Monday, May 01, 2006

Then come lasses to the green

I wish more men identified as feminists. I wish people who aren't women were more comfortable standing together for women's causes. HOWEVER:

May Day (that highest holiday of Bryn Mawr College) has rather soured me to men's presence in female spaces. I don't want to hear a baritone singing "Pallas Athena" behind me at a stepsing. The whole point of writing the school songs in ancient Greek is that they's nerdy and unique and ours. And what's with the brigade of men wearing white dresses every year? Much as I'm usually in favor of crossdressing, this doesn't feel like freedom of expression or solidarity with women. It feels like cultural appropriation. You're not one of us even in a white dress, any more than I would be African if I started wearing kente or Scottish if I bought myself a tartan.

May Day is open to the public, and it's cool if people want to watch the festivities. But there are some things - like the May Hole - that should only be us. Not your boyfriend. Not your pal from Swarthmore, not even if he's wearing a white dress. In a perfect world that distinction wouldn't be neccesary, but after so many all-male spaces I want my all-female space a couple of times a year.

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