bad class aftertaste

28 Nov

Today, my substitute teacher suggested that feminism is a form of colonialism. I know. He said this at 11 am and i am still trying to unravel this mess, and i think it may help to do it on ‘paper.’

To start. He must have meant imperialism, not colonialism. True western feminism is often applied to make arguments and add to the discourse about women in eastern cultures, and double true, the american politics co-opts western feminism to use it as a means and justification for the nessesity of invading the middle east.Which pisses me the fuck off, by the way, for reasons i may or may not get into later. BUT because feminism is a tool of the nation, not the nation itself, it can’t be a colonizer, but rather an agent of colonization, or a type of imperialism.Okay, so where am I at now…

He must have meant: western feminism is a type of imperialism.

Problem. I really detest all ‘feminism is’ or ‘feminists are’ statements. Western feminism is soo fragmented now with hundreds of sects ( ex. backlash feminism, ecofeminism, mens feminism, black feminism, post-feminism feminism, liberal feminism, and the list goes on and on), so unless the word following “feminism is” is “equality”, good lucking finding a vague common uniter for all those different ideaologies. ” A type of imperialism” sure as hell doesn’t fit for all of those types, not even the majority. So the sub used a blanket statement when he shouldn’t have. The other bone I have to pick with his phrasing is that he said “western feminism **IS** colonialism ( meaning a type of imperialism i guess).” He didn’t say was, or acts like, or a method of, he said IS. Alright, so lemme take a step back. What it means to ‘be’ something in the current tense. Who is Emily? Emily is a compilation of past experiances, thoughts and behaviors manifesting themselves into a susinct personhood, a steady pattern of inward thoughts and behaviors. To ask the same question of feminism, what is feminism, it is so not accurate to call it as you see it in the present without taking into account it’s past. American Feminism has it’s roots in anything but imperialism. So much so, i fact, that after the first wave ( mostly sufferage) and then the second wave ( upward mobility and personal status laws for upper-middle class white women) there was a HUGE response in the discourse about how feminism doesn’t adequately address the needs of poor women, minority women, and women abroad. My question is, was that discourse echoing the sentiments of poor/colored/foreign women, or was it a white woman’s observation of white women’s activity and decided that if it worked so well for them, they should share the freedoms(?) with all other women. Maybe this is the glitch where the current third wave of feminism on surface is percieved as imperialism–does it make a difference in labels of imperialist vs non imperialist if ‘imperialist-esque’ actions were asked for by the marginalized group or not if those actions are still happening? I don’t know. Maybe?

So are specific actions of western feminism imperialist when the western female agenda and ideals are projected and used as ameasuring stick onto non western womens status, and then our military occupies their country, and when ask why they say weapons of mass destruction but then they’re wrong, and so when asked why again, they call their good freinds at CNN and Fox and tell them to reinforce the images of the middle eastern or eastern people as somehow barbaric, archaic, uncivilized, with scewed morals and sex drives, and then people wont ask as much why we’re there because theyll think we’re there to liberate them and they wont ask as much about oil,haliburton,and stratigic preemptive miliatry bases set up permantly by china/india/russia.

ive got you pegged bush. checkmate

oh god, im getting on a plane in a few hours. goodnight


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