Culture PaperDolls

August 19th, 2013

Why Solidarity Really Is For White Women

By

I wrote a while ago about the nature of feminism as a general expression of white western female privilege. In short, modern western feminism is a movement of well-off white Western women, by well-off Western white women and for well-off Western white women.

I was not the first to make this kind of claim, but such critiques weren’t as common as I’d have expected given how obvious these realities have been. Recently (and to my great pleasure), this has been changing.

The most recent shake-up began during a debate about a certain dysfunctional hypocrite/male feminist and his recent “retirement” from the internet. A black feminist by the name of Mikki Kendall accused supporters of this retired hypocrite of being dismissive toward women of color. Said hypocrite had engaged in open attacks on women of color because of their race, but had not been reprimanded by supposedly anti-racist mainstream feminists for this. Instead, he found support among them (he was allowed to write for some of the largest feminist publications in existence), and still finds support from them even after admitting his behavior.

 

 

 

 

 

 

#SolidarityIsForWhiteWomen was born then, and it exploded globally online as many women across the planet began to empathize. Many of the best tweets from this viral episode re-state some of the critiques I mentioned in my earlier article, but also add some interesting new ones:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As I noted in my discussion on the limits of Western feminism, Western feminists are in some ways their own worst enemy. They argue endlessly from the perspective of downtrodden victims, but few can fail to notice that they tend to disproportionately be white and well-off. It is also not easy to overlook the fact that their interests as well-off white women tend to take precedent over the interests of others who are non-white, not well-off or both.

It is also hard to miss their partaking in some of the very eurocentric/prejudicial behavior that they claim to want to avoid:

 

 

 

 

 

One of the biggest issues that modern western feminism is going to face in the coming years relates to its own links to racism. As many of the tweets have shown, feminists have been tied to racially insensitive positions. This, among other things, is a problem for a movement seeking global influence in a world that is primarily nonwhite. Why should nonwhites support people who have shown a tendency to support and occasionally praise those who engage in openly anti-nonwhite behavior? Whether it’s through the support of hypocrites like Schwyzer or open eugenicists who have not hidden their desire to actually eliminate non-white populations, feminists will have a lot to answer for.

As I noted in previous articles, cultures vary across the world. White Western (primarily Anglo) feminists dominate the feminist narrative, but the reality is that their goals differ substantially from those of many women across the globe. Not every group of women is going to have the same views on acceptable dress, the worth of traditional gender roles (which are, in some places, held in much higher esteem than they are in the West) and how to deal with issues relating to work-life balancing. Western feminists haven’t done much to acknowledge this or to work these different visions of female “empowerment” into the mainstream feminist narrative, and they will pay a price for this as some respond by simply refusing to associate themselves with the movement.

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The long and short of all this is simple: the affluent white Western women leading the feminist movement aren’t going to be able to accomplish all that they hope to accomplish without non-white women firmly by their side. Numbers are crucial, and they are not in the wealthy white feminist’s favor. As things stand, however, neither are many of the non-white women she most needs to accomplish all that she hopes to accomplish.

Read Next: Successful Women Use Poor Women To Advance


About the Author

is a young man whose background gives him unique insight on sociological and cultural changes that are happening today.

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