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It takes dedicated effort to remove these sorts of fiery speeches from the history of women. Oratory like this somehow doesn’t make it into the classrooms, or history lectures. So the lessons need to be discovered, theorized, and fought for in each generation of women making progress glacially slow. Yet we have helpful mnemonics for the British Monarchy, US presidents and Canadian PM’s that we teach to children. Yet nothing for the bold female speakers of the 60’s and 70’s who set their minds to one of the most important projects facing humankind – the dismantling of patriarchy.
Unless you seek information like this out, you won’t be told about it by your choice of news station, you most likely won’t hear it on the radio and I’m almost certain you wont get this in secondary school. The exclusion of feminist history in the mainstream is not an accidental omission, but a tactical choice.
– [Source:Notes from the Third Year]
The Female Version:
And then there is male date preparation:
Men worry that their date won’t measure up to their aesthetic preferences. Women worry that they’re going wind up dead.
The disparity is RIDICULOUS, and the fact that dudes get offended when women try to protect themselves is hard proof that way too many guys Do Not Understand how dangerous it is to be a woman. (Not to mention it’s fucking insulting. “How dare you not trust your life and safety to a complete stranger whose intentions you have no way of knowing”?)
The point is, “WE HAVE NO WAY OF KNOWING A NICE GUY FROM A SERIAL KILLER.”
It’s not like they fucking wear nametags, okay? Moreover, the most awful people with the worst intentions often put on the nicest face or deliberately make themselves seem harmless and likeable, to lull potential victims into a false sense of security. (Read up on Ted Bundy sometime. It’s horrifying shit. Or read any thread on the “Let’s Not Meet” subreddit.)
In order to protect ourselves, we are forced to assume the worst of every man we meet, because statistically speaking, the biggest danger to women…IS MEN. Saying “not all men are out to get you, you’re just being paranoid” is like saying “not every car you ride in is going to crash, so buckling your seatbealt is stupid.”
When dealing with an unknown situation, in the absence of absolute proof of safety, exercising a little extra caution can be the difference between life and death. Shaming women for being what you may view as overly cautious is every bit as horrid as blaming them if something goes wrong later on.
This speech, by Sojourner Truth, was delivered at the Akron convention was not officially recorded; it survives because it was written down by Frances Gage –
“A’int I a woman? Look at me! Look at my arm! I have ploughed and planted, and gathered into barns, and no man could head me! And ain’t I a woman? I could work as much and eat as much as a man – when I could get it – and bear the lash as well! And ain’t I a woman? I have borne thirteen children, and seen them most all sold off to slavery, and when I cried out with my mother’s grief, none but Jesus heard me! And ain’t I a woman?
Then they talk about this thing in the head’; what’s this they call it? [Intellect, someone whispers.] That’s it honey. What’s that got to do with women’s rights or negro’s rights? If my cup won’t hold but a pint, and your holds a quart, wouldn’t you be mean not to let me have my little half-measure full?
Then that little man in black there, he says women can’t have as much rights as men, ’cause Christ wasn’t a woman! Where did your Christ come from? Where did your Christ come from?? From God and a woman! Man had nothing to do with Him.
If the first woman God ever made was strong enough to turn the world upside down all alone, these women together ought to be able to turn it back, and get it right side up again! And now they is asking to do it, the men better let them!”
Sojourner Truth saw how religion and patriarchy fit together, one reinforcing the other. Her reference to the ‘man in black’ demonstrates her keen intellect as she was aware of the part played by organized religion in maintaining the oppressive state of affairs – she addressed the problem of religious interpretation directly in this quote focusing on the power of the female role in the biblical story.
Funny how big an issue translating the bible into common languages has been throughout history, almost like those who did the interpreting had something to lose (or something to hide) in the process. But that is the cynic speaking, I’m sure that the religious authorities had nothing to gain by keeping the masses ignorant and dependent on their self-serving interpretation of the bible…
I’m not sure if talking about patriarchy while discussing a TV show based on conspiracy theories is the best plan, but what the hell. If this sort of shit is happening to Gillian Anderson, it can (and probably does) happen to you, if you happen to be female.
“Anderson and Duchovny’s legendarily potent onscreen pairing—rife with sexual tension yet ambiguous enough that a simple embrace could leave fans swooning for days—has been the object of heated obsession for decades, ever since The X-Files, a show that transformed serialized TV and elevated the potential of genre storytelling, premiered in 1993.
Tales of alien abductions, malicious government conspiracies, shadowy figures, and a plot to take over Earth drove the series’ “mythology” arc, in which Mulder (a believer) and Scully (a skeptic) hunted down the truth about what really happened to Mulder’s missing little sister.
But it was the unexpected magnetism between Anderson and Duchovny that truly gave the show its rabid appeal.
“The chemistry was there from the first day they ever appeared together in [Mulder’s] office,” series creator Chris Carter tells me. “It was not apparent until that first day that these two people were gonna click. The chemistry you can’t manufacture. It was just total luck.”
The success of Fox’s six-episode X-Files event series, which premieres with an episode written and directed by Carter on Sunday, hinges in part on whether that chemistry—and the excitement and anguish of watching the agents, clearly two halves of a whole, engage in the will they/won’t they dance—can be reignited again, nine seasons, two movies, and 25 years of X-Files history later.”
I’m excited to see the new shows, as I was a fan back in the day. Unfortunately, here comes the P…
But while Scully asserted her authority at every turn, Anderson found herself fighting just to stand on (literal) equal ground with her male co-star. The studio initially required Anderson to stand a few feet behind her male partner on camera, careful never to step side-by-side with him. And it took three years before Anderson finally closed the wage gap between her pay and Duchovny’s, having become fed up with accepting less than “equal pay for equal work.”
“I can only imagine that at the beginning, they wanted me to be the sidekick,” Anderson says of Fox’s curious no-equal-footing rule. “Or that, somehow, maybe it was enough of a change just to see a woman having this kind of intellectual repartee with a man on camera, and surely the audience couldn’t deal with actually seeing them walk side by side!”
She laughs again, this time at the absurdity of the notion of Dana Scully as anyone’s mere sidekick. “I have such a knee-jerk reaction to that stuff, a very short tolerance for that shit,” she says acidly. “I don’t know how long it lasted or if it changed because I eventually said, ‘Fuck no! No!’ I don’t remember somebody saying, ‘OK, now you get to walk alongside him.’ But I imagine it had more to do with my intolerance and spunk than it being an allowance that was made.”
The work Anderson put into securing equal pay back in the ’90s seemingly came undone when it came time to negotiate pay for this year’s event series. Once again, Anderson was being offered “half” of what they would pay Duchovny.
“I’m surprised that more [interviewers] haven’t brought that up because it’s the truth,” Anderson says of the pay disparity, first disclosed in the Hollywood Reporter. “Especially in this climate of women talking about the reality of [unequal pay] in this business, I think it’s important that it gets heard and voiced. It was shocking to me, given all the work that I had done in the past to get us to be paid fairly. I worked really hard toward that and finally got somewhere with it.
“Even in interviews in the last few years, people have said to me, ‘I can’t believe that happened, how did you feel about it, that is insane.’ And my response always was, ‘That was then, this is now.’ And then it happened again! I don’t even know what to say about it.”
She stammers for a moment, at a loss for words. “It is… sad,” she finally says. “It is sad.” (Sources told the Hollywood Reporter Anderson and Duchovny ultimately took home equal pay for the event series.)
Yeah, 2015 and sexist bullshit is still flying high in Hollywood. Awesome.
All slides are from the presentation by Dr. Cathy Higgins.
Given that power works best from the shadows (insert creepy *mou-ah-ah-ah, here), it is always beneficial to bring the artifice of power into plain sight so can be properly evaluated and critiqued. If one doesn’t know what Patriarchy is, then how can it ever be brought down? Finding the root of the problem and working toward solving that problem – what radical feminism is – provides the means not only to criticize our patriarchal society, but to change it.
Lofty goals aside, for the critical work to get done, a common base of knowledge must be established, hence the reason for our 14 slide foray into the land of patriarchy.