Women We Love 2022: Wednesday Martin

Wednesday Martin

by Don Flood

“Our world is so richly weird,” says Wednesday Martin. The cultural critic and author of books like Untrue: Why Nearly Everything We Believe About Women, Lust, and Infidelity is Wrong and How the New Science Can Set Us Free has been fascinated by society’s inner workings since reading Margaret Mead’s Coming of Age in Samoa as a child. “Eventually it came out that Mead was queer, and also likely part of a throuple,” Martin tells GO. “Learning about her blew my mind, and set me on a path, both personally and professionally.” Martin’s work in anthropology, which she honed at the University of Michigan before earning a Doctorate in Cultural Studies at Yale, goes far beyond monitoring recent trends: for example, with female non- monogamy, which has been observed in cultures world-wide. “I’m not just saying, ‘You’re normal, this is a thing people [have done] in Brooklyn for the last 15 years,’” Martin clarifies. “I am marshaling data from different disciplines to show people that yes, they are in fact normal, and marshaling the scientific [literature] to help them understand why they want what they want and feel what they feel.” It’s a lot of effort, Martin admits, but she relishes “taking the things I struggle with, whether it’s how to survive all the hatred we feel toward stepmothers, or dealing with female competition, or having a hard time with monogamy, and turning it into a book…and then hearing from other people that my writing helped them.” Since facing judgment as the daughter of atheists in a religious town in the 1970s, Martin understands how her identity informs her work. “I think my gender and my sexuality helped me feel a very deep identification with all people on the wrong side of power.” –LE

What Do You Think?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *