Written by Standard Issue


Everyday sexism subversions for dummies

Sick of everyday sexism but your pretty head’s too full to know how to start undoing it? Why not print out our handy list of tiny subversions, stick it on the inside of your handbag and refer to it every time someone offers you a housewife pillowcase.

GIF by Louise Boulter.

1. Don’t refer to girls as ‘little princesses’ or boys as ‘trouble’ or ‘little monsters’. All kids are equally adorable/detestable, irrespective of whether they’re boys or girls. Call them all ‘little shits’ instead.

2. Walk down the aisle with your partner when/if you get married. You are entering an equal union, not being ‘given away’ like an unwanted coat to a charity shop.

3. Ask for a pay rise. If you don’t get one, see point 14.

4. If you have a male partner, buy him an engagement present. Men like expensive things too. Who knew?

5. Address correspondence to Madam/Sir, not Sir/Madam. Radical.

6. Ask all single men over the age of 18 when they are going to settle down and have babies.

7. When a man becomes a father, ask him if he is going to ‘go part-time’ or be a stay-at-home dad.

girl climbing a tree8. Don’t say, “He is SUCH a boy” or “Tsk. Typical man”. And avoid the word ‘tomboy’. She’s just a girl who likes to do fun stuff (er, like all children).

9. Choose the best surname for your children. If you can’t decide, play rock, paper, scissors or make an even better name up. Don’t worry about what the next generation is going to do when everyone has double-barrelled surnames – that’s their problem.

10. Make a speech at a wedding; either as the bride, bridesmaid, or as a random guest and encourage your friends to do the same.

11. Use ‘manager’ not ‘manageress’, ‘actor’ not ‘actress’ and ‘comedian’ not ‘comedienne’. Try it. See how it trips off the tongue.

12. Avoid gender-specific presents for children’s birthdays. Seriously, it’s not THAT HARD.

13. Offer to be ‘dad’ when you pour the tea for everyone.

14. Do a PhD. In three short years you could be ticking the ‘Dr’ box on all official forms. Employers won’t even notice that you are a woman and will pay you more.

What are your favourite acts of subversion? Tweet them to @StandardIssueUK

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Written by Standard Issue