Institutions and sexism, racism

Justin Schwartz jschwart at
Fri Nov 11 12:54:47 MST 1994


We agree entirely.


On Fri, 11 Nov 1994 mhill at wrote:

> My post of yesterday doesn't seem to have made it to the list.  Commenting
> on Justin's comment that covert or latent sexism and racism aren't the
> problem but rather institutionalized sexism and racism, I raised the issue
> of institutions and their perpetuation.  At this point racism and sexism in
> hiring and promotion, for example, are supposedly illegal but I doubt that
> anyone on this list will deny that such practices are nonetheless
> pervasive.  Institutionalized practices then need not be explicitly
> legislated (consider marriage--not required by law but
> "illegitimacy" penalized in various ways). (In economics institutionalists
> are examining such questions as what common understandings are necessary in
> addition to explicit contractual agreements for a market transaction to
> take place.)  Currently attitudes and beliefs, inevitably linked to the
> rationalization of privilege, lie behind many sexist and racist practices,
> and must be systematically exposed and analyzed.  The rationalization of
> privilege in the family on the part of males means buying into the
> perpetuation of sexist practices ("but only until ..." I can hear--but what
> makes you think that men will do their fair share of housework/childcare
> after the new society arrives, or does that not require change???)
> Marianne mhill at


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