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Feminism because why not make a thread for it?
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Willem



Joined: 09 Jul 2006
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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 1:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dogen wrote:
The YouTube commenters seem to make the same connection that you make in your question - that is, "asking a woman out for coffee." I heard it as, "asking a woman in for coffee," which, whether we (men) like it or intend it, has certain connotations. Asking a woman out for coffee is 100% a-okay. Asking a stranger - even an interesting one - back to your hotel room... yeah, I can sympathize with how that might creep a woman out.

I also find it interesting how some of the people commenting labelled it as sexist because the dyad is a male and a female, saying that she would react differently if it were a guy asking another guy to come to his hotel room to talk, or a woman asking another woman... even though those combinations have entirely different social connotations. It's like saying a woman is sexist because she's offended when a man slaps her on the ass without her consent because she isn't offended every time two guys on a sports team slap each other on the ass. You have to modify your own behavior with respect to patriarchy, too. It's not just a problem for women. You may ask a strange woman to walk down a dark alley with you with a totally egalitarian intent, but just like other forms of communication it's not merely your intent that matters (and, in fact, it's less than half of the equation) but how that message is transmitted and understood by the recipient. If you're the biggest feminist on the face of the earth in your heart but you're always trying to get women to walk down dark alleys with you, people will treat you like a creep, because that's the image you portray. Similarly, if you ask a woman you don't know to come back to your hotel room at 4am, no one should be surprised she finds that creepy.

This is pretty much Correct, but I'd just like to add that Dawkins is a huge creep and fuck him.
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Mr_Moustache



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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 1:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You sir are no friend of mine. Dawkins is awesome.
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Arc Tempest



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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 2:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mr_Moustache wrote:
You sir are no friend of mine. Dawkins is awesome.


Attacking the Avengers and defending Dawkins...


Sometimes I worry about you.
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Guest



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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 2:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Willem wrote:
Guest wrote:
words

reddit.txt or maybe even MRA.txt


For someone who is unaware of the Something Awful memes you're privy to, mind elaborating?

Willem wrote:
Snorri wrote:
By what reasoning does consent become meaningless in the context of patriarchy that does not hold for non-patriarchal systems?

But that's just a brief aside. Both consent and rape explicitly require agency, because rape is the absence of consent and does not make sense without the existence of consent, to deny one denies the other.


Samsally wrote:
So do women just never want sex, ever? Because 1) not true, or I wouldn't be such a special snowflake and 2) isn't that kind of a sexist thing to assume to begin with?

No, they absolutely want sex. It's just impossible to know when exactly in a patriarchy. It's kind of like Shrödinger's Libido or something.

But the same holds true for men, if you follow this line of reasoning, but that's another issue.

Yeah, you kind of did shoot your own argument in the foot there. I'm just curious what brought you to this kind of reasoning. It's impossible to know when a woman wants to have sex? Because... what? Elaborate, please.

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I'll just start by saying that if Dworkin considered herself feminist, and she apparently had (and still has) a large following, then I'm not surprised when people say feminism has been hijacked.

Those people are idiots. Feminism isn't just a single monolith of an ideology. There are several waves of feminism and enough different groups within it. And they all disagree with each other. (and this on a very wide range of subjects, like pornography, prostitution, abortion, etc) Saying that one group (which most people don't even understand) discredits the entire movement is insulting - to say the least.


When did I say that one group discredit the entire movement? Are you using the same rhetoric as Dennis now? Broad statements to something I definitely did not say? I said that people like Dworkin and Coulter has/had large followings, who are particularly vocal, and as such hijacked the name. And not just Dworkin and Coulter, others too. I didn't say they discredited the movement as a whole, I merely said that because of these people feminism may not be a word for which some people see favourably. So, I just say I'm a humanist now. No confusion there.

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misandrists

While it may be the most fitting as it will ever be due to the subject of this conversation, but don't use this word again when discussing feminism. It's laughable.


While I didn't really mention it due to the subject at hand, but you may feel free to think so if it makes you feel better, Why not? Because there are no such things as misandrists? Really, Willem, you need to stop this naive outlook you have on life. It's making me feel old.

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seduction was no different than rape

“Seduction is often difficult to distinguish from rape. In seduction, the rapist often bothers to buy a bottle of wine.”

Slight difference. Do I really have to link you to some MRA-text?


Wow. Yeah, you got me there. Slight difference. Never thought you were one for semantics, but there you are. Brilliant. But you may have noticed that she's still calling the seducer a rapist. A rapist who has the decency to buy their victim a bottle of wine.

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marriage was an invitation to rape and slavery (to women, of course)

"Marriage as an institution developed from rape as a practice. Rape, originally defined as abduction, became marriage by capture. Marriage meant the taking was to extend in time, to be not only use of but possession of, or ownership."

This isn't nearly as controversial if you look at the origins and the history of marriage.


In which culture, I wonder? Ancient Greece? Rome? Egypt? Or way before that, with our troglodyte ancestors? (Nice callback to the comic.) Unfortunately there is no evidence for neither abduction or capture being commonplace in the Neolithic, apart from cartoons, and none for marriage as far as we know. Of course my history-fu might be lacking. Maybe you have a better grasp on the history of marriage than I do.

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She then goes on how women cannot be free until all men are dead (or she says 'manhood', which I assume is exactly what it means, and how it will 'perish' when 'ravaged feminity (rape) no longer sustain it'. yeah.)

"Only when manhood is dead -- and it will perish when ravaged femininity no longer sustains it -- only then will we know what it is to be free."
Manhood is 'the patriarchy'. That's pretty uncontroversial feminism101 stuff right there. She's not talking about literally killing all men.


No, I didn't say she was literally talking about killing all men either. Gods you're quick with that double-edged sword of broad statements, aren't you? So if 'manhood' in that statement means 'the patriarchy' (as you so expertly seem to be able to divine her meaning), what's the 'ravaged feminity'?

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and then that wishing for equality with men is akin to becoming the rich, the rapist and the murderer. (Which we'll assume with the inclusion of rapists and murderers are all bad.)

"A commitment to sexual equality with males is a commitment to becoming the rich instead of the poor, the rapist instead of the raped, the murderer instead of the murdered."

What she means here is that to demand sexual equality isn't enough. She's calling for the end of patriarchy, so that actual, full equality can be reached. This is, again, not controversial.

Really, most of these statements are suddenly totally uncontroversial when I - y'know - actually put the quote in there instead and when I give a little explanation.


Or akin to handwaving a particularly malicious Bible quote. Now you're just being pathetic, Willem.

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I mean, even Ann Coulter is considered a feminist icon. Ann fucking Coulter. That right there is proof that feminism -- or at least a large part of it -- has gone off the deep end. So to cut out the middle man, I just call myself humanist now. (Which, ironically, is also what Hugh Hefner did.)

As I said, feminism is a very, very large and very, very diverse group. No doubt that you'll find some small group that thinks that Coulter is a feminist icon, but obviously most groups (including myself) would disagree.


Yeah, I do believe I said that. However, as with most groups, if you acknowledge the one group, you must acknowledge the other, even if it is unsavory. Ann Coulter has apparently done a lot for women's rights, according to many women. Even if you ... disagree.

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It doesn't matter though. Feminism is very much legitimate and alive today. To call oneself humanist is either showing yourself as ignorant on the subject or showing your 'what about the mens!' privilege. Or both.


What?

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Either your ignorance drives you to think that feminism is somehow not legitimate anymore or you feel the need to explicitly cram men into what is fundamentally a women's movement. (though obviously this movement already includes issues pertinent to men - the patriarchy hurts men as well)


o_O

I... what?

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also, guest, you never did respond to my last Big Post


The one you linked to? I missed that. I'll get around to it.
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Halen



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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 2:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm with Moustache. The Selfish Gene is just a masterwork.
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Mizike



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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 2:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

jwing wrote:
I always thought that feminism was that radical belief that women were humans, too, deserving of all the rights, respect and opportunities that are given to men.


Guys, thread's over. jwing won.
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Samsally



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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 3:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Guest: It really does seem like you're using a very select few to completely taint your view of the entire movement. Unfortunately, I'm not able to view videos at work easily, I will try to catch them during a slow time or something.

Dogen: That does make a lot of sense, and it is a really interesting outline of how patriarchy hurts men, too. I know it's a matter that really frustrates some of my more socially awkward male friends. They accidentally come off way creepier than they really are. My friends don't generally blame the women, but some people in similar situations have and it is an upsetting thing to watch.

Willem: I think it's an interesting theory and I like that it brings in to question how much of what we do and think is determined by society, either directly or indirectly. But I honestly think it's a pretty questionable claim all the same. It skirts the edge of telling women they just don't know what they want ever, which is a really un-empowering message that seems counter-productive to the movement as a whole.

Also, I feel like I still have so much to learn. I should have said "bickering" instead of "bitching", I suppose. It's just mind-blowing how far the rabbit-hole goes.
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Willem



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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 3:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Halen wrote:
I'm with Moustache. The Selfish Gene is just a masterwork.

He's good when it comes to atheism, I guess, but he should stop talking about anything else.

Guest wrote:
Yeah, you kind of did shoot your own argument in the foot there. I'm just curious what brought you to this kind of reasoning. It's impossible to know when a woman wants to have sex? Because... what? Elaborate, please.

Willem wrote:
Because of cultural indoctrination - which teaches women that sometimes no means yes, that to make her partner happy she has to do things she doesn't want, etc - a patriarchic society adds a specific extra layer of issues which take away from the meaning of consent. But as you said, there is no way to ever know if your decision is 'your own', even in a non-patriarchy. There's always something that's 'tainting' your agency. But if you were to compare just the patriarchy and the non-patriarchy on this specific issue, you can say that consent in a non-patriarchy would be more meaningful because it doesn't have the issues I mentioned. But it's not perfect either.

When all your decisions and your very mind are formed by the structures which make up our society, it becomes impossible to know if you'd make the same decision in - say - a non-patriarchy. You'd be fundamentally different if those structures changed. So maybe you'd have sex in this patriarchy because, y'know, he had a rough day, it's been a while since we did it, it's all part of this whole relationship thing, while in a non-patriarchy you wouldn't.

But that doesn't mean that women don't ever want to have sex (that's absurd), it's just that nobody can know for certain in this society. It's unclear if there's consent or not. Is there enough agency for her to make that decision or is this decision being made - essentially - by the patriarchic structure which formed her mind? The argument Dworkin makes is that no, it is structure and if we break down patriarchy she'd have more agency to make this specific decision.

Sorry if I'm a bit unclear, but it's hard to explain.

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When did I say that one group discredit the entire movement? Are you using the same rhetoric as Dennis now? Broad statements to something I definitely did not say? I said that people like Dworkin and Coulter has/had large followings, who are particularly vocal, and as such hijacked the name. And not just Dworkin and Coulter, others too. I didn't say they discredited the movement as a whole, I merely said that because of these people feminism may not be a word for which some people see favourably. So, I just say I'm a humanist now. No confusion there.

You said that feminism was hijacked, which is utter bullshit. Dworkin and Coulter make up tiny bits of the feminism spectrum. I'm also not buying the whole 'tainted term' thing, because you can hop from name to name like a coward but the connotation will always follow you. If you actually care about feminist goals, you should proudly call yourself a feminist and not buckle the second someone says 'but look at Coulter!'. It's the same as someone going 'but Stalin!' in a conversation about socialism and it's equally stupid.

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Because there are no such things as misandrists? Really, Willem, you need to stop this naive outlook you have on life. It's making me feel old.

In a conversation about feminism and women's rights, it's in incredibly poor taste to talk about 'misandrists'. Aside from it being a weasel-word/dogwhistle much in the same way as welfare queens and States' Rights are, aside from it spawning out of a contrarian tactic of taking feminist terms and childishly reversing them, aside from the fact that I've never seen it used properly, it's laughably meaningless. Here we are, living in a patriarchy, where men are automatically advantaged in nearly every way - where the default is misogyny - and you're going to bring up the fringe of the fringe misandrists like it even deserves to be mentioned in the same conversation as misogyny? No, don't do that.

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Wow. Yeah, you got me there. Slight difference. Never thought you were one for semantics, but there you are. Brilliant. But you may have noticed that she's still calling the seducer a rapist. A rapist who has the decency to buy their victim a bottle of wine.

She's saying that some tactics involved in seduction are comparable to the tactics that rapists use. Don't dismiss this as semantics, because she's saying something entirely different than what you think she's saying. As for examples (I should've said PUA, not MRA, by the way), browse around.

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In which culture, I wonder? Ancient Greece? Rome? Egypt? Or way before that, with our troglodyte ancestors? (Nice callback to the comic.) Unfortunately there is no evidence for neither abduction or capture being commonplace in the Neolithic, apart from cartoons, and none for marriage as far as we know. Of course my history-fu might be lacking. Maybe you have a better grasp on the history of marriage than I do.

I'm not an expert either, but I'm guessing that marriage came into being during the transition from migrating group dynamics to sedentary family units. Suddenly lineage becomes important and the only way for a man to know for sure (or as sure as he can be) is for him to have a woman that's exclusively for him. Taking women wasn't all too uncommon during those days either (I'm sure the Romans and the Jews had some myths about this). And during most of history, in a marriage, the man really did own the woman.

But really, I don't think her argument would stand up to serious historical criticism, but I can see where she's coming from.

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No, I didn't say she was literally talking about killing all men either. Gods you're quick with that double-edged sword of broad statements, aren't you? So if 'manhood' in that statement means 'the patriarchy' (as you so expertly seem to be able to divine her meaning), what's the 'ravaged feminity'?

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She then goes on how women cannot be free until all men are dead

Also, I can 'divine' her meaning because I actually know what I'm talking about. I'm guessing 'ravaged feminity' just means womankind, but it could be something else. Anyway, do you object to this statement now that you know she's only saying that women should overthrow the patriarchy?

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Or akin to handwaving a particularly malicious Bible quote. Now you're just being pathetic, Willem.

This is not an argument. Do you disagree with my interpretation of her quote? If so, why?

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Yeah, I do believe I said that. However, as with most groups, if you acknowledge the one group, you must acknowledge the other, even if it is unsavory. Ann Coulter has apparently done a lot for women's rights, according to many women. Even if you ... disagree.

What? No, you don't. I'm not sure what you mean with acknowledge, but I doubt it's anything good. An anti-porn feminist shouldn't be thrown into the same pile as a pro-porn feminist. Nuance.

And you keep saying that a lot of people say that Ann Coulter's a feminist: who are these people?

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What?

o_O

I... what?

These aren't arguments.
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Willem



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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 3:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Samsally wrote:
Willem: I think it's an interesting theory and I like that it brings in to question how much of what we do and think is determined by society, either directly or indirectly. But I honestly think it's a pretty questionable claim all the same. It skirts the edge of telling women they just don't know what they want ever, which is a really un-empowering message that seems counter-productive to the movement as a whole.

It basically says nobody ever knows what they want, so it's not specifically anti-feminist or anything. But I mainly look at it like an interesting thought-exercise which does a lot to expose the scope of the patriarchy.
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Guest



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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 3:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Samsally wrote:
Guest: It really does seem like you're using a very select few to completely taint your view of the entire movement. Unfortunately, I'm not able to view videos at work easily, I will try to catch them during a slow time or something.


...What. How? What is this? Am I just a really shit wordsmith? I really can't figure it out. I haven't said a bad thing about feminism in this thread. None. So why am I the black sheep here? I wish for the same thing as you, I just don't call myself feminist. That is all. I think the word 'feminist' has been tainted, but I haven't said a bad thing about the movement. Goddamnit.

I mean, Willem just basically said that I call myself humanist because I'm either ignorant or just showing my privilege. Why am I the only one being lambasted here?
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Him



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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 4:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Guest wrote:
I said that people like Dworkin and Coulter has/had large followings, who are particularly vocal, and as such hijacked the name. And not just Dworkin and Coulter, others too.

What exactly do you think Coulter and Dworkin have in common? And who, except for people who would otherwise hold a favourable view of Coulter anyway, considers her a "feminist icon"? I wasn't even aware she tried to claim that crown, would have had her more pinned as a self-proclaimed anti-feminist. So either I am missing something or saying "Ann Coulter is a feminist icon" is rather misleading.
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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 4:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh and re: that whole marriage thing, FYI rape inside the marriage was not a crime in sweden until the 1960's. So unless you consider roughly 50 years ago to be pre-historic times, marriage meant that you as a woman could not get raped by your husband. And by not get raped, I mean you could totally get raped it just wasn't illegal. Does that help put it into perspective a bit more?
Oh and I think it's good you don't call yourself a feminist, guest, because...well, you're not.
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Samsally



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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 4:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Willem wrote:
Samsally wrote:
Willem: I think it's an interesting theory and I like that it brings in to question how much of what we do and think is determined by society, either directly or indirectly. But I honestly think it's a pretty questionable claim all the same. It skirts the edge of telling women they just don't know what they want ever, which is a really un-empowering message that seems counter-productive to the movement as a whole.

It basically says nobody ever knows what they want, so it's not specifically anti-feminist or anything. But I mainly look at it like an interesting thought-exercise which does a lot to expose the scope of the patriarchy.

I do think this explains why it's such an unpopular opinion. Even when you include men into it, I don't think anybody likes being told that they don't actually know what they want. It comes off as extremely patronizing and even belittling. I do agree that it's interesting to ponder, but I'm not sure how much I actually believe it.

Guest wrote:
...What. How? What is this? Am I just a really shit wordsmith? I really can't figure it out. I haven't said a bad thing about feminism in this thread. None. So why am I the black sheep here? I wish for the same thing as you, I just don't call myself feminist. That is all. I think the word 'feminist' has been tainted, but I haven't said a bad thing about the movement. Goddamnit.

I mean, Willem just basically said that I call myself humanist because I'm either ignorant or just showing my privilege. Why am I the only one being lambasted here?

I'm really not trying to attack you. I just feel that it is important to the feminist movement to use the term feminist. Other people have written on it more eloquently than I'll be able to, but its a convenient way for the well-intentioned to ultimately dismiss feminist concerns.

By lumping us into a bigger category you risk forced comparisons as well as massive generalizations. My ultimate goal is get closer to equality of all people, yes, but acting as though all discrimination is exactly the same cuts out your ability to argue specifics.

Misogyny is not the same as other forms of discrimination. Same as other forms of discrimination are not the same as each other. In order to effectively argue against them, they need to be separate things.

Feminism is against misogyny. It is a direct response to a patriarchal system and the kind of casual sexism that harms men and women. In comparison, the term "humanist" is a sort of hand-waved approval that yeah, okay, sexism is bad. Misogyny is bad. But what about this other stuff that's also bad? It doesn't actually help any of the movements it proposes to support.

You can fight all of the fights, but you cannot fight them as though they are the same thing. Feminism is just one of many fights against discrimination and taking away it's name does not help that fight in the slightest.
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Willem



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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 4:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Samsally wrote:
I do think this explains why it's such an unpopular opinion. Even when you include men into it, I don't think anybody likes being told that they don't actually know what they want. It comes off as extremely patronizing and even belittling. I do agree that it's interesting to ponder, but I'm not sure how much I actually believe it.

"Freedom is life's great lie. Once you accept that, in your heart, you will know peace."
\


Really, it's an argument that I've seen a lot, but I don't think it's patronising or belittling because when you say it, you automatically include yourself in the equation and you don't say treat this absence of agency as a bad thing per se. But yeah, I'm not 100% sure what I think about it either. It's ideologically convenient, in any case. e: though I should say that believing this doesn't mean that all your choices are immediately invalid or that this has immediate consequences in your day to day life - we're stuck in the patriarchy for now, so until we get rid of it we'll have to learn how to live within its limitations as best we can.
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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 5:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't pretend to have done huge amounts of reading on feminism, but my understanding is that most U.S. Citizens fall comfortably into the classification of "equity Feminist" whether they define themselves as feminists or not. In other words they believe that women and men should be treated the same and everyone should be nice to each other and be allowed to pursue their happiness, etc. Yes giant oversimplification, but the bottom line is equity feminists were so successful in their efforts that ideas that were once fairly radical aren't even associated with the ideology anymore. They're simply normal.

There are fringe groups and some of their members actually believe the bile they spew, but they generally aren't taken any more seriously than flat earthers.

Most of the reading I have done in this area was brought on by the shit storm that occured after a couple of evolutionary psychologists published a book on the biological underpinnings of rape as a behavior. In it they recommended that policy might benefit from a more evidence based approach that the assertion that rape isn't about sex, might be problematic from a policy standpoint (Surely this is true at least some of the time, but the evidence suggests there's plenty of times when it is indeed about sex.). They were immediately attacked by fringe feminist groups who called their book "science by men for men" and accused them of providing a biological "Excuse" for rape and thus somehow making it okay.... Yeah they said that. It was the Equity feminists who defended them. It was they who pointed out that many of the studies cited in the book were conducted by women, that evolutionary psych as a discipline had equal gender representation, and that the studies cited by the attackers provided no real evidence for their claims. Citations in plenty yes, but those citations were followed to other papers with no evidence, which provided more citations but no more evidence until eventually they got to papers that didn't even provide citations. In short, the Equity Feminists pretty much saved the day, and agreed that policy should be evidence based and questioning dogma should not be verboten.
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