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Disillusioning women

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The argument that feminism is disillusioning women is a kind of harming the community silencing tactic where the community is women themselves.

In this argument, focus on sexism and oppression of women is seen as inhibiting women's progress towards equality. People making this argument will sometimes say that positive thinking and positive examples are far more important and should be used more or less exclusively as the tool of achieving the end of sexism. Examples of sexism and struggles will only encourage women to give up.

This is different from the choice that some feminists might make to personally focus on being or promoting positive role models for a time as a strategy to avoid burnout without necessarily believing that all other feminists should do likewise.

Geek feminists argue that misrepresenting or minimising sexism and oppression in geekdom has the following problems:

  • that it makes women who experience it feel isolated or blame themselves or regard their experience as exceptional
  • that it hides the systemic nature of the problem and allows each incident to be treated as an anomaly, which feeds some other silencing tactics: witch hunt, distraction from real issues, harming the community
  • that cultures that acknowledge and are addressing problems with discrimination and oppression may be in fact more welcoming for oppressed people than otherwise, in that their experiences and accounts are at least more likely to be believed

Examples Edit

Discussion Edit

  • "It is a terrible kind of lie to tell young women they will not face discrimination and harassment because equal rights and opportunity have fixed everything. That’s the particular lie I grew up with. While we have many, many positive examples and heroes and stories it isn’t all pink sparkles and struggles in the past. The struggle is now and will be in the future." -- Liz Henry [1]
  • Why We Document by Mary Gardiner

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