PFP: Privilege

I appreciate the different links to the different types of privilege. For the most part, I was aware of the groups that tend to have more privilege than do others, but for some reason, I hadn’t heard the term “cisgender” before. I found “30+ Examples of Cisgender Privilege” to be informative in the sense that it’s written in the second person (you), but doesn’t sound overly accusatory or harsh (Killerman). It effectively demonstrates what a person who is not cisgender might encounter on a daily basis—and these attitudes and situations are definitely not ones anyone would like to encounter. It’s always helpful to reminded of a viewpoint that is not my own; this article truly gets its readers to consider what its like to be in another person’s shoes.

I also appreciated “Male Privilege Checklist.” As a woman, I’ve heard plenty about male privilege, but I don’t feel like I’ve been actively discriminated against in my life. Granted, I don’t see what goes on behind the scenes of a situation where discrimination might actually be possible, so maybe I have been discriminated against and don’t know even know it. All in all though, I haven’t seen overt male privilege in my own life. Perhaps I’m very lucky.

However, after reading the “Male Privilege Checklist, ” I actually agreed with most of what it had to say regarding Male Privilege, but there were some points with which I did not agree. I liked that it was written in first person, demonstrating that a male could be admitting these things to be true (but it was written by a woman which make the dynamic here a littler more controversial and interesting).  Number 15 was spot on: I was having this conversation with my roommate the other day: “My clothing is typically less expensive and better-constructed than women’s clothing for the same social status. While I have fewer options, my clothes will probably fit better than a woman’s without tailoring” (SAP).  I don’t know what the clothing industry is trying to say by making women’s sizing so drastically different from brand to brand. It’s absolutely frustrating to never truly know what size I am.

I also liked the points that had to do with a woman being called “selfish” for choosing to work rather than be a stay-at-home mom (that is a great choice as well!), though I feel this is becoming more socially acceptable now (SAP). In some communities, it’s still an issue. Men also never have to take their wives last names (though I’ve seen it happen once) while women are often questioned and criticized for choosing to keep their own last names (SAP). It’s something I’ve given thought to doing myself, but wonder how people in my life would take it. In certain situations, women tend to have “what other people think” in the back of their minds. Overall, I appreciate the argument of this checklist. While equality for women has progressed greatly, there’s obviously still some work to do.

Works Cited:

Killerman, Sam. “30+ Examples of Cisgender Privilege.” It’s Pronounced Metrosexual.

MIT School of Architecture and Planning. “Male Privilege Checklist.” MIT.



Filed under PFPS17

2 Responses to PFP: Privilege

  1. webbm

    I agree with most the listed items in your blog. However, the last point you mentioned “women are often questioned and criticized for choosing to keep their own last names”, in my opinion depends on the culture. In my country, while a woman being called selfish for choosing to work rather than staying home, women in general, keep their own last name when they get married and it is very normal and nobody expects them to change their last name.

  2. ahallibu

    That “male privilege checklist” strikes me on a deep level! I have a wonderful husband who is supportive of my career and helpful around the house. I know when we have children, he will be an ever-present part of their daily lives. And yet, those around us sometimes seem to feel that he should be rewarded for what I feel are basic expectations in an egalitarian relationship. For example, I have been questioned (a) why I am taking so long to have kids, (b) whether he is going to move with me when I go to my next job, and (c) how I managed to land such a “catch” who can cook and clean. No one would ever ask him these things about me! The good part is, he is just as frustrated as I am when I tell him these stories and fully acknowledges his privilege in these scenarios.

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