So wrote Sylvia Plath in the unsettling elegy to her father, ‘Daddy.’ Composed a year before her suicide in 1963, it is probably the most haunting and articulate insight you’ll ever read from a girl with severe daddy issues. Otto Plath died when Sylvia Plath was eight, and the poem re-imagines her father as a Nazi and her as a defenseless Jew. Sexual bondage and a yearning for domination abounds:
It stuck in a barb wire snare.
Ich, ich, ich, ich,
I could hardly speak.
I thought every German was you.
And the language obscene
An engine, an engine
Chuffing me off like a Jew.
A Jew to Dachau, Auschwitz, Belsen.
I began to talk like a Jew.
I think I may well be a Jew.
Plath’s willing sublimation to her absent father is a topic that has been done to death by academics. Typically, they reach for the easiest go-to theory of modern literary academia: psychoanalysis. But this is no Electra complex. There is no matriarchal competition for her father’s affections. It is merely a wrestling with her own identity as the early death of her father leaves her yearning for a strong male presence to fill the vacuum.
Every woman adores a Fascist,
The boot in the face, the brute
Brute heart of a brute like you.
The hundreds of lovers of Benito Mussolini, or Eva Braun, who shot herself in the chest (with her father’s pistol – another psychoanalytical field day) in an attempt to gain Adolf Hitler’s attention, would no doubt have agreed with this sentiment. And can it be mere coincidence that Gabriele D’Annunzio, one of the forerunners of Italian Fascism, was also one of the most famous seducers of the 20th century? No doubt men of power from every political creed (Stalin and Mao both enjoyed a harem of women) made use of their power to gain notches, but peculiar to Fascism is the submissive adoration it induces in its adherents.
At the heart of this lies a fascination with cruelty. There is the cruelty of socialism that sends millions to its death in the vain hope of engineering a utopian society. And there is the cruelty of the fascist, an unashamedly masculine individual who will go to any lengths to assert his supremacy. Sexual and political domination go hand in hand. Aldous Huxley observed in his foreword to Brave New World that ‘As political and economic freedom diminishes, sexual freedom tends compensatingly to increase.’
The direction in the past fifty years of any Western democracy bears out this idea. De Tocqueville’s warnings of overly-democratic societies spilling into soft tyrannies is observable in the huge increase in the regulatory power of centralized government, a movement that goes hand-in-hand with our pornified culture where the chasm between procreation and sex is widening. The exception to this is undoubtedly countries ruled under Sharia, but as religious states have always taken particular delight in moderating the sex lives of their citizens, there was little sexual freedom to be diminished at the outset.
I made a model of you,
A man in black with a Meinkampf look
And a love of the rack and the screw.
And I said I do, I do.
There have been numerous observations of late that women can no longer enjoy a good romping without it involving a moderate-to-severe degree of torture. Lefties have attributed this to the violence of internet porn, but the answer is simpler: the sheer number of modern Sylvia Plath’s that our culture is churning out – albeit without a modicum of her intelligence. And as marriage continues its precipitous decline, it is difficult to foresee anything but a proliferation of these types.
Is the answer, then, to become the fascist that every woman secretly craves? In the bedroom, if we are to take the Fifty Shades phenomenon at face value, this would seem the thing to do. Outside the bedroom, advancing such political opinions would alienate the vast majority of Western womanhood, and could in Orwellian Europe land you incarcerated in jail for a thought crime, so ultimately it is best to channel the fascist implicitly, not through words but through actions and demonstrating the supremacy of your value over those in your surroundings. To paraphrase Groucho Marx, once you can fake that, you’ve got it made.
Listen to Plath reading the poem in full. Her tone is a fascinating blend of anger, resentment, resignation, ruefulness, belligerence, and pent-up sexual aggression towards her father. It does almost enough to convince that the only way to ensure a woman is enamored with you is to have her completely brutalized. Now there’s a cheering thought.
Read More: Is This The Most Deluded Woman In The World?