Gender and Women

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Oppression is a word that is often misunderstood and misused. In Marilyn Frye’s article, Oppression, a central theme is created that focuses on male control, and how it is a form of oppression that affects the lives of women (Frye, 9). My reasons for agreeing with Frye’s argument that only women are oppressed as their own gender will be further discussed by focusing on how women are forced into particular roles. Additionally, I will explain how there is a mutual barrier of oppression where women are oppressed for the benefit of men, and how women will always be immobilized and degraded to benefit other groups regardless of their race or economic status. Frye defines oppression as often being thought of as the limitation or suffering of any human for any reason or cause. She argues that this statement is incorrect and highlights that humans can be miserable without being oppressed. Frye defines being oppressed as similar to being molded, immobilized and reduced by forces or barriers. She relates this concept to the “category” of women and how they are constantly caught between forces or barriers that are a disadvantage to them. It is explained that women, regardless of race, religion or economic status, will always be oppressed because “being a woman is significantly attached to whatever disadvantages and deprivations she suffers, be they great or small”(Frye, 16). Frye highlights that oppression is a double bind barrier in which one group will suffer for the betterment of the other. Men oppress women with a variety of different elements that collaboratively immobilize, reduce, and mold the lives of women. She concludes that women are oppressed as women, which adds limitations to what they can do in life, and men are not oppressed as men by shedding light on the fact that being a man is something that they have going for them (Frye, 9-16).

It is clear that everyone, either male or female, acts a certain way around someone of the same sex, as opposed to someone...
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