Bristol University's Christian Union Bans Women From Teaching At Meetings

(106 Posts)
ecclesvet Tue 04-Dec-12 20:56:42
TeiTetua Sun 09-Dec-12 22:29:12
HolofernesesHead Mon 10-Dec-12 17:30:12

grin Tei! That's great news (about the Dean, not anyone choking).

LRDtheFeministDude Mon 10-Dec-12 17:58:06

SGB - fully agree with your post about the two things to consider.

maria - I honestly think if you believe that institutions other than religious ones are not explicitly discriminatory, you're being awfully generous.

Explicit discrimination, in my book, isn't just about saying 'we fully believe women are inferior to men' (FWIW, relatively few religious institutions say this - they'll dance around it in all sorts of ways because they know it's quite blunt, even for their own followers).

Explicit discrimination can also be things like saying 'well, we would have more women doing career x, but women choose to have babies, so ...'.

I also think that by focussing on 'explicit discrimination' as somehow different and more important than other kinds, you end up (not deliberately, and 'you' as in people, not you personally!) downplaying the covert tactics, which are in some ways much nastier and harder to deal with.

LRDtheFeministDude Mon 10-Dec-12 18:29:44

tei - I get your point, and I think you are right that is the thinking, about opposing homosexuality (and quite likely about women bishops too).

I like the argument Ayann Hirsi Ali puts forward (apologies if you know it and it's boring). She says (as I understand it) that while it is important for people to be aware of privilege, that mustn't become thing to hide behind, or a thing that stops us feeling able to say something is wrong. So, she's saying that people must not feel that they can't speak up if they think others are being hurt, just because it is happening in a foreign country or a different culture. Of course you might get it wrong, but you can be prepared to be corrected - it's better than not speaking up.

I think that the Anglican Church is worried about schism and I see a result of schism could be to end up with influential religious groups that were more vehemently against equality than before. But I think that it's a case where it's fundamentally right that women be equal and that homosexuals be allowed to marry, and that should not be an area for compromise.

HolofernesesHead Mon 10-Dec-12 18:34:55

Oh yes, that's so true. I was at a leading UK institution (not religious) and talking to their university talent-spotter person, who actually said 'We employ men and women, but women usually leave to have babies.' She (yes, she) even used the term 'attrition rate.' shock If that's not patriarchy in action, I don't know what is...

LRDtheFeministDude Mon 10-Dec-12 18:41:30

Right with you there! It is so depressing.

It makes sense to me though. Society is set up with a structure that disadvantages women (and of course many other groups). It makes sense that the structure becomes invisible rather than explicit, because it has become the norm.

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