Random Acts of Feminism

Have you engaged in–or imagined– random acts of feminism? If so, The Guardian wants to hear about it.

These are small, simple acts that allow us all to inject feminism into our daily lives, like turning over the lads mags in a newsagent so that the covers face the wall.

Got a better idea? Tell the Guardian by emailing women@guardian.co.uk. And also tell us in the comments! (Thanks, Kate!)

26 thoughts on “Random Acts of Feminism

  1. Today I purchased a new mop for my wife and new earrings for my mistress… does that count?
    Oh yeah, instead of pissing on the toilet seat I politely used the sink…

  2. TRM, I expect you meant your actions to describe some sort of male protest, but they sound to me more like adolescent fantasies. If you have the spare time to think about your life in these terms, you are probably wasting that time.

  3. It was meant more to be a smart ass, in a good natured way. I just don’t understand any need for a “feminist” movement these days. It’s a little silly to me actually…

  4. I think if you click on BIAS over in the categories, you’ll pretty quickly see things that most feminists show the need to continue to work for great equality for women.

  5. From my own experience in the military and other feilds. I have worked with a few women who were professional, smart, capable and made decisions based on logic and mission accomplishment.
    The huge majority, however, wanted to be in charge but used the “woman” thing when it suited their needs. They crumpled under pressure and were incapable of making tough decisions. Not to mention the least bit of pressure would completely ruin their judgment. Sorry, that’s just my honest observation.

    The woman of steel, or equall, as you call them was the exception and definatley not the rule… really no offense…


  6. From my own experience in the military and other feilds. I have worked with a few blacks who were professional, smart, capable and made decisions based on logic and mission accomplishment.
    The huge majority, however, wanted to be in charge but used the “black” thing when it suited their needs. They crumpled under pressure and were incapable of making tough decisions. Not to mention the least bit of pressure would completely ruin their judgment. Sorry, that’s just my honest observation.

    The black of steel, or equall, as you call them was the exception and definatley not the rule… really no offense…

    None taken!

  7. Really interesting, RS. I think that people are still willing to say things about women that they’d recognized as unacceptably racist if said about African Americans.

    But I’m finding the present example hard. Is TRM really just saying, “In my experience a few women are genuine leaders, but most aren’t”??? He says that the majority wanted to be in charge, but instead fell back on other strategies. BUT of course that’s just part of what happens in groups, isn’t it? The majority CANNOT be in charge. So that hardly seems to distinguish among men and women, and doesn’t seem so awful to say about blacks.

    I hope I’m being clear. Maybe.

  8. I suppose that’s a plausible interpretation of TRM’s comment. It is indeed benign (and true) to say “most ______ won’t become leaders in their fields” since, after all, the blank can simply be filled in with “people.” I wonder if TRM meant something more than that…

    “No question that the enemy has tried to spread sectarian violence. They use violence as a tool to do that.” – G-Dub

    Okay, maybe not.

  9. RS was/is way off track in her clever? spin. I just don’t see the need for any type of feminist outrage these days. People are going to be people. Sometimes they are insensitive to whatever real or percieved bais one would like to read into everyday situations.
    Once you have been “labeled” one of these hyper sensitive people it makes for a hostile workplace and will only get worse.
    Men and women are wired differently and to go around and make men “walk on eggshells” around women is definately a huge minus when teamwork is called for.

    Women want to be equal? Then stop pulling the poor woman card and let your merits speak for themselves.

  10. TRM, it’s a nice idea that merits might speak for themselves. The scientific evidence is completely against it. That you are not aware of this is one reason why I’m leaving this discussion.

  11. In an attempt to salvage this thread, here is what I mailed in:

    – Not ignoring sexist remarks by (usually male, but also occasional surprising female) friends.
    – Responding to mistaken assumptions on the scientific body of evidence concerning women and sex/gender differences.
    – Advising friends on grammatically- and stylistically-sound approaches to degenderizing their written vobacularies. Although I am a closet fan of the singular “they”…
    – Sharing links to feminist philosophers blog entries!

    These acts can be done without gaining a reputation of being a persnickety feminist jerkface. It can even lead to friends who would not self-identify as feminists saying and doing such things with others. Hooray for viral feminism! ;)

  12. Thanks, RS. I love the idea of sharing links to feminist phil blogs and even more that you mailed it in.

    I’m a fan of “they” also, though I tend to go back and change the nouns to the plural, for what that’s worth.

  13. I guess I made you guys oops gals angry so I will leave…
    good luck with your “movement”

    My wife is serving dinner…

  14. RS, I think I owe you a bit of an apology. Read as they were probably intended, TRM’s comment that you recast in racist terms was in fact, I suddenly remembered, quite like the recent one the Nobel Prize winner James Watson made. And. of course, his remark caused a huge scandal and led to his ‘resignation’ from Cold Harbor. So the point – that sexism seems much more permissible than racism – remains so important..

  15. Outrage is the appropriate response to injustice. It is not uncommon to dismiss injustice when you are not suffering from it. To claim that you “just dont see the need for any type of feminist outrage these days”, simply means that your privilege blinds you to injustice. Privilege is the headache that you do not know that you do not have.

  16. The sexism-to-racism recasting exercise has a powerful psychological effect even on me. My sensitivity to sexism is far lower than it is to racism (perhaps because I’m male and brown, or perhaps because the rampant and overt sexism found in public discourse has had a desensitizing effect). Whatever the cause of it, the recasting exercise to this day can still leave me shocked that I might otherwise have just shrugged and ignored a comment.

    On the other hand, we have this TRM fellow who enjoys announcing that his wife negro is cooking for him tonight and then giddily waits for uproar. Unfortunately, his reload key may get prematurely worn out for naught. Childishness and shock value are often wrongly conflated.

  17. Wife negro, thats classic…LOL,,, I don’t think I will share it with her though…. see! I’m sensitive!

    At the risk of repeating myself, I feel that you are either qualified and good at what you do or you aren’t, no matter what your sex or race. If you suck at something, someone should’nt have to fear telling you or firing you because of some garbage perceptions that person may hold. Make sense?? I am not as smart as you guys with the words and all…

    If I were a woman I would be more pissed about the way attractive and not attractive?? women are treated in society. I evaluated myself many times,(we learned it in EO class), a year and I actually do treat attractive women different than non attractive ones. Sorry, I am sure many men have tried not to, but it just happens… Any men out there back me up, or am I the only one here…

  18. TRM, I’m concerned that you feel this is a site on which you can simply announce your bigoted behavior and expect us to regard your statement as a serious contribution to the discourse.

    In fact, you are obviously what is generally counted as a troll. Your comments have failed to reflect any desire to engaged genuinely in the discourse that this blog represents.

    Your comments will now be shunted into the spam box.

  19. RS, I don’t know why racist versions can strike one with so much more force, but I think it’s common that they do.

    thebewilderness: thanks so much for your observation that outrage at injustice can vary with whether one experiences it oneself. Let me add to your observation what’s probably obvious: outrage at an injustice that doesn’t affect one directly can be very liberating, since one gets a vivid sense of the importance of fairness independently of one’s own interests.

  20. Carla,

    Thanks for the useful link. It’s interesting that people who come on to challenge one’s basic ideas don’t understand our (or at least my) reluctance to enter into that discussion for the 999th time. Something like this would be useful to refer them to.

  21. I suppose that sweeping generalizations based on anecdotal evidence tend to be rather more convincing to the person saying it than to anyone else.

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