Sunday, September 28, 2008

A secret that really isn't a secret.

A PostSecret secret that stuck out to me today:

Of course, this is no secret, really, and feminists have known this for a long time. According to Andi Zeisler, co-founder of Bitch Magazine, the definition of bitch is this:
"Bitch is a word we use culturally to describe any woman who is strong, angry, uncompromising and, often, uninterested in pleasing men."
Truthful would certainly fall under this definition too. Those words - strong, angry, uncompromising - are more often than not words to describe men. And so when a woman shows those peculiarities, it's bad, because, somehow, men monopolize those characteristics. Bullshit, I say.

I rather like the basic definition of feminism, coined by Cheris Kramarae: "Feminism is the radical notion that women are human." It's short and to-the-point, with a touch of snarkiness that might cause the woman who coined the definition to be labeled as, well, a bitch. If telling the truth makes me a bitch, then sign me up. I just wonder what truth this secret-sender offered - if it was the truth about rape, violence, misogyny, then I hope she spoke up loud and clear.

(Shakespeare's Sister also has an excellent post about the word bitch and other forms of misogyny, why they're alienating, and why they should not be ignored. This is where I got Andi Zeisler's definition.)

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