Archive for the ‘Games The Half-Educated Play’ Category

Watching What You Say

I once read a book composed of articles about “political correctness”. One contributor complained that PC meant always having to watch what he said. Another, I think it might have been Christopher Hitchens, retorted that this was actually a good thing, for watching what you say so as not to cause offence was simple consideration […]

How Can You Not Be “Got”?

Whenever we say that a person “ought” to have done X, we imply that he could have done Y instead. In law, we do not hold people culpable if they have no choice. Much PC manipulation, however, relies on us not noticing that there is no valid alternative course of action, because all possible actions […]

Pelvic Dissolution And Short Memories

Some of us remember when the women’s libbers – as we called them back then – railed against high heels, on the grounds that they made their wearers into sexual objects. That is to say, they made you wiggle your bottom when you walked. Men liked to watch the effect, ergo it was wrong and […]

Objectifying Men

“Objectification” is one of the great boo-words of our time, employed in rather the same way as the 19th century used ‘immorality’ or the 13th century used “heresy”. That is, it condemns without conveying very much information about how or why. Feminists have popularised the use of the term “objectification” in but a very narrow […]

Talking Trash Or Appealing To The State

If someone offends you by speech, wrote Camille Paglia, you must learn to defend yourself by speech. This is of course highly obnoxious to all right-thinking people, for whom any kind of symmetry in behaviour is anathema. There can be no general principles of conduct, as everything must depend on the actor’s identity, with the […]

The Red Guards

Everyone knows at least a little something about the Chinese Cultural Revolution, which Mao unleashed in order to do down his opponents within the Party. They know how students and even schoolchildren were exhorted to criticise their teachers and professors for ideological deviations, which sometimes meant hounding and physically abusing them. They may be aware […]

On Reading Only Authors Bearded Like Me

Camille Paglia’s harrumph about Arcadian myths being “the kind of nonsense you get when you spend more time reading fifth-rate women writers than you do dead white males like Aeschylus and Shakespeare” does not go far enough. Given her devotion to the canon of the arts, by whomsoever created, I am surprised that she does […]

A Heads-Up From Mary Wortley Montagu

In the early nineteenth century an English lady accompanied her husband, recently appointed ambassador to the Sublime Porte, on a journey overland to Constantinople. She regaled her family, friends and major social figures with her observations, often complaining of the falsity of previously published information. I was struck by her description of the weekly shooting […]

Studying Only Ourselves

British historian Tony Judt is said to have remarked that what with Jewish Studies, African-American Studies and Lesbian and Gay Studies, “we are all studying ourselves”. Why the remark omitted the grandmother of them all, Women’s Studies, is unclear. The baleful potential of this situation is not, of course, the mere fact that these things […]

Walking The Walk

Initiatory hazing is one of the male practices that has been most fiercely condemned by women in general and feminists in particular, especially when it is they themselves who are getting hazed. Their lack of sympathy with males who get hazed – it is apparently considered to serve them right for their depraved male nature […]