Sunday, August 07, 2005


Over at Bitch Ph.D. there's an ongoing discussion of the various ways in which misogyny manifests itself in everyday life.

This spring I posted about a couple of my own experiences, the kind that throw you off balance while you try to decide what just happened and what to do about it. It's often so subtle that you might not notice it, might not even think about it except to roll your eyes or laugh at it.

Notice it.

Today on our way back from a fishing expedition we stopped at a convenience store for something cold to drink. The guy behind the counter was talking to a friend of his at the counter. They were talking about taking a trip before August is over. "Yeah," said the guy behind the counter, "you know I won't be having any more fun after the wedding, so we'd better do it before then. One last good time."

There's an example of misogyny in every day life: the ingrained assumption that a woman is naturally just out to keep her man from having a good time.

Or the presumption that the primary function of any woman in public is to look pretty for you, so that you think it's acceptable to say, "Hey, smile!" to any female looking anything less than euphoric.

Or the idea that of course condoms are legal and unregulated, but we just can't let women get their hands on emergency contraception without really making it a challenge.

"Sarah in Chicago" left a comment in the discussion at Bitch Ph.D. that made it click in my brain:

Men's classification of women as moody, irrational, and emotional because of their PMS is misogyny because they are judging women on some male standard of not being hormonally effected. It's using a male default as the standard and then because (well, duh) women are different from that standard, we are found lacking.
That's it. That makes sense to me. Any time you find someone using men or men's behavior as the norm, and dismissing or belittling any behavior that doesn't match their ideal of how the mythical Exemplary Man would behave--that's misogyny.

Just something I've been thinking about. Other than that, it was another lovely day. We drove over to Cle Elum, did a little fishing, a little reading, a little basking in the sun (a little being careful to put sunscreen all over me, except for forgetting to put any on my face...).

I'd type a bit more, but this wireless keyboard seems to be dying on me. Plus, it's bedtime anyway. Sunday nights are my least favorite time of the week--all that weekend behind, all that workweek ahead... To bed, to sleep, perchance to dream!