Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Unremarkable Misogyny

[TW: Violence]

Would it really be that difficult for mainstream media sources to mention that Norway murderer Anders Breivik was motivated by misogyny and anti-feminism, in addition to his much-discussed xenophobia and anti-Muslim sentiment?

Michelle Goldberg notes, of the killer's 1,500 page manifesto, parts of which parallel some of the most extreme, hateful, violent MRA fantasies on the internet:

"Rarely has the connection between sexual anxiety and right-wing nationalism been made quite so clear. Indeed, Breivik’s hatred of women rivals his hatred of Islam, and is intimately linked to it. Some reports have suggested that during his rampage on Utoya, he targeted the most beautiful girl first. This was about sex even more than religion....

...[W]hile he pretends to abhor Muslim subjugation of women, he writes that the 'fate of European civilisation depends on European men steadfastly resisting Politically Correct feminism.' When cultural conservatives seize control of Europe, he promises, 'we will re-establish the patriarchal structures.' Eventually, women 'conditioned' to this new order 'will know her place in society.' His mad act was in the service of male superiority as well as Christian nationalism. Those two things, of course, almost always go together."

This information is highly-relevant as to why this man committed his crime and yet it has been omitted from most media accounts I have read regarding the situation.


To invisibilize the gender-based, male-supremacist motivations of this crime communicates that a violent hatred of half the human population is not important, notable, or worthy of condemnation.

Is the hatred of women so common that it doesn't need to be explicitly pointed out or criticized? Or, is it that violence against women, unlike violence against groups that also include men, is too specific to women to be seen as the human rights tragedy that it is?

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