It’s a Mad Mad World

In “Penguin Family Values” Noel Sturgeon makes a unique connection between the patriarchal and heteronormative normalized/popularized family form and today’s poor environmental health. He claims: “When such heteronormative family forms are bound up in environmentally dangerous social and economic practices, we have a situation in which we are promoting environmental damage by naturalizing heteronormative patriarchy” (107). This assertion reminded me of a scene in the television show Mad Men where the Draper family (a perfect model of the traditional and patriarchal family Sturgeon describes) goes on a picnic and, after they’ve finished, leave all their trash behind. Although it would be an unwarranted assumption to say that they do so only because they are the type of family Sturgeon describes, I think it’s interesting that the correlation he argues in his text is evident in a piece of prominent popular culture.