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Posts tagged: feminism

Non-Traditional Woman—Aunt Berl…

Good evening, Netizens…

Revisiting the message thread “Changing the Image”

After reading some of the many different opinions expressed in the message thread “Changing the Image”, and quickly realizing that some of our conversations had delicately slid into gender-based issues, followed shortly by a robust discussion of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin, I decided to create a new thread to discuss traditional and non-traditional roles of women in American society and how they have changed in my 60-some years of living.

My favorite example of what I term “non-traditional women” began with my somewhat exotic but emotionally powerful Aunt Beryl. I will concede that traditional roles for women have changed since the late 1950’s, but perhaps even by modern-day standards, Aunt Beryl might still create a bit of a stir.

There was that visual image, and I submit even modern-day men tend to react to that first. At six feet four inches tall, with powerful shoulders and well-muscled arms, Aunt Beryl tended to stand out in a crowd simply because she was so big and at first glance hardly typified what most men would define as “dainty femininity”. Adding to that visual image, she smoked a pipe, usually late in the day, and occasionally chewed Red Man tobacco, which further separated her from anyone’s definition of the feminine mystique. She wasn’t the least bit mannish at all, but just plain in the face, physically strong and yet gentle.Some family members insisted she was a lesbian, but I can state with total candor, she was not.

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