It is very fashionable to argue using feminism as a garbage heap. That is, one offloads all the evils of the world onto it and forgets all about it whenever it's not directly mentioned. No matter where, how or when - feminism always wants the most evil of all things, and there's no end to the evilness once the offloading gets going. Whatever evil it is - feminism wants it.
There's a lot of evil in the world that needs forgetting, it would seem.
The strangest thing about this is that it is always Feminism as an abstract entity that's invoked. It's very seldom a specific happening or person that's put to blame - as if the feminist terror is more existential than material.
One might, at this point, expect someone to burst forth, dramatically waving a copy of the SCUM manifesto, triumphantly proclaiming instant victory. Which is interesting, since it was published in 1967, and you'd think the all-encompassing threat of feminism would have produced more than one provocative piece of literature during the last forty years.
Really? Only the one text in forty years? Wow. Much scare.
It's enough to give one pause. Who's the scary feminist that wants all these evil things? Is it Judith Butler? bell hooks? Angela Davis? Susan Faludi? Helene Cixous? Luce Irigaray?
Julia Kristeva? Catharine MacKinnon? Susan Bordo? Simone de Beauvoir?
Betty Friedan? Virginia Woolf? Mary Wollstonecraft? Sojourner Truth? -
I imagine there being avid antifeminists reading this, and wondering who all these people are. If you're one such person, then this is a sign. A sign that you really have no clue as to what you're anti about, and base your opinions more on uncritical momentum than on actual knowledge.
Which is very much like criticizing Lord of the Rings without knowing who Gandalf is. No matter how good your poker face might be, you still look like a fool.
It does not suit you as well as you think.
Originally published January 19, 2014