My favorite period in feminism has always been the 1920s and 1930s, when American women energized by winning the vote gained worldwide prominence for their professional achievements. My early role models, Amelia Earhart and Katharine Hepburn, were fierce individualists and competitors who liked and admired men and who never indulged in the tiresome, snippy rote male-bashing that we constantly hear from today’s feminists.
It was also (not coincidentally) the “golden age” of women ministers in modern Pentecost, a fact which I touched on in my last post. After 1950, setting women into ministry in Pentecostal churches (in the Church of God at least) went into decline until recent times.
Another thing that experienced a “golden age” in the 1930’s was aviation, where women such as Earhart and Laura Ingalls made their mark. My grandfather was part of that era and I discuss that–and womens’ achievements there–in more detail here.
What happened? In short, World War II, which induced many changes into American society that are still not appreciated. Today we work under a paradigm (or paradigms, some of which are self-contradictory) that really isn’t working for anybody. A good example of this comes from another observation from Paglia:
The main point here is that we should have had our first woman president way back in the 1990s, but neither Pelosi nor Feinstein, the leading female candidates, chose to run, as even Elizabeth Dole bravely did. There is absolutely no mythical “misogyny” holding back American women from the presidency: for heaven’s sake, the U.S. has had women mayors, senators, and governors for decades now.
We should have had our first women president then, but instead we got that Scots-Irish wonder kid, Bill Clinton. Had we done so, as head of government she would have been sandwiched between the UK’s Margaret Thatcher and Theresa May, both of whom were or are Tories. (Even Turkey, Pakistan, Indonesia and Bangladesh, Muslim countries all, have beat us to the punch on this one…) Something is wrong, but our heated rhetoric confounds our ability to fix it.