Episode 29, available on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and YouTube


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“I think one of the most damaging phrases ever is, and I think it was Gloria Steinem who it's attributed (to is), ‘the political is personal’...This thinking cast us into this idea that women were the proletariat (and) men were like the capitalist exploiters.”

Today's episode of Keep Talking features Danielle Crittenden, an author, mother, and host of The Femsplainers Podcast. During the conversation, Danielle talks about her book, What Our Mothers Didn't Tell Us: Why Happiness Eludes the Modern Woman, feminism in the modern world, women and happiness, the role of mothers in our society, her 30-plus year marriage to author and essayist David Frum, and the advice she would give to young men and women about the role of relationships and work in a happy, wise life.

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Time Stamps:

(00:00) Intro
(00:51) Get to know Danielle Crittenden
(01:39) What led Danielle to write "What Our Mothers Didn't Tell Us"
(10:42) The modern messages received by women in academia and culture
(18:43) The modern relevance of "What Our Mothers Didn't Tell Us"
(26:01) How not taking partnering seriously changes how women prioritize their lives
(32:52) Creating "The Femsplainers Podcast" with Christina Hoff Sommers
(39:49) How "The Femsplainers Podcast" has influenced Danielle's thinking
(54:06) Danielle's marriage to David Frum, and advice for a successful relationship
(01:00:21) The thinkers, writers, podcasters, and resources Danielle  recommends
(01:07:14) How to address some of modernity's common issues
(01:12:31) Advice for young women to chase their dreams and lead a fulfilled, meaningful life


“A lot of women who are working are not doing it to fulfill their inner dreams, but because they have to.”

“(Single) women, I have noticed, tend to get more neurotic. As time goes by, I feel we have a lot of impulses to take care of things. That's why single women seem to get cats.”

“I think one of the most damaging phrases ever is, and I think it was Gloria Steinem who it's attributed (to is), ‘the political is personal’...This thinking cast us into this idea that women were the proletariat (and) men were like the capitalist exploiters.”

“If you are constantly...counting...who is doing what, and feeling that your whole identity is undermined because you've ended up unloading the dishwasher, that's going to be a problem for a relationship, especially when you encounter real (problems). We're all going to encounter sadness, we're all going to encounter health issues.”

“It is true that by pretending that we have the same needs as men and don't want different things...(whether) you call it parental leave and not maternity, you've made it very difficult to compensate for the tangible differences that we do have.”

“One of the most profound things a child does, too, is it takes you out of yourself, you stop thinking about yourself all the time...You're no longer first, you're not putting yourself first, you're putting someone else first.”

“You don't have to do anything that makes you feel degraded or will make you feel embarrassed or degraded...It does not mean you're not cool… Look for someone who you respect and who will respect you back.”

Resources Mentioned:

Book Mentioned:

People Mentioned (Quotes from Wikipedia):

  • Christina Hoff Sommers  – “Christina Marie Hoff Sommers is an American author and philosopher. Specializing in ethics, she is a resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute. Sommers is known for her critique of contemporary feminism. Her work includes the books Who Stole Feminism? and The War Against Boys.”
  • Andrea Dworkin – “Andrea Rita Dworkin was an American radical feminist activist and writer. She is best known for her analysis of pornography, although her feminist writings, beginning in 1974, span 30 years. They are found in a dozen solo works: nine books of non-fiction, two novels, and a collection of short stories.”
  • David Frum – “David Jeffrey Frum is a Canadian-American political commentator and a former speechwriter for President George W. Bush, who is currently a senior editor at The Atlantic as well as an MSNBC contributor. In 2003, Frum authored the first book about Bush's presidency written by a former member of the administration.”
  • Sam Harris – “Samuel Benjamin Harris is an American philosopher, neuroscientist, author, public intellectual and podcast host. His work touches on a wide range of topics, including rationality, religion, ethics, free will, neuroscience, meditation, psychedelics, philosophy of mind, politics, terrorism, and artificial intelligence.”
  • Jerry Seinfeld – “Jerome Allen Seinfeld is an American stand-up comedian, actor, writer, and producer. He is best known for playing a semi-fictionalized version of himself in the sitcom Seinfeld, which he created and wrote with Larry David.”
  • Mark Normand – “Mark Normand is an American stand-up comedian and actor. He began performing stand-up in his hometown New Orleans in 2006. He has performed across the United States and abroad and has appeared on Conan, The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon and The Late Show with Stephen Colbert."
  • Betty Friedan – “Betty Friedan was an American feminist writer and activist. A leading figure in the women's movement in the United States, her 1963 book The Feminine Mystique is often credited with sparking the second wave of American feminism in the 20th century.”
  • Gloria Steinem – “Gloria Marie Steinem is an American feminist journalist and social-political activist who became nationally recognized as a leader and a spokeswoman for the American feminist movement in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Steinem was a columnist for New York magazine and a co-founder of Ms. magazine.”
  • Caitlin Flanagan – “Caitlin Flanagan is an American writer and social critic. A contributor to The Atlantic since February 2001, she was a staff writer for The New Yorker in 2004, contributing five articles in 2004 and 2005 including To Hell with All That. In 2019, she was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize for Commentary award.”

Connect with Danielle:

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