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I have seen responses to nerd anti-feminism along the lines of ‘being bullied at school doesn’t make you oppressed.’ Maybe it’s not a vector of oppression in the same way, but it’s not nothing. It is a real shame that Aaronson picked up Dworkin rather than any of the many feminist theorists and writers who manage to combine raw rage with refusal to resort to sexual shame as an instructive tool.
Weaponised shame- male, female or other- has no place in any feminism I subscribe to.
This whole affair makes me despair of the power of language to convey human reality—or at least, of my own ability to use language for that end.
At the same time, I also think there are crucial differences between the two cases—at least in the world as it currently exists—which might make the shy-nerdy-male problem vastly harder to solve than the shy-nerdy-female one.Toward that end, I believe open, honest communication (as I’ve been trying to foster on this blog) is essential. I believe that no one should be ashamed of inborn sexual desires: not straight men, not straight women, not gays, not lesbians, not even pedophiles (though in the last case, there might really be no moral solution other than a lifetime of unfulfilled longing).Indeed, I’ve always felt a special kinship with gays and lesbians, precisely the sense of having to hide from the world, of being hissed at for a sexual makeup that you never chose, is one that I can relate to on a visceral level.But then I removed it all, for a simple reason: because while I have the right to bare my own soul on my blog, I don’t have the right to bare people’s unless they want me to.Without further ado, and for the benefit of the world’s Twitterariat, I’m now just going to state nine of my core beliefs. I believe that women are authors of their own stories, that they don’t exist merely to please men, that they are not homogeneous, that they’re not slot machines that ‘pay out’ but only if you say the right things.