“The fundamental sign of absence of cultural permission is the lack of words in the language of the dominant culture which would suffice to describe an experience.” – Anthony Temple
January 9, 2011Posted by on
Misogyny, especially cis misogyny, is a somewhat unusual discrimination compared to most others. Men and women are constantly around each other. Men are born to women, and the vast majority have mothers and sisters. A few boys are raised by single fathers or multiple fathers but no mother, but the majority are raised in part or in whole by women. When they grow up, the cis boys are expected to marry a woman in this society that sees marriage as the ultimate form of love. Cis men are expected to spend the majority of their lives living with and emotionally closest to women. I don’t think there are many men who don’t love at least one woman.
This is distinct from most other discriminations. There are still people who aren’t even on first name terms with a person they know isn’t straight or cis or monogamous or singlet or any number of things (although this doesn’t necessarily mean they don’t actually know someone like this, just that they don’t know they do). Cis straight monogamous singlets certainly aren’t expected to spend most of their lives with trans, non-straight, polyamorous people or multiple systems. Society is still pretty segregated racially, even in places that are majority people of color it’s not unusual for a white person not to have any close friends of color. At my highschool at lunch time, white people primarily ate with other white people, it was very rare for a white person to be sitting at a table that was majority people of color or for there to be more than one or two people of color at a table of white people. I don’t think any of the tables were as diverse as the school was.
And yet, people who aren’t cis men are still discriminated about in much the same way as other groups. Violence is used to control them too often even by those who love them, their health concerns aren’t as researched (sometimes they’re used to prove that people who aren’t cis men aren’t capable), etc. If you can’t look into all the ways that sexism still exists, still effects our lives- well, I’m not really sure how you managed to get to this blog, but you can always read this for more.
One thing this shows is that diversity isn’t actually the answer, no matter how much privileged people want to think it is. It takes more to end oppression and mistreatment than the privileged and oppressed groups interacting closely. It takes more than saying “these people are human“.
“Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus”- there’s the idea that men and women are practically a different species. Even though I’m sure that, rationally, cis men are aware that women are human- there’s still a culturally spread idea that other people aren’t human in the same way, but in a lesser way. There’s a blog called “Are Women Human?” about gender and sexuality in Christianity and society as a whole. You’d think that the question doesn’t need to be asked, and while I’m pretty sure that anyone who was asked this would answer “yes”, it actually is a question that hasn’t universally been answered “yes”. It’s still all too common to think that women should be subservient to men. There are still women who believe this.
*a note: Because society is so cissexist, it’s difficult to talk about these things and how it effects trans people. Generally society doesn’t have as distinct roles about where trans people should be, and would rather that we just didn’t exist at all. Trans people are simultaneously expected to completely live up to the roles of their assigned gender and to completely reject them. Even with this complication, trans people of all genders can face misogyny, but misogyny towards camab female-pressenting trans people is often far worse and trans men can get male privilege as well as facing misogyny.