3 Comments

Call for links: debunking the malicious stuff

Mandolin had a suggestion I’d like to highlight and get some input on:

Andrea Dworkin/Germaine Greer/someone else said something complicated, and I have a reductionist summary of that which comes out to “men hate women” / “all sex is rape” / “something else catchy” … why am I wrong? Only, competently stated.

The competent concise statement is always the tricky part, but I though while I’m working up to that some links to specific debunkings would be useful. Here’s my favourite for debunking the “MacKinnon/Dworkin said all sex is rape” myth.

RadGeek (Geekery Today): Misquotation in Media: Catharine MacKinnon never, ever, ever, ever said “All heterosexual intercourse is rape.” Ever. Ever. (posted 19 February 2006)

Elizabeth Anderson, in a post quoted by RadGeek, said this:

Here’s a measure of how much a group is despised: how much malicious absurdity can one ascribe to its members and still be taken as a credible source on what they say and do?

So what’s your unfavourite piece of malicious absurdity and what are your favourite debunkings of malicious absurdities about feminism?

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writer, singer, webwrangler, blogger, comedy tragic | about.me/vivsmythe

3 comments on “Call for links: debunking the malicious stuff

  1. 4 comments at the original thread, cut and pasted below:

    Here’s a link to an article debunking the infamous “bra burning” myth: Myths of Women’s History – BraBurning
    Tracey | Homepage | 05.12.07 – 4:51 pm | #

    And here’s a good one debunking the myth that feminism ruins romance: Mythbusting – Feminism is a romance killer
    Tracey | Homepage | 05.12.07 – 5:18 pm | #

    This is embarrassing. Until I was sent to this link, I *did* believe that Andrea Dworkin had said ‘all sex is rape’ (or words to that effect). I must have read or been told that years ago, and just assumed it to be true ever since, rather than finding out for myself what she actually said.

    Thanks to Feminism 101 for disproving my misconceptions.
    Alasdair | 05.14.07 – 12:44 pm | #

    You’re welcome, Alasdair. Don’t feel too bad about it – each of has had some social investment in believing some factoid/s that “everybody knows” about someone or some group that is mad, bad and dangerous to know, and generally one is not encouraged to disturb the applecart of those who wish the factoid/s to be true. If you’re interested in examining factoids generally to see what else snuck by you in the socialising process I suggest taking a look at tafkac.org (the alt.folklore.urban archive) and/or snopes.com

    Welcome to an examined life!
    Editor | 05.14.07 – 1:12 pm | #

  2. I thought Dworkin did say that, but was talking about power dynamics and our messed up concept of sex as conquest and it’s taken out of context all the time. Am I wrong?

  3. She never said it. What she did say (and which is quoted in one of the links in that RadGeek post) is that centuries of male discourse have represented sexual penetration as a violation of bodily integrity to which women are expected to surrender, and that this limited view of sexual intercourse as an expression of bodily dominance underpins much of sexism. This observation (and extended analysis thereof) by Dworkin has been taken as if she claimed that heterosexual intercourse can never be anything other than rape, which of course is the exact opposite of her argument.

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