Guest post: If it made some effort to actually tie it back to women

Originally a comment by Freemage on This toxic cloud is called.

The odd thing is, to me, that this would be easier to take seriously if it didn’t try to be quite so dramatic about the situation, and it might fit in a site called Everyday Feminism if it made some effort to actually tie it back to women specifically.

The constant push for fictional characters to end up in monogamous relationships with their ‘one true love’ is annoying to folks who have no desire for such a relationship; this annoyance rises to the level of a micro-aggression when it’s accompanied by ‘proof’ in the narrative that anyone who claims to be happy alone (say, because their career is too important to them, or because they genuinely have no such attractions) is somehow completely deluded and just needs to meet the right Special Someone in order to learn true happiness.

It’s also trivially easy to prove that this microaggression (like a great many in the media) is directed principally at women; male leads can be focused on their jobs, with either a string of casual hook-ups or simply no romance at all, and it usually doesn’t so much as get pointed out that that’s what they are doing. From there, it’s certainly simple to point out how this plays into a greater narrative that teaches that men are ‘complete’ human beings in their own right, while women can only be made whole by the addition of a romantic relationship. Thus, one could make the case that killing this trope would, by and large, benefit women and advance feminism in one small way. It could thus fit quite well into, say, a course on sexism in media.

But this article doesn’t want to do any of that work; it just wants to point out the annoyance, and leave it as if that alone makes it the cause of a great crusade.

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