This anthology was launched in March, but in a fine example of its major theme regarding whose voices get sidelined in the feminism movement, most of the femosphere appears to not have heard of it until it was centred in a blogstorm this week. If a reader already has a book review online or nearly ready to go, please consider submitting it here as a guest post.
Feminism FOR REAL: Deconstructing the academic industrial complex of feminism, edited by Jessica Yee
When feminism itself becomes its own form of oppression, what do we have to say about it? Western notions of polite discourse are not the norm for all of us, and just because we’ve got some new and hot language lately in equity-seeking movements like feminism — such as “intersectionality” — to use in our talk, it doesn’t necessarily make things change in our walk (i.e. actually being anti-racist).
Confronting the sometimes uncomfortable questions feminism has made us ask about what’s going on FOR REAL paved the many paths that brought the contributors of this book together to share their sometimes uncomfortable truths, not just about feminism, but about who they are and where they are coming from.
This is a hugely important addition to the feminist conversation. It’s too easy for those of us who benefit especially from white privilege to stick to the familiar voices and not challenge ourselves by listening to previously unknown voices with different experiences.
So, what can more privileged voices do to oppose the systems that sideline minority voices? As a small idea, I’ve just put up a Spruik Your May Social Justice Event signal-boosting post on Finally, A Feminism 101 blog, aiming to make it a monthly series, to hopefully add a teaspoon or two of assistance with PR for events that fall outside the mainstream progressive marketing circle. Please pass the word.
N.B. For those of you who weren’t already aware, I’m a part of the Feministe team as their tech person, although I don’t blog there. This limits what I am willing to discuss about the shitstorm in question. I’ve also been badly bitten before by criticism from me being repurposed by others as a sledgehammer against people, much to my dismay and their (far greater) distress. I have a great deal of respect and affection for Jill, even though we don’t agree on everything: this doesn’t mean that criticism from readers towards Jill’s post is off-limits, just that all the usual comments policy guidelines regarding dissent and particularly regarding abusive language still apply.