Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Constructive criticism

Few really know what it is, but reader "Kyla" grasps the concept, taking me to task for some simplistic analysis. And I welcome it, with hopes that the Malcontent evolves into a forum for this kind of give and take.

Here's a re-post of a comment Kyla left regarding female suicide bombers:

So you've missed the whole line of conversation out there, about how it's not virgins, it's not *really* virgins, *everybody* gets pure spouses, the text actually says "raisins" and the like? (Incidentally, I'm damn sure it doesn't say raisins, in case you're wondering. It would suck to have died for a box of Sunmaids or whatever they're called).

I ask because it sounds like you've picked the one-liner about virgins and run with it. And being a sort of fan of yours, I was hoping for a more complicated analysis. So now I'm confused.

Obviously, the same discourse that allows men to think that there are women in heaven waiting for them allows them to ignore what might happen if the main subject of the fantasy was a woman.

As for women, jihad and martyrdom as an idea go so much deeper than the promise of endless exquisite orgasm, that 'virgins' isn't even close to the kind of carrot we're talking about here. It's just the sound byte for straight men, the rhetorical flourish that puts you over the edge when a bunch of other, deeper appeals have committed you 99.9% already. There are countless other rewards on offer.

Other things you've written suggest that you know this. But this one doesn't. So this comment is a genuine question. You seem to be falling for the sound byte.

1 comment:

  1. I meant to leave this earlier, but then I got distracted by news about the al-Askariyya bombing in Iraq, and then I got all upset, and then I almost threw my laptop away. BUT:

    Thank you for taking my critique in the spirit I meant it, which was indeed meant to be buildy. It's nice to be able to give and take that space, considering we live in such stupid times.