How feasible do you guys think it is to use female-only organizations (Girl Scouts, women in tech clubs, etc.) to advance the causes of women’s liberation? Personally I think there’s a lot of promise there for a few reasons:
1. It’s easier to do female liberation organizing in an all-woman environment because there’s less possibility that men–even well-meaning men–will come into the organization and make it about them.
2. Women are probably more amenable to radical thought when they know that there aren’t men listening, so they won’t have to moderate themselves when expressing their thoughts or constantly be coddling men’s feelings, something we are socialized to do.
3. These organizations aren’t as likely to be financially dependent on men (unlike, say, most feminist websites), so the power of the purse probably belongs to other women, so it may be easier for them to adopt strong pro-woman policies (e.g., being pro-abortion rights, critical of marriage, piv-critical, etc.)
Of course, just because an institution is all-women, that does not mean that it can’t be oppressive. A religious women’s small group is likely to be homophobic, for example. White sororities (I mean historically white, founded by white people, NPC sororities basically), one of the most prominent types of all-women institutions, have a racist past and often a racist present. I think it’s also worthwhile to join all-female group simply to be around other women. That kind of community, whether it’s explicitly political or not, can be really cool and nurturing. To what extent do you think sharing radical thought could be successful within the context of existing women’s organizations?