(urth) Wolfe: Misogynist or Realist?

Daniel D Jones ddjones at riddlemaster.org
Wed Oct 18 13:50:27 PDT 2006

On Wednesday 18 October 2006 08:35, b sharp wrote:
> Daniel D. Jones raises an important question:  Is Wolfe's "misogyny"
> presented in a way which is meant to inspire outrage in a reader, or a
> recognition of how things "really" are?  I think people are disagreeing on
> this.
> Mo's observation that few women seem to become Wolfe fanatics is germaine.
> There was an Alice who appeared on this list in its early days and I think
> I remember a complaint or two about Wolfe's presentation of women from her.
> This suggests to me that Wolfe is not so successful if he is trying to
> inspire outrage or empathy in regard to women's issues.  I don't think he
> is trying to.

To tie this into another recent thread, does it matter what his intent is?  
The story stands or falls on its own merits, not the author's intent.  If 
intent does matter, then, while Wolfe may not be attempting to inspire 
outrage or emapathy, I don't think he's trying to encourage or praise 
misogyny either.

In the particular story DoDrI, I don't think misogyny was a theme of the story 
so much as was the value of human beings, regardless of gender.  Behaviorism 
and similar theories which treated human beings as machine-like automatons 
were in vogue at the time the story was written.  I'd strongly suspect that 
this is more relevant to interpreting the story than is the treatment of 

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