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Audio Book Speaks Up On Gender Communication

If you’re looking for an alternative to the music that Spokane’s radio stations continually play, you might try picking up a book on tape.

You can borrow them from the city and/or county public libraries or rent them for a modest price from a number of local bookstores. (Purchasing unabridged versions of novels can be expensive).

One gender-oriented tape that just recently became available is titled “Men and Women: Talking Together” (Sound Horizons, two hours, $16.95). A recorded dialogue between Deborah Tannen and Robert Bly, the tape is, according to AudioFile magazine, “utterly delightful.”

“The authors are both funny and serious,” says reviewer Elizabeth Futas. “They care a great deal about the topic of women and men’s conversational styles.”

If you’re interested in ordering a copy, tell the bookstore the tape’s ISBN number (1-879323-09-5) and that the tape was recorded in 1992.

Rush to judgment: In her book “Tell Me Another One: A Woman’s Guide to Men’s Classic Lines,” author Judith Nelson offers this bit of Rush Limbaugh philosophy: “Feminism was established to allow unattractive women access to mainstream society.”

Nelson’s retort is appropriately rhetorical: “Have any of you actually seen Rush Limbaugh?”

Speaking of definitions: Here’s what Limbaugh apparently is afraid of, an explanation of feminism by author Rebecca Walker.

“To be a feminist is to integrate an ideology of equality and female empowerment into the very fiber of my life,” Walker wrote in her book “Court of Appeal: The Black Community Speaks Out on the Racial and Sexual Politics of Thomas vs. Hill.” “It is to search for personal clarity in the midst of systemic destruction, to join in sisterhood with women when often we are divided, to understand power structures with the intention of challenging them.”

More on meaning: Speaking of definitions, author Sam Keen offers a rational male perspective.

“‘Feminism’ is a label describing a kaleidoscope, the many-faceted responses of a multitude of women wrestling with the question of selfdefinition and seeking social changes that will give greater justice, power and dignity to women,” Keen writes in “Fire in the Belly: On Being a Man.” “But we need to make a rough and ready distinction between the best and worst of feminism, between feminism as a prophetic protest and feminism as an ideology.

“Prophetic feminism is a model for the changes men are beginning to experience.

“Ideological feminism is a continuation of a pattern of general enmity and scapegoating that men have traditionally practiced against women.”

Even the attractive ones.

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