Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Pink Power Ranger

Here's something for you to elaborate on: tell me one of your most significant memories from middle school (I guess for Swedes that translates to 4-6th grade, approximately).

Loosely connected to my previous post: we had a woman here talking about - and if I translate literally it gets funny - "Power and Sex". Obviously we were talking about feminism and equality. She had a slow start, but then she had some interesting things to say, and the discussion afterwards was reasonably fun. Seeing the difference between "sex" and "gender" seems more and more necessary.

Anyway, she pointed out that we tend to contrast men and women against each other as though everything one is, the other is not. Weird. We do the same with light and darkness, and everything else we decided to divide in no less or more than two: attribute them with qualities they do not inherently possess. Like Rik said, we define things by what we think they're not, instead of what they are. Much like science then, right? To know if swans are only white, we do not test their whiteness: we look for swans of other colors. And now it's like we discovered there are sixtyfive nuances of "white". Bet Jesus didn't see that one coming.


Rik said...

I commented on this issue in my own blog, I dunno if you read it - it's in Trivia pt. 1.

There might be a power aspect to sex - I took an entire course on that last semester, but I didn't understand much of what they meant by "power" - if you could explain that, I'd be glad, because I didn't quite get where power fits into the equation.

Anyway, of course there are nuances of gender. That's hardly a surprise, since there are nuances to everything - nothing is discrete in nature. However, there can be tendencies to them and they can be measured with arbitrarily drawn lines - qualities are rarely grasped out of thin air.

It's objectively so that men usually are faster and stronger than women, it might also be objectively so that women are usually more socially suave than men. The key words are "usually" and "more than" - men and women do possess inherent qualities to greater or lesser degrees, but that does not mean there can't be a woman who's stronger than most men or, statistically, stronger than all men.

I view gender as two bell curve diagrams overlapping to a greater or lesser degree.

Man, I would love to have this discussion in person with you. The written word is slow.

Rik said...

Lemme see if I gotcha straight - "borders are not caused by our differences, but we create the differences on account of there being borders?"

Would that sum up the argument?

Iceye said...

Had to think a bit, but yes, it would. Or the other way around, if you switch the word "border" with "difference"? Border sounds a lot stricter?

Honestly, I mean really, I'm preaching for the already redeemed. It's mostly an attempt at straightening out some ideas that have been there for years already, and that we've all heard, but I wasn't sure wheather we put the same values in. How to affect those who have resisted so far is another interesting subject, but that's a discussion for another day.

Iceye said...

I really really wish I could be over there with you guys, though. Internet and phone is to real life what porn is to the real thing.

Iceye said...

Uh, right, power. I suppose you mean it the way I think you mean it, in which case the "power" is simply the upper hand either gender will get in certain situations. Well, we can talk about it more in a better manner sometime.