The feminism of equality, of toughness, of anti-discrimination, has been overwhelmed by one of victimhood and demands for special treatment….At a certain point, when we demand an equal ratio of men to women in certain fields, what we’re criticizing is not “the system,” but the choices that women themselves are making…..let’s keep our eye on the question of equal opportunity and stop obsessing about equal outcomes, lest we find ourselves trying to cure society, not of sexism, but of free choice.”
― Elizabeth Wasserman
Prayer is not asking. It is a longing of the soul. It is daily admission of one’s weakness. It is better in prayer to have a heart without words than words without a heart.
― Mahatma Gandhi
“Every woman who chooses–joyfully, thoughtfully, calmly, of her own free will and desire–not to have a child does womankind a massive favor in the long term. We need more women who are allowed to prove their worth as people, rather than being assessed merely for their potential to create new people. After all, half of those new people we go on to create are also women–presumably themselves to be judged, in their futures, for not making new people. And so it will go on, and on…
While motherhood is an incredible vocation, it has no more inherent worth than a childless woman simply being who she is, to the utmost of her capabilities. To think otherwise betrays a belief that being a thinking, creative, productive, and fulfilled woman is, somehow, not enough. That no action will ever be the equal of giving birth.”
― Caitlin Moran, How to Be a Woman
Success is most often achieved by those who don’t know that failure is inevitable.
Women’s actions have never been more than symbolic agitation; they have won only what men have been willing to concede to them; they have taken nothing; they have received.5 It is that they lack the concrete means to organize themselves into a unit that could posit itself in opposition. They have no past, no history, no religion of their own; and unlike the proletariat, they have no solidarity of labor or interests; they even lack their own space that makes communities of American blacks, the Jews in ghettos, or the workers in Saint-Denis or Renault factories. They live dispersed among men, tied by homes, work, economic interests, and social conditions to certain men—fathers or husbands—more closely than to other women. As bourgeois women, they are in solidarity with bourgeois men and not with women proletarians; as white women, they are in solidarity with white men and not with black women.
― Simone de Beauvoir, The Second Sex
He has achieved success who has lived well, laughed often, and loved much;
Who has enjoyed the trust of pure women, the respect of intelligent men and the love of little children;
Who has filled his niche and accomplished his task;
Who has never lacked appreciation of Earth’s beauty or failed to express it;
Who has left the world better than he found it,
Whether an improved poppy, a perfect poem, or a rescued soul;
Who has always looked for the best in others and given them the best he had;
Whose life was an inspiration;
Whose memory a benediction
Girls barely budding open their legs to make a living, alongside the toothless and rancid of breath; hair thick with lice, they all find customers if the price is right, against the wall or on sheets well-soiled. Their holes cost but a shilling. Skins grow thick and claws sharp.
― Emmanuelle de Maupassant, The Gentlemen’s Club