A professor posted this and I would really love to hear peoples’ thoughts on it. 

YOU GUYS REMEMBER WHEN TUMBLR WENT CRAZY OVER THOSE CONSENT PANTIES AND UNDERWEARS?

SOME LADY IS WANTS TO REALLY MAKE THEM FOR REAL NOW

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/amulya/social-change-through-consumerism-feminist-style

Tags: feminism

coeurdelhistoire:

ON FUCKING POINT

bahahahahahaha 

feministsongs:

Dance apocalyptic | listen

50 upbeat songs that won’t hurt your feminist ears, all by female artists. 


omg bookmarked <3

feministsongs:

Dance apocalyptic listen

50 upbeat songs that won’t hurt your feminist ears, all by female artists. 

omg bookmarked <3

Tags: feminism

hard things about feminism: not stepping on other toes

Like I really want to respect your religious choices… but I can’t help but think it’s wrong to teach young women to be silent and to only follow men. I really struggle with that. There should be a way to go about it without being a dick. 

princessjinx:

"Man almost always addresses himself to the weakness of woman. By flattery, by an appeal to her passions, he seeks access to her heart; and when he has gained her affections, he uses her as the instrument of his pleasure—the minister of his temporal comfort. He furnishes himself with a housekeeper, whose chief business is in the kitchen, or the nursery. And whilst he goes abroad…his wife is condemned to draw nearly all her instruction from books, if she has time to pursue them; and if not, from her meditations, whilst engaged in those domestic duties, which are necessary for the comfort of her lord and master"

February 2013 readings

princessjinx:

"Man almost always addresses himself to the weakness of woman. By flattery, by an appeal to her passions, he seeks access to her heart; and when he has gained her affections, he uses her as the instrument of his pleasure—the minister of his temporal comfort. He furnishes himself with a housekeeper, whose chief business is in the kitchen, or the nursery. And whilst he goes abroad…his wife is condemned to draw nearly all her instruction from books, if she has time to pursue them; and if not, from her meditations, whilst engaged in those domestic duties, which are necessary for the comfort of her lord and master"

February 2013 readings

I have this acquaintance from high school

he has really matured (like most of us)

On his facebook page he often posts very interesting things. He gets a lot of good and smart comments; he clearly has an intelligent group of facebook friends, and while, like often happens on the internet, things fall apart into meaningless debate, its seems like more often than not, on his page, there are some meaningFUL debates. 

Anyway, what sucks the most, is that even with all of these intelligent people; people who enjoy studying and learning and have really thought about things that the majority of people don’t take time to think about… when he posts anything remotely feminist, the backlash is so devastatingly generic.

These people who question the media, the government, religion, and so on, who spend free time reading journal articles, hunting down sources… they buy into the feminism is a bunch of hairy male-haters who don’t realize men and women are already equal and are trying to push their bullshit liberal hippie agenda on the rest of us perfectly content people. 

It is all the more unsettling because imo, many of them think their arguments are ~!new!~ and ~!special!~ but they are the same vanilla flavored cow cakes I see from, well, let’s be honest, guys everywhere.

That is one thing that scares me.

Across the board these people don’t know what feminism is, don’t see oppression…

That guys who think they are so different are saying the exact same thing.

That on Saturday night, in a dirty metal club, I heard a guy with tattoos up the ass and grungy hair and brutal piercings utter the same exact phrase that I heard out of a perfectly coiffed, bow-tie wearing, sperry sporting, proud conservative fraternity brother …

And that these guys think they are being “edgy” and “cool” when they respond in this way…

I dunno, maybe it is just early morning ramblings, but it sucks that across the board people don’t know or they don’t want to know about things like that. 

Tags: feminism

"to live in a culture in which women are routinely naked where men aren’t is to learn inequality in little ways all day long."

— Naomi Wolf

thebookworm:

face-down-asgard-up:

ladyhippie:

womenaresociety:

Nerds and Male Privilege (definitely worth a read!)
I want to tell you a story.
A few years ago, I was dating a girl who was decidedly not nerd curious. She tolerated my geeky interests with a certain bemused air but definitely didn’t participate in ‘em… not even setting foot inside a comic store on new comic day. She’d wait outside until I was done… which could be a while, since I was friends with several of the staff.
She came in the store exactly once, after I’d explained that no, it’s a pretty friendly place… well lit, spacious, organized and with helpful – and clearly identified – staff members who were willing to bend over backwards to make sure their customers were satisfied.
She was in there for less than 4 minutes before one mouth-breathing troglodyte began alternately staring at her boobs – evidently hoping that x-ray vision could develop spontaneously – and berating her for daring to comment on the skimpy nature of the costumes – in this case, Lady Death and Witchblade. She fled the premises, never to return.
When both the manager and I explained to him in no uncertain terms as to what he did wrong he shrugged his shoulders. “Hey, I was just trying to help you guys! She couldn’t understand that chicks can be tough and sexy! Not my fault she’s a chauvinist,” he said.
And that was when I shot him, your honor.
So with that example in mind, let’s talk about a subject I’ve touched on before: Male Privilege and how it applies to geeks and – more importantly – geek girls.
MALE PRIVILEGE: WHAT IS IT, EXACTLY?
I don’t think I’m breaking any news or blowing minds when I point out that geek culture as a whole is predominantly male. Not to say that women aren’t making huge inroads in science fiction/fantasy fandom, gaming, anime and comics… but it’s still a very male culture. As such, it caters to the predominantly male audience that makes it up. This, in turn leads to the phenomenon known as male privilege: the idea that men – most often straight, white men – as a whole, get certain privileges and status because of their gender.
(Obvious disclaimer: I’m a straight white man.)
In geek culture, this manifests in a number of ways. The most obvious is in the portrayal of female characters in comics, video games and movies. Batman: Arkham City provides an excellent example.
The women are all about sex, sex, sexy sextimes. With maybe a little villainy thrown in for flavor. They may be characters, but they’re also sexual objects to be consumed.
I will pause now for the traditional arguments from my readers: these characters are all femme fatales in the comics, all of the characters in the Arkham games are over-the-top, the men are just as exaggerated/sexualized/objectified as the women. Got all of that out of your systems? Good.
Because that reaction is exactly what I’m talking about.
Y’see, one of the issues of male privilege as it applies to fandom is the instinctive defensive reaction to any criticism that maybe, just maybe, shit’s a little fucked up, yo. Nobody wants to acknowledge that a one-sided (and one-dimensional) portrayal of women is the dominant paradigm in gaming; the vast majority of female characters are sexual objects. If a girl wants to see herself represented in video games, she better get used to the idea of being the prize at the bottom of the cereal box. If she wants to see herself as a main character, then it’s time to get ready for a parade of candyfloss costumes where nipple slips are only prevented by violating the laws of physics. The number of games with competent female protagonists who wear more than the Victoria’s Secret Angels are few and far between.
The idea that perhaps the way women are portrayed in fandom is aleetle sexist is regularly met with denials, justifications and outright dismissal of the issue. So regularly, in fact, that there’s a Bingo card covering the most common responses. Part of the notion of male privilege in fandom is that nothing is wrong with fandom and that suggestions that it might benefit from some diversity is treated as a threat.
But what is that threat, exactly?
In this case, the threat is that – ultimately – fandom won’t cater to guys almost to exclusion… that gays, lesbians, racial and religious minorities and (gasp!) women might start having a say in the way that games, comics, etc. will be created in the future. The strawmen that are regularly trotted out – that men are objectified as well, that it’s a convention of the genre, that women actually have more privileges than guys – are a distraction from the real issue: that the Privileged are worried that they won’t be as privileged in the near future if this threat isn’t stomped out. Hence the usual reactions: derailment, minimization and ultimately dismissing the topic all together.
As much as my nerdy brethren wish that more girls were of the geeky persuasion, it’s a little understandable why women might be a little reticent. It’s hard to feel valued or fully included when a very vocal group insists that your input is irrelevant, misguided and ultimately unwelcome. It’s small wonder why geekdom – for all of it’s self-proclaimed enlightened attitudes towards outsiders and outcasts – stil retains the odor of the guy’s locker room.
HOW MALE PRIVILEGE AFFECTS GEEK GIRLS IN REAL LIFE
Don’t make the mistake of thinking male privilege is solely about how big Power Girl’s tits are, fan service and jiggle physics in 3D fighters. It affects geek girls in direct, personal ways as well.
Remember the example I mentioned earlier with my then-girlfriend in the comic store? Her opinions were deemed mistaken and she was told she didn’t “get it”… because she was a girl.
Y’see, one of the issues that nerd girls face is the fact that they are seen as girls first and anything else second. And before you flood my comments section demanding to know why this is a bad thing, realize that being seen as a “girl” first colors every interaction that they have within fandom. They’re treated differently because they are women.
We will now pause for the expected responses: well that’s a good thing isn’t it, girls get special treatment because they’re girls, guys will fall all over themselves to try to get girls to like ‘em so it all balances out.
If you’re paying attention you’ll realize that – once again – those reactions are what I’m talking about.
Y’see, nobody’s saying that women don’t receive different treatment from guys… I’m saying that being treated differently is the problem. And yes, I know exactly what many of you are going to say and I’ll get to that in a minute.
Male privilege – again – is about what men can expect as the default setting for society. A man isn’t going to have everything about him filtered through the prism of his gender first. A man, for example, who gets a job isn’t going to face with suggestions that his attractiveness or that his willingness to perform sexual favors was a factor in his being hired, nor will he be shrugged off as a “quota hire”. A man isn’t expected to be a representative of his sex in all things; if he fails at a job, it’s not going to be extrapolated that all men are unfit for that job. A man who’s strong-willed or aggressive won’t be denigrated for it, nor are men socialized to “go along to get along”. A man can expect to have his opinion considered, not dismissed out of hand because of his sex. When paired with a woman who’s of equal status, the man can expect that most of the world will assume that he’s the one in charge. And, critically, a man doesn’t have to continually view the world through the lens of potential violence and sexual assault.
Now with this in mind, consider why being a girl first may be a hindrance to geek girls. A guy who plays a first person shooter – Call of Duty, Halo, Battlefield, what-have-you – online may expect a certain amount of trash talking, but he’s not going to be inundated with offers for sex, threats of rape, sounds of simulated masturbation or demands that he blow the other players – but not before going to the kitchen and getting them a beer/sandwich/pizza first. Men will also not be told that they’re being “too sensitive” or that “they need to toughen up” when they complain about said sexual threats.
Men also won’t have their opinions weighed or dismissed solely on the basis of how sexy or attractive they are. The most common responses a woman can expect in an argument – especially online – is that she’s fat, ugly, single, jealous, a whore, or a lesbian – or any combination thereof – and therefore her opinion is irrelevant, regardless of it’s actual merits. This is especially true if she’s commenting on the portrayal of female characters, whether in comics, video games or movies.
Men can expect that their presence at an event won’t automatically be assumed to be decorative or secondary to another man. Despite the growing presence of women in comics, as publishers, editors and creators as well as consumers, a preponderance of men will either treat women at conventions as inconveniences, booth bunnies or even potential dates. Many a female creator or publisher has had the experience of convention guests coming up and addressing all of their questions to the man at the table… despite being told many times that the man is often the assistant, not the talent, only there to provide logistical support and occasional heavy lifting.
Men are also not going to be automatically assigned into a particular niche just based on their gender. A girl in a comic store or a video game store is far more likely to be dismissed as another customer’s girlfriend/sister/cousin rather than being someone who might actually be interested in making a purchase herself. And when they are seen as customers, they’re often automatically assumed to be buying one of the designated “girl” properties… regardless of whether they were just reading Ultimate Spider-Man or looking for a copy of Saint’s Row 3.
Of course, the other side of the coin isn’t much better; being dismissed for the sin of being a woman is bad, but being placed on the traditional pillar is no less insulting. Guys who fall all over themselves to fawn over a geek girl and dance in attendance upon her are just as bad. The behavior is different, but the message is the same: she’s different because she’s a girl. These would-be white knights are ultimately treating her as a fetish object, not as a person. It’s especially notable when it comes to sexy cosplayers; the guys will laude them for being geek girls and celebrate them in person and online. They’ll lavish attention upon them, take photos of them and treat them as queens…
And in doing so, they’re sending the message that women are only valued in geek culture if they’re willing to be a sexually alluring product. Everybody loves Olivia Munn when she enters the room ass-cheeks first as Aeon Flux, but nobody is particularly concerned by the girls dressed in a baseball tee, jeans and ballet flats. One of these is welcomed into geek culture with open arms, the other has to justify their existence in the first place.
WHAT DOES ALL OF THIS MEAN TO YOU?
The reason why male privilege is so insidious is because of the insistance that it doesn’t exist in the first place. That willful ignorance is key in keeping it in place; by pretending that the issue doesn’t exist, it is that much easier to ensure that nothing ever changes.
Geek society prides itself on being explicitly counter-culture; nerds will crow about how, as a society, they’re better than the others who exclude them. They’ll insist that they’re more egalitarian; geeks hold tight to the belief that geek culture is a meritocracy, where concepts of agism, sexism and racism simply don’t exist the way it does elsewhere. And yet, even a cursory examination will demonstrate that this isn’t true.
And yet geeks will cling to this illusion while simultaneously refusing to address the matters that make it so unattractive to women and minorities. They will insist that they treat women exactly the same as they treat guys – all the while ignoring the fact that their behavior is what’s making the women uncomfortable and feeling unwelcome in the first place. They will find one girl in their immediate community who will say that she’s not offended and use her as the “proof” that nobody else is allowed to be offended.
Changing this prevailing attitude starts with the individual. Call it part of learning to be a better person; being willing to examine your own attitudes and behaviors and to be ruthlessly honest about the benefits you get from being a white male in fandom is the first step. Waving your hands and pretending that there isn’t a problem is a part of the attitude that makes women feel unwelcome in fandom and serves as the barrier to entry to geeky pursuits that she might otherwise enjoy.
Bringing the spotlight onto the concept of male privilege as it exists in nerd culture is the first step in making it more welcoming of diversity, especially women.
*Thanks to Madoka for bringing this to my attention.

A huge thank you to whoever wrote this article.





a few problems
So I wanna talk about this overwhelmingly well written article. Statistics about geekdom are very hard. For example, the best surveys we have about comic book demographics come from self-identified comic book fans on facebook. We honestly cannot say how the numbers fall, but it is pretty clear that women legitimately enjoy all things geek. With that being said, I hopefully assume that this phrase &#8220;geek culture as a whole is predominantly male is to illustrate the point that it is a MALE culture, not that it is overwhelmingly populated by males. In sectors where males make up more than women, it is often not as big as a gap as many men would have you think. Coming off the end of E3, I heard argument after argument that women are not gamers. Upon showing the actual statistics from the ESA that 45% of gamers are women, everyone&#8217;s back up desperation argument was &#8220;but women don&#8217;t play serious games.&#8221;I know the OP addresses this a little but this is something very frustrating, and I don&#8217;t know if I have the words to address it but I will try. Women are geeks at home and in public.When women enter male-culture spaces, it is sometimes like a battle arena. Sexy women sometimes are given a pass. And like OP says, other women are made to justify their existence. But another problem comes from men who don&#8217;t want justification. They either don&#8217;t ask, or before or after the justification, just assume it is a lie, or you, little female, are an anomaly. It is at this point in my life when I hear that derailment tactic chugging along, &#8220;prove it,&#8221; &#8220;well, whose your favorite character,&#8221; or &#8220;what serious games do you play,&#8221; (and let me make it clear there are nice conversations when you meet a new friend and you say &#8220;omg haha who is your fave character?&#8221; and then there are &#8220;I don&#8217;t believe you like X for a second, who is your favorite character and i will follow up with the most obscure fandom popular questions i can think of to prove you are not a fan&#8221; conversations) I try not to answer them.And I hope that other women will feel comfortable doing this as well. You can say &#8220;I don&#8217;t have to prove my interest to you.&#8221; and divert back to the original topic. 
And something slightly different&#8230;
When women speak up and say &#8220;I wish there were less magical bikinis,&#8221; or &#8220;I wish that there were more characters like me.&#8221; They are not ENCROACHING on YOUR space. Men are allowed to comment on their games, movies, books, etc. So are women. Women can complain and make suggestions just as much as praise them. But when a woman says &#8220;It sucks that there aren&#8217;t more diverse females,&#8221; she is often met with a backlash of &#8220;THESE NASTY FEMALES ARE DEMANDING THAT WE CATER TO THEM - THAT IS SEXISM.&#8221; Well even if they did demand that games catered to every single one of their desires, it wouldn&#8217;t be sexism, but anyway, NO IT ISN&#8217;T A DEMAND. Its doing what we all do when we interact with things we like. 
And finally, lets say that only like ONE WOMAN in the entire world plays video games, and she says &#8220;hey maybe we could have a female in pants??&#8221;, you might consider saying &#8220;oh what an interesting idea&#8221; because then maybe more women would start playing, and you, sad little lonely gamer, could find your 1trueluv. The thing is. We are out here.
We just don&#8217;t talk to you about it.
Because you are not the center of the world.And you are a giant douchenozzle.

thebookworm:

face-down-asgard-up:

ladyhippie:

womenaresociety:

Nerds and Male Privilege (definitely worth a read!)

I want to tell you a story.

A few years ago, I was dating a girl who was decidedly not nerd curious. She tolerated my geeky interests with a certain bemused air but definitely didn’t participate in ‘em… not even setting foot inside a comic store on new comic day. She’d wait outside until I was done… which could be a while, since I was friends with several of the staff.

She came in the store exactly once, after I’d explained that no, it’s a pretty friendly place… well lit, spacious, organized and with helpful – and clearly identified – staff members who were willing to bend over backwards to make sure their customers were satisfied.

She was in there for less than 4 minutes before one mouth-breathing troglodyte began alternately staring at her boobs – evidently hoping that x-ray vision could develop spontaneously – and berating her for daring to comment on the skimpy nature of the costumes – in this case, Lady Death and Witchblade. She fled the premises, never to return.

When both the manager and I explained to him in no uncertain terms as to what he did wrong he shrugged his shoulders. “Hey, I was just trying to help you guys! She couldn’t understand that chicks can be tough and sexy! Not my fault she’s a chauvinist,” he said.

And that was when I shot him, your honor.

So with that example in mind, let’s talk about a subject I’ve touched on before: Male Privilege and how it applies to geeks and – more importantly – geek girls.

MALE PRIVILEGE: WHAT IS IT, EXACTLY?

I don’t think I’m breaking any news or blowing minds when I point out that geek culture as a whole is predominantly male. Not to say that women aren’t making huge inroads in science fiction/fantasy fandom, gaming, anime and comics… but it’s still a very male culture. As such, it caters to the predominantly male audience that makes it up. This, in turn leads to the phenomenon known as male privilege: the idea that men – most often straight, white men – as a whole, get certain privileges and status because of their gender.

(Obvious disclaimer: I’m a straight white man.)

In geek culture, this manifests in a number of ways. The most obvious is in the portrayal of female characters in comics, video games and movies. Batman: Arkham City provides an excellent example.

The women are all about sex, sex, sexy sextimes. With maybe a little villainy thrown in for flavor. They may be characters, but they’re also sexual objects to be consumed.

I will pause now for the traditional arguments from my readers: these characters are all femme fatales in the comics, all of the characters in the Arkham games are over-the-top, the men are just as exaggerated/sexualized/objectified as the women. Got all of that out of your systems? Good.

Because that reaction is exactly what I’m talking about.

Y’see, one of the issues of male privilege as it applies to fandom is the instinctive defensive reaction to any criticism that maybe, just maybe, shit’s a little fucked up, yo. Nobody wants to acknowledge that a one-sided (and one-dimensional) portrayal of women is the dominant paradigm in gaming; the vast majority of female characters are sexual objects. If a girl wants to see herself represented in video games, she better get used to the idea of being the prize at the bottom of the cereal box. If she wants to see herself as a main character, then it’s time to get ready for a parade of candyfloss costumes where nipple slips are only prevented by violating the laws of physics. The number of games with competent female protagonists who wear more than the Victoria’s Secret Angels are few and far between.

The idea that perhaps the way women are portrayed in fandom is aleetle sexist is regularly met with denials, justifications and outright dismissal of the issue. So regularly, in fact, that there’s a Bingo card covering the most common responses. Part of the notion of male privilege in fandom is that nothing is wrong with fandom and that suggestions that it might benefit from some diversity is treated as a threat.

But what is that threat, exactly?

In this case, the threat is that – ultimately – fandom won’t cater to guys almost to exclusion… that gays, lesbians, racial and religious minorities and (gasp!) women might start having a say in the way that games, comics, etc. will be created in the future. The strawmen that are regularly trotted out – that men are objectified as well, that it’s a convention of the genre, that women actually have more privileges than guys – are a distraction from the real issue: that the Privileged are worried that they won’t be as privileged in the near future if this threat isn’t stomped out. Hence the usual reactions: derailment, minimization and ultimately dismissing the topic all together.

As much as my nerdy brethren wish that more girls were of the geeky persuasion, it’s a little understandable why women might be a little reticent. It’s hard to feel valued or fully included when a very vocal group insists that your input is irrelevant, misguided and ultimately unwelcome. It’s small wonder why geekdom – for all of it’s self-proclaimed enlightened attitudes towards outsiders and outcasts – stil retains the odor of the guy’s locker room.

HOW MALE PRIVILEGE AFFECTS GEEK GIRLS IN REAL LIFE

Don’t make the mistake of thinking male privilege is solely about how big Power Girl’s tits are, fan service and jiggle physics in 3D fighters. It affects geek girls in direct, personal ways as well.

Remember the example I mentioned earlier with my then-girlfriend in the comic store? Her opinions were deemed mistaken and she was told she didn’t “get it”… because she was a girl.

Y’see, one of the issues that nerd girls face is the fact that they are seen as girls first and anything else second. And before you flood my comments section demanding to know why this is a bad thing, realize that being seen as a “girl” first colors every interaction that they have within fandom. They’re treated differently because they are women.

We will now pause for the expected responses: well that’s a good thing isn’t it, girls get special treatment because they’re girls, guys will fall all over themselves to try to get girls to like ‘em so it all balances out.

If you’re paying attention you’ll realize that – once again – those reactions are what I’m talking about.

Y’see, nobody’s saying that women don’t receive different treatment from guys… I’m saying that being treated differently is the problem. And yes, I know exactly what many of you are going to say and I’ll get to that in a minute.

Male privilege – again – is about what men can expect as the default setting for society. A man isn’t going to have everything about him filtered through the prism of his gender first. A man, for example, who gets a job isn’t going to face with suggestions that his attractiveness or that his willingness to perform sexual favors was a factor in his being hired, nor will he be shrugged off as a “quota hire”. A man isn’t expected to be a representative of his sex in all things; if he fails at a job, it’s not going to be extrapolated that all men are unfit for that job. A man who’s strong-willed or aggressive won’t be denigrated for it, nor are men socialized to “go along to get along”. A man can expect to have his opinion considered, not dismissed out of hand because of his sex. When paired with a woman who’s of equal status, the man can expect that most of the world will assume that he’s the one in charge. And, critically, a man doesn’t have to continually view the world through the lens of potential violence and sexual assault.

Now with this in mind, consider why being a girl first may be a hindrance to geek girls. A guy who plays a first person shooter – Call of Duty, Halo, Battlefield, what-have-you – online may expect a certain amount of trash talking, but he’s not going to be inundated with offers for sex, threats of rape, sounds of simulated masturbation or demands that he blow the other players – but not before going to the kitchen and getting them a beer/sandwich/pizza first. Men will also not be told that they’re being “too sensitive” or that “they need to toughen up” when they complain about said sexual threats.

Men also won’t have their opinions weighed or dismissed solely on the basis of how sexy or attractive they are. The most common responses a woman can expect in an argument – especially online – is that she’s fat, ugly, single, jealous, a whore, or a lesbian – or any combination thereof – and therefore her opinion is irrelevant, regardless of it’s actual merits. This is especially true if she’s commenting on the portrayal of female characters, whether in comics, video games or movies.

Men can expect that their presence at an event won’t automatically be assumed to be decorative or secondary to another man. Despite the growing presence of women in comics, as publishers, editors and creators as well as consumers, a preponderance of men will either treat women at conventions as inconveniences, booth bunnies or even potential dates. Many a female creator or publisher has had the experience of convention guests coming up and addressing all of their questions to the man at the table… despite being told many times that the man is often the assistant, not the talent, only there to provide logistical support and occasional heavy lifting.

Men are also not going to be automatically assigned into a particular niche just based on their gender. A girl in a comic store or a video game store is far more likely to be dismissed as another customer’s girlfriend/sister/cousin rather than being someone who might actually be interested in making a purchase herself. And when they are seen as customers, they’re often automatically assumed to be buying one of the designated “girl” properties… regardless of whether they were just reading Ultimate Spider-Man or looking for a copy of Saint’s Row 3.

Of course, the other side of the coin isn’t much better; being dismissed for the sin of being a woman is bad, but being placed on the traditional pillar is no less insulting. Guys who fall all over themselves to fawn over a geek girl and dance in attendance upon her are just as bad. The behavior is different, but the message is the same: she’s different because she’s a girl. These would-be white knights are ultimately treating her as a fetish object, not as a person. It’s especially notable when it comes to sexy cosplayers; the guys will laude them for being geek girls and celebrate them in person and online. They’ll lavish attention upon them, take photos of them and treat them as queens…

And in doing so, they’re sending the message that women are only valued in geek culture if they’re willing to be a sexually alluring product. Everybody loves Olivia Munn when she enters the room ass-cheeks first as Aeon Flux, but nobody is particularly concerned by the girls dressed in a baseball tee, jeans and ballet flats. One of these is welcomed into geek culture with open arms, the other has to justify their existence in the first place.

WHAT DOES ALL OF THIS MEAN TO YOU?

The reason why male privilege is so insidious is because of the insistance that it doesn’t exist in the first place. That willful ignorance is key in keeping it in place; by pretending that the issue doesn’t exist, it is that much easier to ensure that nothing ever changes.

Geek society prides itself on being explicitly counter-culture; nerds will crow about how, as a society, they’re better than the others who exclude them. They’ll insist that they’re more egalitarian; geeks hold tight to the belief that geek culture is a meritocracy, where concepts of agism, sexism and racism simply don’t exist the way it does elsewhere. And yet, even a cursory examination will demonstrate that this isn’t true.

And yet geeks will cling to this illusion while simultaneously refusing to address the matters that make it so unattractive to women and minorities. They will insist that they treat women exactly the same as they treat guys – all the while ignoring the fact that their behavior is what’s making the women uncomfortable and feeling unwelcome in the first place. They will find one girl in their immediate community who will say that she’s not offended and use her as the “proof” that nobody else is allowed to be offended.

Changing this prevailing attitude starts with the individual. Call it part of learning to be a better person; being willing to examine your own attitudes and behaviors and to be ruthlessly honest about the benefits you get from being a white male in fandom is the first step. Waving your hands and pretending that there isn’t a problem is a part of the attitude that makes women feel unwelcome in fandom and serves as the barrier to entry to geeky pursuits that she might otherwise enjoy.

Bringing the spotlight onto the concept of male privilege as it exists in nerd culture is the first step in making it more welcoming of diversity, especially women.

*Thanks to Madoka for bringing this to my attention.

A huge thank you to whoever wrote this article.

image

image

a few problems

So I wanna talk about this overwhelmingly well written article. 

Statistics about geekdom are very hard. For example, the best surveys we have about comic book demographics come from self-identified comic book fans on facebook. We honestly cannot say how the numbers fall, but it is pretty clear that women legitimately enjoy all things geek. With that being said, I hopefully assume that this phrase “geek culture as a whole is predominantly male is to illustrate the point that it is a MALE culture, not that it is overwhelmingly populated by males. In sectors where males make up more than women, it is often not as big as a gap as many men would have you think. Coming off the end of E3, I heard argument after argument that women are not gamers. Upon showing the actual statistics from the ESA that 45% of gamers are women, everyone’s back up desperation argument was “but women don’t play serious games.”

I know the OP addresses this a little but this is something very frustrating, and I don’t know if I have the words to address it but I will try. 

Women are geeks at home and in public.

When women enter male-culture spaces, it is sometimes like a battle arena. Sexy women sometimes are given a pass. And like OP says, other women are made to justify their existence. But another problem comes from men who don’t want justification. They either don’t ask, or before or after the justification, just assume it is a lie, or you, little female, are an anomaly. It is at this point in my life when I hear that derailment tactic chugging along, “prove it,” “well, whose your favorite character,” or “what serious games do you play,” (and let me make it clear there are nice conversations when you meet a new friend and you say “omg haha who is your fave character?” and then there are “I don’t believe you like X for a second, who is your favorite character and i will follow up with the most obscure fandom popular questions i can think of to prove you are not a fan” conversations) I try not to answer them.

And I hope that other women will feel comfortable doing this as well. You can say “I don’t have to prove my interest to you.” and divert back to the original topic. 

And something slightly different…

When women speak up and say “I wish there were less magical bikinis,” or “I wish that there were more characters like me.” They are not ENCROACHING on YOUR space. Men are allowed to comment on their games, movies, books, etc. So are women. Women can complain and make suggestions just as much as praise them. 

But when a woman says “It sucks that there aren’t more diverse females,” she is often met with a backlash of “THESE NASTY FEMALES ARE DEMANDING THAT WE CATER TO THEM - THAT IS SEXISM.” Well even if they did demand that games catered to every single one of their desires, it wouldn’t be sexism, but anyway, NO IT ISN’T A DEMAND. Its doing what we all do when we interact with things we like. 

And finally, lets say that only like ONE WOMAN in the entire world plays video games, and she says “hey maybe we could have a female in pants??”, you might consider saying “oh what an interesting idea” because then maybe more women would start playing, and you, sad little lonely gamer, could find your 1trueluv. 

The thing is. We are out here.

We just don’t talk to you about it.

Because you are not the center of the world.

And you are a giant douchenozzle.

(via symphonyno6)