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Wed Feb 20, 2013, 10:38 AM

Radical feminism: what it is and why we're afraid of it




Sweden's chief prosecutor Marianne Ny has been accused by a retired judge of being a "malicious radical feminist". Photograph: Scanpix Sweden/Reuters
OMG, a radfem, lol


Alongside the obvious questions of freedom of information and criminal justice, the Julian Assange affair has also made visible a multitude of contemporary anxieties concerning sex and gender. This was brought into sharp relief by claims that Assange's prospects of a fair trial might be compromised by the possibility that Sweden's chief prosecutor Marianne Ny is a "malicious radical feminist" with a "bias against men". But what exactly is radical feminism? If popular attitudes to feminism are anything to go by, it's clearly something pretty terrifying.

Research suggests that, in the popular imagination, the feminist and the radical feminist in particular is seen as full of irrational vitriol towards all men, probably a lesbian and certainly not likely to be found browsing in Claire's Accessories. As an academic working on issues concerning gender and politics, I've had the good fortune of meeting lots of inspiring feminist women and men but despite searching I've yet to locate a feminist matching that particular description. Perhaps I haven't looked hard enough. A more likely possibility is that the popular insistence that radical feminists and often by implication feminists in general are all man-haters reflects wider misunderstandings about the history of feminism and its impact on contemporary gender relations.

*

However, in Britain at least, radical feminism has never been particularly dominant, partly because in the eyes of many socialist and postcolonial feminists it has been insufficiently attentive to the intersections between gender inequality and other categories, such as race and class. So Rod Liddle's peddling of the tiresome rightwing idea that radical feminism has destroyed the family, along with Dominic Raab's assault on "feminist bigotry" and the Vatican's efforts to address "distortions" caused by radical feminism, rest on at least two implausible assumptions. First, they reduce feminism to a horrifying caricature that never really existed and second, they make the frankly bizarre suggestion that radical feminism is the dominant ideology of our times. It would seem that not only do these radical feminists commit the outrage of not wearing makeup, but they use the time this frees up to consolidate their world domination. Or an alternative explanation might be that these are the paranoid anxieties of fearful anti-feminists.

Their fear is not totally misplaced, for radical feminism has undoubtedly had some success. Fortunately for Dominic Raab, world domination is not one of them. Three decades ago, the notion that rape and domestic violence are pressing political issues rather than trivialities, or that men should play an active role in childcare, would have been seen by many as radical and dangerous. Today, thanks to the influence of the insights of diverse strands of feminism (including, but not limited to, radical feminism), these ideas have seeped into the mainstream. Despite this, genuine gender equality can seem distant, but many groups and individuals continue to push in the right direction.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/feb/09/radical-feminism-assange-case


ok. thanks to those that made me explore this subject. i appreciate it. it has been fun. all the rads, all around. this woman, here in a picture, the "man hater" and the stay at home mom in texas, lol. yeehaw. i forgot the point i was gonna make, but i will probably get back on track here in a minute.

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Arrow 28 replies Author Time Post
Reply Radical feminism: what it is and why we're afraid of it (Original post)
seabeyond Feb 2013 OP
Helen Reddy Feb 2013 #1
seabeyond Feb 2013 #2
Helen Reddy Feb 2013 #5
niyad Feb 2013 #3
seabeyond Feb 2013 #6
Helen Reddy Feb 2013 #8
niyad Feb 2013 #4
seabeyond Feb 2013 #7
Helen Reddy Feb 2013 #9
seabeyond Feb 2013 #10
redqueen Feb 2013 #11
seabeyond Feb 2013 #12
niyad Feb 2013 #14
seabeyond Feb 2013 #16
niyad Feb 2013 #18
seabeyond Feb 2013 #19
niyad Feb 2013 #20
redqueen Feb 2013 #23
niyad Feb 2013 #24
niyad Feb 2013 #13
redqueen Feb 2013 #15
niyad Feb 2013 #16
redqueen Feb 2013 #21
niyad Feb 2013 #22
MadrasT Feb 2013 #25
Helen Reddy Feb 2013 #26
ismnotwasm Feb 2013 #27
MadrasT Feb 2013 #28

Response to seabeyond (Original post)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 10:44 AM

1. Women "made" you explore this subject?

 

Now, THAT is amusing.



Great article hunting and hopefully some will read and ponder.

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Response to Helen Reddy (Reply #1)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 10:46 AM

2. actually,

it wasnt women that made me explore. lol. but, that is neither here nor there. i do appreciate the push to check this out.

thanks always helen. ya, wouldnt it be nice for this stuff to actually be read instead of staying in ignorance to argue.

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Response to seabeyond (Reply #2)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 10:52 AM

5. Yes mam. n/t

 

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Response to seabeyond (Original post)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 10:47 AM

3. paranoid anxieties of fearful anti-feminists. yeah, fearful that if women ever did become the

dominant power, they would treat men the way men have treated women for thousands of years. interesting that every single one of their fears is based on exactly what the dominant power structure has been doing for millenia. hmmm, consciences bothering any of you fearful anti-feminists?

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Response to niyad (Reply #3)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 10:54 AM

6. kinda like having a black president. ya. you are right on. nt

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Response to niyad (Reply #3)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 10:57 AM

8. Projection indeed!

 

Spot-on!

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Response to seabeyond (Original post)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 10:49 AM

4. do you think any of them noticed that the woman in the pic is indeed wearing makeup?

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Response to niyad (Reply #4)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 10:54 AM

7. lol lol. making sense is not required, lol. something we forget time to time.

seeing that logic works best and all.

lmfao.

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Response to niyad (Reply #4)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 10:59 AM

9. Make-up is okay.

 

But if she is wearing 'comfortable shoes' watch out!

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Response to Helen Reddy (Reply #9)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 11:00 AM

10. bah hahahaha. tellin ya, that was funny. nt

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Response to niyad (Reply #4)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 11:13 AM

11. Camouflage.

We radfems are a wily lot.

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Response to redqueen (Reply #11)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 11:16 AM

12. you are funny. how do you think i tricked hubby into marrying me. lol

yup.

dress it all up, get that ring, them.... boom. just so i could spend the rest of our life, hating on him.

ok, not. lol

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Response to seabeyond (Reply #12)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 11:21 AM

14. thank goodness I had just put down my coffee

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Response to niyad (Reply #14)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 11:26 AM

16. you know, it just gets taken so far beyond reason, it becomes a hoot. nt

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Response to seabeyond (Reply #16)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 11:27 AM

18. have you ever read "the rules"?

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Response to niyad (Reply #18)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 11:29 AM

19. no. does that make us "ladies" or "manhaters"

So many rules. So little time.

Can I look it up googlin' the rules?

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Response to seabeyond (Reply #19)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 11:32 AM

20. it's a book that came out a few years ago, telling women how to behave so they could get

men to marry them (bs lifted straight from the 50's, apparently). all the games to play, how to dress, talk, accept dates--yeccch.

of course, after you get the idiot to marry you, then you get to be the "surrendered wife" (another bestseller)

my questions were: why would you want someone dumb enough to fall for these games, and at what point does the mask come off, and what happens then?

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss/189-3755391-7579354?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=the%20rules

I am going to be ill--did not realize they wrote MORE of that crap

and then we have "the surrendered wife" (I would guess you have been doing it all wrong all this time, sea)
http://www.amazon.com/Surrendered-Wife-Practical-Finding-Intimacy/dp/0743204441/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1361378250&sr=1-1&keywords=surrendered+wife

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Response to niyad (Reply #20)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 11:37 AM

23. Then you get to be like one of those women interviewed for The Feminine Mystique...

Married to a successful man, with a beautiful house, 2.5 kids, and desperately unhappy. And guilty over the unhappiness, because didn't you get everything society says women want? That's the prize for falling for that shit.

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Response to redqueen (Reply #23)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 11:41 AM

24. amazing the bill of goods women have been sold, isn't it?

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Response to redqueen (Reply #11)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 11:17 AM

13. if I remember correctly, phyllis chesler used to refer to it as war paint.

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Response to niyad (Reply #13)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 11:23 AM

15. Yeah, that's a popular nickname. I like to call it lady drag.

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Response to redqueen (Reply #15)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 11:26 AM

16. oh, I like that! alas, whatever we call it, I cannot employ it, having this unreasonable bias in

favour of breathing.

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Response to niyad (Reply #16)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 11:33 AM

21. I like to throw it into lighthearted discussions among women.

For example a conversation about the frequent practice of charging more for women's dry cleaning... I just casually mention that its like a tax on lady drag.

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Response to redqueen (Reply #21)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 11:36 AM

22. oh, I am most definitely stealing this

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Response to seabeyond (Original post)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 11:48 AM

25. OMG

It would seem that not only do these radical feminists commit the outrage of not wearing makeup, but they use the time this frees up to consolidate their world domination.


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Response to MadrasT (Reply #25)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 11:51 AM

26. World domination

 

is hard work. We want to look our best! while we're dominatin' and stuff.

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Response to seabeyond (Original post)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 03:55 PM

27. And this


"The end goal of feminist revolution must be...not just the elimination of male privilege but of the sex distinction itself: genital differences between human beings would no longer matter culturally."

---Shulamith Firestone

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Response to ismnotwasm (Reply #27)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 04:18 PM

28. My dream world. Truly. n/t

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