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54 of 63 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow! What an incredible book!
Having grown up in the 60's, I used to believe all of the feminist rhetoric regarding the so called oppression of women. It wasn't long though before I figured out that feminists were anything but, since their basic premise was "You are only good inasmuch as you are like a man." Carolyn Graglia courageously points this out in a masterful analysis of...
Published on July 8, 1999

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76 of 96 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Started out good, then disappointed
As a novice homemaker who struggled mightily with feminist expectations, I really wanted to like this book, which I read in the course of my transition from career to home. And at first, I did like it. Graglia's exposition of the inherent misogyny of doctrinaire feminism was right on. But about halfway through the book it became apparent that a woman who stays home...
Published on November 14, 2001


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54 of 63 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow! What an incredible book!, July 8, 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Domestic Tranquility: A Brief Against Feminism (Hardcover)
Having grown up in the 60's, I used to believe all of the feminist rhetoric regarding the so called oppression of women. It wasn't long though before I figured out that feminists were anything but, since their basic premise was "You are only good inasmuch as you are like a man." Carolyn Graglia courageously points this out in a masterful analysis of feminism. Thank goodness that someone of the female gender has finally had the guts to say what totalitarian feminists would love to have squelched! Notice the deafening silence regarding this book? It is an absolute must read for everyone who is ever so weary of militant feminism's poison promises. As I slog through yet another day as a nurse in Labor & Delivery (where the rooms are occupied by 14, 15 & 16 year olds no doubt very fulfilled by the practice of the uninhibited sexuality promoted by feminists, leavened with the sheer terror of a child not prepared for the experience of labor and delivery) I do my best to be an excellent nurse while trying to do the impossible: balance work, running a home and raising children. Although I am fortunate to have a devoted husband to share the work load, he too is overworked. Thanks to all of the feminist improvements in our society, we are taxed at a ridiculous rate while both of us work ourselves to death! Mrs. Graglia's book is not easy reading, but it is very worthwhile. I am especially pleased that she quoted directly from feminist writings which allow the reader to see for themselves just what feminists say and stand for. It is my ardent hope that Mrs. Graglia's book will serve as a catalyst for women who are tired of the poison apples that feminists tirelessly peddle. At long last, those of us who would much rather be at home with our precious children have someone to stand up for us, having been betrayed for far too long by feminists who purport to represent the best interests of women. With "friends" such as these, who indeed needs enemies? After enduring the "benefits" of feminism, all I can say is "It's about time someone of our gender had the guts to stand up to the vicious, virulent attacks against homemakers by feminists!" Thank you, thank you Carolyn Graglia.
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118 of 145 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best book I've read this decade., April 13, 1998
By 
Judith K. Warner (Rohrersville, MD United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Domestic Tranquility: A Brief Against Feminism (Hardcover)
Carolyn Graglia was a lawyer before she had children, so she knows how to argue her case against feminism. She shows how its aim is to destroy the traditional woman who gets her satisfaction from taking care of her home and family. And she documents the devastation to children and society that has resulted. In a very moving way, Mrs. Graglia uses her own experiences and feelings to show how feminism violates women's nature. Women are different from men, as anyone knows who isn't blinded by ideology. But feminists have succeeded in changing society's view of women so that instead of nurturing and yielding, women are now expected to be just like men. She describes women's sexuality at length, taking issue with feminism's view that women should be casual and aggressive about sex. She shows how feminism is totalitarian at heart, because feminists cannot simply live their own lives the way they wish, but must impose their world view on everyone. Thus they hold up traditional women to contempt, and rearrange society's institutions to drive women out of the home. I was fascinated to read Mrs. Graglia's skewering of some feminist myths, such as the idea that women were not sexual beings until the last few decades. Her history of female sexuality alone would make the book worth reading. I am also fascinated by the little notice this book has received, as far as I am aware. It is so powerful that, were its subject anything but feminism, it would certainly be the subject of constant publicity, in the way that, say "The Bell Curve" was.
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thank you, Carolyn Graglia, June 15, 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Domestic Tranquility: A Brief Against Feminism (Hardcover)
Thank you for writing this book, Mrs. Graglia. When I saw your book review on C-span, I knew I wanted to read it. As a homemaker who has had a professional life (BS, RN), I, too, find it very worthwhile to be at home with my young. I am grateful that my husband is able to provide for his family and let me stay "at home" with our two children. We have made financial sacrifices for me to be at home, but it has been worth it. Our children have thrived. I was able to nurse our children for quite some time and they benefited from that. I read FEMININE MYSTIQUE in high school and was quite taken with it. Now I see I am happiest at home with my family. Time to fix breakfast!
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23 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book about a shattering topic, June 7, 1999
By A Customer
This book is the best one I know about feminism and the sexual revolution and the irrefutable connections between them. It makes clear that the goal of modern of feminism has been to destroy all differences between the sexes, in work, family life, and sexual behavior. To accomplish this, the task had to be completed in all three areas, as the feminists understood very well. Graglia demonstrates this with quotes from the leading feminists themselves. The aim is the utopian or totalitarian one of creating a completely androgynous society of emasculated men and defeminized women. In one chilling passage, Graglia claims that we are very close in American society to making the sexes "completely fungible", the three tasks set out by the feminists being near completion. The predictable results of this assault on nature have been severe damage to the family; suicidal birth rates, especially in Europe; increasing hatred between the sexes; increased sexual violence; a flight of men from marriage; and much, more. Graglia attempts probably the most comprehensive view of any of the recent writers decrying various detrimental effects of feminism and the sexual revolution; of earlier writers, George Gilder's "Men and Marriage" comes to mind. Perhaps being a woman of about seventy, she has a long personal perspective, and takes a sweeping, even magisterial survey of all the different aspects of feminism and their mutual connections and interdependences. One interesting point she makes is that the early "social" feminists, in contrast to the early and contemporary "modern" feminists, had goals diametrically opposed to the moderns: more sharply differentiated roles of the sexes in family and work, and an emphasis on shoring up distinct feminine and masculine virtues.
This book is a sleeper: it's message is so shattering, it is no wonder it has not received much attention. It is also a long and sometimes difficult book to follow, mainly because of the intricacy of the argument, one worthy of the attorney Mrs. Graglia was trained to be before she dropped her legal career for what she obviously found a more rewarding life. But it may be destined to become a classic statement about the ills that beset modern men and women. One suspects the howls of pain, especially those emanating from the fair sex, are only going to get louder. This book helps understand why. One wishes that Mrs. Graglia would attempt to write shorter pieces for magazines of opinion and even more popular outlets.
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76 of 96 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Started out good, then disappointed, November 14, 2001
By A Customer
As a novice homemaker who struggled mightily with feminist expectations, I really wanted to like this book, which I read in the course of my transition from career to home. And at first, I did like it. Graglia's exposition of the inherent misogyny of doctrinaire feminism was right on. But about halfway through the book it became apparent that a woman who stays home isn't, in Graglia's view, moving into a different area of achievement which brings balance to the family unit, but rather renouncing all achievement so that the man can shine in solitary glory. And this is supposed to give her some sort of hero-worshipping sexual high.
Yep, that's the worst part. I've read enough books on both sides of this issue to know that when an author starts slighting people whose sexuality isn't like her own, it's a sure sign she's run out of real arguments. In fact, it was kind of embarrassing to read, because so obviously a projection of the author's private tastes: a woman should be "constantly available for sex", and prefer vaginal penetration to clitoral orgasm; when she does have an orgasm, it should be part of the "prelude" to intercourse; she ought to feel "controlled" by the man, who in turn ought to make liberal use of "the lover's pinch"; but sado-masochism is going too far because she should experience his power directly rather than through instruments. And so on.
If she wanted to express herself that way, she should have sent away for the Harlequin Romance writer's guide. Dressed up as philosophy, it's blatantly arbitrary and self-serving: how very convenient that what she likes should also happen to be the recipe for perfect femininity!
Oops, I almost forgot to mention the several pages she spends rhapsodizing about how lucky African mutilation victims are because the absence of a clitoris allows them to focus completely on their husbands. She waxed quite poetic when describing how they cry and scream for mercy as they're cut open on their wedding nights and raped for days to keep the wound from healing. I hate to bring that awful topic up, but I swear it's in the book and she really does write approvingly of it. Despicable.
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25 of 30 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Marvelous Attempt to defend stay-at-home mothers!, August 2, 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Domestic Tranquility: A Brief Against Feminism (Hardcover)
Mrs. Graglia's book is a smashing example of what a classic polemic is. She not only attacks the ideas of many modern feminists, she also seeks to defend the role of the stay at home housewife. She notes quite well that what the feminists were after in their hell raising heyday was not so much equality with males as attacks upon women who willingly and happily chose to stay at home. She also delves into the area of consequences that the so-called sexual revolution started, particularly with the advent of no-fault divorce laws.
The principle criticism I have with the book is some of the diatribes Mrs. Graglia unleashes upon some feminist goals and statements and for some of her more ambitious statements concerning "the social contract" women had some 50 years ago or so. I think that either attacking feminism OR defending homemakers would have provided more focus for the author's wonderful abilities as a thinker and as a writer. I think that for conservatives, it is worthwhile to note that the terrible review given in Reason magazine denotes some of the traditionalist/libertarian divide within the movement.
This book, even with the lack of focus is nevertheless a smashing success because of the trouble the ideas present to many feminists and their sympathizers in society and in academia. It is is also a smashing success because of the attempts to obstruct publication and distribution of the book as noted in a recent issue of American Enterprise magazine. This book is indeed revolutionary in its thinking and a definite must read for one and all.
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24 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Women take a stand against Feminism, April 14, 1998
By A Customer
This review is from: Domestic Tranquility: A Brief Against Feminism (Hardcover)
The author graduated from Columbia University (Law School), and went to work for the Supreme Court of the United States (I think she was a clerk to a Supreme Court Justice). She continued to work until she had her first child, then she dropped out of the work place to become a Homemaker. Her book takes every argument of the Feminist Movement, and in a very logical, educated, and persuasive manner, tears it down. For women who love their opportunity to be at home and raise their own children, this book is a confirmation of what we already know. For women who consider themselves followers of the feminist movement, it will challenge all of your convictions and "modern" ideas about "traditional homemakers." If you are a working mom who wants to be a stay-at-home-mom, this book will help you re-evaluate your reasons for working--perhaps you don't need to be away from your children and home. It's a great book that provides valuable insights to the position of women in society.
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45 of 57 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars As with feminism, sift out the good parts, September 21, 2002
By 
This review is from: Domestic Tranquility: A Brief Against Feminism (Hardcover)
Mrs. Graglia's work is an important shoulder-tap on mainstream feminist-dominated Western culture. It details the morally barren and intellectually dishonest bases of the mid-20th Century round of feminism only just now petering out.
The author now & then shares her personal taste in, er, conjugal relations, and occasionally employs vivid imagery to make a point. Most amateur reviewers cannot overcome their reactions and revulsions enough to stay with the narrative. For myself, I enjoyed the break from the rather turgid, stuffy writing style loaded with two-dollar words. My Oxford abridged dictionary doesn't even list "fungible"!
But the thesis is strong: modern feminism was a big factor in creating the child-hating, sexually perverse culture we live in today. Not surprising, really, since biographies and self-admissions reveal that today's feminism was founded by disgruntled corner cases with just those characteristics.
As a result, women actually have a harder time relating to other women, men and children, and have fewer choices today than they did in the mid-1950's, in that the woman choosing to be the core of her family is reviled and pressured to abandon her children and neglect her marriage.
Women who prefer to serve strangers in the marketplace are actually subsidized at the cost of traditional families, through "childcare" credits, anti-competitive affirmative action programs, corporate workplace inefficiencies etc. And as Mrs. Graglia notes but IMO does not sufficiently develop, modern (non-)mothering by working women requires the existence of a huge economic underclass of proxy-mothers, who are paid as little a possible for doing the untimately thankless job of making sure little Jill and Johnny don't kill themselves or feel totally abandoned.
Anyway, Domestic Tranquility is a valuable read for those wishing a balanced viewpoint. I enjoyed having my brain deprogrammed a bit, and now think I see the world better without the feminist distortions of the dominant culture.
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34 of 43 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Worth serious consideration, April 11, 2005
By 
This review is from: Domestic Tranquility: A Brief Against Feminism (Hardcover)
Too many reviewers seem to have missed the point, blaming Ms. Graglia for her professional career/background, seeing it as hypocrisy. Anyone who cares about family life must surely see that hard-line, ideological 'feminism' has done as much damage to women - as anything 'men' have perpetrated, taken at their most insensitive extremes.

There is something deep, meaningful and spiritual, about being a 'home-maker' - which ought not to have been denigrated as the philosophy of the female sucker. Written as a compensatory reaction to an extreme attitude, Ms. Graglia's book sometimes seems to be ignoring the positive, intelligent side of feminism. What she combats - is the extreme form of feminism - thus defending the discredited role of the homemaker. While some would call it an ideologically driven caricature - perpetrated by men, there does seem to be something about women which makes them better equipped, constitutionally, to function as homemakers. As a spiritual quality, this gives women an almost bodhisattvic character, a source of solace for the whole family.

I think of the Blues number "aint no sunshine when she's gone. . .when she goes away, a house is not a home" etc. Some would crucify me for saying so, but I feel it takes a woman in the house to create that magic sense of blessing, and it is very real. I thank all the gods, whenever I enter a home, and still feel that special aura that only a woman can bestow upon bricks and mortar. Deep down, most guys know its something special. I say this with humility, not as something taken for granted.

As a supplement to Ms. Graglia's book, I recommend Esther Harding's books 'The Way of All Women" - and 'Women's Mysteries' which place the'feminine' in its cosmic context.

In recent decades, it has become fashionable to talk about 'biological traps' etc.@We might as well talk about gravity as a 'trap' - but, without it, we could not live. What binds us to the earth also roots us, spiritually. Nature is our nurse, not our slave-master.

Why not review the whole situation? The more twisted per-spectives on this - hinge on rather limited, materialistic definitions. As more than a few reviewers have pointed out, many working-women, become as such, because of financial pressures.In that sense, perhaps we ought to question the economics of a society,which robs women of the chance to be homemakers - if that's what they prefer. In this sense, it is not so much a case of men oppressing women, as the politicians, banks and financial institutions - oppressing families, and we should be more 'savvy' about it.They reap harvest from the misfortune of divided or fractured family lives.

We ought to consider that the difference between a 'house' and a 'home' - is that a 'home' means having time to share, and men ought to be able to spend more time with their kids, especially when the kids are young. It is doubly ironic, when both parents end up becoming relative strangers - to their own kids. Those early years are especially precious and formative, and there is something sick about any ideal that encourages such alienating habits. Though much denigrated and currently devalued, the family - with a homemaker, is a blessing.Potentialy, it is a sacred space between the individual - and the faceless mass of humanity. Be warned, all totalitarian systems, political and religious, have endeavoured to weaken the family. But it is part of great dance of life. Remember Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young@|'Teach Your Children Well'?
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28 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The opposite perspective to prominent feminists, June 8, 2004
By 
This review is from: Domestic Tranquility: A Brief Against Feminism (Hardcover)
This book is very enjoyable to read, especially if you are a full-time mom or homemaker. It provides detailed and well-researched arguments to support the author's contention that there are some major drawbacks to the results of the feminist movement, which began in the 60s. While the obvious advantage to the feminist movement of women being able to pursue the career of their choice is evident, Ms. Graglia argues persuasively that the feminists have denigrated the traditional mother and homemaker in the process with sometimes horrible results for children and families. The mass surrogation of childrearing and the mass exodus of women out of the home and into the workforce have had numerous detrimental effects on our society, as explained eloquently and in great detail by Ms. Graglia. This book is a must read; and although lengthy, it is easily understood and very informative. Thank you, Ms. Graglia for telling the other side to this story.
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Domestic Tranquility: A Brief Against Feminism
Domestic Tranquility: A Brief Against Feminism by F. Carolyn Graglia (Hardcover - Jan. 1998)
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