Women On Women Misogyny: The Epitome of Pointless
Google defines misogyny as:
“dislike of, contempt for, or ingrained prejudice against women.”.
It’s short, clear and to the point. But, this definition names the victim but not the aggressor. As most people do, you’re probably imagining the person portraying the characteristics of misogyny as a man. Am I right? What if I were to tell you that women can have misogynistic tendencies, too?
Misogyny Throughout History
History is riddled with sexism and moments of misogyny. There were times when women were counted in a census as half a person. And if you’re wondering “WHAT DOES THAT EVEN MEAN? THAT MAKES NO SENSE!”, you’re not alone. Women had to fight for the right to vote, hold the same jobs as men are we’re still fighting the wage gap! There have been so many fights, protests, steps in both the right and wrong directions and yet, we still aren’t considered an equal gender. So, how do we recognise misogyny when it’s happening?
When people describe a misogynist, you’ll usually here more than a few from the following list:
- “frat boy” (the frat boy stereotype)
But, misogyny isn’t reserved only for men or those who are boldly, almost cartoonishly exuding this behaviour. There are so many different ways that misogyny is prevalent in our society. Through music, movies and television, sometimes through art and literature, you can find misogyny creeping everywhere. It even creeps into the minds of some women themselves!
The Female Misogynist: A Walking Oxymoron.
Like it was mentioned earlier, when you think of a misogynist you’re usually picturing a man. But, although women usually fight for their own rights and gender equality, we do have a few tendencies that aren’t doing the cause any favours.
Women are competitive, it’s a known fact. We have to fight for what we want in this world and to be taken seriously. And yes, we are known (sometimes rightly so) to be very competitive with each other.
I had an experience where a woman I knew was looking for an assistant with her job. It was between a man and another woman we worked with. She ended up hiring the woman for the job. Doesn’t sound like misogyny, right? Wrong! I asked her a bit later how it was going with the new assistant and she said, “I definitely made the right decision. I mean, he’s a great worker but he prefers to take the initiative on stuff. It’s just better to hire a girl because she’s used to taking orders.”
Well, that’s one huge step back for womankind. So, her warped mind told her that a man will naturally try to take the lead and be his own person whereas a woman will automatically fall into a submissive role and follow instructions obediently and without question. That is, without a doubt, the most backward thinking a woman could have. The sad thing is, she was probably completely unaware of what she was doing. She probably just wanted to be the woman in charge without fear of competition but, her approach was not only wrong but the epitome of a misogynistic approach.
You know the ones I’m talking about. (Mom and Dad, please look away! When I say “Alrighty-o!” you can continue reading). I’m talking about words like: b**ch, whore, c*nt, slut, hoe, skank, etc. Calling other women by these names, even as a joke, tells men that it’s an okay thing for them to do. When I’m mad at another woman, I never bring those words in (or I try not to anyway). Do we really want our message to be: “Call us whatever you want to. We probably deserve it.”? I don’t think so.
The term slut is far too commonly used and for what reason? YouTuber, Anna Akana, makes an excellent point about NOT calling women sluts in her video Who Is A Slut? It’s thought provoking and has some very valid points about slut-shaming. In a more entertaining manner, Hannah Hart does another hilarious episode of My Drunk Kitchen called My Drunk Kitchen: Pop Tart. Though this episode is filled with goofs and terrible puns, it does get the point across.
Condescending Pet Names
If your skin isn’t crawling when you hear someone speak to you in this manner, there’s something severely wrong with you.
There is almost nothing more verbally demeaning than being referred to in a way that makes you feel like less than a person. “Oh, let me take care of that, honey.”, “Aw, sweetie, did you need help?”, “Did you have any questions, sweetheart?”. Women hate when men belittle them in this way. So, why on Earth would this be okay to do to another woman? Oddly, this is a phenomenon that seems to be on an incline rather than a decline. I’ve actually ad complete strangers refer to me as honey or sweetie. And I’ve flat out said, “No, don’t call me that.”.
Lena Dunham did an episode of her podcast Women of the Hour with her guest of the day, Emma Stone, on this very topic! I’d suggest finding it on iTunes or Soundcloud and listening to it.
“Be the Kind of Leader You Would Want to Follow.”
Leading by example is the strongest form of educating others. Since birth, we learned our basic motor skills and language skills by mimicking those around us. As members of the world representing the female sex, set an example for others that you would be proud of. Ladies, women on women misogyny is unnecessary and wrong. No, I do not expect the world to change over night. But, can we strive to make each day less judgmental and more loving than the last? We cannot expect the world to lift us up if we’re tearing ourselves down. Can we?