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Catherine Wheel

March 18, 1990

In his review of "Harry and Catherine" (Book Review, Feb. 25), Richard Eder writes: "The message--that if you are truly your own woman, even a manly, tender, utterly respectful man with such extras as passion, wit, originality and a small but huggable potbelly may not fit--is not really anti-feminist. But it is very mournful."

Human development is distinguished by the quest for autonomy. Men have throughout history sought autonomy, and sought it through power-over.

As a result of the 20th-Century feminist transformation, women are now seeking autonomy, but generally not through power-over. They are seeking it through radical independence and generative solitude.

The challenge for Catherine--of "Harry and Catherine"--is to affirm the "manly," tender, utterly respectful person that is Catherine, with such extras as passion, wit, originality and a small but huggable potbelly thrown in. This historic venture is not--from a woman's standpoint--"very mournful". It is deeply celebratory.

DIANE R. HOLMAN LAGUNA BEACH

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