As I was browsing the Internet the other day I stumbled upon an article on Jezebel that caught my eye. The Real Housewives of New Jersey star, Melissa Gorges, has recently published her book, Love Italian Style, for feminists everywhere to cringe at the abundant examples of sexism, spousal abuse, and gender roles. Granted, I have not read the book but I have watched a few episodes of the Real Housewives of New Jersey so when I saw the article on Jezebel I immediately clicked on it. Luckily, having not read the book, Jezebel provided ample examples of the book’s most misogynistic passages. I’m going to post the link here and I encourage you to take a look at it for a better understanding of why this book is so egregious in it’s attempt to describe a happy marriage : http://jezebel.com/real-housewife-melissa-gorgas-new-book-advocates-mar-1371722729
If I commented on every passage provided on Jezebel, this post would probably the length of novel so instead I’m going to focus on only two.
One of the passages is from Melissa Gorges and the other is from her chauvinistic pig of a husband, Joe Gorges. The book’s purpose is to give advice on what women should do to have the wonderful marriage that the Gorges have! Joe Gorges provides women with helpful and insightful advice on how we may sexually please our husbands so they do not cheat on us (how thoughtful!) :
“Men, I know you think your woman isn’t the type who wants to be taken. But trust me, she is. Every girl wants to get her hair pulled once in a while. If your wife says “no,” turn her around, and rip her clothes off. She wants to be dominated. Women don’t realize how easy men are. Just give us what we want”.
This passage is so outrageous that I completely agree with Jezebel in wondering how the hell passages such as these made it past the publisher. Joe is basically encouraging spousal rape so it is completely unfathomable that the publishing company, St. Martin’s Press, allowed such a passage to remain. I find this particular passage so incredibly disturbing because it perpetuates the idea that women inherently desire dominant men and the absurd notion of “ no means yes”. If a woman says “no” it very well means NO regardless if a man believes she’s saying otherwise based on her dress, appearance, or actions.
The last part “ women don’t realize how easy men are. Just give us what we want” is so infuriating because it’s insinuating that women, in this case spouses, are meant to be sexual slaves to a man’s every whim. Melissa provides us with her perspective of wifely duties in this enraging passage:
“[A] woman needs to keep herself in shape. She has to be seductive. She must be willing to try new things for her husband’s pleasure and her own. And, most important, she has to be available for sex”.
Melissa is a tragic figure indeed because I can easily bet that most of her backwards opinions on wifely duties are heavily influenced by her domineering husband. A wife is not there for her husband as a beautiful sex toy for which he can do whatever he pleases with. Marriage is built upon true companionship, equality, respect, and most importantly, love. These passages are truly so upsetting because of how they perpetuate the existing, sexist notions that a woman’s true role in life is to remain subservient, attractive, and sexually available for a man.