Joss Whedon was honored by Equality Now on November 4, 2013. Being a master wordsmith, he noted the inadequacy of words like ‘feminist’ and ‘misogynist’ and suggested the words ‘genderist’ and ‘genderism.’ His whole talk is excellent. Here are some excerpts, and the video of his talk is below.
We have this word, when we deal with race, that says we have evolved beyond something, and we don’t really have this word for gender. Now, you could argue ‘sexism,’ but I’d say that’s a little specific. People feel removed from sexism: “I’m not a sexist, but I’m not a feminist.” They think there’s this fuzzy middle ground. There’s no fuzzy middle ground. You either believe that women are people or you don’t. It’s that simple.
You don’t have to hate someone to destroy them. You just have to not get it.
The word ‘racism’ didn’t end racism, it contextualized it, in a way that we still haven’t done with this issue.
There are and will be great heroes, great women, extraordinary movements, extraordinary acts of history, and then there’ll be schmucks like me, just working the words, just trying to get it right. Is this idea of ‘genderist’ going to do something? I don’t know. I don’t think that I can change the world. I just want to punch it up a little.