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We in the United States are having our “Harvey Weinstein” moment, where after decades and decades of silence about everyday sexual harassment and even abuse, women are finally being heard. No cases have come to trial, and yet perpetrators are losing their jobs.

This great “turn” that allow our society to finally hear to voice of women is so heartening. And yet it also brings questions. Some of these questions have already been raised, such as “why didn’t we listen to these women before?” And for women, “why did we put up with this?”

But there are other questions, too. What principles is our society drawing from the “Weinstein moment”? Is the principle our society is drawing really “don’t harass or abuse women”? Or might there be other calculations at work? For example, how many women have to come forward before you lose your job? If you have offered a certain form of apology, can you just take a sabbatical from your job and return? If you are a politician, how bad does it have to be before the other party calls for you to step down? Before your own party calls for you to step down? What’s the statute of limitations in the court of public opinion these days?

More seriously, Stephen Marche, writing about what we have learned about the male libido through the Weinstein Moment in the opinion section of the New York Times, asks a trenchant question: "What if there is no possible reconciliation between the bright clean ideals of gender equality and the mechanisms of human desire?" Marche goes on to predict we are entering a stage of pessimism about the answer to that question.

So we ask: what do our readers think will be the upshot of our nation’s “Weinstein Moment”?




Full Citation for this Article: Editorial Board, SquareTwo Journal (2017) "Reader's Puzzle Fall 2017: What is the Upshot of the Weinstein Moment?," SquareTwo, Vol. 10 No. 3 (Fall 2017), http://squaretwo.org/Sq2ArticleReadersPuzzleFall2017.html, accessed <give access date>.

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