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Tue Jul 29, 2014, 12:34 PM

Room to Breathe: Breaking the Chains, Unleashing the Imagination, and Taking Responsibility

for a World Without Patriarchy

...

This is where the connection between the social origins and the social consequences of individual desires must be grasped. Not all theories that seem on the surface to be in opposition to harmful and oppressive tradition actually reflect the kind of world that is possible: a world without slavery in any form. On the contrary, the defining of sex as “whatever you want it to be” when what people want is being shaped by a patriarchal system, is in itself a stamp of approval on the intolerable conditions women face in the world as it is.

In a world where acid attacks, stonings, arranged marriages, forced sterilization, domestic violence, stalking, rape by machine gun, criminalization of abortion, and super-exploitation are commonplace, it is damaging to imagine that personal desires and individual identity exist somehow abstracted from influence. To refuse to confront the reality of patriarchy and to naively (and somewhat selfishly) claim that personal desires and individual identity are untouched and untouchable private property, is an endorsement of the following stories, right here in the U.S.:

...

What does mistaken anal sex, cum shots to the face, and the encouragement of rape fantasies have in common? Lost intimacy. Constructed identity. A twisted version of sexuality imposed on people by patriarchy, by the reality that in this world, being born female is a condemnation to serve as a disposable utility. To the point where "being yourself" or discovering your own complex desires and turn-ons is an obstacle course fraught with prevention and misdirection. Riddled with predetermined patriarchal notions and barriers, from the cult of motherhood to the flesh trade. That is the backdrop on which "sex positive" thinking encourages everyone to "do their own thing," in a nation and a world where dehumanization of women is the thing to do.

Patriarchy in all its forms, including the pornography apologetics of “uninhibited individuality” that abstracts desire from its social context, continues to shape our relationships with others and ourselves, to shape our futures, our dreams, what we think we "deserve" and what we believe we're capable of. No individual lives outside of the real world or escapes the formative lessons of the "money shot"—you know your place before you even get to the age where sexuality is interesting. If you can't imagine sex without porn... you're fucked.

And then, every other girl growing up... when they see that going on, it's not just that their dreams are extinguished, the dreams don't even flourish to begin with. Because when you see every woman around you treated that way, it's like trying to grow a plant underneath a rock. - Sunsara Taylor

...

http://revcom.us/movement-for-revolution/stop-patriarchy/a/339/room-to-breathe-en.html

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Reply Room to Breathe: Breaking the Chains, Unleashing the Imagination, and Taking Responsibility (Original post)
redqueen Jul 2014 OP
MadrasT Jul 2014 #1
redqueen Jul 2014 #4
MadrasT Jul 2014 #5
MuseRider Jul 2014 #6
redqueen Jul 2014 #7
el_bryanto Jul 2014 #2
Tuesday Afternoon Jul 2014 #3

Response to redqueen (Original post)

Tue Jul 29, 2014, 01:16 PM

1. As I approach age 50

Last edited Tue Jul 29, 2014, 03:32 PM - Edit history (1)

I have only recently begun to realize how my identity and self image and beliefs about who I am, and my place in the world, have been so drastically affected by the messaging about "women" that has assaulted me since birth.

It is depressing as hell to think about what might have been, if we grew up and lived in a world where women do not have "less than" status.

To pretend that people make free sexual choices as if in a vacuum is naive in the extreme.

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Response to MadrasT (Reply #1)

Tue Jul 29, 2014, 02:33 PM

4. "It is depressing as hell to think about what might have been, ..."

It truly is.

It's too late for our daughters. They're already absorbing the same messages. Maybe their children...

One bright spot is seeing how many young women are discovering radical feminism at younger and younger ages, thanks to the internet. It really is no surprise at all that there are so many working so hard to demonize radical feminism. It is the only form of feminism that truly threatens the patriarchy.

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Response to redqueen (Reply #4)

Tue Jul 29, 2014, 02:46 PM

5. When I express these thoughts out loud, so often I hear,

"But think how much worse it was only 100 or 200 years ago!"

It makes me want to bang my head on a rock.

So we've gone from really shitty to slightly less shitty? Excuse the fuck out of me while I don't jump up and down and wave my pompoms and wiggle my ass in a miniskirt.

Full, autonomous, personhood for all women, everywhere. Nothing less is acceptable.

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Response to MadrasT (Reply #1)

Tue Jul 29, 2014, 03:06 PM

6. (((HUGS))) At 60 I understand your feelings all too well.

I want to cry about the things I wanted to do but was told I could not. At my age I have to cut my losses because physically I would be totally unable to accomplish most of this. And still...and still you hear the call to ignore your dreams and desires. "Can't you just be happy with the box I have provided for you? I know I am happy when you are in your box, isn't that all that matters? Aren't women supposed to be all about making others happy even if it means sacrificing yourself?" <---this is what I was taught and it is pretty much all that I have actually accomplished What a waste of a good brain, curiosity and the desire to create.

We struggle to find the good parts of ourselves at the end. I raised two wonderful sons who do not think this way and are all around good citizens. That is all I have ever accomplished, a good thing, maybe even a grand thing but it was still part of the box. I made it part of the way as a musician but hit the wall when I was told no to graduate school. Girls were a waste of time. There are no jobs for most of you, it is a mens only gig in your section. Go home, get married and have babies. THAT is a direct quote I heard many times. So many of us lost.

Redqueen, this is a very good read. Thank you for it.

I do not mean to sound morose. I am able to use this final part of my life to do some things I wanted to do and I am happy that I can, very happy about it. I will never achieve more than pleasure in the creation and maybe that is OK now but it was certainly frustrating back then.

I mourn for what could have been. Now I celebrate being healthy and alive and busy doing what I want to do after all the years of trying to figure out what was allowed out of that box.

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Response to MuseRider (Reply #6)

Tue Jul 29, 2014, 03:44 PM

7. My pleasure to share it, MuseRider

Good to see you around

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Response to redqueen (Original post)

Tue Jul 29, 2014, 01:43 PM

2. It makes a lot of good points - thanks for sharing. nt.

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Response to redqueen (Original post)

Tue Jul 29, 2014, 01:58 PM

3. DU Rec.

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