Of Frozen, Misogyny, and Male Dominated Culture

misogyny3

Tell me, what would happen if your daughter wanted to be Spiderman for Halloween? What would happen if she preferred to wear her hair short? What would happen if she wore pants to church?

If you answered, “nothing,” you would be correct.

Now tell me, what would happen if your son wanted to be a Elsa or Anna for Halloween? What would happen if he preferred his hair long? What would happen if he wore a dress anywhere? And what would happen if he wore Frozen rain boots to school?

Unless you know me very well, you are probably thinking I’m nuts. (OK, you’re probably thinking the same thing if you know me.) What kinds of questions are these? A boy can’t dress like a girl. A boy can’t like things a girl likes. A boy can’t do the things a girl can do.

I submit to you that this reaction is proof that feminism lost.

I know, it seems like we won, doesn’t it? Women can get an education, and rise through the ranks of power. They can pretty much do whatever they want.

But is it what it seems? I don’t think it is.

See, women can do everything a man can do, but men can’t do what a woman can do. If I admit to you that my son likes to play with dolls, it will be a problem. If you admit to me that your daughter likes to play with swords, I must support that, unquestioning.

So, how does this prove that feminism lost?

Because feminism is about equality, about being treated the same; it’s not about being the same. It never was. But somewhere along the line feminists thought it was making ground when Hollywood, society in general, and even the church, allowed women certain concessions, as long as they were male concessions.

It’s why, at the church that accused me of turning my sons gay by allowing them to dance ballet and have long hair, girls were allowed to participate in traditionally male sports like wrestling, and play with “boy” Legos and other toys, without anyone questioning it.

It’s OK for a girl to be a boy, but not for a boy to be a girl.

Women can do what they want, in so far as they act like men. Because men are better than women, and therefore to be emulated by all.

Misogyny won.

Femininity, in either gender, is now frowned upon and mocked. It’s OK for a girl to be manly, but not to be girly. When a woman is feminine in a film, it is only for sexual purposes. Otherwise, she needs to act like a man.

No one questions if I’m having a gender identity crisis if I go out in jeans and a t-shirt and tennis shoes. If I wear a baseball cap and admit to actually watching and enjoying baseball, no one casts a sidelong look at me, no one’s going to talk about that behind my back.

But if a man enjoys the ballet, or worse, dances in it; if he enjoys rainbows and flowers and remarks at beauty; if he likes to read and hates sports; if he wants to be a teacher or a stay-at-home dad, all these things will bring him under suspicion of being effeminate.

As a woman, I can wear pants, because pants are male and since males are superior, it is OK for me to emulate them, to want to be like them. There is even a term for girls like this “tom boy.” It’s not a derogatory term, either, I don’t think it ever has been (Laura Ingalls was called a tom boy back in the 1800s.)

There’s also a term for a boy who prefers the more so-called feminine things, “momma’s boy.” And it has always been derogatory. Since I was young, a girl could take shop at school and be hailed as progressive, while a boy who wanted to take a home ec class was mocked as “queer.” (And I don’t mean “odd.”)

Feminism lost, despite what the conservative pundits bemoan. Misogyny won, so-called male superiority triumphed, and I think that’s something that should bother us all.

4 Comments Add yours

  1. Amen, Sister. Although, I will say there is still a bit of a cultural norm against masculine females, it is not nearly to the excruciating level as that against feminine males. I do think every individual who resists it makes a small difference.

    1. sarasamomx5 says:

      I hope so. Guess I’ll find out tomorrow when I meet with the teacher and principal. :/

  2. carlybenson says:

    Interesting post- that’s not something I’ve really thought about much but I can see what you mean.

    1. sarasamomx5 says:

      Thanks. Yeah, most don’t have to. I was forced to when my boys started dancing over 10 years ago. I started getting comments. :/

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