Thursday, May 5, 2011

Long afterward, Oedipus, old and blinded, walked the
roads. He smelled a familiar smell. It was
the Sphinx. Oedipus said, 'I want to ask one question.
Why didn't I recognize my mother?' 'You gave the
wrong answer,' said the Sphinx. 'But that was what
made everything possible,' said Oedipus. 'No,' she said.
'When I asked, "What walks on four legs in the morning,
two at noon, and three in the evening," you answered,
"Man." You didn't say anything about woman.'
'When you say Man,' said Oedipus, 'you include women
too. Everyone knows that.' She said, 'That's what
you think.'
Muriel R. Schulz, 1975, 'The semantic derogation of woman', in Language and Sex, eds, B. Thorn and N. Henley, Rowley MA: Newbury House Publishers, pp. 66-7