Grand Delusions of the Modern Power Couple

It’s hard to find a lot of sympathy for the high-powered kind of feminist who laments that she isn’t quite as high-powered as she could have been, were she a man, or, indeed, as is her husband, despite his lesser talents. But I found myself sympathising with much of this, from Margaret Cook, divorced wife of deceased ex-minister Robin Cook, about the Vicky Pryce verdict.

We all know alpha males can bully their underlings in pursuit of their own ambitions. Whether their underlings, or wives, are born submissive, or are required to learn submission, or have it thrust upon them is neither here nor there. Why would Vicky Pryce have agreed to sign off on her husband’s speeding points, if she hadn’t been, if not exactly “maritally coerced”, then under intense pressure? Not as if it’s a barrel of laughs, is it, acquiring points on one’s driving license?

Both Robin Cook and Chris Huhne – especially Chris Huhne – would have been better off marrying old-fashioned homemakers who meekly accepted their lot, including eventual abandonment for younger model, in exchange for a decent pay-off. Except that both, as the young politicos they were, were probably born just a little too late to have found dating a girl without any professional ambitions of her own socially acceptable; especially not being Tories. 

In my personal experience ambitious young men still wary of equally ambitious female counterparts often look abroad when the time comes to choose a permanent mate. With an uncorrupted grounding in proper gender hierarchy, even well-educated girls from many other countries can often be counted on to view wife-status of Western alpha male a more-than-sufficient ambition in its own right. They are usually better looking too.

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About marytuda

An accidental first time mum in her fifties reflects on all things maternal from position of perpetual outsider and prolonged state of shock. An urban odessy through parenthood plus from one who thought she'd never go there.
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3 Responses to Grand Delusions of the Modern Power Couple

  1. martin griffin says:

    Maybe the transnational marriage you describe also has the advantage of difference, in the sense that the individuals concerned don’t know each other’s language and assumptions in the sometimes claustrophobic way that fellow-nationals do? There is always the bridging of tones, perspectives, and cultural sensitivities to add a little exoticism to a relationship and, perhaps, to provide a neutral justification for clashes and misunderstandings. “Maria is Brazilian, you know, and they get angry about all sorts of odd things” sounds a lot more affectionate and accepting than “You know, Mary’s getting angry about all sorts of odd things these days.”

  2. marytuda says:

    Oh sure Martin I wouldn’t presume to disparage cross-cultural liaisons; indeed as you know I’ve been party to a few myself. The above is really about the Pryce/Huhne case the details of which you have probably been blissfully spared. Have had so little time lately for lengthy blogs or anything else, really.

  3. martin griffin says:

    Still, I like reading them (and Mike’s too), so keep them coming! I did pick up the story of the wife taking the rap for the traffic offense, incidentally. Sorry, offence. No offense!

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