I almost finished reading Germaine Greer's "The Whole Woman". A very thought-provoking book.
There is a perception about feminists in some quarters (correct me if I'm wrong) that they abhor motherhood and domesticity, hate men and want women to hold a superior position to women. I came across a particular blog on sulekha.com here:
http://sulekha.com/blogs/blogdisplay.aspx?cid=89707 where the author has commented about the higher suicide rates of men. I just don't understand his logic there.
This book is totally different from what you would expect. She has, in fact, called upon women to be proud of their bodies as they are, to celebrate their womanhood, to not look upon their periods as dirty. She has talked volumes about motherhood and stood up for all mothers. All the pro-lifers and pro-choice people in the US and elsewhere must read what she has to say about abortion. She is neither on the left or right on this issue. What she says about sex and gender politics does make a lot of sense.
In essence, she has talked about giving single mothers social and economic support. Mothers should have the option to either stay at home or work. I have been thinking about this issue long before I read her book. Is our modern corporate culture itself unfriendly to women? I mean, our lifestyle is really so unnatural at times. People in cities have to work for long hours coupled with the harrowing daily commute. Where is the time for family or even for oneself? Parents, particularly mothers, might feel guilty about leaving their kids to the care of strangers while they juggle work and home responsibilities. Again, it is the mother who shoulders the maximum proportion of the blame.
The recent ascent of Indra Nooyi to the top slot at PepsiCo proves that when corporates lend a helping hand to women in managing their family life, there's nothing stopping the motivated females. Here is a post that talks of her success and on how she coped.
I have a lot to say about the possibilty of menstrual leave, but more about that on another day.