Thursday, October 1, 2009

Women Are No Longer Happy?

A New York Times story by Maureen Dowd refers to a study conducted by the group General Social Survey. Interestingly enough, the study concludes that almost every grouping of women is now less happy than from before 1972. Despite the increase in women-held positions in commerce and politics, women are less happy than ever. Dowd continues, explaining that perhaps the traditional role of women kept them happier, and now they balance too much to be happy. While many of her conclusions are logical, her ultimate conclusion that to women, "happiness is beside the point. We’re happy to have our newfound abundance of choices, she said, even if those choices end up making us unhappier." This twisted logic baffles me. The only thing I hear in it is an echo of the cry "non serviam." Though women are less happy, they are more empowered, and that's what matters. I wonder how many unhappy women want empowerment more than happiness? If one makes an absolute freedom of will--essentially trying to decide your own good--a higher good than satisfying that will, you are left only with unhappiness. That, after all, has been man's failing from the Garden till now.