This picture was put on Twitter today, with the comment “Very disappointed by @sainsburys sexism: since when are science/history/astronomy ‘men’s’ interests?”
Notice that there are magazines for artists, scientists, history buffs, and more. Once upon a time, when the world appeared to be in black & white, these were the preserve of men, but we aren’t living in the 1950s anymore.
Quite soon, there was a reply from a man who said something about how it happens the other way about (I can’t remember what his example was, but it’s not difficult to imagine one, cookery for example) and ended with “so what?”
So what indeed? Isn’t this all very trivial? Aren’t there more important things to worry about?
Well yes, in a way that’s true, but I’ve never understood the argument that we shouldn’t concern ourselves with a problem if there’s a more serious problem to worry about. Why not address both?
Besides, the trivial nature of this particular problem cuts both ways. It would not be prohibitively expensive to fix, just throw out the sexist signs and arrange magazines by genre; motoring, sci-fi, cookery etcetera. Let people decide for themselves what their interests are, don’t tell them what they should be based on gender.
And the cumulative effect is considerably greater than any single “trivial” incident. The drip-drip effect of casual sexism is more corrosive than blatant misogyny because it goes largely unnoticed, so shining a light on it, though it may well attract mockery, can help undermine the greater bigotry.
I was alerted to this topic on Twitter by someone with the username “@EverydaySexism” – well worth a follow. See also their website everydaysexism.com.
- Tesco Retro (vagendamag.blogspot.co.uk)