Tuesday, 27 November 2007

From "The Numbers Trouble with “Numbers Trouble”"

By Jennifer Ashton.

What they [Spahr and Young] offer are numbers suggesting that at the present moment women are getting something closer to 25% of the poetry pie than half of it.


But while it might be interesting and even salutary in some contexts to see a truly accurate picture, I want to make clear from the start that the accuracy or inaccuracy of that picture is completely irrelevant to the argument of "Our Bodies, Our Poems." If it were relevant, I might have done what Spahr and Young seem to think I should have done—I might have had a lot more to say about feminism. (In that case I also would have had a lot more to say about the degrees to which feminism has and hasn’t been able to further the causes of social justice. And about the value, for example, of a feminism that concerns itself as much with whether women poets get equal time on Ron Silliman’s blog as with the discrepancies between the wages men and women earn for the same work—and that concerns itself more with both of these than with the social and economic structures that prevent most people, men and women alike, from ever having such concerns to begin with.)

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