We apologize for the inconvenience.
you still cross my mind from time to time; and I mostly smile..
—Andria // La Dispute (via naybowl)
Hermaphroditus, Roman marble, Imperial period (3rd century CE) — This Hermaphroditus is called “Stante” (relieved) because carved with the male member in erection, shown by the woman’s dress lifted to the waist. Discovered in a vineyard of Monte Porzio Catone in 1781 and purchased by prince Marcantonio Borghese, it was long kept hidden in a closet because it was considered “indecent”
I don’t feel any universal connection with all people who are born with female parts. I’m not sure I know anyone who actually does, not when you really break it down. Because, despite what mainstream (white) feminism and tampon commercials would have us believe, “shared” female experience isn’t really all that “shared” at all.
Let’s take for example a well-known issue that affects women—the issue of “equal pay.” We’ve all heard the statistic: in the US, women make 77 cents for every dollar a man makes on average. That sucks. But it’s not quite the shared experience it seems. A recent report by the National Partnership for Women & Families shows that black women only make 70 cents for every dollar a man makes on average, and only 64 cents compared to every dollar paid to a white, non-Hispanic man. And Latinas make only 55 cents for every dollar made by a white, non-Hispanic man. Well, damn. That 77 cents never looked so good.
Of course, it’s not just economics. There are many ways in which factors such as race, sexuality, gender presentation, and (dis)ability make the “collective” experience of one group of women vastly different from that of another. According to RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network), 91% of people who are raped in the US are women. So, rape is a universal issue for women, right? Of course. When you break it down, though, “universal” gets complicated. The rate of rape and attempted rape for white women is 17.7%. For American Indian/Alaskan women it’s 34.1%. And women with disabilities are raped at a rate at least twice that of women overall. So, while “women” have a collective experience of being more vulnerable to rape, some women are a whole lot more vulnerable to it than others. While that first statistic is always used to suggest a shared female experience of the world, the statistics that follow it show that women’s experiences aren’t really all that shared. Or at least not equally shared. Not anywhere near equally.