Sunday, February 10, 2008

From an NYT article about the growing unease in Iran's ruling elite that they're about to get swept in the upcoming elections--leading to repression of liberal elements:

Ms. Sherkat, a former religious revolutionary turned pragmatic feminist, has kept Zanan open for 16 years and 152 issues, despite financial and political pressures. She has managed to inform her readers without overly infuriating the mullahs — until now. According to reports from Iran, authorities said that the magazine was a “threat to the psychological security of the society” because it showed Iranian women in a “black light.”

The truth is, the magazine respected and celebrated Iranian women by offering articles on health, parenting, legal issues, literature and women’s achievements. One recent article argued that laws codifying unequal treatment of women in Islamic countries lacked justification under Islamic law and could be changed. The only psychological threat Zanan posed was to the regime’s authoritarian and anti-feminist pathology.

Sounds great to me. One problem: the word anti-feminist.

This is not a theoretical argument. It's not a matter of being anti-feminist; it's anti-women. You can say it's an unimportant point of semantics, but this kind of perceptive distinction is what implicit misogyny is all about.

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