completely unconvincing take
Periods of tremendous positive growth in women's roles and opportunities always generate a counter-reaction that comes in the form of images.Isaac Chotiner
What value is there in such countervailing images--the shadow to women's increasingly bright reality? The first is psychological. On some deep level, there's a generalized feeling that women's vulnerability equals the guarantee of receiving a reliable supply of their love and care. There's an anxiety that if women become too strong, too independent, we won't be able to count on them to nurture and they won't need love. Because men, children and (not to put too fine a point upon it) the whole edifice of human civilization depend on women's willingness to nurture, it's scary to take a step into the unknown--to see if women will continue to love if they're really free to choose whether to do so.
At a time like this, the broken, out-of-control ingenue--who clearly can't manage without lots of help--is reassuring. And, I'd say, seductive.