Re: The Kent State Issue and questions of 'machismo' on both sides (multiple posts)

Sun, 31 May 1998 15:47:58 -0400

From: (Paul Heavens)

>Steven, et al,
>on another list I am on, there is a minor go around about
>the Kent State Issue, so I might as well ask for your opinion
>on all of this.


I have gotten some real insights on "male machismo" out of Sam Keen's "Fire
in the Belly-- on being a man". It worth a look at Drieux. Even tho the
book was written 10 years ago, to me it seemed even more relevant to the
sixties era, at least in the context of why many of us men acted the way we
did. Check it out!

Paul Heavens

/_) /_/
/ /-)(_//_ / /

From: PNFPNF <>

Drieux's post reminds me how in France in the years just following "Mai"
('68), and possibly until today, people would say "Qu'est-ce qu-on fait le
Samedi soir? On va au manif'" (what does one do Saturday evening? one goes to
a demo). Revolution/ "revolution" has always been as good a place to meet as
any. The problem arises when this gets trivialized, in the Reaction, as the
ONLY motive or reason, for where Reactive blinders trivialize/downgrade
genuinely progressive changes in how personal identity/relations are seen; (I
am having a problem with this issue just now, as a woman who is including my
personal story [of relinquishment during the antiwar movement] in a book of
birthmothers' accounts, still tends to refer to the late-1960s interface of
personal and political change as "free love", "sudden" revelations, etc., thus
rather missing a crucial point.)
Relatedly, what I think Drieux may be getting at in his post, the value as
legacy of the gender/identity issues we struggled with, seems to be getting
quite trivialized in some of the thread on gender re informants/FBI activity.
One keeps hearing that feminism (and, before that, Black power) etc. were
Right/FBI ploys to destroy the one united movement. Doubtless "divide and
conquer" tactics were used against us by the FBI etc.--what else is new?--but
certainly the bigger issue must be that 1) feminism, Black power/identity
currents, etc., were solid responses to genuine oppressions inadequately
addressed by the then-active forces of the (perhaps) more general Left here
(male-led, mostly middle class students and post-students?), and 2) the basic
still-bleeding matter of why were we unable to encompass all these
issues/trends into one "lion a sept tetes" revolutionary movement? (granted,
infiltration etc. likely played a major role.)
I guess we all feel somehow we must find how to inform and enthuse the new
generations' revolutionary needs. Though you'd think a whiff of the
"air"/polluted miasma we're all breathing would do that pretty quick.
Paula Friedman