Category Archives: Gender Caste

"Girl" Gamers Not Welcome [Gaming Communities, Part 2]

I have been a gamer almost all of my life. I was 4, maybe 5, when a cousin who was staying with us introduced me to Dragon Warrior. I could barely get my character around the world, but I was in love. I played with my mom, I played with my best friend, I got calls from the elder brother of a family friend when he and his friends were stuck in games like Zelda. When I was old enough, I started playing them by myself. I bonded with many of my friends over my Nintendo, or Genesis, and later my SNES.

It wasn’t until high school, though, that I realized I wasn’t quite welcome in the greater gaming community. I would be at a party held by my male gamer friends and they would all gather around the N64 and play Goldeneye or Mario Party and I wouldn’t be welcome. It’s not like they said, “No, Andrea, you can’t play this,” but if I tried, they’d do little things like forget my turn, or gang up on me first, etc. I don’t think they meant to do it, but they still did. So I started just playing games alone. If I got to the parties early enough, I could hog the big TV and play Space Channel Five or whatever, but if not then I was stuck in another room playing whatever PSX game was available. Unless people were in there trying to play Marvel vs. Capcom or Street Fighter or something. Then I just sat around and watched. Which suited everyone just fine. Everyone, except me. Fighting and shooting games are probably the most shitass boring things to watch. Continue reading

Posted in Gaming Communities, Gender Caste, Personal, Series, The Evil -ism's, Video Games | 3 Comments

Introduction [Gaming Communities, Part 1]

This is a subject that is very personal for me. So personal, in fact, that my original introduction was too bitter, too angry, and not productive enough to be considered suitable for this blog. I posted it in feminist_gamers instead. … Continue reading

Posted in Gaming Communities, Gender Caste, Gender Cultism, Series, Video Games | 3 Comments

To my fellow sisters-in-arms:

Stop it. Stop invalidating me because of my reproductive choices. Stop telling me what is and is not worthy of discussion. Stop calling me names because I have a different sexual expression than you. Stop discriminating against our sisters just … Continue reading

Posted in Childfree Issues, Eradicating Divisive Discourse, Feminism, Gender Caste, Personal, Popular Culture, Queer Issues, Sex, sexuality, and sexual politics | 5 Comments

No more token women!

Whether we recognize it or not, we all know about The Girl. Sometimes the Love Interest, or the Sidekick, or the Little Sister, or what have you, she has existed in literature and popular culture from time immemorial. Those of you who are of my generation may be thinking of Smurfette, who was literally defined in both name and action as being the (only) female smurf while all the male smurfs were defined by their actions. Later on, some female smurf kids were added, but kids tend to fit more into a “gender neutral” category than adults in our society.

Enter And Then There’s the Girl: “Women Characters” vs. “Characters that are Women”, a Blog Against Sexism post from a couple days ago that I missed highlighting. The author, kalinara, uses Cheetara (do you notice a trend in taking a word and “feminizing” it for the token women?) to represent the phenomenon of The Girl. Continue reading

Posted in Comics, cartoons, manga, and anime, Gender Caste, Gender Democracy, Video Games | Comments Off

In Defense of Domesticity [REPOST from Shrub.com]

Note: This article was originally written on July 03, 2005 as a Shrub.com Article. In my process of switching all articles over to this blog, I will be reposting old entries. What follows is in its original form without any editing.

Because of some crossed wires, I’m taking this month instead of johnmoon (he’ll be up for August). Since I’m in the middle of moving, I’m going to shamelessly plagiarize my own comment from a thread over at reappropriate. On our blog, I argued for the ability for people to choose what, if any, parts of traditional femininity and masculinity are right for them. Taking the argument to its logical conclusion, everyone should have the right to choose what kind of life is right for them whether it be working a job or taking care of the house and kids. Continue reading

Posted in Feminism, Gender Caste, Monthly Articles | 7 Comments

An Open Letter to Geeky Guys (Non-geeks may learn something, too):

Listen, I’m really glad that some of you are into the whole gender deconstruction thing. I think it’s great that you don’t want to just oogle the pixeled female bits. Really. But, guys? It’s not so cute when all your ‘deconstruction’ does is reaffirm women’s position as Second Class Geeks.

What am I talking about? Well, you can find examples on it all over the net. You can find one on this blog, addressed to your gaming cousins. For a more recent, and in-depth example, let’s take I Enjoy Playing a Girl from the latest Escapist issue. Continue reading

Posted in Gender Caste, Gender Cultism, Privilege, The Evil -ism's, Video Games | 30 Comments

The Sexism of Transphobia

First off, I’d like to give a fangirl squee to Feministe’s newest blogger, piny. I have loved piny ever since I came across him in comments on Alas and Feministe, and I considered asking him to blog here more than once (if I had gotten to know him better, I may have snapped him up before Feministe did). I still may see if I can convince him to guest blog on occasion. So, from one of your fans, congrats on the new position, piny!

Today I found an article where he fisks a transphobic letter to the editor from a San Fran magazine. He said read the article, so I did. Then I read the letter responding to it. Between my hacking and sputtering, I found myself making connections between one issue addressed in the article and the subtext of the letter: the link between transphobia and sexism. Continue reading

Posted in Alternative, Gender Caste, Queer Issues, Sex, sexuality, and sexual politics, The Evil -ism's | 7 Comments

On Chivalry

Most of my friends know my stance on chivalry: it needs to rest in a watery grave. Some of them think that I go overboard with my outspoken hatred of a tradition that is supposedly about “good manners.” They think that if I try to dismantle the system that I’ll deprive them of the privilege of having their SO’s do anything from open car doors for them to give them flowers. But, what they don’t get is that I could care less what arrangements they make with the people in their lives. I care about what people try to do to me without my consent. I care about what the unspoken “rules” of chivalry mean for me and other women. And that is why I hate chivalry in its current incarnation, not because I’m against people opening doors for each other or whatever other considerate gestures they wish to extend.

Over in the feminist LJ, police_my_lips has sparked a discussion on the matter. I’d like to pull some choice quotes from commenters and elaborate on my own experiences and opinions. Continue reading

Posted in Feminism, Gender Caste, The Evil -ism's | 34 Comments

Trading one set of chains for another

More ranting via midlife mama. Libby critiqued an article from the American Prospect Online and asked for opinions. I was foolish enough to think that I could contain my opinion in one little comment. I know, I know, I should be used to the Attack of the 50-line Comment by now. So, I decided to turn my rant/fisk into its own post.

First off, I’m going to steal Libby’s summary of the article:

It’s an article in American Prospect Online that takes all those “opt out” articles seriously. The author, Linda R. Hirshman, a feminist professor, is working on a book about “marriage after feminism.” She interviewed 30 some-odd women whose weddings were announced in the Sunday NY Times over three Sundays in 1996. Most of them, she says, were staying home with their kids 7 or 8 years later. (Actually, 50% were no longer working for pay, and a third were working part time.) : Conservatives contend that the dropouts prove that feminism “failed” because it was too radical, because women didn’t want what feminism had to offer. In fact, if half or more of feminism’s heirs (85 percent of the women in my Times sample), are not working seriously, it’s because feminism wasn’t radical enough: It changed the workplace but it didn’t change men, and, more importantly, it didn’t fundamentally change how women related to men.

Just because I can, I’m going to use the same style of breakdowns as Hirshman uses in her article. Well, also I want to mock her section heads. And we all know I love mocking people and things. Also, all further quotes (unless otherwise noted) come from the article itself. Continue reading

Posted in Eradicating Divisive Discourse, Feminism, Gender Caste, Media and journalism, Skepticism, The Evil -ism's | 7 Comments

Transphobia to the left of me, Anti-feminism to the right…

For all my talk about not tarring and feathering those feminists (you know, the ones not like us), I must confess that there is one type of feminist that constantly gets under my skin. The transphobic one. Ye gods I wish I could go to all those who think that transgendered people don’t deserve a place in feminism because they aren’t “real women” (whatever that means) and say to them, “You! Out of my feminism!” I guess a part of it is because in order to believe what they do about the transgendered population, they must first believe in gender essentialism – an ideal not compatible with liberation, as one poster on the feminist LJ pointed out.

But are my exclusionary tactics any different than those who try to tar “radical” feminists with the same brush? Who cry to their critics, “I’m not that kind of feminist, don’t blame me!”? I’m not sure. The so-called “radical” feminists’ biggest problem is that the media has chosen them to caricature, while the transphobic feminists try to exclude transwomen (and transmen) in a very real way. Of course, I have said in the past that not all feminists hold 100% feminist values. I know that, despite my best efforts, I still hold some anti-feminist values. Continue reading

Posted in Feminism, Gender Caste, Gender issues, Queer Issues, The Evil -ism's | 19 Comments