What justice are we trying to achieve?

After watching our in-class film, “La Mitad de Todo” (2012), I began to wonder: what justice are we trying to achieve?  If we are creating theoretical frameworks, which will, in effect, inform our practices and function in the real world (and hopefully, one day, make a more just world), how are we prioritizing feminism to our understanding of other forms of oppression?  To better contextualize the question, we can analyze this through Julia Query’s (“Live Nude Girls Unite!”, 2000) negotiations with the owners of the strip club. Was their effort to become a closed shop union a feminist struggle or a labor struggle? If it’s a combination, what needs to be considered if an endeavor necessitates compromise on some goals over others? I ask this because, in any struggle, there are intersecting issues at hand. Going back to Query’s situation, how could we evaluate the success of the union if they conceded racial equality to better salaries and overall benefits?

Although abstract, this notion of priority is important. When discussing feminist ideas and even feminist utopias, we need to keep in mind other forms oppression that have become entangled with patriarchy. Doing so, helps us understand if a solution to a certain oppression creates another oppression for others. Of course, this question of priority would need to be contextualized with some specific situation. Firestone sets a good example in her utopia, “A cybernetic socialism would abolish economic classes, and all forms of labor exploitation, by granting all people a livelihood based only on material needs.”  (Firestone, 274). Here, Firestone prioritizes a feminist revolution but within a socialist change. In closing, as we further our understanding of gender and sexual oppression, we need to continuously create notions of justice that encompass other struggles to achieve the best understanding of the justice we want to see in this Earth.

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