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Wednesday, March 22, 2017
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News-Sentinel.com Your Town. Your Voice.

Forum File

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.The Associated Press

Alarms and diversions for the thinking person

Saturday, March 11, 2017 05:01 am
The reading list “It is happily the case that in 2017 there are more women in what we would all probably agree are ‘powerful’ positions than there were 10, let alone 50 years ago. Whether that is as politicians, police commissioners, CEOs, judges or whatever, it’s still a clear minority -– but there are more. (If you want some figures, around 4 per cent of UK MPs were women in the 1970s; around 30 per cent are now.) But my basic premise is that our mental, cultural template for a powerful person remains resolutely male. If we close our eyes and try to conjure up the image of a president or (to move into the knowledge economy) a professor, what most of us see isn’t a woman. And that’s just as true even if you are a woman professor: the cultural stereotype is so strong that, at the level of those close-your-eyes fantasies, it is still hard for me to imagine me, or someone like me, in my role. 

“ ...To put this the other way round, we have no template for what a powerful woman looks like, except that she looks rather like a man. The regulation trouser suits, or at least the trousers, worn by so many Western female political leaders, from Merkel to Clinton, may be convenient and practical; they may be a signal of the refusal to become a clothes horse, which is the fate of so many political wives; but they’re also a simple tactic – like lowering the timbre of the voice – to make the female appear more male, to fit the part of power.?“

— From “Women in Power” at lrb.co.uk

A quiz

Which country has the longest coastline?

 Wisdom of the ages



“I must study politics and war that my son may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy.” — John Adams

Current wisdom

“Feminism is about giving women choice. Feminism is not a stick with which to beat other women with.”

Actress Emma Watson, on International Women’s Day

Quiz answer

Canada, at 151,600 miles.

Snob words

demesne (dih-MEYN), n. — land attached to a manor and retained for the owner’s own use; that lands of an estate, as in: “The editorial writer was so lazy that his demesne looked like a wildlife preserve.”

Today in history

On this day in 1918, Moscow became the capital of revolutionary Russia; well, that didn’t work out too well for the rest of the world, did it? 

Now you know

The term “blonde” came from French and kept its masculine and feminine forms; consequently, as a noun, “blond” is a fair-haired male, while “blonde” is a fair-haired female. 

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