Huffington Post “White Feminism”

Here’s a primer on “White Feminism” courtesy of the Huffington Post last August. It’s a two minute video, and it’s a weird mix of condescending and mindless. I guess that’s to be expected from the Huffington Post, but it’s disheartening.

What does “White Feminism” mean?”  Presenter 1 asks helpfully for us.

“Basically,” says Presenter 2, “White Feminism is feminism that ignores intersectionality.”

“So not all feminists who are white,” says 1, “are White Feminists.”

But most are, 2 says, because they just don’t have to think about race on a daily basis.

Sigh. One can see what they’re getting at, of course, and it’s not that there’s no truth to it, but jeezis what a way to go about it, with what ineffable smugness, and yet again this eagerness to attack feminism in particular.

“And we’re not just ‘pulling the race card,'” says 1. “White Feminism excludes the experiences of basically, anyone who’s not white, cis and straight.”

Then why call it White Feminism?

Also, what about middle class? Why is cis a category while middle class is not? What about young and attractive? Both presenters are young and attractive – what about Young Attractive Feminism? Why are we attacking White Feminism for excluding anyone who’s not white, cis and straight, but not attacking Young Attractive Feminism for excluding anyone who’s not young and attractive?

But they are kind and reassuring, once they’ve educated us. “Being a white feminist doesn’t make you a bad person,” Presenter 1 tells us, “it just means you have a lot to learn.”

Presenter 2 gets the closing line: “The most important thing any white feminist can do is educate herself, and listen, and engage with the experiences of women of color, without silencing them. Because sometimes as white ladies we just have to shut the fuck up.”

If that’s “intersectionality,” I say the hell with it.

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