Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Confirmational Creativity

 "...the uncomfortable question of whether a book can arrive at the larger truths if the bricks on which it is built won't stand up to time."--Alan Wolfe

This is a kind comment on "The Feminine Mystique" by Betty Freidan, a seminal writing on feminism. The book contains some remarkable ideas that are similar to creationism in their simple and proud ignorance. Just one notion is that gender differences in behavior are culturally created; that is, we learn to be masculine or feminine and, in a neutral environment, both genders would be pretty much the same. One might wonder why farmers teach their bulls to be so unmanageable but high flying thinking does not bother with the mundane. Equality is at stake here. Since legal or spiritual equality is unsatisfactory, sameness must be achieved by other means.

Honest errors are wonderful because they can be changed and improved with education and a good heart. This kind of thinking is unsettling because its conclusions are clearly predetermined and, as such, are immune to correction. The end-point must be reached by any means possible.

And strangely, those that pursue this type of distortion take themselves much more seriously than did, for example, the creators of Piltdown Man or Cardiff Man.

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