A GLOSSARY OF GENDER-RELATED WORDS (IN HOMAGE TO AMBROSE BIERCE’S THE DEVIL’S DICTIONARY)

#metoo: Hashtivist campaign used to evidence how commonplace sexual harassment is for women, in all professional contexts. A group of men responded by using the self-defensive hashtag #NotAllMen, instead of the better suited #LearnToBeGentlemen or #GoodMenShameHarassers. SEE: harassment.

Agender: Intelligent individual tired of the obnoxious gender binary, who has made the wise decision to assume that gender is irrelevant (sadly, it may be to yourself, but not to the others). SEE: asexual.

Alleged rape: Perplexing way in which the media refer to the misogynistic hate crime of rape and which has no parallel with other crimes (alleged murder? alleged robbery?). In the case of rape the perpetrator’s presumption of innocence extends so far that the victim’s presumption of victimhood is questioned, hence the idiosyncratic use of the adjective ‘alleged’. SEE: rape.

Armpit vagina: Part of the female body discovered by actor Jennifer Lawrence, now a Nobel prize candidate for Medicine (sub-section Anatomy). Finding body-shaming not thorough enough, Lawrence proceeded to point out how female flesh folds around armpits producing a strange vaginal hollow. Canadian filmmaker David Cronenberg might actually share Lawrence’s award, as the female protagonist of his 1977 film Rabid has a penis in her armpit. SEE: body-shaming.

Asexual: Intelligent individual who, unlike most current human beings, has realized that sex occupies too much mental space considering how scant actual time is employed in having some. Asexuals are the only sane persons in our sex-crazed world although, sadly, their position appears insane to the sex-crazed. SEE: agender.

Body-shaming: Abuse focused on declaring (usually on the social media) how little you like a particular part of a person’s body, or even the whole body. Since no human body is perfect, not even Naomi Campbell’s, and she is bound to age one century or another, it is a mystery why humans have chosen this way of making their lives harder. Defenders of body-shaming claim that they mean well and their abuse is for our own good. SEE: armpit vagina.

Brazilian wax: Torture method consisting of getting rid of perfectly natural pubic hair in female genitalia by applying a layer of hot wax and pulling hard. The technique can only be called Brazilian if a hair strip is left in the central segment; otherwise, the proper label is ‘Hollywood wax’. This torture method, which would appal the Inquisition, is, inexplicably, endured voluntarily by millions of women all over the world as an effect of the popularity of porn among heterosexual men.

Closet: Not to be confused with a wardrobe, particularly a cabinet wardrobe. In British English a closet is a small room that can be closed for privacy (hence water closet, or w.c.). Rich houses had closets used as walk-in wardrobes (or, rather, dressing rooms), but also as small studios; thus in Restoration comedy closets were often the place where adulterous affairs happened. In American English ‘closet’ refers to a walk-in wardrobe, not to the small room, hence the confusion about the meaning of ‘coming out of the closet’, an early 20th century expression. Some claim that ‘coming out’ refers to acting as a debutante, presenting yourself publicly, whereas ‘closet’ is often connected with other popular idioms, such as ‘keeping skeletons in the closet’. Anyway, the Spanish mistranslation of ‘closet’ as ‘armario’ is absurd, and it would have been far more accurate to translate the idiom as ‘salir de la habitación secreta’.

Consent: A word missing in the vocabulary of the patriarchal men whose sense of entitlement includes free access to women’s bodies, through harassment and direct sexual violence. Often confused with ‘yes’, the word ‘no’, used to deny consent, is often downplayed by these men as irrelevant, just teasing, or a product of women’s hesitant behaviour and tiny brains. SEE: harassment.

Dick pic / to dickpic: A peculiar variety of selfie which pops up unsolicited in women’s computers and cellphones and that, inexplicably, senders believe to have the same seductive value as the pic of a nice, smiling face.

Feminazi: A feminist in favour of building concentration camps where men can be exterminated using poison gas, while pretending this never happened. This is possibly a misinterpretation of the word but it is very hard to guess correctly what ‘feminazi’ does mean. On the other hand, no feminist in on record demanding that Hitler’s genocidal policies against Jews, gays, Roma people, political prisoners and other minorities be used against men, which makes ‘feminazi’ a truly mystifying word.

Feminism: An antidote to patriarchy. Of course, patriarchal men pretend that feminism is the same as androphobia (or misandry) and in this way they can dismiss women’s demands that patriarchy ends as mere men-hatred.

Feminism (Institutional): The terrorist branch of radical feminism. Institutional feminists force Parliaments to pass legislation designed to take all the power away from men to give it to women, so that men will know what it is like to be powerless. It hasn’t worked so far, despite the claims of masculinist men. SEE: Feminism (radical).

Feminism (radical): A dangerous gang of women devoted to running a vicious smear campaign against all men, despite the clear evidence that men, not women, are the victims of patriarchal power, and that women have no real grounds of complaint. SEE: Feminism (Institutional)

Gender gap: The gap between the platform where women wait for the train that men ride and the train itself. Despite the constant warnings to ‘mind the gap’ many women still die by falling under the wheels of oncoming trains that they’re trying to board. The few who have managed to become passengers do little to narrow the gap, as they feel very proud to have bridged it.

Gender labelling: Taxonomic mania that has gripped Gender Studies theoreticians, sex and gender activists, and plain people in the vain hope that the more labels you generate the more at ease will individuals feel with their own inclinations. It is not working, for gender labelling still insists on the central role of gender in human identity; besides, most people are labelled-against than self-labelling. SEE: agender.

Gender-equal: Gender-utopian (currently)

Gender-neutral toilets: Really??? What for?? To make who more comfortable?

Harassment (sexual): Very easy – any unwelcome sexual advance, from a mere verbal comment to an act of bodily aggression. This is very different from flirting, which is enjoyed by the two individuals involved. So, why is harassment so difficult to understand?

Incel: Involuntary celibate, that is to say, a man who hates women because the bitches reject him sexually and force him to remain celibate. This is NOT a tongue-in-cheek definition, but the real thing even though the term ‘incel’ appeared in the 1990s to name men and women who wanted to be in a relationship but could not find a couple. And who did not hate each other for that.

Mansplaining: A label used for men’s constant offering of unrequired explanations in a patronising tone to women, in the belief that we generally know little about everything and are too shy to ask for an explanation from our always better informed male peers. Mansplaining is not general among men but mansplainers tend to offer all kinds of explanations, which is why they seem to be omnipresent. Here, by the way, I am ‘femsplaining’, which conflates ‘woman explaining’ with ‘feminist explaining’–but then I don’t volunteer explanations unless asked for them. And it’s my blog.

Manspreading: The taking up of extra space by men on the seats of public transport on the grounds that men genitalia need to be cooled by keeping the legs separate. An example of how men’s poor knowledge of their own anatomy combines with a sense of entitlement that ignores basic politeness.

Menstruation: Perfectly natural discharge of the menses, or blood lining up the uterus, every time conception fails to happen. Even though the practice by which menstruating women were deemed unclean and separated from the tribe is not practiced in the modern world, women obsess about concealing all signs of their period–as if they still could be sent into the menstrual hut. SEE: Menstrual blood.

Menstrual blood: Blood discharged with every menstruation. Unlike the liquid that appears in the ads for sanitary napkins, menstrual blood is not blue but the habitual dark red. SEE: period poverty.

Pansexual: Individual inclined to having sex with any person of any gender variation, which sounds woefully limited in the context of planet Earth but must be great fun in a pan-galactic context!!!

Paternity leave: Strategy followed by legislators to invite new fathers to be involved in the first months of life of their newly born babies. It favours caring men who, otherwise, would be booed down as sissies by their less caring male-co-workers but it is a pain in the ass for patriarchal breadwinners. Many men who drag their feet as new fathers claim they would take paternity leave if it were compulsory (and in this way they wouldn’t lose patriarchal face–or cheek).

Period poverty: A type of economic hardship affecting specifically young girls, who are forced to stop attending school because they cannot afford sanitary napkins or tampons but are body-shamed if signs of their menstrual blood show. This affects girls all over the world, also in supposedly rich nations like the UK. Really.

Polyamorous: A person who kids him or herself that having several relationships at the same time will make him/her happier than being monogamous. Unless, that is, we are all missing something…

Rape: Hate crime committed against the bodily integrity of another person who does not wish to be touched in any way by the perpetrator, much less be intimate with their assailant. Unless what happens in most crimes, such as robbery, the victim must convince the judge that she (or he) has been assaulted. SEE: alleged rape.

Self-objectification: Mysterious prolongation of Lacan’s mirror-phase from early childhood until the day before actual death, when Instagrammers will still insist on posting their last selfie (wait and see). Self-objectification is an extreme form of Romantic narcissism but focused on the body rather than the mind and its feelings. Like 19th century Romantic individuals, self-objectifiers are subjected to much ridicule and abuse (particularly body-shaming), which begs the question of why this Narcissistic behaviour persists. Perhaps Lacan knew.

Submission (in rape): A strategy followed by the victim to avoid greater harm during rape, such as murder, and often confused with consent, or even active participation resulting in great pleasure. SEE: consent.

Third gender option: A way of transforming all the problems besetting the vexing gender binary into a new set of problems besetting the vexing gender trinity. A solution similar to claiming that adultery makes long-lasting relationships more interesting.

Toxic masculinity: Patriarchal masculinity, that is to say, a masculinity defined by the privileges that patriarchy gives men. It is very easy to replace with an alternative, non-toxic masculinity but only a minority of men have seen the advantages of breaking away from patriarchy and embracing a healthier, far more satisfying way of being a man.

Victim/survivor: An individual who struggles not to have his or her life defined by the bodily and psychological harm inflicted by others. In current parlance, a victim appears to be in a weaker position than a survivor, who has taken many more steps on the path towards self-healing. Victim/survivors are often shamed and, thus, doubly abused, while perpetrators even get the support of family, lovers, friends and even complete strangers. SEE: Victim-blaming.

Victim-blaming: Strategy consisting of blaming the victim in, for instance, cases of sexual harassment or assault, rather than the perpetrator because while the perpetrator will listen to no argument and might not even understand he has committed a crime, there is an absurd hope that if only women understood that the wolves are there, they would take measures not to stray off the path.

I publish a new post every Tuesday (for updates follow @SaraMartinUAB). Comments are very welcome! Download the yearly volumes from: https://ddd.uab.cat/record/116328. My web: https://gent.uab.cat/saramartinalegre/

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