Women, in "patriarchal societies" of the Islamic kind, should be neither publicly seen nor heard.
In Western societies the ideal woman has traditionally been soft-voiced, non-assertive and forbearing; innately suited "to obey" according to the nineteenth-century German philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer.
During the Middle Ages, there were several absurd notions of the physical nature of the Jew: that Jews had horns and a distinctive odour, and that Jewish men menstruated.
The Viennese philosopher Otto Weininger, who was troubled by his Jewishness and converted to Christianity to try to escape it, finally escaping from the world itself by his own hand, despised women and despised Jews, whom he regarded as exhibiting the feminine qualities that he abhorred.
All these things crowded into my mind when I read a most intriguing piece by Elana Maryles Sztokman on reaction to the sexual assault on CBS correspondent Lara Logan (pictured, moments prior to the assault) in Tahrir Square.
Ms Sztokman begins:
'Some days I think, Jews are the new women. Jews are like the woman in a room full of men, the ones who are supposed to stay quiet and nice and not talk too loud or even at all, not appear in any way strong or assertive, and never make any waves. Just as society prefers women when they are passive and submissive, the world at large prefers Jews that way, too.
I thought of this as I watched the “60 Minutes” interview with CBS correspondent Lara Logan as she described being sexually assaulted on February 11 amid the uprising in Egypt’s Tahrir Square [http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=7364550n].... She was the only woman on the CBS team that night, and she was isolated from her crew and throngs of Egyptian men had their way with every inch of her body, inside and out. It was a harrowing account, and most definitively a woman’s story, in the sense that it was her womanhood that made her a victim.
But it is also a Jewish story — and, actually, an Israeli one.
That’s because Logan recounted that what set the mob upon her was when someone shouted, “She’s a Jew! She’s an Israeli!” There were other women in Tahrir Square that night, and for all we know others were attacked as well. But right then, Logan was a target not just because she is a woman, but because she was perceived to be a Jew and an Israeli, and therefore fair game.
What really upsets me about this story — in addition to Logan’s experience and the understanding of just how rampant sexual violence is in Egypt — is that CBS and the interviewer, Scott Pelley, did not seem to care about the Jewish angle. It was mentioned, just like that, and then forgotten. The implications for what this means about being a Jew or an Israeli in the world were just swept away, ignored."Read the rest: http://blogs.forward.com/sisterhood-blog/137458/#ixzz1LPQFGdSF