The ability of academics, feminist and otherwise, to be elitists with savior complexes is astounding. I’m going to focus on the feminist ones, since feminism is my priority. But academia is where postmodernism arose, that movement which states there is no such thing as truth. In feminism it means attempting to redefine words and stating that everything a woman does is “feminist” and she makes free choices; essentially, that the truth of oppression doesn’t exist.
Liberal and radical feminists are pretty much the same when it comes to neologisms and euphemisms. Usually they’re weasel words. Like people who use baby talk instead of cuss words, they downplay the reality and practice of oppressive things in favor of theory and abstraction. It’s so they can use the weasel words as a shield for their self-righteousness. Like the word “problematic” instead of “rapist” or “pedophile” or “sadist.” Don’t understand it? Then you don’t understand theory. How sad for you, you ignorant plebeian 😦 I must enlighten you with my knowledge of theory!
Most of this pettiness can easily be solved by saying,”I’m sorry” or acknowledging they were wrong when called out, but no, it is about WINNING for them and they cannot stand differences in opinion if it means they have to step down from the soapbox for 2 seconds and not be the gatekeeper of knowledge. They also like to use the royal “we” to refer to themselves and it’s obvious they only speak on their own behalf, except their small cliques.
The abuse of Jacqueline Homan by Elizabeth Hungerford re: choosing a speaker or getting petition letters out about anti-trafficking is just one example of their arrogance.
“What is also interesting is the timing of the advent of postmodernist theory. As Somer Brodribb and Barbara Christian point out in Radically Speaking, postmodernism came into vogue in academia just when the voices of women and people of color began to assert a significant presence there. It seems that when groups other than those in power attempt to say things, suddenly truth dissolves into meaninglessness. This is a little too coincidental for my taste.” –Let them eat text: The real politics of postmodernism
If you think that criticizing or calling out the harmful aspects of famous people and advising against worshipping them (i.e. the sadistic Mother Theresa, the perverted and racist Ghandi or the abusive John Lennon) implies we cannot like anything ever – as if somehow every powerful person is fucked up – please examine your priorities.