radical feminism or rationalization?

tgs at cunyvms1.gc.cuny.edu tgs at cunyvms1.gc.cuny.edu
Fri Nov 11 07:57:45 MST 1994


I submit that "radical" feminism is a rationalization and legitimation
strategy for the conscious expression of inter-gender hostility by women overtly
toward men.

By "radical" feminism, I certainly do not mean ALL feminism.  See, again,
Alex Trotter's excellent recent post.  What I mean is that version of
feminism which declare men to be an exploitative class, which state things
like "all (or even most) men are sexist."

Not only does this ideology sow needless division and hostility among the
working class, and especially those among the middle class--the left--who
would be its "organic intellectuals."  It is also, in its own right, a
rationalization for sexism on the part of women.  By the logic of the
argument, men should be scapegoated for the patriarchal system, just as we
ought to (and I believe we should) scapegoat the capitalists for the
capitalist system.  While it is often stated that women are incapable of
hostility toward men (see Katha Pollitt's excellent essay in THE NATION a
year ago or so, "Are Women Morally Superior to Men?: Difference Feminism is
In.  Whatever happened to equality"). this is clearly false, on the argument's
own grounds.  Privilege causes irrational hostility among both the privileged
and the oppressed. ( Nietzsche's idea of slave morality and resentiment wasn't
completely crazy. Would anyone claim the working CLASS to be free of
irrationality and resentiment, when the whites among them take their
economic frustrations out upon those welfare bums?  Of course not. Yet
radical feminists seek to have their cake and eat it, too--the call men
a class, and yet claim that women have no irrationaly hostility toward them.)

The real message put forward by the radical feminists is that the hostility
of women toward men is different from men's hostility.  WHETHER IT BE
RATIONAL OR IRRATIONAL, women's hostility and sexist generalizations are
JUSTIFIED, because men are an exploitative CLASS.

Of course they are not.  Exploitation at the very least requires enough
money on the part of the exploiter to pay labor which is unpaid--it requires,
in other words, that an actual SURPLUS is being ripped off from the producer
of the unpaid labor.



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