FAQ

Feminism Friday: More on how Rape Jokes Just Aren’t Funny

Obviously, a lot of women feel uncomfortable about rape jokes because rape is an ever-present background threat to daily life for us, not just a bit of regrettable “bad sex”. Melissa McEwan at Shakesville has written quite a lot about how rape jokes bolster rape culture, and posted an excellent essay on the subject of […]

FAQ: What is “internalized sexism”?

Short definition: Internalized sexism is the involuntary internalization by women of the sexist messages that are present in their societies and culture. It also the way in which women reinforce sexism by utilizing and relaying sexist messages that they’ve internalized.

FAQ: What is “sexism”?

Short definition: Sexism is both discrimination based on gender and the attitudes, stereotypes, and the cultural elements that promote this discrimination. Given the historical and continued imbalance of power, where men as a class are privileged over women as a class (see male privilege), an important, but often overlooked, part of the term is that […]

FAQ: What’s wrong with saying that things happen to men, too?

Short answer: Nothing in and of itself. The problem occurs when conversations about women can’t happen on unmoderated blogs without someone showing up and saying, “but [x] happens to men, too!” (also known as a “Patriarchy Hurts Men, Too” or PHMT argument, or a “What About The Mens?” or WATM argument). When this happens, it […]

FAQ: What roles should men play in feminism?

Just as there’s no easy answer to the question of whether or not a man should call himself a “feminist” or go by a different term, there’s no easy answer for what role men should play in feminism. Below are a collection of different thoughts and perspectives of what men can do to be good […]

FAQ Updates

As you might notice in the “Recent Comments” section of the sidebar to the right, there’s an awful lot of comments coming from someone called “FAQ”.  That’s actually tekanji going to town on FAQ updates, adding more quotes and links and summaries, which are generating trackbacks to the other FAQs that they link to etc […]

FAQ: What is the “male gaze”?

Before talking about the male gaze, it is first important to introduce its parent concept: the gaze. According to Wikipedia the gaze is a concept used for “analysing visual culture… that deals with how an audience views the people presented.” The types of gaze are primarily categorized by who is doing the looking. While the […]

FAQ: Some feminist said/did something offensive/stupid/crazy/evil, so isn’t feminism a failure?

A: No. No one person represents the whole feminist movement, or all feminisms. Not this feminist, not any other feminist. Often both the people asking this sort of question and the responses conflate two separate arguments: Did the person actually commit the alleged offensive/stupid/crazy/evil action? Does committing that offensive/stupid/crazy/evil action reflect badly on feminism? Trying […]

Feminism Friday: Open Thread on gender dominance issues in sexuality, slurs and raunch culture

Where do you point a male feminist ally (whose alliance up until now has been based on largely unexamined egalitarian impulses, but who hasn’t read any theory) to find good introductory analysis of gendered dominance in sexual behaviours, and how attitudes towards and about sexual behaviours play back into gender relations more widely? Some of […]

FAQ: Isn’t the existence of the term “sex-positive feminism” effectively an admission that many feminists are anti-sex?

If only it actually were that simple. Sex-positive’s opposite is not sex-negative. The terms sex-positive, sex-pos etc came about as a movement in opposition to the feminist anti-pornography activists of the late 1970s/early 1980s. Let’s spell it out: Pornography does not equal all sexual behaviour.. Prostitution does not equal all sexual behaviour. Consensual sex play […]

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