Diane P. reviewed Return to Modesty: Discovering the Lost Virtue on
Helpful Score: 5
As a home schooling mother, I have lived a somewhat sheltered life from the type culture experiences that Wendy writes about in this book. This was an eye-opener for me, and a very helpful one, enlightening me about some of the things my daughters are experiencing of which I had no idea. My daughters may not even recognize some of the undercurrents of pressure to display themselves sexually.
Ms. Shalit offers thorough research of historical and philosophical developments of the independent woman, whereby the chivalrous gentleman has been societally marginalized. She describes how this has put women at risk, both sexually and criminally.
While not overtly Christian (I believe Ms. Shalit is Jewish), she writes with clearly Judeo-Christian standards as her foundation. If one does not value the natural differences between men and women, this book will be a turn-off. If the reader values, as I do, the traditional male-female relationship, and the virtues of protecting a woman's sexuality from predators, then this book should be of great interest.
Written in an enjoyable and easy-to-read-while-still-intellectual style, this book is recommended for every parent, and for every young woman who cares about her sexual future.
Much has been written about Ms. Shalit's research data, of how she resorted to polls taken by women's and girls' magazines to measure the popular sentiment about all things sexual or gender-related from the distinct point of view of young women in the US. I think she just proved her vast resourcefulness as a cultural researcher, as these kinds of subjects (both the issues and the young women's) are hardly the target of serious independent academic study by university researchers (or at least they weren't at the time this book was published).
It takes a lot of courage to go against the current, and that's exactly what Ms. Shalit has done with this book. She swam against the sex-saturated cultural current in mainstream America to deliver an impassioned and very important message about the dangers young women are exposed to today, as they have been stripped(forgive the pun) of their natural modesty and of every tool culturally conceived through hundreds (perhaps thousands) of years to support that modesty, which used to protect them from the male tendency to "spread the seed" at any cost. As another reviewer pointed out, if you favor the current view that the sexes are exactly the same in every respect, and there are no differences in the ways men and women view the world, perhaps you'll be bored with this book, even offended. But if you believe that the differences between men and women don't preclude their inherent equal worth as human beings, then this book might make you reconsider, even question, many of our current assumptions about what it means to be female in our time.