I read that and then Nat's response. It is interesting that things got blown up to the point where people were thinking women were burning bras all over the place. I was a kid at the time, and that would have been my perspective of the situation. I do remember women not wearing bras or girdles as a statment. To some degree, it was as much a fashion trend as anything ultimately.
Since this discussion started I have been thinking about what is happening now. I still do NOT think feminists are caving. They are just doing things differently. In northern BC, there is an organization called Women's North Network. I believe they may actually meet in person, but since I live five hours away from the main centre, I don't participate in person. They have a strong e-mail network and share stories about events and news and such.
An example of this is our "Highway of Tears". This is the highway that runs from Prince George, BC to Prince Rupert. Several women have gone missing or have been murdered over a certain period of time along the highway. The perception is that since most of the women are Aboriginal, there isn't the political will to do something and investigate properly. Several groups have been keeping this issue alive, by walking the highway in groups, having vigils, speaking in the media, pressuring leaders etc. Another similar story is that of Vancouver's Downtown East Side. Many many young women went missing over many years. The police were not giving it much effort because these were "just" prostitutes and many were drug addicted "Indians". Well, Native groups, womens groups and others brought this out to the forefront. One man has been charged with something like 50 murders in a particularly awful situation. Now people are looking at the disappearance of prostitutes in other cities in Canada more seriously.
Women are also just "doing it" and are taking positions of power or making changes. That is more effective in the long run. When young women have role models they can aspire to higher levels. In fact, I heard a woman speaking of this last week, that young women do now have role models that those of us in our 40's and 50's did not have.
Feminism is not dead in the water. Women have not retreated. They are just doing things differently. Thankfully our mothers ditched their girdles and opened doors for us. Now we can help our daughters. We can romanticize the past or do something constructive.