Rabbit's Feminist Support Pages
WHAT IS FEMINISM?
"Dictionaries usually define it as the advocacy of women's rights based on a
belief in the equality of the sexes, and in its broadest use the word refers to
everyone who is aware of and seeking to end women's subordination in any way and
for any reason."
-Encyclopedia of Feminism (By Lisa Tuttle)
A feminist is a person who answers "yes" to the
question, "Are women human?" Feminism is not about whether women are better
than, worse than or identical with men. And it's certainly not about trading
personal liberty--abortion, divorce, sexual self-expression--for social
protection as wives and mothers,
as pro-life feminists propose. It's about justice, fairness, and access to the broad range of human experience. It's about women consulting their own
well-being and being judged as individuals rather than as members of a class with one personality, one social function, one road to happiness. It's about women having intrinsic value as persons rather than contingent value as a means to an end for others: fetuses, children, the "family," men.
- Katha Pollitt
(More quotes on feminism:
, Feminist Majority
Leadership Alliance's Feminist Quotes)
Patriarchy has labelled men as "self" and women as "other"
Patriarchal society positions people to view the world from a male point of view. People are conditioned to view the male psyche as self and female psyche as "other" from when they are children. The majority of films and texts are androcentric featuring male protagonists facing archetypal male problems. People are positioned to sympathise with the male self and encouraged to empathise with difficulties men face in daily life.There is little encouragement given to people to empathise with women's problems,hopes and dreams in life. Women's reality and "self" (including the existence of "herstory" rather than "history") is often marginalised and viewed as being less important by many authors, film makers, and the patriarchy in general. Androcentric texts and films typically position women as only significant in relation to men's needs and wants and not as complex human beings who have their own dreams and desires independent of men. Women are often frustrated with the lack of strong female protagonists in texts and films. Some women question the belief they should adopt a male perspective on the world and some women believe the construct of male "self" and female "otherness" undermines the female "self" and they believe women's "self" is often ignored in almost all mediums of communication throughout life. Feminist author Adrienne Rich offers an insight on how women feel when their achievements go unrecognized:
When someone with the authority of a teacher, say, describes the world and you are not in it, there is a moment of psychic disequilibrium, as if you looked into a mirror and saw nothing. Yet you know you exist and others like you, that this is a game with mirrors. It takes some strength of soul--and not just individual strength, but collective understanding--to resist this void, this nonbeing, into which are thrust, and to stand up, demanding to be seen and heard".
By Judge Judy Sheindlin
"My father was a kidder, and he could usually
make me laugh; in laughing I was able to feel better about myself. He also
gave me a piece of advice about beauty that has stayed with me. 'Beauty fades'
he used to say, 'but dumb? Dumb is forever.' Judge Judy's father
impressed upon her that a bright intellect, a curious mind, and a passion for
learning are priceless commodities. "For as long as I can remember," she
writes, "the worst insult someone could give me was to say 'You're stupid.' In
fact to this day, it's second nature for me when I'm on the bench to point a
finger to the side of my head and ask, 'Does it say stupid here?' "the implied
answer being a resounding no. "
LACK OF FEMALE CARTOONISTS
The rare female cartoonist: If only she
wore khaki - a humorous
perspective on why there are so few female editorial cartoonists.
Includes statistics such as 9.85 out of every 10 editorial cartoonists in America are male.
Cartoonists Bring Wit to Cultural Exchange - two prominent female cartoonists lecture on their work at the University of Pennsylvania, USA.
Friends of Lulu - Friends of Lulu is a national nonprofit organization whose purpose is to promote and encourage female readership and participation in the comic book industry.
THE BIAS AGAINST FEMALE COMPUTER SCIENTISTS
"My gender is interesting but really not the subject of the story here."
-Carly Fiorina, Hewlett-Packard Co., President and CEO and the first woman to head a Dow 30 company.
"Privilege" - a poem by D. A. Clarke, feminist and software engineer.
INTERESTING FEMINIST TERMS
-Extracted from the Encyclopedia of Feminism, by Lisa Tuttle.
Androcentric -Male centred. Androcentric theory is the ‘view that the male sex is primary and the female secondary’.
Phallocentric - Term, like androcentric, which points out the masculine bias of our culture. Phallocentrism...is the belief that maleness is the centre and the norm against which everything must be judged.
Patriarchy- The universal political structure which privileges men at the expense of women; the social system which feminism is determined to destroy.
Phallocracy - Social, political, ideological system which perpetuates the domination of men and the subordination of women. Another term for patriarchy, it literally means ‘rule of the phallus’, thus emphasizing that... patriarchy is based on penis worship.
Double standard -Patriarchal moral code which sets different rules for behaviour according to gender. Under the double standard, behaviour condemned in a woman is accepted or even applauded in a man.
He/man language - Term used to describe the most obvious and pervasive instance of sexism in LANGUAGE: the use of the masculine PRONOUN (he, him) as a generic, and the use of the words MAN or mankind for the whole human race.
Herstory- Term used for women’s history, and to point up to the fact that what is presented as our history is all too often simply ‘his story’.
"I’m not a feminist but" syndrome -Mental state of women who have become aware that sexism exists, that they suffer from it, and that feminism - or something exactly like it but preferably with a different name - must be necessary, yet are afraid of being mistaken for one of the ugly, humourless, dogmatic, man-hating lesbians who are labelled feminists.
Objectification -The term describes the process of viewing women not as individual, complex persons, but as sexual objects which exist only in relation to male desire. This is done by identifying women solely with their bodies, either whole, or fragmented and fetishized as parts...
Social constructionism -The idea that the status of women, and the apparently natural differences between male and female, are not directly attributable to biology, but rather to the way that biology is interpreted within a given society; that sex roles are constructed and women and men made rather than born. The opposite to this point of view is called biological determinism or essentialism.
RECLAIM THE NIGHT (RTN) '2000
Are you a victim of emotional or physical abuse? The following pages may help you work out how to deal with your current situation and how to escape if you are in a crisis situation. Please remember you are not alone and there are those who will support you if you are in a crisis situation. There are safe houses and refuges for immediate escape and there is counselling to help you work out what to do about your future.
The following pages are from an Australian advocacy support plan but are equally useful to abuse victims from other countries.
Please also remember that if you are a victim of emotional abuse and you
feel you cannot talk to anyone about the abuse you are suffering, you are not
alone. Emotional/psychological abuse is sometimes worse than physical abuse
because you have no scars or bruises to prove the abuse. However, the
psychological abuse you suffer can cause great damage to both yourself and any
children involved. If you are the victim of psychological abuse you should
seek help just as if you had suffered physical abuse.
HUMOUR- SMART WOMEN AND DUMB MEN JOKES
You see a lot of smart guys with dumb women, but you hardly ever see a smart
woman with a dumb guy.
I think-therefore I'm single.
I never married because there was no need. I have three pets at home which
answer the same purpose as a husband. I have a dog that growls every
morning, a parrot that swears all afternoon, and a cat that comes home late
In politics, if you want anything said, ask a man; if you want anything
done, ask a woman.
I am a marvelous housekeeper. Every time I leave a man I keep his
-Zsa Zsa Gabor
What's the difference between government bonds and men?
What did God say after creating man?
I can do better
A woman of 35 thinks of having children. What does a man of 35 think of?
How does a man show he is planning for the future?
He buys two cases of beer instead of one
Why do bachelors like smart women?
Why are dumb blonde jokes so short?
So men can understand them.
Did you hear about the man who won the gold medal at the olympics?
He had it bronzed
What's the difference between an intelligent man and a UFO?
I don't know, I haven't seen either one.
Why is psychoanalysis quicker for men than for women?
When it's time to go back to childhood, he's already there.
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