Letter: Keith Appleby’s ‘feminism’ attempts to abdicate himself of responsibility
Keith Appleby’s legal case against the University is important for the community to consider and debate. Meanwhile, his tenuous claims to feminism via shirt must also be vetted — especially by and for the men participating in feminist research and political projects across campus. Some people may be surprised that men have been part of feminist theorizing and theory — and, as some may or may not agree, feminist politics — since the 1960s. What brings men to feminism is realizing that placing the burden of achieving women’s rights and gender equality purely on the shoulders of women simply reproduces a sexual division of labor that has negative impacts on all people — some more than others.
But Keith Appleby is not one of those men. Instead, Appleby’s ‘feminism’ is an attempt to abdicate men of their responsibility for, and reproduction of, male privilege — made apparent by the fact that he can’t seem to understand why feminists would be reluctant to include him, of all people, in their movement. Furthermore, his inability to understand why his own past interactions with women, violent or otherwise, might bring about difficult conversations regarding his “This is what feminist looks like” shirt, disproves beyond all doubt that he, of all people, could be what male feminists might look like.
University doctoral student
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