Gin as a feminist drinkPosted: May 15, 2016
Honestly, I mostly love the taste. But I do feel quite a political passion for gin too. It’s the connotations for me – the 18th century panic about gin (beautifully illustrated in these Hogarth paintings https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beer_Street_and_Gin_Lane) largely focussed on the way that gin would make women terrible mothers with loose morals. Then it was part of the desperate history of pre-legal abortions (http://www.medic8.com/healthguide/abortion/history-of-abortion.html). Buying any sort of alcohol was pretty much a man’s game, but it must have seemed very eye-brow raising for a woman to be buying gin with such strong connotations of illegality and immorality.
I am hugely privileged by my position in history and today’s world, to not even consider gin as a way to blur poverty or as any kind of desperate contraceptive. But sitting pretty on my bar stool, with a gin menu in front of me, seems like such a reminder of how far feminism has come.
Or maybe just an excuse for one more G&T. Cheers!