gender

Feminism Friday: Sexism, Misogyny and Dictionaries

Feminism Friday: Sexism, Misogyny and Dictionaries

There is a common misconception of how dictionaries come to be written: lexicographers record meanings as they change, and if there is a widely used meaning currently missing from a dictionary’s pages then it is a weakness of the dictionary rather than of the language

Feed the FAQ: the policing of women’s sexuality and double standards

Crowd-sourcing time! From KellyK in the Suggestions thread: Can you add “slut-shaming” and/or “mother/whore dichotomy” to Clarifying Concepts? A classmate of mine posted something I found mildly offensive and I’m having trouble elucidating why it strikes me as sexist, and would really like something to point him to when he inevitably asks what I’m being […]

FAQ: vagina vs vulva and public “faces of feminism”

Q: A celebrity feminist said something about the incorrect usage of vagina vs vulva and I want you to explain every nuance of her thoughts to me and why feminism thinks that way.

A: “Feminism” doesn’t necessarily think that way just because that celebrity feminist does.
Possibly there is controversy about her opinion.
Possibly her opinion is highly unpopular.
Also, just a thought, possibly she didn’t actually say quite what you think she said?

FAQ: Rape Culture 101

But my correspondents—whether they are dewy noobs just coming to feminism, advanced feminists looking for a source, or disbelievers in the existence of the rape culture—always seem to be looking for something more comprehensive and less abstract: What is the rape culture? What are its borders? What does it look like and sound like and feel like?

It is not a definition for which they’re looking; not really. It’s a description. It’s something substantive enough to reach out and touch, in all its ugly, heaving, menacing grotesquery.

Press Release from Equality Now

Remember the RapeLay video game, written about by Melissa and Cara back in February? Equality Now has been working to persuade Japan to uphold its obligations under UN conventions with respect to material that normalises and/or promotes violence against women and girls.

On the Mommy and Daddy Binary

Men are there to provide and discipline; women are there to care. This lie is the foundation for every damnable binary about sex and emotion in our culture—men are rational; woman are emotional—and it is on what we’ve based our pernicious refusal to regard the most destructive versions of emotions like anger, jealousy, possessiveness, vengeance, apathy, and selfishness as not emotions at all, but merely biological evidence of strength, as long as they emanate from men.

On Gendered Language

Pursuant to yesterday’s letter regarding the cessation of your use of the terms “man’s man” and “ladies’ man,” I would also like to request that you jettison the following from your vocabularies: “He’s all boy” and “She’s all girl.”

These terms are used to refer to children, anywhere from infancy to about 10 years of age, who are regarded as conforming nicely to the sex- and gender stereotypes prescribed by The PatriarchyTM. Sometimes, their use is only as pernicious as reinforcing an exclusionary narrative like all male humans like sports or all female humans like fashion.

On The Feminine as an insult

I had no reason at all to assume PatC was a woman, and I’m frankly not sure why I did; I’ve had female and male friends called Pat, and my email correspondents collectively skew slightly more male. So big wev to me: lol my gender assumptions.

What was more interesting to me was my reaction to PatC’s email: I was surprised, relieved, and grateful that he wasn’t insulted by having been presumed a woman.

And it was sad to me that I found it notable when his response wasn’t aggrieved.

An apology and a promise

A few months ago I posted an events notice for a MichFest Women’s Festival event in NYC. I screwed up big time in that original post by not including any text noting the trans-exclusionary policy of MichFest, which has excluded trans women as festival participants for many years. I apologise unreservedly for neglecting to highlight […]

Feminists Have Free Speech Too: Action Alert I

I’ve labelled this post as (I) because my spidey-sense tells me that this will become a series. Here you go: [link]. Tell this cartoonist what you think of jokes about his comic’s protagonist drooling about raping disabled homeless women because “it’s hard to keep your legs closed if you don’t have any”. Hey, having no […]

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