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Power feminism & economic adjustment of languages

iskierka's picture

Last class, we met in our groups and tried to come up with an economic approach to whatever topic we had chosen for our web event, and having chosen gendered pronouns, I struggled for a while trying to figure out a practical application. After talking it out with one of my partners, though, she helped me realize that a business-centered pronoun could potentially solve the issue. If you use a pronoun unrelated to either gender (possibly deriving from pre-existing gender-neutral pronouns), the terms come without any subconscious connotations, then until one is face-to-face with the individual, there's a preconceived notion of how they operate their business. And even then, using identical pronouns can force the speakers into operating on a subconscious equal playing field across genders, stemming from the idea of male pronouns being action takers (and a point I didn't realize until after the fact, female pronouns being applied to possession - ships and cars - while stereotypically female jobs like secretaries and nurses are seen as subservient to male positions).

Secondly, on the issue of power feminism, I'm still trying to wrap my head about the pros and cons of both. My personal issue with it is what is achieved with the end goal - if the woman uses this newfound power to enable other women or to put them down in turn. But then the points raised in class: what of the people put down during her rise to the top?  My question is, how is it any different from the people put down during anyone else's rise. Maybe I'm not viewing this from a proper context, but from a grand-scale point of view, someone will always be put down so someone else can gain power, so it's just a matter of not accepting the denial of power. Can a power feminist in practice become an acting feminist once they have the power necessary to do their intended work?