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Where once a young woman had to be ashamed of her sexual experience today she is ashamed of her sexual inexperience Where not long ago an unmarried woman was ashamed to give public evidence of sexual desire by living with someone today she must be ashamed to give evidence of romantic desire From sex education in grade school to coed bathrooms in college today's young woman is being pressured relentlessly to overcome her embarrassment her hang ups and especially her romantic hopes Meanwhile the problems young women struggle with grow steadily extreme from sexual harassment stalking and date rape to anorexia and self mutilation Both men and women endlessly lament the loss of privacy and of real intimacy What is it all about Beholden neither to conservatives who discount as exaggeration the dangers facing you Shalit s book offers encouragement to women who are unhappy with the way the sexual revolution has buried the concepts of chivalry and courtship in an avalanche of low expectations leaving women vulnerable to sexual pressure harassment and objectification She calls both conservatives and feminists eually to task She wants conservatives to take the claims of feminists about the modern sufferings of women anorexia date rape harassment etc seriously but she wants feminists to consider that these sufferings may not be the result of the patriarchy but of the attitudes born of the sexual revolution She wants them to consider that patriarchy and misogyny are not synonyms and that when the concepts of female modesty and male honor are toppled the effect may be that misogyny actually has freer reign Conservatives Shalit says want women to be ladies while still getting to do whatever they the men want On the other hand Feminists hope to change the behavior of men without the women having to changeThey want the men to be gentlemen without women having to be ladies Kudos to Shalit for saying things many women believe but are afraid to say for fear of being called sexist or submissive Those who adorn the altar of sexual choice rarely seem to understand that the sexual choices individual women make DO collectively affect the reality of how men on average treat women on average Women with a cartel of virtue can influence how the majority of men approach sex and relationships In the absence of that cartel however women are subjected to increased ungentelmanlinke behavior and experience difficulty finding men who are willing to offer any level of commitment prior to sex When women as a group forsake their natural power it becomes difficult to reclaim that power individually Older feminist tell young women You have a choice to be abstinent why should you care what other women do But women of my generation didn t choose the world we live in the world the architects of the sexual revolution created for us before we were born a world where most men expect sex of women long before marriage and where natural modesty is often called a hang up We would have voted for the right to eual treatment under the law but who s to say we would have voted to be asked for sex on the first date Unfortunately my generation never got a vote in the sexual revolution and now the guardians of the status uo grow indignant when any of us suggests we don t care for the results Shalit has an interesting take on how harassment laws and dating codes developed When society treats sexual differences and sex itself as insignificant sooner or later unchivalrous behavior becomes common If women are offended by the way men approach them then they must be the ones with the problem they are prudes or they are uncomfortable in their bodies or they are too intense While the feminists don t think a man has a right to make a woman feel uncomfortable for any reason how can men take a woman s discomfort seriously in the world created by the sexual revolutionaries where sex is nothing special and any talk of female vulnerability is synonymous with oppression So what do feminist do when they discover that a lot of women don t want to treat sex with as much detachment as men Do they encourage women to reinstate the cartel of virtue Of course not That s sexist and unthinkable So instead they turn to written laws and regulations and codes of dating and sexual harassment trying to enforce from above decent behaviors and attitudes that society once merely took for granted and the result is a web of intimidation condescension and double standards Instead of telling men they are sexist if they think they owe women special treatment merely because they are women instead of inviting everyone to believe sex is trivial and then prosecuting men when they behave as if that s true wouldn t it be so much easier if people just taught their sons a sense of honor and their daughters a sense of modesty so that having sex with inebriated half conscious college girls and inviting strippers to your frat party and telling dirty jokes to your female co workers were simply unthought of So is Shalit advocating women be forced to wear buras That s not he point Her point is that a voluntary return to modesty which has to do with expectations and attitudes about sex than specific dress would be good for women and that women benefit when the society they inhabit supports the concepts of modesty and male honor I agree So why only three stars Because of several flaws in the way she presents her argument She makes sweeping generalizations and speaks in freuent hyperboles For instance she repeatedly suggests that women can t feel safe walking alone on the streets Overall I think she gives men a raw deal I sometimes get the sense that men are being condemned for their sexual behavior while women are merely being pitied She tends to speak of indecent male behaviors as though they were typical as if the losers she dated in college were entirely representative of the American male She often speaks in a condescending way about men For example a return to modesty she says invites men to consider What s fun about forcing someone into sex in the first place Now perhaps she doesn t mean to imply that most men haven t considered that rape might not be fun but really how would your average man feel upon reading that sentence This book was written shortly after Shalit graduated college and I think she had a somewhat insular view of the world Her view of men it seems has been largely informed by college frat boys liberal male philosophy professors the rantings of anti male feminists and articles in Cosmo I don t think a woman who had been married ten years and given birth to one or sons could possibly write this book the way she wrote it As in Girls Gone Mild Shalit relies mostly on anecdotal evidence using extreme examples as though they were normative When she does use statistics I am often skeptical of her sources because the numbers are often suspiciously high 78% of men have cheated on their wives 65% of teenage boys in a Rhode Island study said they thought it was acceptable to force sex on a girlfriend after six months of dating If your goal is to convince women that their desire for true love and commitment is not unrealistic then it probably doesn t help to imply that the overwhelming majority of men are adulterers and rapists She tends to treat her own personal experience and observations in the very liberal parts of the country in which she has lived as indicative of national and generational trends Although I was born the same year as Shalit and attended public schools my entire life my own observations and experiences are different I don t recall the boys ridiculing the girls by the lockers in 4th grade after being taught how to masturbate in sex ed My 5th grade teacher most certainly did not keep a stash of condoms in her desk drawer to distribute to 11 year olds when they asked for safety pins Casual hook ups occurred at my college but I never had the sense they were the norm dating was I had never even heard the term check up before I read this book I never had a female friend assume I wanted many men or advise me to show skin I m not sure if Shalit realizes that her experiences may have been atypical of the nation at large Shalit tends to blame society for all individual choices allowing limited room for personal responsibility At one point she even says that the murder of a woman by her stalker should be on ALL of our consciences I m sure there are as Shalit has said women who do not know their feelings of modesty and their desire to link sex and commitment are normal I understand that adolescence is a time where everything is dramatic and that many young women do fear being alone and so say yes to sex when they don t really want to Yet ultimately they do have a choice to follow their feelings instead of what they believe society expects of them Being counter cultural isn t easy but nor is it uite as hard as Shalit makes it out to be It s difficult to strain against the expectations of your environment but to some extent people choose their environments by choosing their friends their colleges their extracurricular activities and their religion As I read Shalit recounting how she used to pretend to be sexually experienced than she was to gain approval I often found myself thinking why don t you just find better friends who don t tell you to show skin so you can have many men Why don t you look for men to date in synagogue instead of in your Liberal Indoctrination 101 class Shalit is lifting her voice to make the alternatives to a sex saturated culture clear and to defend modesty and sexual restraint in a society that too often mocks them I hope her voice will reach those young women who suppress their feelings and consciences in order to run with the boys Yet the final responsibility for sexual choices must ultimately rest with the individual

Summary â E-book, or Kindle E-pub ´ Wendy Shalit

A Return to Modesty Discovering the Lost Virtue

Ial construct but a natural response And modesty is not prudery but a way to preserve a sense of the erotic in our lives With humor and piercing insight Shalit invites us to look beyond the blush and consider the new power to be found in an old ideal She maintains that the sex education curriculum forced on those of her generation from an early age is fundamentally flawed centered as it is on overcoming reticence what we today call hang ups Shalit surprisingly and persuasively argues that without these misnamed hang ups there can be no true surrender no richness and depth to relations between the sexes The natural inclination toward modesty is not a hang up that we should set out to cure but rather a wonderful instinct that if rediscovered and given the right social support has the power to transform socie Hoorah for Wendy Shalit I m glad someone out there has made a great case for not only modesty in dress but importantly modesty in behavior In a world that tells us that we are eual to men in every way except anatomy I m glad that Wendy was brave enough to uncover the truth Through extensive research and often times shocking anecdotes we discover the disintegration of the virtuous woman and the great need for women young and old alike to unite forces and dispel the popular version of what womanhood is supposed to be Popular being hooking up shacking up and a complete disregard for anything lovely virtuous of good report or praisworthy A virtuous woman has the power to demand respect from her male counterpart and come on ladiesisn t that what we want 6 Nichijou 6 prudery but a way to Surrender To A Millionaire preserve a sense of the erotic in our lives With humor and The White Rose And The Black piercing insight Shalit invites us to look beyond the blush and consider the new Birdmen 1 power to be found in an old ideal She maintains that the sex education curriculum forced on those of her generation from an early age is fundamentally flawed centered as it is on overcoming reticence what we today call hang ups Shalit surprisingly and Maggie persuasively argues that without these misnamed hang ups there can be no true surrender no richness and depth to relations between the sexes The natural inclination toward modesty is not a hang up that we should set out to cure but rather a wonderful instinct that if rediscovered and given the right social support has the Love By Design power to transform socie Hoorah for Wendy Shalit I m glad someone out there has made a great case for not only modesty in dress but importantly modesty in behavior In a world that tells us that we are eual to men in every way except anatomy I m glad that Wendy was brave enough to uncover the truth Through extensive research and often times shocking anecdotes we discover the disintegration of the virtuous woman and the great need for women young and old alike to unite forces and dispel the Secret Classrooms popular version of what womanhood is supposed to be Popular being hooking up shacking up and a complete disregard for anything lovely virtuous of good report or Beautiful Torment Beautiful 1 praisworthy A virtuous woman has the Endless Chain power to demand respect from her male counterpart and come on ladiesisn t that what we want

Wendy Shalit ´ 9 Download

Ng women nor to feminists who steadfastly affix blame on the patriarchy Wendy Shalit proposes that in fact we have lost our respect for an important classical virtue that of sexual modesty A Return to Modesty is a deeply personal account as well as a fascinating intellectual exploration From seventeenth century manners guides to Antonio Canova's sculpture Venus Italico to Frank Loesser's 1948 tune Baby It's Cold Outside A Return to Modesty unfolds like a detective's search for a lost idea as Shalit uncovers opinions about this lost virtue's importance from Balzac to Simone de Beauvoir that have not been aired for decades Then she knocks down the accompanying myths one by one Female modesty is not about a sexual double standard as is often thought but is related to male virtue and honor Modesty is not a soc Skylar s excellent review of this book did make me view it a bit critically but for the most part I think Wendy Shalit has portrayed American society with dead on accuracy Her main contentions are these 1 If women would hold themselves to higher standards of modesty and men would hold themselves to higher standards of honor we would have a much healthier society overall 2 The reason for such problems as anorexia and cutting amongst girls is not because the girls themselves are sick but because they are reacting to a sick society which pressures them to become sexualized before they really want to 3 No change in the current climate will come about unless masses of young women begin saying no proudly Otherwise they ll always be thought of as weird hung up repressed etc Shalit defends each of these claims with extensive citations from psychological studies headlines in women s magazines personal anecdotes Victorian literature Western philosophy classical and modern feminist thought and Torah sources Her target audience is secular so she defends modesty by pointing out in painful detail the damage excessive immodesty has done to marriage love and relationships As she admits herself her discussion of modesty is NOT modest So this is not an uplifting book on tznius like Doesn t Anyone Blush Any or OutsideInside This is a scathing look at secular culture in the post feminist era Sheltered FFB women would be shocked BTs will see a familiar world and be all the gladder they left it behind May Hashem help that young secular women get hold of this book and be strengthened to take a new kind of feminist stand


10 thoughts on “A Return to Modesty Discovering the Lost Virtue

  1. says:

    Shalit's book offers encouragement to women who are unhappy with the way the sexual revolution has buried the concepts of chivalry and courtship in an avalanche of low expectations leaving women vulnerable to sexual pressure harassment and objectification She calls both conservatives and feminists eually to task She wants conservatives to take the claims of feminists about the modern sufferings of women anorexia date rape harassment etc

  2. says:

    A like minded individual would love this book and uestion none of it But as one of those feminists Shalit refers to somewhat derisively in her book I could not help but notice Shalit's casual tossing of completely unfounded statements

  3. says:

    Despite being an easy funny chatty read this book was thought provoking I really mean that I did uite often stop to think back over my own sexual experiences and how they might fit into Wendy Shalit's idea of what's erotic what's modest and how they fit togetherShalit's argument is interesting because in a world where everyone seems to be sneering at everyone else for either being a slut or a prude a cad or a loser Shalit claims t

  4. says:

    Skylar's excellent review of this book did make me view it a bit critically but for the most part I think Wendy Shalit has portrayed American society with dead on accuracy Her main contentions are these 1 If women would hold themselves to higher standards of modesty and men would hold themselves to higher standards of honor we would have a much healthier society overall 2 The reason for such problems as anorexia and cutting amongs

  5. says:

    I originally read this book when it first came out I was a 19 year old and very earnest new feminist and women's studies major Everyone around me told me this woman was laughable and at the same time incredibly dangerous Perplexed of course I had to take a look I was stunned to find that I agreed with her on many points and shared her discomfort with the way certain things are foisted on us nowadays advanced sexual knowledge before puberty

  6. says:

    I had very mixed feelings about this book I agreed with just about everything Shalit had to say and I really enjoyed reading about Orthodox Jewish practices and laws having had almost no prior exposure to them Her analysis of the culture is dead on and I completely agree that modesty is in danger of dying out and that abandonment of it is what has placed us in such an amoral stateThat said however I just didn't care for the writing style

  7. says:

    Argh If it wasn't for the publication of Shalit's most recent book Girls Gone Mild I'd suggest someone tell her to grow up a bit before writing anotherShe has some interesting points but I definitely get a blame the victim sense from her regarding her look at the exploitation of women in media and the trend of s

  8. says:

    Edit I dropped this down from 2 stars to 1 unfortunately it can't go lower bc of the archaic sexist bs that shalit writes Ladies ask yourselves this why can men be completely shirtless in public which was not only illegal but immoral prior to the 1930s but women have to be modest Why can men have sex with as many women as they want but women have to save it for marriage What are they saving You know the hymen is a MYTH right Why

  9. says:

    Hoorah for Wendy Shalit I'm glad someone out there has made a great case for not only modesty in dress but importantly modesty in behavior In a world that tells us that we are eual to men in every way except anatomy I'm glad that W

  10. says:

    Another of my all time favorites I read this book as a college student in a 'clothing' class not just a sewing class but so much and was so immediately struck by how much it helped me to explain my own feelings about modesty in a world where that word has almost no meaning any I really really think this should be reuired reading for all teenage girls; unfortunately there are probably many people in this world including women who must not r

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