Women under patriarchy often are told that the choices they make will differentiate themselves from those “other” women. That the choices they make as an individual will empower them to overcome the obstacles they face. Granted, in some individual cases this can happen, but for the vast majority of women the choices they make individually in society does not alter society’s or men’s impressions and evaluations of them. Hence, the resultant series of catch 22’s that define the female experience – Virgin/Whore, Push-Over/B*tch, Motherly/Control Freak et cetera.
The common factor that is missing from much of liberal feminist analysis is the idea that misogyny is the backdrop (canvas, background radiation, insert meaningful metaphor here)to the stage of how society operates. Men will hate women in whichever role they choose, thus negating much if not all of the progress claimed by individual women.
Let us thank tumblr user Sazquatch (original post unavailable) as she provides perspective into the finer points of how misogyny works in society.
It’s not really as simple as saying “Men treat you badly when you do x, therefore men hate x, and so you doing x is empowering yourself and standing up to them!!” because men treat us badly no matter what we do, even if what we are doing materially benefits them. That’s what misogyny is – the hatred of women.
Men treat women who engage in sex with them badly, talking about how they’re worthless sluts if they send nudes etc., and you’re not gonna convince me that men’s goal in life is to ensure no woman ever has sex with them. Men want you to engage in sex with them, but they treat you badly afterwards because they hate women.
It’s like how men want women to be subservient house-servants who cook and clean without complaint, and then they turn around and slam those same women for being dependent, boring, or doormats. It doesn’t mean they want us to stop performing domestic labour for them, it just means they hate us.
Nothing we are doing in relation to men is standing up and doing things they hate to empower ourselves, unless we’re actively avoiding them and not centring them in our lives.”
Still not convinced? But wait there’s more! Did you want to see how quickly the shift happens in dudely behaviour from ‘possible happy sex times’ to let’s see how fast we can pile on the misogynistic insults. The bullshit dudes pull really turns a dime. Don’t believe me? Go see for yourself.
This is just a small sliver background of misogyny that we exist in and yes Dudebro’s it applies to you, because you let it go on around you. Your part in the equation is to stop the misogyny when your friends start in on, if you don’t then welcome to being part of the problem.