Monday, July 29, 2013

The hand that rocks the cradle…

kw: book reviews, nonfiction, sociology

Y'know that T-shirt that says:
If Mama Ain't Happy
Ain't Nobody Happy!
I wish it were truer than it really is. A colleague of mine (now deceased) once said, in his best Bill Cosby voice (though I don't know if the Coz ever said it), "A woman's power lies in saying, 'If you don't, then I won't!'." There's just one trouble with this. Powerful men seldom love any woman enough to care what she may think. Worldwide, all the really powerful men are either adulterous (often rampantly so), or have a harem, in societies that expect that sort of thing from sultans and princes.

I just finished reading The Athena Doctrine: How Women (and the Men Who Think Like Them) Will Rule the Future, by John Gerzema and Michael D'Antonio. In their Introduction, they present ten virtues that women have (or seem to have) in greater measure than men, and state that these virtues comprise the Athena Doctrine, a wiser way to run governments, businesses and families. They illustrate these virtues and combinations of them with stories from ten countries or groups of similar countries. They close by promoting a balance between traditionally male and traditionally female approaches to problem solving and management.

I agree with their thesis. In fact, I'd state their subtitle thus: …How Women Must Prevail if We Are to Have a Future. But I have to say that the book needs to be redone, probably by a married couple of long standing (and, sad to say, in today's America I need to specify that I mean a man and a woman, long married to one another, with equal responsibility in producing the book). The stories are potentially fascinating (each chapter has from about 4 to about 10), but the writing is dull and couldn't hold my attention. There is just a little bit of a fawning note, as if the authors were "women wannabees". I wish it were a better book. Its message is much needed.

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