The Radical Feminist Strategy

I have heard it said that one major failing of radical feminism is that there is no strategy in place, that it’s a movement based on wishful thinking and founded on the vague hopes of a revolution that will never get off the ground.

But the more I learn, the more I see that radical feminists are adept at laying out concrete solutions and practial ways of dealing with patriarchal oppression.

Since the Radfem HUB was launched yesterday (Wooohoooooooooo!)  I found it interesting that the posts on the various topics all led to the same, peaceful conclusion: we can get this revolution underway by rejecting PIV and heterosexual coupledom whenever we can (not an option for many women, of course, but  wherever possible women could make this decision) . Teaching our daughters not to marry, explaining to them that marriage is a big pile of horse shit ( I love that Americanism)  is a very good start. And not a machine gun in sight. 

I’m always astonished, ( yes, astonished is the right word) at the ability the early feminists had to think outside the box. They were able to analyze marriage and heteronormativity; and that they were the FIRST GROUP OF PEOPLE IN THE WORLD to do so in a political sense is astounding. In a political sense. This means they didn’t bring it down to the individual level… They understood that it was women’s reproductive slavery (not love!) that was the essence of marriage  and the institution has historically been taken advantage of by all men, including gay men (as many a woman is forced to discover late in life, when her husband confesses he has always loved men .. . though the confession tends to come after she has borne his children ).

So there are plenty of strategies out there,  you just have to look for them. I haven’t even begun to mention them all. The small decisions made by women over the course of the next twenty years  may bring this movement forward quicker than we imagine. There is no Feminist Handbook, and certainly no feminist bible. There is no dogma, but if you are interested in finding creative, practical solutions to oppression, radical feminists most certainly do have answers.

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17 thoughts on “The Radical Feminist Strategy

  1. We have to do more than just tell our daughters “don’t marry” because there are a whole lot of other sanctions that are in place, or get put in place, to force women into marriage. Take the current UK unemployment figures, it is the females becoming unemployed at greater rates than males, and males getting back to work in greater numbers. And of course, there is always male violence, particularly if you live alone as a female. We need to establish female group living, either small or large groups.

    • that’s true FAB, and I could be wrong but I think the Condems have drawn up some nasty tax policies which penalize single or cohabiting mothers (Quelle surprise) and reward married women. I even saw something somewhere about them wanting to pay the child benefit to the FATHER!, when the reason it goes to the mother now is because the government admitted in the twentieth century that any money given to men has traditionally been spent down the pub and not on the kids.
      We’re going backwards.

      I went to the Feminst in London conference last year and they were so angry at the Tories; they said that the current government had put the women’s movement back twenty five years..

      Street marches (and more!) definitely have their place.

      But for example, we could tell our daughter’s “there will always be a bed for you here in your childhood home, no matter what happens” and we need to make discouraging marriage socially acceptable. The Backlash media continues to convince women that they’re lucky to get a man at all, and if they get one they have to work hard to keep him. What a distortion!

      • Oh yeah, the govt do sneaky little strategies like that all the time. But, here is one method to get around them (in the uk at least, probably similar elsewhere). Separate living is usually defined by a lockable door, sometimes also by separate kitchen/bathroom facilities (but not always). There are larger older buildings (like Victorian Terraces) that get divided up into smaller flats, these are then considered ‘separate living’. If you had a group of you renting in the same building, there is the additional support (particularly child minding). My best friend and I lived in the same building, she moved in about a month after I did and we became best friends – it was separate living, but with someone to cat-sit nearby (yeah, we had cats not children) and someone to go out with to the pub etc. I guess if you group-owned or group-rented a huge place, you could put locks on the doors, declare them ‘apartment A, B, C, etc’ and see if that flies.

        So, if you live in a small complex of some sort, keep your eye on when the other flats get vacant, and alert friends or other mothers from your local groups etc to the vacancy. This is one method, under the current system obviously. Not as independent as I am working towards.

    • yes.. this is the kind of information that needs to become common knowledge among women…( somehow!). So we’re back to the internet again. Women need to KNOW these laws. I’m pretty certain men know all the ins and outs of laws that pertain to their lives.

      Women know deep down that men’s laws are not for them, so they lose interest learning about where they stand.

  2. YAY radical feminist strategies!

    agreed about the female group living. yes. there is really no way around this one, and i think that “gay marriage” is really not going to work in womens favor either because while it IS damage control under the P for women who are do this (no PIV!) 2 people does not a support system make. and thinking that it does, that it can and that it will be, is always to womens detriment, because we are putting all our eggs in ONE PERSONS basket. and the thing about people is…they die. or get sick. or go crazy, or get addicted, or have wandering eyes etc.

    female group living, YES! its really just the next step from anti-PIV and realizing that if we are dependant on men for any reason (including as bosses and colleagues) we are STILL only whores, and are subject to thier whims and PIV-entitlement and rape threats. men will do this to us, unless we are able to do something (anything) to stop it.

    and YAY radfem HUB!

    • This post came about because of a comment I remember reading on a certain Women’s Studies Professor’s blog. He gets a lot of men commenting there and one of them thought he was being “fair” by defending the THEORIES of radical feminists, but went on to say that our main problem was we were hoping for a world that is NEVER going to exist, and that liberal feminists are more realistic in their goals and are therefore better for the women’s movement.
      Since then, I’ve read a lot of comments in various places, by women feminists and men, saying that the problem with radical feminism is that there’s no strategy in place, and it’s just a lot of hating and hot air..

      But…. when you LOOK at radical feminism for five seconds you see that it’s teeming with ideas and strategies and ways to move forward. THere are plenty of workable ways to get this revolution moving..

      The number one problem is the same one its always been: how do we get women to SEE their oppression? Well, blogging definitely helps with that!

    • ah, just looked at that site myself, seriously off the planet, very anti-feminist.

      Just set your mod to “must have previously approved comment” and those pingbacks will go into mod, so you can check them out before they go up. Also, stops the other riff-raff from getting in unapproved, but regular commenters carry on as normal.

    • I’ve put it in Spam, is that what you do? (I have no idea, it’s my FIRST troll [ puffs out chest] )

      I’ve set it so that only people who’ve commented before can get through.

      • Yeah, that is the way forward (I call it lazy-mod mode). If I ever let a doubtful one comment, I put their email addy in the moderation pile, that way they don’t have free reign if one comment has been approved.

  3. … that the problem with radical feminism is that there’s no strategy in place, and it’s just a lot of hating and hot air..

    And that’s exactly what they want you to think! So yes, if you simply LOOK at it seriously for those 5 minutes (or less!) then it’s OBVIOUS what needs to happen and what is happening.

    Glad you’re part of the Hub, CBL ❤

    (And a certain male women’s studies oxymoron professor can take a ticket and stand in line to kiss my ass. 😛 )

  4. “(as many a woman is forced to discover late in life, when her husband confesses he has always loved men .. . though the confession tends to come after she has borne his children ).”

    Excellent post.

    • I am beginning to find it outrageous that the Gay and Lesbian movements are lumped into the same bracket, because it gives the impression that both gay men and lesbian women are equally disenfranchised and oppressed….
      Lesbians have never oppressed anyone: not other women and certainly not men! Gay men thought nothing of marrying women (who in turn believed they were loved for who they were) to save their arses in a patriarchy that hates homosexuality
      I find this set up even worse than a heterosexual man who might actually find women beautiful… Just think of all these women who believed their men were acting in good faith, only to find they were just baby makers. All these women who must have been so confused to see the revulsion in their husband’s eyes… Although let’s be honest, heterosexual men don’t like women either, and the entire point of marriage is to turn women into baby makers in the first place… but I suppose my point is that it’s outrageous that gay men are seen as being *as* *oppressed* as any women.

      • Yes very true. I actually saw an article last week about some dude who runs a support group for ‘gay farmers who are tied into being married’. Jeez! I must see if I saved this piece.

        Gay men will tolerate lesbians, and women, up to a point. But when push comes to shove, they will throw all women, lesbians included, under the bus. In other words, they are little different from their het brothers.

    • OMG, those poor gay men forced to have their own personal slaves sorry wives who will even risk their lives to bear children for them only to get NOTHING in return, not even love, (except maybe a farmhouse roof over their heads.)
      And they’re complaining they’re trapped in marriage. Farmers wives are the most hardworking wives ever. That’s why these gay farmers NEED a wife sorry personal slave.

      What the Fuck.

      The Rage. the RAGE.

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