It is a truth universally observed that women drivers exist to be scorned, belittled, demeaned and abused. I know—I used to be a woman driver! It is a fascinating curiosity that Saudi Arabia manages to conform to this principle by the singular expedient of preventing women from driving at all.

I have often wondered what it is about vehicular transportation that induces irreducible and ineradicable misogyny. In these sensitive days— post the men are from Mars, women from Venus debate—one is supposed to be more subtle than just to put it down to testosterone. If the androgenic hormone is not responsible, then what is it that makes the internal combustion engine the great redoubt and ultimate legitimisation of male supremacy?

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