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The Church and the Culture War Paperback – October, 1995
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I have rarely come across a book which outlines so lucidly why feminism is not only a failure, but an utterly destructive product of the 20th century. Fathers have only obligations and no rights, while everyone else claims rights (men included) but refuse any obligations. As the author explains, by confusing equality with egalitarianism, we have started a chain reaction which trivializes all differences. This has produced regression, not progress. We delude ourselves, claiming that current notions are better because they are "new", as if ideas improved like the latest soap powder. By constantly crying "discrimination!" (read "wolf"), we have lost the concept of the word, the "making of clear distinctions". We, and our children, are the losers. In the name of freedom, we're raising a generation of orphans and telling them that they're lucky for it, while (always the beginning of anarchy) violence is ever on the rise.
We kid ourselves if we say that we have no part to play in this breakdown: through our inability (unwillingness?) to truly discriminate, we have lost the distinction between freedom and licence. This state of affairs can only lead to a loss of freedom, since we don't know what we should be protecting.
I highly recommend this book to those who are not afraid of clear-sighted analyses, and do not resent arguments which demonstrate why we need to make hard choices for the future. If we fail in this task, we risk having the kind of future all of us would have wanted to avoid. Are we brave enough to admit error? This book is not for opinionated people who know what is or isn't right - but those who are willing to keep an open mind while reading the tough arguments that are presented will find it a rewarding experience to ponder its message.
I first picked up this book because I am concerned about the issues that threaten to divide the Church. But reading the book turned out to be instead a spiritual experience. Little draws on the Catholic tradition to help deepen our understanding of our mission as humans (to be the image and likeness of God), how that mission is reflected in our very bodies (we are created male and female; and in the conjugal embrace we become a sacrament of the love that is embodied in the Trinity), and on the true meaning of discipleship (which we see reflected first in Mary and then in the apostles).
This book is not a negative screed against feminists. It is, rather, a hopeful, uplifting and spiritual vision of the gifts God has given us as men and as women, and how we can only realize our highest nature by answering the call to love. It is one of those handy little books that remind us of the beauty of the Catholic faith.