Re: [-empyre-] the use in everyone coming?


I think this is an important thing, is that the issues of feminism are really just issues of cultural programming. And this programming gets in between everyone and self actualization; not just women. The role of women as "gazed at" vs the role of men as the eye is definitely accurate, but men can be thrown into the position of the eye, as well. As a "man" I'm privy to a lot of what goes on when men are alone and a lot of it is still molded by what they are supposed to be by holding that position. When men are alone with men they can be very different than when they are alone with women. I mean, I've been alone with guys who would say the most absurd things, things like "Cheese Curls, A Big Screen and Porno, that's all a guy needs!" And of course on a date the guy is completely respectful and courteous either a) because he's getting laid or trying to or b) because he can actually not "act" like a "male."  While a lot of this comes off as men being sleazy or manipulative it actually seems more like a kind of schizophrenia.

How this affects the internet is interesting. What I've kind of noticed is that the net doesn't liberate many people- instead, it makes people play their projected roles even more precisely. People in a chat room tend to lean more towards the "cheese curls and porno" side of themselves instead of giving themselves a chance to be who they more than likely actually are. Why this is, I don't know, although it seems very possible that this is a side effect of the net being conducive to and populated by the male psyche. Internet interfaces are a predominantly male domination of a feminine structure anyway.

But this just brings me back to the point that at the heart of feminism, sexuality and multiculturalism is the elimination of roles, period, and to see people "as they are" which is not always perfect anyway. Can you live in your head completely deprogrammed from all of the stereotypes and roles you've been nominated to play by the roll of some genetic dice? And, ultimately- would this make you "good?"

Men have traditionally been left out of "liberation" ideas because it's been misconstrued as a binary of power and powerless, as defined by the one who is observed vs the one who is looked at- women are gazed at, black men are followed around in stores and eyed by cops, there's a perception of this giant eye being forced on everyone [which also plays a nice fat role in the white male's core myth of christianity; which, despite any real reason, has been turned into a story about a giant hovering eyeball in the sky]- and he who controls the eye controls the norm. So white men have held on to it for a while, but ultimately, if you can manipulate women's [culturally indoctrinated] insecurities that they need to spend millions of dollars to be "real women" who "turn heads" and appease the giant hovering eyeball of the white male gaze, why not convince men that they, too, need to spend millions of dollars to be "real men" who appease the giant hovering eyeball of women? I mean there is a rise in male vanity products isn't there? There is no prestige anymore, white men aren't safe from the hovering eyeball either. The cultural power has shifted to media producers- people who want to sell products. So ultimately the hovering eye is made up of dollar signs.

But ultimately this leads to the oppression of everybody. Which is why I'll say again that feminism is not going to work on its own. The root of oppressive cultural force has to be eradicated; and this is a very personal thing. The internet can be a huge asset in this regard for disseminating information that can help in self liberation [since the media won't have any of that shit going on between their ads for perfumes and stylish boxer shorts.]


Charlotte Frost wrote:

Finally, and I hope this isn't taken the wrong way by fellow feminists, but
it is a thought I heard the other day and have been mulling
over...patriarchal society has shaped men as much as it has shaped women,
and it has oppressed men too. Some of the roles we expect men to fulfil, or
chastise them for fulfilling, are precisely the roles they often don't want
to fulfil. It is often the focus on the shaping of women by society that
upsets and angers men, so perhaps we should be looking for ways, in line
with what I have suggested about feminism being about oppression in general,
to renegotiate for men too. It might make for a better understanding of
feminism EVERYWHERE, and stop the antagonism and or limiting comments often

But of course I have argued myself in a circle by pointing out the
circularity of this argument!


empyre forum

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