Sunday, March 1, 2009

End of An Unconventional Family

Okay, so I was kind of disappointed with the end of this book. I thought she took things more slowly in the beginning, explaining and providing details on her unconventional family. By the middle to end, Sandy rushed things and became more impersonal, which I think correlates to her declining marriage. Speaking of her marriage, I was waiting for the part about she and her husband getting divorced and becoming involved in a same-sex relationship. She brisked over this part and maybe mentioned it in a sentence or two. If Lily had not mentioned it in class, I probably wouldn't have noticed that she became involved with a woman.

Certain things were just odd to me. Namely, her two year old daughter asking her to kiss her clitoria, and then when she actually does it. If a father kissed his son's penis, some serious questions would be raised. Also, Sandy acts like her two-year old is so knowledgeable about the female body and sex in general, which I definitely don't buy. This must be some really sophisticated two-year-old.

I liked the question-and-answer section with her son and daughter. I know I'm just reading into it too much, but it kind of irritated me how she put her son's questions before her daughter's, even though her daughter was born first, AND, his section seemed to be longer. Out of the the four, I liked the son the best, because he appeared more neutral and balanced compared to the others. I liked how he gave simple answers to his mom's questions, especially the one when she asks, "Is this affection with guys part of being gay?" and he replies, "I mentioned a girl earlier. You didn't ask then if I was describing myself as straight." She also seemed to idolized her son because he was a "mathematical genius" with a "poet's soul," (taken in my words) essentially. She obviously loves her daughter, but she dwells on her son's gifts and talents too much, paired with his "feminine personality traits," making him appear inhuman.
She seems really hung up on supporting gays in general, and denouncing heterosexual relationships. As for her daughter, she just sounded strange to me. I couldn't get past the image of her wearing bikini bottoms without shaving. Though, I will say, I thought the children inherited Daryl's gentle demeanor, which is definitely a good thing. I would also say that they don't need to "flaunt" or "force" their feminist status, like their mother.

Overall, I thought Sandy captured the reader's attention, but I was lost when she started talking about her failed attempt at being tenured at Stanford, and everything seemed to be written in a drier tone and more formal, like in the Whiteness book. My real complaint is not getting more personal, and that Daryl proved to be passive, as predicted. In all honesty, I don't see the appeal of her idea of an egalitarian marriage.

Well, I've obviously written too much, though there is plenty of good and bad points about this book.

1 comment:

  1. I agree with the question-answer section at the end. I think that brought the entire book together from different perspectives so that we could further understand her meathods. I did however find lots of her meathods on how she raised her children extremely odd. I really did not agree with them at all, but in the end it really seem to help them, according to them, so I guess how she conducted her childerns life was not so entirely bad.