By contrast, capitalism, a similar systemic concept, has a raft of institutions that serve to maintain it: starting on an international level with the World Bank, IMF, WTO, Davos forum, the European Single Market, countless trade agreements between nations and regional blocs, Central Banks. Moving down to national and local levels in Britain we have the Treasury, BIS and other government departments, council licensing regimes, and numerous free market think tanks like the Institute of Economic Affairs and the Adam Smith Institute – all catering and administering to the capitalist system.
“Culture hates women, so men who grow up in a sexist culture have a tendency to do and say sexist things, often without meaning to. We aren’t judging you for who you are but that doesn’t mean we’re not asking you to change your behaviour”.
“While you, individual man...may not hate and hurt women, men as a group – men as a structure – certainly do. I do not believe the majority of men are too stupid to understand this distinction, and if they are we need to step up our efforts to stop them running almost every global government”.
“A feminist position, at a most general level, is one which enhances or defends the interests of women. Those who defend patriarchy as a theoretical explanation of the position of women are stuck with the idea that all women share a common set of interests at some general level.”“We do not wish to participate simply in the elaboration of accounts of our own oppression. Neither do we wish to celebrate that oppression with meetings and rallies. We prefer a mode of politics which engages with the details of the oppression and which is capable of ending it.”
“the apologists of Marxism...do not see that it is the danger of any movement like Marxism that it soon comes to represent all kinds of vested interests, and that there are intellectual investments, as well as material ones.”
[End of Part III]“We have come a long way. But feminism has lost its way. Most of its energy is spent on demonising men, overstating our differences and neglecting what we have in common. And it has got into some fairly illiberal tangles of late, such as the witch-hunt against trolls on the internet; calls for banning lads’ mags; the Page 3 campaign; and calls for the banning of pop songs, policing everyday language as if it’s a major threat.“An alarmist mind-set is taking hold which suggests that women are too frail to deal with nasty words, and that our natural state is to need protection. It’s not quite Mary Wollstonecraft, more Mary Whitehouse. It is this that could impede further progress.”
The fourth and final part of this essay, now up, seeks to explain Popper’s ideas on knowledge and ignorance, which have framed a lot of the arguments I have made in the first three parts. It also addresses what his legacy should be for us here and now, and points out a few problems with his work.