SMART WOMEN/FOOLISH CHOICES: Finding the Right Men and Avoiding the Wrong Ones by Connell & Melvyn Kinder Cowan

SMART WOMEN/FOOLISH CHOICES: Finding the Right Men and Avoiding the Wrong Ones

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Two male Beverly Hills psychologists tell today's accomplished, choosy women ""to become more realistic in their expectation if they want to form close long-term relationships with men."" Many women, according to Cowan and Kinder, are still looking to men for the ""excitement and thrills"" that men find in work or sports. They want their men to be strong, and in some way superior. They don't really want to know about a man's insecurities--that diminishes the man, in their eyes. There are varying degrees of truth in this, and a mite of truth in the ""love addiction"" charge that the authors level broadly: the allegation that women expect Mr. Right to make everything right for them. It's reasonable to point out to women, too, that men don't want a live-wire femme to turn domestic, and actively resent a self-supporting woman's shift to economic dependence (for further schooling, more creative work)--an option not open to men, who may not like their jobs either. But mainly this is a mid-1980s version of the old line about women going after the ""wrong,"" exciting men (who make them miserable) and passing up ""diamonds in the rough"": the shy, awkward guys, without looks or ""sizzle,"" who improve on acquaintance. Women should also cultivate their femininity: ""a magical mixture of unadulterated power and tenderness--in equal measure."" Coming after injunctions to women not to impute ""magical qualities"" to men, this not only smacks of male fantasizing, it puts the burden of successful relationships right back on women--who shouldn't expect (yet again) to Have It All.

Pub Date: March 1st, 1985
Publisher: Potter--dist. by Crown