“Hillary Clinton, the Halo Effect, and Women’s Catch-22”

Fantastic essay about women in politics here, at the Situationist. Below is a short excerpt:

… After the final presidential debate between Obama and McCain, news anchor Katie Couric asked Hillary Clinton,”Why do you think Sarah Palin has an action figure and you have a nutcracker?”Clinton replied that she didn’t know. But Hillary Clinton knows better than anyone that capturing the American audience as a woman is a balancing act.

The constant criticism dedicated to Hillary’s pantsuits culminated in the marketing of a”Hillary Clinton nutcracker,”in which her thighs serve as the nutcrackers (perish the thought of imagining what a comparable doll would look like for Obama…?) Meanwhile, Sarah Palin, who took a cue and opted for the skirtsuit and heels, became the subject of sexualized mockery. Interesting too that often, the originators of derogatory material directed at both Clinton and Palin were from the ideological left, a position we associate with progressive and tolerant views …

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