Freitag, August 02, 2013

Feministin verzweifelt: "Ich bin erzogen worden, Männer zu hassen!"

Die US-amerikanische Publizistin Jennifer Levin blickt zurück auf ihr bisheriges Leben und die feministische Indoktrination, die sie dabei von klein auf erfahren musste:

A suburban working mother with twins in the late ‘70s and early ‘80s, my mother was outspoken about feminism in any given situation. I had T-shirts with feminist slogans on them and when I was little, my parents thought it was hilarious to point out some instance of sexism in our environment and then look at me for the punch-line. With my hands on my hips I’d stomp my foot and say "Male chauvinist pig!"

In Deutschland hingegen bringt man dem Politik-Kindergarten bei, "sexistische Kackscheiße" zu plärren ...

Immerhin kann keiner sagen, dass die kleine Jennifer nicht schon früh konkrete Lebenspläne hatte:

When I was 10, I told my mom I was going to grow up to be a journalist, live in a loft in Paris, and have "a succession of live-in lovers."

Man sollte ihr das allerdings nicht vorwerfen, mit zehn hatte ich dieselben Pläne. :-) Und erst danach ging es für Jennifer so richtig zur Sache:

My mother’s brand of feminism went from wanting equal rights to wanting to smash the patriarchy, which she defined for my brother and me as "men’s historical oppression of women, which they continue to do today." No man could escape complicity, not even little boys, she said. Suddenly, men were the root of all of women’s problems and since they had all the power, we had to fight them.

Men were always wrong. Men were aggressors; men were rapists; men were stupid; men were obsessed with their penises; men were responsible for forcing my mother into a heterosexual marriage and motherhood. Mary Daly and Andrea Dworkin had become her prophets. She never once said that "patriarchy" wasn’t synonymous with "men." She used the terms interchangeably. She told us we’d been forced on her by the patriarchy and, given the choice, she would not have had us.

My mom and her wife began frequenting a "womyn-only" coffee house in Chicago. (No boys over the age of 10 were allowed.) They went back to school to earn master’s degrees in women’s studies, and their class and study-schedule took precedence over the rest of the calendar.

(...) Very many things I did made me a sell-out to the patriarchy in her eyes. I wore makeup. I shaved my legs and armpits. I liked boys. Flip this nightly lecture to be about what men do to hurt women, and imagine being my brother

We moved from the suburbs to Chicago when we began high school. My mom and her wife were deep in their grad program and entrenched with the women from the coffeehouse. Many of them wouldn’t read books written by men or see movies with male protagonists. Most of the women were nice to me and my brother but it was made clear to us that some of their friends wouldn’t come over because there was a teenage boy in the apartment. They were separatists and wanted to live completely apart from men.

I was stunned. "But he’s your son!"

"He’s still male," my mom said. "And if I didn’t have a son, I’d probably be a sep, too."

(...) My mom started encouraging me to "find a nice girl to fool around with." She told me any woman who had sex with men wasn’t a feminist. She told me all heterosexual sex was rape "by definition." When I asked her if she meant I was a product of rape, she told me I was "letting myself get raped" every time I had sex with my boyfriend.

In college, I was so averse to labels and power that I refused to run for student government when asked. Once, a boyfriend and I were hungry at my house and I had a panic attack over what it would mean if I fried an egg for him, which seems so silly now. It wasn’t the egg that should have given me pause; it was the particular guy. But I no longer had any judgment because, at the time, I still struggled with the idea that all men were the same -- and out to control me. It took me a long time to get past this and honestly I don’t know when it happened, but it did. I think 10 years of therapy had something to do with it.

So, what’s the opposite of being a feminist? Not being one? That’s not an option for me if I’m going to live in the world, because we still need feminism, badly. I have no real conclusion to this essay other than to say I will forever be confused and hurt by the kind of feminism I was raised to believe was The One True Feminism. I didn’t even write this as an indictment of my mom, who has mellowed somewhat with age and apologized for a few things.

Misandry as an ironic or non-ironic Feminist pose might be cathartic for a while, but it has nothing to do with achieving equality. And espousing outright hatred and contempt for all men to your children is not a feminist act. It’s tantamount to child abuse.

So ganz sortiert bekommen hat sie es also immer noch nicht. Und bei allem Mitgefühl für Jennifer Levin: Die Tramatisierungserfahrungen, die ich von Männern zu hören bekomme, die von radikalfeministischen Müttern aufgezogen worden sind, klingen noch um einiges schlimmer.

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