You don’t need to use the word “woman” in order to discriminate against females. If you are a misogynist, you already know who “those people” are and what you think of them. You probably have your own words for them, somewhere in the back of your mind: gash, bitches, TERFs, breeders, mummies, helpmeets, whatever. You know what you expect of them: submissiveness, the constant massaging of your ego, sexual subservience, reproductive labour, pipe and slippers, the works. You have millennia of tradition behind you — that hierarchy feminists call gender — to reinforce your demands. So why would you want the word “woman” when it comes to discriminating against that inferior class? It only grants your subordinates a dignity you’ve decided they don’t deserve. So go on, take it from them and put it to a better usage, a usage that permits you to set the boundaries of what women can actually be.

In contrast to this, you do need the word “woman” if you are the one being discriminated against. You need it to say who you are, what is happening to you and why. You need it to describe the historical and cultural context of your subjugation. You need it so that when discussing your abuse you can say “it’s because I’m a woman”. These things matter. Misogyny is not arbitrary and you need language both for your own understanding and to provide you with the tools to enact change. (more…)