Wotan with a Briefcase
Water-Mills and Boring Jobs

Woman to Women: Shut up Once in a While.

Recently a reader complained that German Joys has become too esoteric. So let's read today what everybody will be talking about in Germany, the interview (G) German "TV personality" Eva Herman gave to the mass-market tabloid Bild to promote her new book, "The Eva Principle."

Herman, who is 47 years old, has been married several times and has one son. She was recently fired from her job as a news announcer on one of the the country's major news show for delivering increasingly strident anti-feminist commentaries (G), and now hosts a chat show.

Here's an excerpt of the interview:

You accuse women of having become too masculine. Give us an example.

You see this not only on the job, but in everyday behavior. We criticize our men even when they try to surprise us once in a while. Best example: A man invites a woman to a restaurant. She says: Sure, it’s nice, but why couldn't we go somewhere else? Of course, the man’s going to be disappointed. I think we women should keep our mouths shut more often. Why should we have a say in everything?

Tell us why!

A lot of this is because of feminism. [German feminist author] Alice Schwarzer drummed it into us: You can do everything, you should be allowed to do anything, exactly equal to men; gender differences don’t exist. ‘You’re all equal’ – and we believed that coming from a women who herself wasn’t married and had no children -- who doesn’t know how it feels to want to, and be expected to, manage all these different roles. Her theories have failed!

Back to the men. Why, in your opinion, are they not fit to do housework?

Men suffer when they’re forced to do too many tasks that they have no desire and no particular capability to do. Only rarely have men voluntarily done housework or raised children. Most are just not  suited to these tasks.

And when women force men to do them anyway?

This makes the men nervous, they don’t feel they’re taken seriously – and that can lead to mental problems. By the way, only five to seven percent of German men are “house-husbands.” And the marriage collapses in 98% of these households.

So, the only true place for a woman is in the home?

Yes, because a woman is much better suited to make the house homey – to find the right place for nice candles, to pick flowers, and to bake apple pies.

I'll refrain from commentary, except to note that (1) Herman herself is combining career and child-raising; (2) she makes several times more money as much as the average reader of this mass-market tabloid; (3) she admits that she has a "reliable nanny, whom we can count on 100%"; and (4) the online interview  of Herman appears next to an article about a calendar featuring photos of naked Austrian female ski instructors ("Naked Ski-Bunnies: Even the Glaciers are Melting!")

That last point probably isn't too relevant, but I thought I'd mention it anyway.

Comments

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steven lynch

dear readers, in the united states every where here I go on the job I see the average working man single divorced living poor paying child support or alamony. some live in their cars. some in a trailer. some shacked up with a girl friend or rich old lady for sexual services while he fixes her car or works in her garden. most of the time they cannot see their children. If he reported everything he made he could not live because they will take out half his wages before taxes. inflation is high and wages are lower because they have sent our jobs overseas. now we have imigrints coming in the thousands to take what jobs that are left. We are labeled as dead beat dads.

many think of suicide but have not the guts. sooo many drink them selves to ruin and then really become dead beat dads. some do not choose to visit the children and then become dead beat dads again to add to the propaganda. I personally would not want to visit my kids while they have another man in the house with my chil sitting on his knee. I beleive I would kill him. If we fathers don't behave right we will have to go to anger management or loose our rights as a visitor. we cannot be a real father because we have not as much right as moms boy friend who also has no say or he is out too. he also supports her too. the institution of fatherhood is gone. those who are not divorced yet know they better behave themselves and not get mommy mad or inlaws mad either. Now that we all know the score and the laws of the state we better keep our mouths shut. I understand that in russia the men suffer alcoholism at a high rate with no oportunity for work or husbanry.

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steven lynch

dear readers, in the united states every where here I go on the job I see the average working man single divorced living poor paying child support or alamony. some live in their cars. some in a trailer. some shacked up with a girl friend or rich old lady for sexual services while he fixes her car or works in her garden. most of the time they cannot see their children. If he reported everything he made he could not live because they will take out half his wages before taxes. inflation is high and wages are lower because they have sent our jobs overseas. now we have imigrints coming in the thousands to take what jobs that are left. We are labeled as dead beat dads.

many think of suicide but have not the guts. sooo many drink them selves to ruin and then really become dead beat dads. some do not choose to visit the children and then become dead beat dads again to add to the propaganda. I personally would not want to visit my kids while they have another man in the house with my chil sitting on his knee. I beleive I would kill him. If we fathers don't behave right we will have to go to anger management or loose our rights as a visitor. we cannot be a real father because we have not as much right as moms boy friend who also has no say or he is out too. he also supports her too. the institution of fatherhood is gone. those who are not divorced yet know they better behave themselves and not get mommy mad or inlaws mad either. Now that we all know the score and the laws of the state we better keep our mouths shut. I understand that in russia the men suffer alcoholism at a high rate with no oportunity for work or husbanry.

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Papageifisch

I think in some points is Mrs. Herman right. What did women get through what is called emanzipation? We were forced to do a job, get children, be the perfect lover. Before we just had one thing to do, as we say in Germany we had to be whore and saint in one person for our husbands. Now we need to be a manager, a nanny and a perfect lover and are always concerned with self-reproaches as we just can't be perfect in every of these "disciplines". And all that even though there have been women doing men's business during all time, there were little of them, but there were some like Jean d'Arc, Grace O'Malley...

On the other hand the environment has changed. Our loving husbands don't earn the same amount of money anymore to feed the family.

Of course emanzipation brought advantages concerning some right, the ones I love most are the right to gain education and the right for elections. But there's always two sides of the story as we can see.

The only question I keep asking myself hearing discussions in that dimension:

Why don't men emanzipate, too? I mean, there has be a discussion in Germany if there should be social benefits for raising up children if men do not partizipate more. And people were wondering which effects a man could suffer if he switched for a while from his job to bring up his kids! But I heard this concern not of a man - it was a woman saying that in an interview! This century should be the century of emanzipation of men. We should send people to our schools teaching the boys what that means. I defenitely don't want to bind men at home. But I've met guys who had a problem going to buy tampons, who blush being seen in a shop for lingerie and so on. There are people cheating men who want - I don't mean the ones being forced but the ones who really want themselves - to live a life as house husband. If we live in a really free world, when freedom only ends there where the freedom of someone else is endangered, why should a man not choose to stay at home.

la deutsche vita

Austrian Joys and German Misery. That sounds pretty realistic.

ukzg

When I first heard about these, um, controversial statements, I thought some bored journalist was pissed about Ann Coulter and the evil US and whatnot.

Lígia

"Yes, because a woman is much better suited to make the house homey – to find the right place for nice candles, to pick flowers, and to bake apple pies."

WTF is that?????

Anyway I think both Herman and Schwarzer are radical. Ms. Schwarzer really can´t talk about things that she has never experienced and, In my point of view , she suffers from a thing calles " Schubladendenken" in German - that menas- she is quite narrow minden when she is talking about gender and feminist. I´m sorry but I think Schwarzer´s statements might be useful just for lesbians.

On the other hand this Herman seems to be attached to a bunch of clichees about women. Except for one thing: sometimes some women should really talk less and agree more with their husbands. Unles he is completely unreliable and reckless, then you should look for a lawyer, of course.

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