Tuesday, September 11, 2007

"Poverty", shame and feminism.

First read this. (Bitch Ph.D. complains about only having $1475 in left over money per month.)
And then this. (What Bitch Ph.D. thinks she should be ashamed of.)

Then read this. (WoC Ph.D. eloquently points out what she's ashamed of, and has some great insights about academe, poverty and feminism.)

Here's my shame list. Feel free to add yours in the comments.

What I'm ashamed of:

  • That I've ever said (and believed) that "I'm so poor!" even though my husband makes a decent salary, we have our basic needs met, and we're able to spend quite liberally on our wants. (And that I've seen real poverty extremely close up and still throw the word around flippantly.)
  • That I have the luxury to spend years and years pursuing my education and some people struggle to graduate from high school, and I whine about how hard it is.
  • That I don't always confront people when they tell racist/sexist jokes.
  • That I'm studying "development", which is a discipline that arose from colonialism and is arguably a tool used by world powers to control the resources of "developing" countries.
  • That I am considering going into academe rather than applied work because I want to have the security of a contract, health insurance and retirement benefits even though I know that I'll be sacrificing a little (a lot) of my ability to affect real change in the world.
  • That despite my relatively privileged upbringing, I pretend to be qualified to advocate for the rights of the oppressed.
  • I still hold subconscious beliefs that are racist, sexist, elitist, and although I try to recognize them and change, sometimes they slip out and hurt people that I love.

2 comments:

Ms. Non Sequitur said...

Wow that WoC's post was quite poignant. Heavy stuff. Yeah. I don't know what it's really been like to be poor either.

idadele said...

The fact that you can analyze yourself this way with such honesty, humilty and wisdom makes you one of the greatest people I know!! Be true to yourself. love ya!