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Congress and the Patriarchal Tension over “Saving Face”

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This will be a quick post, but I wanted to write something to let our readers know that we are still here, we have a lot of great posts in mind, and they are coming soon.

Today the New York Times announced that the government shutdown may be solved by the efforts of three female Republican Congress members. It’s so important to read this, as it gives me hope that our political parties are not completely dominated by intractable “face savers.” It’s a moment to turn to feminist theory, particularly Care-Focused feminism, which focuses on compromise and care-taking as qualities that our patriarchal society considers feminine, ¬†weak, and unworthy for those in powerful positions. Senators Susan Collins (Maine), Lisa Murkowski (Alaska), and Kelly Ayotte (New Hampshire), are leading the conversation that needs to happen, and it’s because they are eschewing the typical patriarchal methods.

It’s an important moment because it demonstrates not only the rising importance of female leadership, but also the need for leadership that doesn’t function solely under the patriarchal umbrella of dominance, refusal to compromise, and war analogies. It gives me hope on a dreary day that Care-Focused feminism is demonstrating another way to lead – through true democracy.

Pictures and a terrific video of Senator Collins are available on the New York Times site: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/15/us/senate-women-lead-in-effort-to-find-accord.html?partner=rss&emc=rss&_r=0