The Feminist Papers--LEAKED!
“The Feminist Papers,” a highly classified document that up until now has only been rumored to exist, was (accidentally?) leaked last night at 11:15pm. In a turn of events that will seriously weaken, if not entirely destroy the feminist movement, The Papers, particularly the Feminist Manifesto (FM), has already sent shock waves through feminist communities, dividing the effort into two camps: those that encourage re-evaluation of The Papers’ terms and protocols, and those that believe “we have sugar-coated, cow-towed, and prostrated ourselves before the pulpit of the patriarchy for long enough. It’s time we stand up and tell the world who we are and what we believe.”
Below are The Eight Protocols put forth by the United Feminist Assembly (UFA):
(1) Abortion is the only effective form of contraception and should be defended at all cost. (2) Penetration, regardless of intention, is an inherently violent act; we will continue our efforts to circumvent this biological war on women. (3) Our “harvesting laboratories” in the Nevada desert and “fertility farms” in Hawaii have seen promising advancements; we must continue our fundraising efforts full force. (4) Plans are underway to melt the chips on our shoulders into a malleable, alloy metal, which will be used to build Vulvalamonde, our Swiss headquarters. (5) Noting a decline in the usage of menstrual cups and consequently the decrease in monthly blood offerings to the Great Mother Goddess, we will reinvigorate our efforts to demonize tampons. (6) Our most brilliant minds are hard at work developing a Feminist Identification App (FIA), for we have outgrown “pit-hair” as the emblematic feminist identifier; the French have created a great deal of confusion, and we must use technology to our advantage. (7) Once and for all we will set the record straight: Gloria Steinem is a fembot, Eve Ensler is an extraterrestrial, and Hillary Clinton is not a man. Repeat: she is not a man. She is, however, engaging in an affair with Huma Abedin. (8) We are currently transitioning from using the more generally accepted “base 10” to the more appropriate “base 8,” in all our dealings, monetarily and otherwise, as it is the numeral that most closely resembles the female form.
Okay. Finished. If you've read this far and haven't yet booked your plane tickets to Switzerland to join in our noble effort of building Vulvalamonde, you know then that I jest. Mostly.
One hundred and four years ago, today, New York World published Emma Goldman’s personal manifesto, “What I Believe.” In the first paragraph, she writes: "It is too bad that we no longer live in the times when witches were burned at the stake or tortured to drive the evil spirit out of them. For, indeed, Emma Goldman is a witch! True, she does not eat little children, but she does many worse things. She manufactures bombs and gambles in crowned heads. B-r-r-r!" Emma Goldman—anarchist, activist, feminist and Jew—wrote this in response to “widespread public misconceptions about anarchism.”
Unfortunately over one hundred years later, misconceptions, stereotypes, fear and loathing still abound, especially in regards to feminism.
Yesterday was a disappointing day for me, and perhaps for others, when in an interview with the PBS-AOL series “Makers,” Marissa Mayer, newly appointed CEO of Yahoo, distanced herself from feminism.
Now there was an opportunity, if I’ve ever seen one, completely missed. Blond-haired and blue-eyed Mayer, sporting a modest, pink shell said: "I don’t think that I would consider myself a feminist. I think that I certainly believe in equal rights, I believe that women are just as capable, if not more so in a lot of different dimensions, but I don’t think I have, sort of, the militant drive and the sort of, the chip on the shoulder that sometimes comes with that.”
Marissa, news flash: YOU ARE A FEMINIST. If you believe in “equal rights” and that “women are just as capable as men” then you are, indeed, a feminist. [Feminism: the belief in the political, social, and economic equality between the sexes]. Just because you are not “militant,” or because you don’t have a “chip on your shoulder,” does not exempt you from the feminist tiers. Unfortunately, you along with so many, subscribe to inaccurate stereotyping, suffer from grave misconceptions. This could have been a defining moment for you, Marissa, and for the feminist cause that helped place you in that executive chair. Forget Yahoo. I’m feeling a bit Boo-hoo. (Corny, I know, but just couldn't resist).
To categorize an entire group, as just one thing, to miss its mission, its essence and focus on bastardized connotations, is offensive and small-minded. Like individuals within any other group, feminists span the spectrum: I know a feminist who’s butch, a feminist who’s dainty. I also know a Jew who’s stingy, and one who’s generous. I know a black person who’s lazy, and a black person who has an inspiring work ethic. I know an Asian who sports “Hello Kitty” memorabilia, and I know one who remembers saying hello to a kitty and then setting it on fire. True story.
Like any group, feminists come in all shapes and sizes. The Feminist Majority and Ms. Magazine sell t-shirts with “This is what a feminist looks like” printed on the front. I propose releasing a new line of t-shirts featuring Marissa’s face. Above her face is her quote: “I certainly believe in equal rights. I believe that women are just as capable, if not more so.” And beneath her face is, of course the standard line: “This is what a feminist looks like.” We need to dispel the myths, fears, inaccuracies, misassociations, disassociations by whatever methods necessary. Even if it means melting the chips on our shoulders in a joint effort to build the feminist headquarters, Vulvalamonde, in the Swiss Alps.
This post is third in a series on "Jewesses with Attitude"-- Passion, Power, and Pulp Friction.
How to cite this page
Orcha, Gabrielle. "The Feminist Papers--LEAKED!." 19 July 2012. Jewish Women's Archive. (Viewed on May 29, 2023) <https://jwa.org/blog/feminist-papers>.
I rock. I roll. We should jam!
I dig the way you think: "Why is it that an ever increasing amount of men are willing to identify as feminists, yet so many women shy away from even using the word?"-- Love that. Great question. I want to see it explored.
Jillian, would you be interested in writing a guest blog piece on that topic? (And feel free to include your observations of academia, i.e. women playing small so as not to seem "overly aggressive.")
I sent you a FB message with some more deets. Let me know where you stand.
Gabrielle, you rock. Hell, you can roll too if that sounds better. Feminism is all about choices rather than forced positions, isn't it? Unfortunately for many women today, the very word "feminism" incurs those images of militancy and misandry. Tragically few women take pride in the fact that feminism allows for choices, for equality of the sexes without caveat.
I could carry on for days about the "myths, fears, inaccuracies, misassociations, disassociations" surrounding feminism, but instead I will point out one observation: Why is it that an ever increasing amount of men are willing to identify as feminists, yet so many women shy away from even using the word?
Even in academic circles, female students are afraid to be seen as overly aggressive or protective of their rights. Some are afraid to seem proud of the women whose efforts lead to a greater societal expectation and acceptance of equality.
What a crying shame that Mayer, who by all counts should be a role model, hesitates to understand (or recognize openly, if she does understand) feminism as the reason she can even climb so high.
Also, so I ranted. I'm okay with that.