FAQ: But men and women are born different! Isn’t that obvious?

That idea is known as “essentialism”: the belief that there are uniquely feminine and uniquely masculine essences which exist independently of cultural conditioning. Both actual (minor) and alleged (major) differences between the sexes have been used to justify inequities and constraints which harm women emotionally, financially and physically. Even where (and if) such differences do […]

Feminism Friday: Safety vs. Patriarchal Overprotection

Reader Justin wrote and asked me for advice on an ethical balance problem, and with his permission I quote his email: I have a question which has been bothering me for some time, and which may/may not be worth addressing on the site. In any case, its something I don’t feel precisely comfortable asking my […]

FAQ: Why "feminism" and not just "humanism"? Or "equalism"? Isn’t saying you’re a feminist exclusionary?

This question implies that one must be either one or the other. People and philosophies are far more complicated than that. A feminist may also be both a humanist and an equalist. There’s no law that says only one box can be ticked here, and it’s hugely important not to get sucked into thinking that […]

FAQ: What is sexual objectification?

Sexual objectification is the viewing of people solely as de-personalised objects of desire instead of as individuals with complex personalities and desires/plans of their own. This is done by speaking/thinking of women especially as only their bodies, either the whole body, or as fetishised body parts. Sexual attraction is not the same as sexual objectification: […]

FAQ: Can men be feminists?

(Updated with extra clarification in the clarifying concepts section)Many men are entirely comfortable with calling themselves feminists, and many feminist women are very happy to accept them as fellow feminists working for the end of sexist oppression. However, there are also men and women who are ideologically uncomfortable with men calling themselves feminists, because it […]

FAQ: What is male privilege?

Before discussing “male privilege” it is first important to define what privilege means in an anti-oppression setting. Privilege, at its core, is the advantages that people benefit from based solely on their social status. It is a status that is conferred by society to certain groups, not seized by individuals, which is why it can […]

FAQ: Why are there so many fights between feminists?

Quoting from Sage’s FAQ: 1. Why do feminists all disagree? Feminism isn’t a movement, it’s an argument! We all want to raise the status of women to the level of men, to feel safe and respected, and to have a fair and equal chance for all our opinions to be heard. Since the movement is […]


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