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Burlesquoni
November 7, 2010 12:51 PM   Subscribe

Maria Laura Rodotà an Italian journalist bemoans Berlusconi´s philandering and the culture of machismo that celebrates his habitual womanising. Rubygate - the latest of many scandals involving teenage girls is shrugged off by the 70 year old as My Passion for women is better than being gay. How much longer can he cling to power? (previously)
posted by adamvasco (73 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

 
"Passion for beautiful young women." Love it. Wealth and power are the only difference between "a passion for beautiful young women" and "that creepy bastard who hangs around the fence and watches the girls' softball practice."
posted by Countess Elena at 1:01 PM on November 7, 2010 [28 favorites]


i love your post title btw
posted by The Lady is a designer at 1:06 PM on November 7, 2010 [6 favorites]


I just learned a new word from the last link: cavort. cavort, cavort, cavort, cavooooort.

Oh, and bunga-bunga, of course. Must try that one next time I meet someone from Italy. I love how they're always embarrassed by Berlusconi.
posted by sour cream at 1:06 PM on November 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


Pretty amazing that in the US you can end up in jail and have lifelong sex offender status if you're a 21-year old and you have sex with a minor, but in Italy if you're a 74-year old man you can sleep with all the minors you want and it's "Ci risiamo con la gnocca!" and some lulz. Italy, you so crazy statutory rape-y.
posted by mullingitover at 1:07 PM on November 7, 2010 [4 favorites]


correction: The "My passion for women" link, which is second to last.
posted by sour cream at 1:08 PM on November 7, 2010


The age of consent in Italy is 14 years (16 if the older is a teacher or adoptive parent or the like). Is there any indication he slept with a 13 year old?

Mind you I think his politics stink and approve of shooting his career down by any means necessary, but regarding their ages we are talking about finger wagging over philandering here, not lawbreaking.
posted by idiopath at 1:17 PM on November 7, 2010 [2 favorites]


in Italy if you're a 74-year old man you can sleep with all the minors you want

That's probably because in America women don't learn to think until they're 18 and thus every teenager that has sex with an adult has to be conned into it because they have absolutely no idea what they're doing, nor have any inkling of the ramifications of their actions.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 1:19 PM on November 7, 2010 [12 favorites]


American ages of minority don't apply to much of Europe, thank goodness.
posted by shinybaum at 1:20 PM on November 7, 2010


> A front-page headline in the rightwing northern daily Libero proclaimed: "Ci risiamo con la gnocca!" ("Here we go again with the pussy").

Well, this is one headline I never have to worry about reading on the front page of a Canadian newspaper. Unless the story is actually about a cat.
posted by The Card Cheat at 1:23 PM on November 7, 2010 [4 favorites]


Huh, they don't apply in a lot of US states, either. That's really weird considering what people online often call statutory rape-y.
posted by shinybaum at 1:24 PM on November 7, 2010


I figured she was of age (although I thought the age was 16, not 14). It's just that her youth makes a very heavy counterweight on the imbalance of power. Just because it's legal doesn't mean it's not gross and feudal to be all up on the youngest of ladies, in his position.
posted by Countess Elena at 1:24 PM on November 7, 2010 [3 favorites]


That's probably because in America women don't learn to think until they're 18.

18 might be old enough to tote a gun. It's not old enough to take a drink though. Maybe the government thinks American women will all get pissed and start fucking old age pensioners?
posted by PeterMcDermott at 1:27 PM on November 7, 2010 [3 favorites]


Eh, he gives them expensive gifts and appoints them to council positions/makes them otherwise famous. Safer than streetwalking at that age and Hugh Hefner seems sleazier by calling them girlfriends.
posted by shinybaum at 1:27 PM on November 7, 2010


idiopath: "The age of consent in Italy is 14 years (16 if the older is a teacher or adoptive parent or the like). Is there any indication he slept with a 13 year old?"

Obviously there are jurisdiction issues, but if Berlusconi was caught doing the same thing he's doing in Milan in Los Angeles, he'd be in prison in short order for statury rape. So sitting here in Los Angeles it feels pretty easy to call him a statury rapist even if it's legal in his little fiefdom.
posted by mullingitover at 1:30 PM on November 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


I don't think it's so much the ages of the girls he's been involved with/paying for, as the cheering section in Italian society that enables him to stay in his position while openly engaging in such behaviour, that is the issue. The rest is technicalities.
posted by jokeefe at 1:31 PM on November 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


Countess Elena: "Just because it's legal doesn't mean it's not gross and feudal to be all up on the youngest of ladies, in his position."

Oh, definitely agreed. He is sleazy, but the above talk about "minors" seemed to be implying the sex was a punishable offense. And there is a big difference between "the Prime Minister is doing some sleazy things that are abusing his power and embarrassing us as a country" and "the Prime Minister gets away with committing crimes that would get other people locked up" (not that the latter isn't happening also - but the sex isn't the crime).
posted by idiopath at 1:31 PM on November 7, 2010 [2 favorites]


[...] as the cheering section in Italian society that enables him to stay in his position while openly engaging in such behaviour

That I agree with. It's an embarrassing aspect of society that cheers him on in his corruption and whatnot because it's manly or something. When older famous people do this in the UK they get laughed at more than anything.
posted by shinybaum at 1:37 PM on November 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


This is a little different; possibly one peccadillo too far
First, in what has inevitably been called "Rubygate" after the stage name of Karima El Mahroug, the dancer who entertained at private parties, it emerged that Mr Berlusconi's office had telephoned Milan police in May after she was arrested and accused of theft.
He allegedly ordered the police to release her, despite the fact that she was a minor with no proper documents, on the false grounds that her grandfather was Hosni Mubarak, the Egyptian president.

I pinched the post title from the Economist but it´s latest story is behind a paywall.
posted by adamvasco at 1:42 PM on November 7, 2010


This afternoon, during his closing address at his Futuro e Libertà party's first congress, rather than deliver the overt defection many were expecting, Fini turned the tables and called for Berlusconi to step down.
posted by progosk at 1:46 PM on November 7, 2010


so am assuming Berlusconi's favorite film director is Roman Polanski :P
posted by liza at 2:01 PM on November 7, 2010 [2 favorites]


18 might be old enough to tote a gun. It's not old enough to take a drink though. Maybe the government thinks American women will all get pissed and start fucking old age pensioners?

"Pensioners" is the British term. Over here we call them "lorries"
posted by delmoi at 2:02 PM on November 7, 2010 [8 favorites]


Ci risiamo con la gnocca!

I wish we had headlines like this here. I'm glad our political leaders are too dumb not to fall all over themselves flailing at the mere whisper of corruption, but damn. Just reading that would be awesome.
posted by flippant at 2:03 PM on November 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


So sitting here in Los Angeles it feels pretty easy to call him a statury rapist even if it's legal in his little fiefdom.

No matter how despicable Berlusconi's behaviour is, this is the kind of attitude that gives Americans a bad name in the rest of the world. Would you accuse someone who has sex with a 16 year old in Nevada of statutory rape because you happen to be in LA?
posted by ssg at 2:34 PM on November 7, 2010 [11 favorites]


Actually, here in Los Angeles, we lobby for them to receive film awards.

I'll just head out on my stilts, now....
posted by effluvia at 2:55 PM on November 7, 2010 [4 favorites]


Just apropos of nothing, I guess, but I was chatting with my Italian fiancee yesterday (who lives in Bologna) and she mentioned how sick she was of hearing about Berlusconi and his antics and seeing his face in the media everywhere all the time.
posted by trip and a half at 3:11 PM on November 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


> "Passion for beautiful young women." Love it. Wealth and power are the only difference between "a passion
> for beautiful young women" and "that creepy bastard who hangs around the fence and watches the girls'
> softball practice."
> posted by Countess Elena at 4:01 PM on November 7 [7 favorites +] [!]

> It's just that her youth makes a very heavy counterweight on the imbalance of power. Just because it's
> legal doesn't mean it's not gross and feudal to be all up on the youngest of ladies, in his position.
> posted by Countess Elena at 4:24 PM on November 7 [1 favorite +] [!]

So, when are women going to stop finding the imbalance of power hot instead of creepy? So much so that wealth and power overwhelm everything else, all other metrics of male eligeability? The day having lots of w. and p. stops giving old farts access to mobs of much younger willing women (not just ones in dire straits in the poverty pool either but all sorts and conditions of women, women who could live perfectly acceptable lives on their own--queue image of Jackie O. sitting on Ari Onassis's skinny old-man thigh and snuggling against his old-man potbelly) this kind of nonsense will halt like a BB against the Matterhorn. That's all that has to happen. But only women can make it so.
posted by jfuller at 3:12 PM on November 7, 2010 [5 favorites]


I think Mr. Fuck the Roma here needs another cathedral to the face.
posted by Uppity Pigeon #2 at 3:14 PM on November 7, 2010 [2 favorites]


Can we start killing the rich yet? Please?
posted by Fuka at 3:17 PM on November 7, 2010


I think if young women really found old men like Berlusconi hot then young women with lots of education and social resources would be competing for men like that. Instead it's women who have few choices, little career potential, and not much social status who go for old guys.

Also, how many girls put pics of old politicians on their bedroom walls to sigh over? None.
posted by communicator at 3:19 PM on November 7, 2010 [2 favorites]


So, when are women going to stop finding the imbalance of power hot instead of creepy?

It isn't hot and it's often creepy, the question is more when are young women going to stop finding 'having easy money and/or fame if you suck old man face' hot. And the answer is never.

I've known a few women who genuinely fall in love with men forty years older but how much of that is their own issues I have no idea. And really, over the age of consent it's their business who they're screwing and why.
posted by shinybaum at 3:23 PM on November 7, 2010 [3 favorites]


>Also, how many girls put pics of old politicians on their bedroom walls to sigh over?

a poster of Berlusconi, no
a poster of Che Guevara, si.

I have grown up, since those days
posted by seawallrunner at 4:12 PM on November 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


I like to assume 18 year old women are capable of making their own decisions. I also gave a cursory glance to the woman listed as being connected with him. Few None seem to be powerless street waifs or children. I'm not sure I see a problem here, but then he's not my elected official.

What goes on in a person's bedroom is between the consenting adults involved. Anything else isn't anyone's business.
posted by cjorgensen at 4:21 PM on November 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


Paul Foot's brain used to be very sexy. Also I'd have May to Decembered the hell out of Tony Benn at one point, though Tony Cliff might have been pushing it even for me.

But still, I think the point with a lot of Berlusconi's ladies isn't that they find him attractive but that they find him wealthy. I can't see why there's a problem with that, except in a broader if society wasn't so fucked up they might have different ambitions way. We have an obsession with other people's genitals that borders on the ludicrous - I don't want people to care or legislate who I sleep with, so I try not to care who they sleep with. My line in the genital caring sand is human and fully consenting.

More disturbing is the actual illegal crap he gets away with because this is either distracting from, obscuring or contributing to his image as a real man, which is ridiculous.
posted by shinybaum at 4:25 PM on November 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


To name a few you have lawyers, a Miss Italia, a burlesque dancer that became his second wife, a dental hygienist, actresses, a reality show contestant, a cabinet minister, and a surgeon's assistant and her twin sister. It's downright Dickensian how poor off and powerless these women are.
posted by cjorgensen at 4:28 PM on November 7, 2010 [3 favorites]


To be fair, some of them seem to be those things because he owns a huge media empire and runs the country. Still, your main point stands.
posted by shinybaum at 4:32 PM on November 7, 2010


Shane Warne is the same in Australia. He's not a powerful politician, but he's married with kids and some of his womanising exploits [accidentally texting his wife with instructions to his mistress that his wife and kids are out, a Fleet Street "sting" involving prostitutes which included photos] are a bit beyond the pale, yet this has INCREASED his popularity.

A telecommunications-related company hired him as a spokesman because of the "LULZ I accidentally texted my wife" scandal.

I'm guessing this is the internet at work? A generation ago women's magazines would have had the most to say about this. And their conclusions about Mr Warne would be less than glowing.

From my perspective, this huge paradigm shift [SORRY] started with Slick Willy Clinton. Men sleazing around with women, their wives/partners standing by them, and most of the public going "meh."

I think Mr. Fuck the Roma here needs another cathedral to the face.

Funny.
posted by uncanny hengeman at 4:38 PM on November 7, 2010


BTW, Shane Warne is a once-in-three-generations sports star. A freak. An absolute champion. Hence the interest in him is so great that another nation's newspaper would conduct a sting of the type normally reserved for F1 bosses, arms dealers, or British royalty.
posted by uncanny hengeman at 4:42 PM on November 7, 2010


ass clowns like this always fall in spectacular fashion. They'll love him until they hate him. He already had his comeback, this is his comeback.
posted by Ironmouth at 4:57 PM on November 7, 2010


Italy's prime minister was thrown onto the defensive last week by claims he used his influence to secure the release of a teenage belly dancer accused of theft in May. The commander of the Milan police station from which she was released was today being questioned by a prosecutor about the incident, which may expose Berlusconi to a criminal charge of abusing his authority. The commander, Vincenzo Indolfi, has been quoted as saying the police were misled into believing the then 17-year-old girl – the daughter of a Moroccan immigrant – was a relative of the Egyptian president, Hosni Mubarak. Berlusconi has acknowledged he himself made the call.

Hosni Mubarak? Related to a belly dancer?

LOL
posted by Ironmouth at 5:03 PM on November 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


But only women can make it so.

Oh? These women are not forcing themselves on Berlusconi. They aren't making him hire prostitutes or host sex parties.

I'd add that Italy has huge problems with sexism, and there are very limited opportunities for women to advance professionally. Berlusconi himself suggests that their path to power lies in their looks, and has made appointments and offered political support on the basis of women's looks.
posted by Marty Marx at 5:12 PM on November 7, 2010


and a surgeon's assistant and her twin sister

Damn.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 5:22 PM on November 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


Berluysconi's antics remind me of the obnoxious Tory MP in Eat The Rich, whose "naughty" sexual exploits are lauded by sympathetic tabloids.
posted by acb at 5:33 PM on November 7, 2010


> I'd add that Italy has huge problems with sexism, and there are very limited opportunities
> for women to advance professionally.

Sweden too I suppose.


> I don't think it's so much the ages of the girls he's been involved with/paying for, as
> the cheering section in Italian society that enables him to stay in his position while openly
> engaging in such behaviour, that is the issue. The rest is technicalities.

But perhaps one of the most intriguing elements of the scandal, for those outside the Scandanavian country, is how the Swedish population have reacted. Over 80 per cent say that the lurid allegations have not changed their perception of the King – and almost 50 per cent say that it is wrong for journalists to look into the private lives of their royal family.
posted by jfuller at 5:36 PM on November 7, 2010


So, when are women going to stop finding the imbalance of power hot instead of creepy? That's all that has to happen. But only women can make it so.

Please. It's insulting to men to suggest that women alone could possibly control everything to this extent. Not all men are so weak as to be incapable of turning down a woman.
posted by Nixy at 5:43 PM on November 7, 2010 [3 favorites]


> It's insulting to men to suggest that women alone could possibly control everything to this
> extent. Not all men are so weak as to be incapable of turning down a woman.

You haven't been soul-seared by the pic of the day Camelot really died. (Usual warning, that which has been seen cannot be unseen.) I'm only pretty sure this was the one Esquire ran in that year's Dubious Achievement Awards, but I'm letter-perfect on their caption: For one brief shining moment... you didn't believe it.
posted by jfuller at 5:57 PM on November 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


I've spent years training my daughters in the black martial art of the 49 sack taps. #39 combines a move called knot the snake (#31) with plucked grape(#26). High probability of significant injury to the tunica albuginea and testicular torsion. I've been working on a set of instructional videos and workbooks, perhaps I should target Italian as a translation language. I've held back publication until now put of concern for what adolescent boys and jocks could
do with these techniques.
posted by humanfont at 6:02 PM on November 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


"Passion for beautiful young women." Love it. Wealth and power are the only difference between "a passion for beautiful young women" and "that creepy bastard who hangs around the fence and watches the girls' softball practice."

There's a famous Hollywood story about Rodney Dangerfield's movie "Back to School." They had the script, had Rodney, had the jokes, couldn't figure out what it was missing ... and then someone had the suggestion, "Make him rich." Boom. There's the movie.
posted by uncanny hengeman at 6:08 PM on November 7, 2010


I think if young women really found old men like Berlusconi hot then young women with lots of education and social resources would be competing for men like that.
They do. I think dating rich older men is seen as somewhat trashy here in the US, so young women might be worried about how they are seen. But in other countries it's pretty common. Also, check out this AskMe from an 18 year old "ivy-leauger" who was dating a 52 year old man and seemingly in love with him.
posted by delmoi at 6:43 PM on November 7, 2010


Could it be that some people are attracted to the same traits that enabled him to (or drove him to) become rich and powerful?
posted by Ad hominem at 7:01 PM on November 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


Also, how many girls put pics of old politicians on their bedroom walls to sigh over? None.

Correction: At least one.
posted by dgaicun at 7:09 PM on November 7, 2010 [2 favorites]


I think suggesting Berlusconi is anything like Polanski is a bit of a stretch. I haven't read anything about Berlusconi drugging these women or doing anything non-consensual.

I'd actually thought about writing Berlusconi a congratulations letter. He's pretty much living most men's dreams (the straight ones anyway), so it's a bit hard for me to be judgmental.
posted by cjorgensen at 7:15 PM on November 7, 2010


He's pretty much living most men's dreams (the straight ones anyway), so it's a bit hard for me to be judgmental.

Sure, who hasn't dreamed of being a corrupt, mobbed-up, racist, right wing plutocrat?
posted by ecurtz at 7:47 PM on November 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


It isn't hot and it's often creepy, the question is more when are young women going to stop finding 'having easy money and/or fame if you suck old man face' hot. And the answer is never.

The answer is when women can have their own easy money and fame as well as the social license to gain status with every "conquest" they add to their roster, and when the greatest power that most women ever have access to is no longer through their youth and beauty.
posted by jokeefe at 8:28 PM on November 7, 2010 [5 favorites]


You're right

*amends to 'not in my lifetime' and 'the same time prostitution becomes obsolete'*
posted by shinybaum at 8:30 PM on November 7, 2010


The answer is when women can have their own easy money and fame as well as the social license to gain status with every "conquest" they add to their roster, and when the greatest power that most women ever have access to is no longer through their youth and beauty.

And they would achieve that "easy money" how?

Would "most women" giving up their "greatest power" be a good place to start? Start walkin' the talk?

Your comment reads like a snarky, righteous, chicken egg argument.
posted by uncanny hengeman at 8:36 PM on November 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


Wait, that's almost like never.

Forgive my cynicism, Europe is completely almost close to equal rights and equal social status and it will be very soon indeed. Berlusconi, your shagging days are numbered matey.
posted by shinybaum at 8:36 PM on November 7, 2010


> Your comment reads like a snarky, righteous, chicken egg argument.

I sense a certain bitterness, but not snark. I do see a bit of a bootstrap problem, though, in that most guys who start out without great fortunes and power (i.e. are not born Ritchie Rich or Atilla the Hun Jr.), and end up with both, get there by being hypercompetitive assholes. So that's the model women will, realistically, have to shoot for to produce the coming generation of female Burlusconis and Putins. Stilts optional.
posted by jfuller at 9:07 PM on November 7, 2010 [2 favorites]


Silvio to my mind is an unctuous, machiavellian buffoon, whose exit from Italian politics will help bolster its democracy. That said, so long as he was not shagging anyone under 14 (the age of consent in Italy), I don't think he should be hauled over the coals on this count. He has done so much more substantive and substantial damage to Italian society (like monopolize the media), that it is pretty sad that Italians find the more frivolous of his outrages outrageous.
posted by Azaadistani at 4:22 AM on November 8, 2010


Also, I would be pretty miffed if I were Hosni Mubarik -- or frankly any Egyptian -- being told that some random Arab tart is being accused of being his niece by a serving Italian president so that she is given diplomatic immunity! Surely, there's a diplomatic row stuck in there that could be whipped up?
posted by Azaadistani at 4:32 AM on November 8, 2010


Huh. This thread is like a wee textual diarama of how Berlusconi manages to twist his way out of these situations.

Slight of hand. Sex sells. The majority of the discussion centers around a girl over the age of consent, instead of how he abused his position and outright lied to get her out of a theft charge.
posted by romakimmy at 4:38 AM on November 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


Obviously there are jurisdiction issues, but if Berlusconi was caught doing the same thing he's doing in Milan in Los Angeles, he'd be in prison in short order for statury rape. So sitting here in Los Angeles it feels pretty easy to call him a statury rapist even if it's legal in his little fiefdom.

Your ideas intrigue me and I would like to engage you and your firm for my stable of vexatious lawsuits against the Reptilian dominated establishment.



Forgive my cynicism, Europe is completely almost close to equal rights and equal social status and it will be very soon indeed. Berlusconi, your shagging days are numbered matey.


Oh come on. Maybe in Denmark, certainly not Italy.
posted by atrazine at 5:25 AM on November 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


Bill Emmott has just written a book that takes more interest in post-Berlusconi Italy. He puts his hope in the young people.

BTW, effectively the man is only about 48 or so.
posted by IndigoJones at 5:27 AM on November 8, 2010


the greatest power that most women ever have access to is no longer through their youth and beauty

Good luck with that. They're basically indoctrinated into the cult of beautiful princess by the ripe age of 3, with yearly re-indoctrinations to follow until they're too old for it to be believable any more. Of course, the reason is because the princess myth was never for them. It was for the guys.

Almost all cliche romance is for guys, not for women. Most of it is based off of ideas of chivalry devised by men a thousand years ago to see who has the bigger dick (without whipping out actual measurement devices, which would immediately put an end to all the illusion).
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 5:51 AM on November 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


I was at a european women's conference last month, in france. And fascinatingly, it was Italy that was considered the most difficult place to be a professional woman wrt style, aesthetics, looks etc being of highest priority (meaning, not france as one would imagine). Various women, especially those who had moved or worked there for a while and were not Italian, talked about having to change their wardrobes and invest in expensive clothes and accessories just to fit in at work. The pressure it seems is enormous.
posted by The Lady is a designer at 6:10 AM on November 8, 2010


Obviously there are jurisdiction issues, but if Berlusconi was caught doing the same thing he's doing in Milan in Los Angeles, he'd be in prison in short order for statury rape. So sitting here in Los Angeles it feels pretty easy to call him a statury rapist even if it's legal in his little fiefdom.

Thanks, I really appreciate your words of wisdom on this matter. Please advise, should Italians also be arrested for copious underage drinking? I mean, when I was a kid, the legal drinking age in our "little fiefdom" was 14. Where shall I turn myself in? I live in Boston, so LA is a little inconvenient.
posted by lydhre at 6:48 AM on November 8, 2010 [4 favorites]


Also, how many girls put pics of old politicians on their bedroom walls to sigh over? None.

I recall hearing -- perhaps from T.R. Reid's reports on NPR, I don't remember -- that some Japanese schoolgirls actually did put up posters of then-Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi.
posted by Gelatin at 10:25 AM on November 8, 2010


Thanks, I really appreciate your words of wisdom on this matter. Please advise, should Italians also be arrested for copious underage drinking? I mean, when I was a kid, the legal drinking age in our "little fiefdom" was 14. Where shall I turn myself in? I live in Boston, so LA is a little inconvenient.

Reasonable people can disagree about the morality, ethics, and practicality of any nation's laws. I myself could give you a laundry list of laws in the US and California I vehemently abhor, starting with same-sex marriage and drug laws. And I think that 14 is too young for age of consent, that 14, 15, 16-year-olds, possibly 17-year-olds, are too young to make an informed decision about sex with an adult, regardless of jurisdiction. Mileage may vary.
posted by JenMarie at 10:47 AM on November 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


I think if young women really found old men like Berlusconi hot then young women with lots of education and social resources would be competing for men like that. Instead it's women who have few choices, little career potential, and not much social status who go for old guys.

Yes, I don't think young women generally find men in their 70s attractive on a visceral level. But there is still a valid point that plenty of (rich/powerful) old men and (attractive) young women decide to pair up. This wouldn't happen if old men and young women weren't both choosing such arrangements for whatever advantages they offer. I think that's jfuller's point, and it's a good point.

Naturally, the women you're referring to, who don't have a lot of resources, will be more drawn to a man who has a lot of resources to offer, than an upper-class woman of the same age will be. The upper-class woman is more free to choose a man based on his personality, taste, etc. But that doesn't mean that lower-class women aren't free agents who make choices for their own advantage. (Notably, upper-class women are the women who will dominate the public discourse on gender issues, since upper-class people generally dominate the public discourse on all issues.)
posted by John Cohen at 8:05 PM on November 8, 2010


Good luck with that. They're basically indoctrinated into the cult of beautiful princess by the ripe age of 3, with yearly re-indoctrinations to follow until they're too old for it to be believable any more. Of course, the reason is because the princess myth was never for them. It was for the guys.

Almost all cliche romance is for guys, not for women. Most of it is based off of ideas of chivalry devised by men a thousand years ago to see who has the bigger dick (without whipping out actual measurement devices, which would immediately put an end to all the illusion).


[CITATION NEEDED] Many, many citations needed.
posted by uncanny hengeman at 9:16 PM on November 8, 2010


Political rivals are now scenting blood
posted by adamvasco at 4:19 AM on November 9, 2010


[CITATION NEEDED] Many, many citations needed.

Well, this got me curious. And while I'm not going to dig THAT deeply into the whole matter, I did find this page, which includes as a source this book, which does seem to indicate that, originally, romance tales and epic troubadour songs were used to help "civilize" the warrior class by introducing chivalry into the training for knighthood. (I didn't read the whole book just now -- but I did skim through quite a bit of it. Interesting stuff.)

And then, of course, Disney got ahold of it and turned it all into a rescue fantasy for girls. Maybe not on purpose -- maybe the films focussed on the girl instead of the guy because they're usually the more sympathetic character in the story or something. But the end result -- legions of girls growing up just knowing they're a secret princess, even if only in their own heart, and that someday Prince Charming will ride up on his white horse and take her away from her nightmare and they'll live happily ever after. That whole thing has been critiqued more than once.
posted by hippybear at 6:44 AM on November 9, 2010


Thanks hippybear, that brings back memories of the Arthurian classic Once and Future King.

Shane Warne and Tiger Woods were highlighted on the national news this morning, joking about cheating on their wives in front of an appreciative audience. Laughs all 'round.

The Aussie started the japery, being his home country and all. Tiger seemed a little hesitant and confused "the audience is laughing at this?" but then made a wise crack or two towards the end of the highlights.

video link contained in this link

ON PREVIEW: the article says the interviewer cracked the first joke.
posted by uncanny hengeman at 5:42 PM on November 9, 2010


'La dolce vita' turns sour.
posted by adamvasco at 12:56 PM on November 20, 2010


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