On Feminism, by a Golfing Pariah


I write this, reluctantly, in the horticultural façade of my Nan’s garden. The sun is incessant and intrusive. Nan is muttering at the tortoise; Granddad is muttering to himself. I solemnly contemplate the mental illness such genetics will inevitably bequeath me. I do so mercifully, rather.

I should be playing golf on days like this. Sadly, an incident involving a three wood and an overly smug caddy has mitigated my ability to enter the grounds of Hayling Golf Club. Said expulsion does give one much more time to think, however, and I now spend the majority of this time, alone, with my memory. Nan has lost Hemingway behind the courgettes. For fuck’s sake.

My indefinite ban from my entitled rights has facilitated in me novel thoughts about women. I have begun to empathise with that degrading feeling of not being allowed into an elite country club. I was born in Hampshire – does that count for nothing? I see why Virginia Woolf was constantly in bits. The wheelchair-bound and the Welsh died transfixed, rightly, in fear.

I cast my eyes at the latest event. Women eating on tubes. Cristina sent me a link. Here we are again. I ponder how to segue way the contrived opening of this article into the point I’m attempting to make. I give up.

Hemingway shits and Nan applauds. It’s a biological process from an insentient reptile. Maybe I should re-establish myself with the Church. Reconnect with faith.

So like every Culture minister we have ever had the honour of mocking through basic trivia tests, the writer distrusts art for art’s sake. Creepy being the semantic equivalent of weird, impenetrable or a bit deep. There is only virtue in certainty, we must infer.

My interest is perked slightly by the castigation of neoliberals. What Hayek’s market fundamentalism has to do with the photographic subjugation of women, is amusing to speculate. Look, we all know he’s used the wrong term; but if one is so adamant about the evils of political correctness, then the minimum they can do is know the correct words. Cute, though.

From then on it’s a wade through the thicket. Random capitalisation and foaming inadequacy. To experiment, I put Hem on the keypad; he trots up and down the alphabet a few times. It’s hardly E.M. Forster but it makes more sense than the drivel I’ve just read.

When Harrison, Jennings and Madge launched the social research project Mass Observation in 1937, they included amongst their problems, “female taboos about eating”. Is this current phenomenon a mere elaboration of the modern anthropological tradition? Unlikely. Is it misogynistic? Perhaps. Art and social anthropology have historically been blighted by hatred towards women. As has golf, which is quite convenient for the structure of this piece.

I’m beginning to understand how the women feel.


Published by

Joseph Owen

PhD, Carl Schmitt, Modernism and Sovereignty at University of Southampton

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