New Book Takes Feminism To The Woodshed

The Flipside of Feminism: What Conservative Women Know -- and Men Can't Say by Suzanne Venker
and Phyllis Schlafly

The authors' presentation shows on C-SPAN II on April 2 at 9 P.M. EST and on April 3 at 5 P.M. EST.

From the description at

What if everything you've been told about women in America is wrong? What if what your college professors taught you - along with television, movies, books, magazine articles, and even news reports - have all been lies or distortions?

Since the 1960s, American feminists have set themselves up as the arbiters of all things female. Their policies have dominated the social and political landscape. The "spin sisters" in the media (aptly named by Myrna Blyth in her book of the same name) and their cohorts in academia are committed feminists. Consequently, everything Americans know -- or think they know -- about marriage, kids, sex, education, politics, gender roles, and work/family balance, has been filtered through a left-wing lens.

But what if conservative women are in the best position to empower American women?

Forty years have passed since the so-called women's movement claimed to liberate women from preconceived notions of what it means to be female -- and the results are in. The latest statistics from the National Bureau of Economic Research show that as women have gained more freedom, more education, and more power, they have become less happy.

Enough, say Suzanne Venker, an emerging young author, and veteran warrior Phyllis Schlafly. It's time to liberate America from feminism's dead-end road. Cast off the ideology that preaches faux empowerment and liberation from men and marriage. While modern women enjoy unprecedented freedom and opportunities, Venker and Schlafly argue that this progress is not the result of feminism.

Women's progress has been a natural evolution - due in large part to men's contributions. American men are not a patriarchal bunch, as feminists claim. They have, in fact, aided women's progress. And like women, they have been just as harmed by the feminist movement.

In The Flipside of Feminism, Venker and Schlafly provide readers with a new view of women in America -- one that runs counter to what Americans have been besieged with for decades. Their book demonstrates that conservative women are, in fact, the most liberated women in America and the folks to whom young people should be turning for advice. Their confident and rational approach to the battle of the sexes is precisely what America needs.

UPDATE. I saw most of the authors' presentation on C-SPAN II. They addressed well the idea that we have to honor today's feminist movement because of women's suffrage. They pointed out that nobody around today remembers when women didn't have the ballot and it's absurd to credit today's feminist movement for that long-distant development. They pointed out that the suffragettes of that era considered abortion an abomination. Preserving every minute detail of a woman's right to execute her unwanted prenatal child is the major preoccupation of the feminist movement of our era.  

They also mentioned the pay gap, the major propaganda tool of feminists, and how it is the result of women's own choices--not necessarily bad choices--rather than victimization. When appropriate statistical comparisons are made women often come out ahead.

UPDATE II. You can still view their lecture at

A good source to consult on the gender economic debates is Catherine Hakim at . You will find there a downloadable PDF of  "Feminist Myths and Magic Medicine: flawed thinking behind calls for further equality legislation" and the opportunity to purchase a hard copy.
conceptualclarity conceptualclarity
51-55, M
10 Responses Apr 2, 2011

well, i am a conservative and non-feminest... i think it's a shame what women have become. i think both genders need to stand up and take responsibility, relearn how to respect each other... without the basic respect, nothing will ever change.

I do not agree that those who support women's rights are automatically feminists. I am not a feminist, period. Let's face it, many women like have an advantage in universities and in workplaces--this is ‘feminism’, holding that females should have special access over that had by males. Otherwise, why called it 'feminism'? True equal rights contain not gender identification, either things are equal or they are not. It is about people, not about men versus women. I also think that men have had a great influence on creating and supporting opportunities for women’s achievements. As an example, my mother abandoned my father and myself when I four years old. She crushed both of us, and yet my father never called her names, nor said that women were evil. Quite the opposite in fact, he always acknowledged women who had achieved wonderful things, like Amelia Earhart. But he also called a spade a spade. If a woman was being foolish he pointed it out and all of this gave me a balanced sense of achievement and honor--be it men or women. From my time on this earth I have concluded that indeed if it looks like a duck and quacks...well you get the point. Common sense told me a long time ago that feminists were just women who wanted an unfair advantage because they were afraid of competing on a level playing field with men. Meanwhile, the smartest women I ever knew never whined about the 'male dominated' world, they just did what they had to do and were very successful. What bothers me now is the silent majority of women these days who don't speak up for men, sitting idly by while men are p*ss*fied, minimized, bullied, and shortchanged by feminism. By doing nothing these women are saying that it's okay to get something for nothing and that they would rather self-victimize than compete with men for a good education, good jobs, and a good life. I once had a young teaching colleague laugh when I pointed out an inequity that favored women. She laughed and said, 'that's just the way it is'. At that moment, she lost much of my respect for her. In the same vein, don't women realize that men who are the victims of anti-male discrimination (or just live in that atmosphere) increasingly take women less seriously--after all, they feel that men in their college classes or workplaces got there through competition, while women may have just been handed the opportunity. Don’t women see how demeaning this is to WOMEN?

Wow! I could have said it better myself. Actually i could have said it that well to begin with.

Excellent comment. Happy to have you comment on my stories anytime.

How do women have an unfair advantage over men in University???
It is true that more females than males obtain degrees, but that is because more males than females choose careers in the trades and labour over professional occupations. I do not believe that there are any quota systems anymore for women in professional programs, at least not in Canada. We still have a very large percentage of female medical students graduating, but far less female engineering students; this is due to interest.
If someone can give me even 1 example where men are oppressed in the world today, which isn't a direct result of patriarchal gender stereotypes I would take posts like yours a lot more seriously. all i see here are folks complaining because of the loss of male privilege , and nor because of any real oppression.

You have been shown examples on EP, such as in the video I pointed you to recently. You simply aren't willing to see.

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The idea that feminism can be thought of as something other than what the activists and organizations who call themselves feminists do and say is total rubbish. <br />
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Feminists do not support women's right to be homemakers. One of their leading lights, Simone de Beauvoir, said women must not be allowed to stay home with their children. From about 1970 on feminists engaged in a loud and virulent campaign of denigration of housewifehood that has caused great psychological anguish to homemakers. Feminists successfully promote government policies that favor working mothers over housewives.<br />
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I support all the rights jane mentioned and I most certainly am not a feminist. Atri is on target when she said "I had the right to vote, drive, healthcare, get married or not get married since I became of legal age. Modern day feminists, the NOW gang had nothing to do with it." The feminists viciously attack Sarah Palin. Feminism is just a movement for left-wing women.

Posted by Atri on Nov 9th, 2011 at 7:27PM
Sorrygumshoejane. They do not support a womans right to be a housewife. They ridicule it. I find feminists to be extremely hypocritical. I heard them defending a womans right to do what she wanted but when talking to me and women in the same business as I was in we were chastised severly and ridiculed and called names. Still are to this day. Another is if you are not a liberal they won't give you the time of day. In fact they will attack a conservative woman in some of the most vile ways. I had the right to vote, drive, healthcae, get married or not get married since I became of legal age. Modern day feminists, the NOW gang had nothing to do with it.

I do agree the radical feminist really screwed it up for much of what you are saying, but the thing is, they are what most think of as feminists, Not what you are describing.

Personally I think the feminists of the 60's to today have done more harm to women and men. The left has been feminizing or trying to feminize men from day one. I have dealt with sexual harrassment without political correctness, without Gloria Allred or Molly Yard. I made three times the money per day in my industry than a man did. Littlerally I made $300 for the same things as a guy got $100 and for some things I got $400 a day for my performance.

This book sounds supper and I am going to order it when I finish here. :)

Feminism is about choice and about preserving the human rights of females!<br />
Feminism supports a womans right to choose to be a homemaker ( we wish these wonderful mothers could be paid a mangers wage for it too!)<br />
if one believes in the womans right to vote, the right to drive, the right to education, the right to healthcare, the right to not get married: then one is a feminist! Most men are feminists at least in North America!<br />
i think people get extreme radical feminists mixed up with the beautiful movement that is feminism.

I totally agree. So many people mangle the feminist ideology, and in so doing, make the rest of us look like weird misandrists. I am proud to call myself a feminist, and feminism has ALWAYS been about gender equality. Early feminists may have seemed militant because they had so much misogynist inequality to overcome, but these days, we're all pretty moderate, and that includes choosing to be a homemaker, and astronaut, or a marine. The extremists are no more of a representation of feminism than the Westboro Baptist Church is of mainstream Christianity.

"I think people get extreme radical feminists mixed up with the beautiful movement that is feminism."

I couldn't have said it better myself!

Guavachick, you say "The extremists are no more of a representation of feminism than the Westboro Baptist Church is of mainstream Christianity." I challenge you to name me one important feminist leader or one widely read feminist author who is not an extremist. Gloria Steinem, Germaine Greer, Susan Brownmiller, Andrea Dworkin, Catherine MacKinnon, Bella Abzug, Betty Friedan, Naomi Wolfe, Shere Hite, Susan Faludi, Barbara Ehrenreich, Simone de Beauvoir, Maureen Dowd. Harriet Harman--all of them and many others demonstrably misandristic extremists. So where are the reasonable moderates in the ranks of feminist opinion leaders?

"Early feminists may have seemed militant because they had so much misogynist inequality to overcome." Actually, no. When the modern feminist movement appeared, Western society was in fact very rapidly responsive to it. Legislation mandating equal pay for equal work was passed in the US Congrees in 1963, when modern feminism was barely underway; it didn't really hit its stride till about seven years later. and I remember the first decade of my life before the feminist ascendency. It was not a time of misogyny. Thanks to feminism, there is drastically more gender hatred now than then, and it's overwhelmingly directed against men. As for "feminism has ALWAYS been about gender equality", please see Southpaugh's comment here.

Thank you Guavachick! You are exactly right.

Hi, Conceptualclarity.
First of all, a lot of people confuse gender feminism with feminism. Gender feminism, as a rule, has a lot of hatred and bitterness at its roots, but it is by no means the basis of feminism. (To use my own example, it’s the Westboro Baptist Church of feminism.) Feminism defends a woman’s right to choose her own destiny in the same way as a man. Perhaps, to be fair, in this day and age, we should call it equalism or gender-equalism, because that’s more accurate. You asked me to see Southpaugh’s comment. I did see it, and respectfully disagree with it.
You’ve listed a LOT of names to consider; here’s my own rundown:

First off, I agree with your views on Germaine Greer, Andrea Dworkin, and quota-happy Harriet Harman. They are extreme to the extent that they seem to want the old ways in existence , but with the groups reversed. Germaine Greer can get a bit paranoid, as could Andrea Dworkin (though her history may have something to do with it); I’m with you there, and there’s no reason to favour ANYONE for a job when all other qualifications remain equal.
Naomi Wolf could be viewed as an extremist, too, but most of her work is academic and theoretical, so I can’t see how she’s a threat; most people don’t understand her theories, much less apply them.
Maureen Dowd, who, while her writing can be a bit abrasive at times, certainly doesn’t come across as a hardcore feminist; she is much better known as a hardcore liberal!
Catherine MacKinnon’s anti-harassment work in the legal field should, in theory anyway, benefit men just as it should women, and I’m honestly sorry that your own complaints about sexual harassment were researching what women thought were their biggest issues, a movement, which you mentioned, was met with great approval and success. This indicates that perhaps it was necessary, and that women especially (and some enlightened men), really supported the idea of equality by law.
You challenged me to name me one important feminist leader or one widely read feminist author who is not an extremist. My first impulse was to nominate Betty Friedan, who, as I mentioned, really came down hard on gender feminists because they defeat the ultimate goals of true feminism. Since you classified her as an extremist, I nominate bell hooks. I challenge you to find any misadry in anything that she has said or done.
Why should women not have the same rights to decide on their fate that men have? What aspect of feminism do you find so repugnant? When all is said and done, it’s a movement that represents legal equality of the genders; that’s it!
not dealt with professionally. That’s not feminism at work; it’s stupidity, and someone should be held accountable.
I have no idea whatsoever why you mentioned Susan Brownmiller, Bella Abzug, or Shere Hite. Susan Brownmiller is less a feminist extremist than an anti-rape activist, and Shere Hite is a sexologist dealing with female sexuality, and is not known for her feminist views at all. Bella Abzug also never said anything misandric, and I only recently found out that she was a feminist at all; I thought she was simply known for her work against racism and for legal reform!
I’ve read a LOT of Barbara Ehrenreich’s work; she is hardly a misadrist. She states facts in her work that can be cross referenced anywhere, and yes, she takes a stand against the historical subjugation of women in society, and against the historical subjugation of many groups of oppressed and formerly oppressed people in society.
Susan Faludi did not oppose women being housewives; she opposed women being criticized for NOT being housewives. BIG difference there.
Simone de Beauvoir, Gloria Steinem, and Betty Friedan spoke out against the status quo in which women had very little choice regarding their own life paths. This does not make them extremists, but humans demanding what we now understand as basic human rights. I am ESPECIALLY astonished that you mentioned Betty Friedan; she stood against the gender feminism which you seem to equate with legitimate feminism. She also founded (or helped found, depending whom you ask) the modern feminist movement after painstakingly

None of my "enter spaces" seem to have gone through. Sorry for any difficulty reading my comment!

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good post dear

There have been some really good articals in the womans magazine I read lately and surprisingly anti feminist so when I get a chance I will do some stories on those, Bit busy today, lots to do so am just snatching a quick cuppa!

Sounds good. I hope you will yet do it.

Thanks will have a look at those when I have a bit more time. :o)

Please see my update to the story. I will soon post a story with a good refutation of the "pay gap" notion.<br />
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It has been pointed out that feminism is not a movement for women in general but rather for left-wing women with a career-oriented lifestyle. They have actually created anguish for millions of ordinary women as you well describe. Don't feel shame. Look people in the eye and proudly tell them what you do. You owe it to other women as well as to yourself to not let people put down housewives.

There are some parts of feminism that I support, my vote for instance I would be gutted to loose it and woman should get equal pay to men when they have to work, trouble is it has gone too far the other way now. You can't go a whole day without coming across an example where men have been disempowered so that women can get ahead, and they make you feel guilty about not going out to work. When someone asks me what I do for a living I have to stop myself from saying "I'm just a housewife" Feminists have made it a crime to want to raise your kids yourself. I know I work damn hard keeping the house and sorting out the children. I know I am good at it. Actually I am equal to my husband in the importance of the skills I use every day but feminists have belittled me to the point where I feel shame when I say I'm a house wife, or should I say domestic technician lol?