Eagle Eye (indyeagleeye) wrote,
Eagle Eye

Amol Rajan: Cameron's Cuties vs Dave's Divas

The Mail takes a dislike to all-women shortlists in its second leader this morning. Andy McSmith's explainer in our paper is an excellent, historically informed account of how we got to where we are on the vexed subject.

My chief interest lies slightly elsewhere.  Clearly the most important question is how we should describe the Tory version of 'Blair's Babes'.  The aim, of course, should be to combine alliteration, affection, and a resistance to misogyny.

'Blair's Babes' is rather patronising, suggesting their attractiveness was their principal asset.  'Cameron's Cuties', which the Mail plumps for, is similarly chauvinistic and faux-superior.

'Dave's Divas' isn't much better. But it does move the emphasis slightly, from focusing on the relative attractiveness of incoming female Tory MPs to focusing on their relative operatic ability.  And, though the word has lately come to imply a tendency toward hysteria ("Stop being such a diva", etc), it's originates from the Latin for goddess, feminine of 'divus', meaning God.

And there's a better rhythym to 'Dave's Divas': it's one-two, one-two, rather than one-two-three, one-two, like 'Cameron's Cuties'. And it's doubly alliterative: there is are two d's and two v's.

On both moral and literary grounds, then, 'Dave's divas' it is.

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