Joss Whedon Discusses Male Feminism & Misogyny In The Wake Of #Gamergate

joss-whedon

We love Joss Whedon. Every woman should. Not just because he created one of the most kickass female on-screen superheroes of the millennial generation (Buffy the Vampire Slayer, duh!) but because he is an unashamed feminist, and having a guy like him on the side of equality in Hollywood is a big freaking deal.

He spoke at the 2013 Equality Now event in Hollywood, revealing that he grew up with a mother who taught him from an early age about gender equality. In his eyes, it’s black and white: you either believe women are people, or you don’t.. Unfortunately there are far too many people who fit into the latter category, which is why websites and organizations like us exist, to share content that is meaningful and all about promoting men and women as equals.

Well Joss was once again present at the 2014 Equality Now event (ummm, how did a whole year go past already?!?) and spoke to entertainment and pop culture website Vulture about his ideas on feminism, gamergate and what he finds most surprising about the ever-present misogyny in our current culture.

Back in August he publicly tweeted his support for the fight for women in gaming, by declaring Anita Sarkeesian’s dissection of the sexist gaming culture to be true.

The the Equality Now event he gave some valuable advice to males who want to be part of the feminist movement, that goes beyond just tweeting support. The top two things he says feminist organizations need are money, and volunteers.

“Action is the best way to say anything. A guy who goes around saying “I’m a feminist” usually has an agenda that is not feminist. A guy who behaves like one, who actually becomes involved in the movement, generally speaking, you can trust that. And it doesn’t just apply to the action that is activist. It applies to the way they treat the women they work with and they live with and they see on the street.”

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He goes on to talk about how he is continually surprised by the online hatred and trolling that happens in the name of gender equality, because in his eyes its a “no-brainer”.

“I was raised by a very strong woman, I didn’t know feminism was actually a thing until I left home and found out the country didn’t run the way my mom’s house did. So I have this goldfish, idiot, forgetful thing in that every time I’m confronted with true misogyny, I’m stunned. I’m like, Really? That’s like, I don’t believe in airplanes. It’s like, What century are you from?”

“I don’t get it. So usually I’m shocked, then occasionally amused, then occasionally extremely not amused, but once I get over the shock, it’s very clear that misogyny in our own culture — and not just where they perform genital mutilation and marry off 10-year-olds — runs so deep.”

To be honest, Joss is one of the lucky minority of men who are taught from an early age about gender issues, and it shows what an impact it can make.

Actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt has also spoken about the same thing in the past, where his mom taught him and his brother about equality and why gender roles that society ushers into our lives from a young age should be challenged and dissected.

Despite the ugly hatred that is happening under the #gamergate movement, when you take a step back you realize what an important work Anita Sarkeesian and others like her are doing to cause this much disruption.

“When I see this hate bubbling up towards any kind of progress, my reaction is twofold: First, it’s horror, and then, it’s delight, because you don’t get this kind of anger unless real change is actually happening. It is a chaotic time. It’s an ugly time because change is happening. It would be lovely to be living after the change has happened,” says Joss.

The bottom line is that we live in an age where we have to teach gender equality not just as an ideology but a culture, and it has intentional from a young age. When you teach a child that men and women are equal, as they grow older and operate within various different industries and careers, the effects will be enormous.

Here’s to more men speaking up about the importance of gender equality, and hey if they want to call themselves a feminist, we’re all for that too!

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2 Comments

  1. Oh hey look its that guy who called #GamerGate terrorists, and also #NotYourShield that has women in it as well. So he basically called women terrorists.

  2. What the hell ever says:

    The funny thing about Whedon is that everything he supports femfreq in, is the same thing he’s been making money of for a long time. Just take firefly. it has everything femfreq hates, and calls “product of patriarchy”

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