F-Bombs for Feminism

November 7, 2014 § 4 Comments

FCKH8.com, a website dedicated to eradicating hatred, posted this video a few weeks back.  Not surprisingly, it caused a bit of a sensation

After all, we can’t have little kids swearing, can we?  Never mind the fact that they’re noting the ridiculous gender imbalance in our world.  Of course, that’s not shocking.  Denise Balkissoon published this devastating opinion piece in the Toronto Globe and Mail today; she argues that the Jian Ghomeshi situation is not some magical watershed for violence against women, reciting a long litany of shocking moments that should’ve marshalled our collective anger to stop it.  And this is just the Canadian context of violence against women.

But it’s not just violence.  A couple of weeks ago in class, two of my female students commented on their own experiences.  Both are incredibly intelligent young women, and both come from a place of privilege.  They are white, and they come from relatively affluent backgrounds.  Both grew up treated equally and fairly vis-à-vis the boys, but when it came time to graduate from high school and go to university, they discovered the world was not so fair.  Both report they received diminished opportunities in comparison to the men they knew, in terms of their choices for university, the internships they received, the jobs they got.  Why?  Because they’re girls.

The Facebook post I first saw this FCK8 video on had a bunch of comments tut-tutting about the foul language of these little girls, not on the fact that what they were saying was true.  And that is the entire point.  If it takes a famous Canadian radio host beating his dates, a South African athlete killing his girlfriend, or little girls swearing to draw our attention to this general societal problem, we’ve failed.

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§ 4 Responses to F-Bombs for Feminism

  • I don’t know what it takes to marshal collective anger. After the Sandy Hook shooting, very little changed in terms of mental health or gun control. If the shooting of children doesn’t get people off their asses, I’m convinced nothing short of apocalyptic proportions will.
    The problem with “shock” marketing campaigns is that the message gets lost in the gimmick used to get people to pay attention. And I’m not altogether convinced that children should be used as gimmicks.

    • I agree with both of your points. I can’t say I like the idea of using children to make any political point. And I agree about shock tactics. But I also am at a loss as to how we go about creating collective anger, or to galvanise society so that this all changes. If you haven’t read Denise Balkisson’s article I linked to in this piece yet, please do. It’s an incredibly true, yet depressing statement about the fact that nothing ever seems to change.

  • Brian Bixby says:

    Our symbolic economy of evil is disconnected from actual evils.

  • Reblogged this on Young Unemployed Journalist and commented:
    A drop of reality: When we choose to ignore the message clouded by society’s misogyny.

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