Monday, July 10, 2006

Why would a feminist wear high heels?

The typical stick-heeled high heeled shoes that the fashion industry insists that women wear are pointless and idiotic. I could maybe see wearing them if your partner has some kind of sexual kink involving such shoes - and then only if you're pretty sure you won't be walking around much in them - but other than that, what's the point?

In her annoying, typically light-weight review of Katha Pollitt's latest book Virginity or Death! Ana Marie Cox, aka Wonkette, complains that mean old Katha is too strident because she expresses distate for such shoes. Cox says:
But there’s a world of difference between choosing to wear heels that require foot-soaking and choosing to cut your toe to fit your shoe.

But the difference is degree, not kind.

Other then some kind of iron-clad traditionalist aesthetic that causes you to be utterly incapable of shaking the idea that mincing around on your tip-toes is the pinnacle of beauty, or being a slave to the fashion industry, what possible reason is there for any woman, much less any feminist to wear stick-heeled tippy tap shoes for walking around in? It makes NO SENSE AT ALL.

So Pollitt objects to high heels and Cox calls her strident. Anybody who doubts Cox's fundamental anti-feminist position should think about that for a moment. "Strident" is an absolute cliche of anti-feminist rhetoric. And to use it in reference to a reasonable and relatively low-keyed writer like Pollitt (who once suggested I tone down my rhetoric when I cc'd her on an email) is simply Cox's way of upholding the grand anti-feminist tradition of characterizing ALL feminists as "strident."