Many times we say things that have implications we do not recognize or understand. These pockets of expressions we put into the universe go out and shape perspectives, build ideologies and promote agendas we may not even know exist. Picture this scenario: A young girl (let's call her Sharon) is watching TV with her brother after a long day at school. Her mother walks into the room and screams "Why are you seated watching TV with your brother? Don't you know that 'AS A GIRL YOU SHOULD' help with the chores?".
Beyond the fact that her mother has just stereotyped Sharon, she has also succeeded in pushing a narrative, engraining it into the young girl's subconscious that: Firstly, certain things are expected of her just by the fact of her existence 'as a woman'. Secondly, that she needs to be confined to society's definition of what a woman is and not have a mind of her own.
By continuously repeating this phrase to young Sharon, and with Sharon growing up hearing other etymologically sexist phrases, the world around Sharon shapes her into a young woman who has deep-seated, innate, self-induced misogyny - who believes she is less than equal and undeserving of respect and value in her society.
Sharon's example explains why we need to decide as a community to make extinct phrases, words and expressions that are innately sexist and injected into our dialogues by the patriarchy to negate the progress made towards the fight for Gender Equality and to ensure that the oppression, discrimination and narration for women as weaker and less valued members of society continues for years to come.
To get you started we have listed 3 Innately Gender-Biased phrases you need to unlearn and make extinct in your conversations:
Eliminating expressions such as these, calling out and correcting/educating people around you to unlearn these and other similar phrases are smalls steps, with big impacts towards the fight for equality.
Did you enjoy this article? What are some of the gender-biased phrases you think we need to unlearn? Let us know in the comments section. Do your part to fight inequality! Like, and share this piece with your female community!