Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Thought experiment number 1

Let us buy an island somewhere and conduct an experiment in feminist utopianism. It would be the most addictive reality-TV show ever – lets call it ‘Big Sister’. Any woman who wanted to go and live there could do so free of charge – I’m sure there would be no shortage of volunteers. No men would be permitted to land, other than authorised TV technicians on brief visits to repair equipment during the day. No rules would be imposed other than that tampering with TV equipment would be prohibited. On humanitarian grounds I suggest that only those with no dependent children be admitted. The community would be completely autonomous, its members would be entirely free to choose their own leaders (if any), make their own laws (if any), and run their own economy. I will let the reader fill in the fine details for themselves.

If we set up such a community, what would it be like? Would it be a socialist-feminist heaven on earth? A paradise of peace, egalitarianism and co-operation? I doubt it. We could all sit back and watch the saga unfold on the internet: the bitching and the clique-formation, the organised psychological abuse, the gossiping and sexual coercion, the screaming and the self-harm, the sobbing in the dark.

I wonder how long it would be before the electricity stopped working, and the rubbish began piling up in the streets, and the drains were blocked, and the rats didn’t even bother to hide any more. We could decide to call the experiment off when the first cholera outbreak occurs.

Perhaps this wouldn’t happen though. Maybe at first a rota system would be drawn up, and every woman would do her fair share working in the sewers and carrying garbage. Soon though, some women would manage to exempt themselves from their share. “I can’t do it because of my asthma / bad back / allergy”, or “I’m too busy with more important work to do mine today, can you cover for me?”. There is also “I’ll cover your garbage detail for you for the next month if you’ll use your influence on the committee to get me a nicer room”. Of course, let’s not forget that timeless favourite, “Do my garbage detail for me or I’ll break your legs / scratch your face / tell the boss what you said about her”. Instead of cholera outbreaks or egalitarian work rotas, perhaps instead we would see the emergence of a social underclass, whose job it would be to do all the dirty work that no one else wants to do. That is what has happened in our own case after all. It is interesting that in our own case, that underclass consists entirely of men. Feminists consistently offer no explanation of why this is. Worse than that, they actually blame the men involved for doing the work.

Big Sister – coming right to your living room. Who says the revolution will not be televised?

1 comment:

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