It’s New and Scary – Here, Have Some Resources

*this is a living document and will be updated as required*

So, you’ve come along to this blog and you’re a bit uncomfortable with the idea that sometimes you’re not going to get to have your opinion heard.  You’re angry because you feel like you’re being left out of something, maybe for the first time ever.  You don’t understand all these new words and phrases, or it feels like you’re going to lose something because you might not get to have your say.

Or perhaps you just don’t understand something, and you know it’s not okay to demand other people educate you, so you’re looking for a starting point on where to do some reading to learn.  That’s awesome!  Nobody understands everything, we’re all learning stuff as we go and it’s ok to not know stuff.  Nobody knows everything!

This is where educating yourself comes in to the picture.  You’re reading this, so that means you have internet access (unless someone kindly printed it out for you).  You have a world of information at your fingertips to educate you in every subject that you need.

But, I’m going to help you a little bit, and give you a few links to articles that will start you off.

Privilege

You will hear the word “privilege” quite a lot here on UnReal Women.  That’s because it’s the one thing that other lady-mags really ignore.  Basically privilege means that not all of us here on the planet start on an even playing field in the game of life.  Some people have a lot of privilege, some people have a little bit.  Most of us have some in one form or another, so we all need to understand it and realise that quite often, the realities of someone we have privilege over are vastly different than our own.

One of my favourite pieces on privilege online is this one:

Check My What? On Privilege and What We Can Do About It

Here’s another really good piece, this one is a downloadable .pdf file that you can keep for future reference:

Checking Your Privilege 101 (.pdf file)

But if all else fails, run a Google search.  Look, here’s one I prepared earlier:

Google “privilege 101”

Intersectionality

Another word you will hear a lot is intersectionality.  Intersectionality is basically the concept that marginalisation and oppression are not single layer.  Intersectionality refers to the way that systems of oppression (ie racism, sexism, sizeism etc) intersect with each other.  In the context of this site, that means that we need to be aware that while we are fighting for one set of human rights (ie, women’s rights), we don’t do so in a way that ignores or further marginalises other people.

My favourite piece on intersectionality is by Flavia Dzodan:

My Feminism will be Intersectional or it will be Bullshit

I also like this very straightforward piece by s.e. smith:

Intersectionality is not Optional

Here’s a nice, simple 101 post by Erin Stewart that was on Lip Magazine:

Broadening Feminism(s): Intersectionality 101

Don’t forget you can always do that Google search too!

Stigma/Stigmatisation

This one is really important.  Stigmatisation is the act of placing negative connotation or value on something.  One of the most prevalent forms of stigmatisation today is fat stigma.  In very simple terms, it is anything that denigrates or vilifies fat people.  This one is very personal to me as a fat woman, and will not ever be tolerated on UnReal Women.  For many people, they’ve been told their whole lives that fat is bad, and all kinds of other incorrect information about fatness.  Therefore, they’re going to struggle with the idea that it is never ok to stigmatise fat people, not even “for their own good”.  If that’s you, I suggest you read this piece:

Fat stigma – not fat – is the real enemy by Dr Linda Bacon

Stigma however is not limited to fat people.  Most other marginalised groups suffer stigmatisation by dominant culture.  Stigma appears in relation to race, mental illness, disability, gender, sexuality, religion, health, age… you name it.

It’s not perfect, but Wikipedia gives a nice simple explanation you can start with.

Cis-gender

This one is often one of the hardest for people to understand.  Cis-gender basically means that you are a person who identifies as the gender you were assigned at birth.  So for most babies born, if they have a vulva they are assigned the female gender, and if they have a penis and testicles they are assigned male gender.  If you are a cis-gender person, it means that you were assigned your gender at birth, and you still identify as being of that gender.  It is basically the opposite of transgender (which is a very complicated subject in itself).

Here you go, the Queer Dictionary gives a nice simple definition.

Here’s a really clear list of cis-gender privileges.

*this is a living document and will be updated as required*

Advertisements

One thought on “It’s New and Scary – Here, Have Some Resources

  1. Pingback: UnReal Women May Not Be For You | UnReal Women

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s