Either way, you can’t ignore it–the book’s become a runaway hit and was a New York Times bestseller before it even hit the stands last week (according to this Hollywood Reporter article by Andy Lewis). The book’s even become so popular that Samuel Jackson recently lent his voice to the audiobook (click on this Hollywood Reporter article to hear him reading it on Letterman).
(For the record, I think it’s hilarious. Then again, I’m a lover of satire and anything that smacks of The Onion, so it’s right up my alley.)
But there’s a whole new debate going on about whether or not the book could have been written by a woman. Amy Sohn argues that if a woman had written Go the F**K to Sleep, a) the book wouldn’t have been a bestseller and b) the woman who attempted it would’ve received the backlash of the century. Instead of being told how “cool” and “funny” her project was, here’s what she’d probably hear instead:
— If you hate being a mom so much, why did you have a child in the first place?
— Clearly your daughter can’t rest because you work.
— You have an anger management problem and you’re giving your kid ADHD.
— You need Zoloft.
— I pray that you bring no more children into the world because it will spare another individual the years of therapy he will need to get over the trauma of having been raised by such a selfish and insensitive person. (Sohn, “Could a Mom Have Written Go The F–K to Sleep?” Babble.com)
I whole-heartedly agree. Despite all the blogs and books out there attempting to blow apart the whole double-standard of what we expect from our mothers and fathers, has anything much really changed? If it had, would we still be crucifying writers like Ayelet Waldman and the like?
Here’s Sohn’s take on this:
Apparently, even though we’re in this age of How Much Parenting Sucks and How Hard It Really Is, the Good Mother archetype still reigns supreme. As Connors puts it, “Any woman that exposes the uglier side of parenting or even humorously disparages motherhood gets a lot of blowback. There’s this powerful idea that mothers should be good. Dads are not held to that same standard so they have more leeway to be irreverent and dark and ridiculous.”
What do you think?