Monday, April 18, 2011

How would you like a Swedish gender coach?

In Sweden they have something they call gender mainstreaming. It means that organisations must go through a process in which all staff are trained in Swedish gender theory (a feminist theory developed by a Swedish academic named Yvonne Hirdman). The organisation is then expected to dedicate itself to implementing this theory in its own operations. The long-term aim is to change the day-to-day behaviour of individuals, so that a "gender system" is no longer reproduced in society.

So Sweden very clearly has a state ideology. There is no pretence that the liberal state in Sweden is neutral.

What is it like to be subject to gender mainstreaming? In 2009, Tiina Rosenberg was appointed as a "gender coach" to thirty leading academics at Lund University. Her opening remarks at a seminar confused some of the attendees; a man from the Faculty of Engineering raised his hand to ask a question and Rosenberg stopped and turned toward him. He took this to mean that she wanted to hear the question - a big mistake it turns out.

Sindra Årsköld, an associate professor of biochemistry and a feminist herself, reports on what happened:

With flashing eyes she [Rosenberg] shouted: You are a man, I'm a woman, and therefore shut up! She then continued to alternatively scold and then insult the entire group, unprovoked and incoherently, for the entire 45 minutes. It was terribly uncomfortable. I have never seen such hatred.

To her credit Professor Årsköld questions the relevance of gender mainstreaming to the physical sciences:

The episode was a wake-up call for me ... What does a gender science look like? [You hear the] gender mantra "sex is a social construct". You also come across the ideas that "everyone is really bisexual, but are socialised into a polarised sexuality" and "heterosexuality is a manifestation of the patriarchal power structure". Hmm, interesting hypotheses. I immediately think that they are easily testable by studying groups with nearly the same biology that we have ... Namely the other mammals.

Interesting. Swedes are being taught not only that sex (meaning here masculine and feminine behaviour) is a social construct but that everyone is bisexual, or would be if it were not for socialisation. The professor of biology is sceptical, believing that sex distinctions and heterosexuality can be observed to be natural amongst the mammals.

Professor Årsköld is also critical of other attempts to gender mainstream the physical sciences in Sweden:

There lurk far more dangerous beasts in the gender jungle than an angry aunt and some counter-intuitive hypotheses. Moira von Wright, professor of education and president of Södertörn University College, has criticised the elementary and secondary school physics books because they emphasise the physics of objective knowledge rather than man's relationship to nature as a social process...

One example she highlights is the rainbow, whose physical explanation completely ignores the "social, cultural, philosophical, aesthetic and religious dimensions of the rainbow." She proposes a cure for these deficiencies: "A gender sensitive physics requires a relational approach and a lot of the traditional scientific knowledge content of physics will be removed."

.. I am offended and outraged at these ideas. Why tackle the natural sciences, whose unchanging core is above gender and which are the key to the wealth that enables us all to sit here and speculate, fed and healthy?

Professor Årsköld finishes by stating her belief that these efforts at gender mainstreaming could cause a backlash against feminism and that women like herself do not need gender coaches.

The Lund University episode is not unique:

In November 2007, a seminar on gender equality was held at the Department of Earth Sciences in Uppsala.

People sat there who know the most about Earth's internal and external affairs and learned more about such things as the famous five forms of domination which, according to feminist Berit Ås, are used by men to suppress women.

One of the participants was apparently not as interested in the domination of the mountain bases and climate, as he leafed through some papers because of a deadline for a script. He shouldn't have. The lecturer was offended and immediately made a mental note of the man...

When the lecturer the day after heard gossip that the same man had discussed her outfit with a few colleagues afterwards the offence was compounded and she wrote to the university's legal department and explained that she was subjected to "abusive treatment because of sex".

The Legal Department and the president agreed that the matter required investigation. A few months later his sentence was declared: the higher academies' version of shame - official criticism of his behavior.

Not all Swedes are happy with the state of affairs in their country. I'm finding an increasing number of Swedish websites critical of state feminism. It's surely a movement with a potential to grow.


  1. Not all Swedes are happy with the state of affairs in their country. I'm finding an increasing number of Swedish websites critical of state feminism. It's surely a movement with a potential to grow.

    Immigrants are growing faster. In numbers and in physical power.

  2. Gender equality concept is hijacked, it is what it is about. If the number of times it can feel like that there are lunatics who have hijacked it. We must reclaim the concept of equality. Equality is equality of rights and obligations of the sexes, neither more nor less. Level playing field, simply. Gender equality is not gender hysteria and Manshar [sic?].”

    The closing paragraph of Årsköld‘s report reads thusly, and so proves that this ‘anti-feminist’ backlash in Sweden is about as ideologically anti-feminist as the neoconservative right-liberal establishment is conservative (i.e., it isn’t). The only legitimate backlash against these trends is a movement that openly, expressly rejects the formal egalitarian dogma on which it is based. MRA and egalitarian anti-feminist feminists are not part of the solution, they are hiccups within the problem.

  3. "The only legitimate backlash against these trends is a movement that openly, expressly rejects the formal egalitarian dogma on which it is based. MRA and egalitarian anti-feminist feminists are not part of the solution, they are hiccups within the problem."

    Agreed Kilroy. Right-liberalism is a huge problem for conservatives. Here is an article about Ayn Rand and how she was not a genuine conservative for example ---

    These people need to understand that there is no such thing as "equality of the sexes". If men and women were the same they would be called the same and would possess exact same attributes. Women are not inferior to men, they are just not suppose to be there doing this or that. There is patriarchy, matriarchy and other systems, not "equality".

    "Game" is also a huge problem because it shapes men into the desires of liberalism by making them seek sluts instead of chaste women (normalizing promiscuity) and so many other points.

  4. I for one am not surprised at all by this. An anti-scientific ideology such as feminism can only plunge further into irrationality as a result of any victories. That is to say, the more clear changes that are made in a society, the more "enemies" that the ideologues will see, and the more radical action they will demand.

    This can be seen in any number of ideological revolutions going back to the French revo of the 1790's. Once the core group has achieved control over the state, they must set about changing everything under their power.

    Consider the example of T.D. Lysenko, who literally killed genetics in the USSR for years. His version of Lamarckianism was pretty much discredited before the Russian Revolution, but Lysenko had the ear of Stalin. And Lysenkoism appealed to the "blank slate" theory of reality, where will-to-power properly exerted can change, well, anything.

    Unhappily, planting corn and potatoes next to each other does not lead to cross-pollination that creates a plant with tubers in the ground and ears of corn on the stalk -- no matter how much will is exerted by agents of the state, the genetics doesn't work. But that didn't save many academics from being shot, or sent to hard labor where they died, while Lysenko was in power in the 1930's.

    When people care about an idea that is anti-rational, they can only get more and more irrational in pursuit of their idea, given enough power.

    The Swedes are committing national suicide with these ideas. Any real reaction ought of necessity to swing hard against feminism as an idea.

    That reaction likely will come from -- Islam. The results will be quite ugly for just about everyone, and especially for women.

  5. I'd love to know what the question was.

    I read her article, but nothing. Clearly unremarkable as she didn't remember it.

  6. I'm sorry but I don't see this Arskold as proof of a larger trend. She is merely making the most obvious of observations. Possibly, this is in order to cull the more unsavory aspects of feminism and keep it at least somewhat intelligible so that she can sell it to her daughters and other younger women as a rationale to get into the STEM line. She would never question the basic premise of feminism because to do so would likely diminish the value of her affirmative-action sponsored trip from grade 1 to professorship.

    So long as most white Swedish men continue being mental geldings and jumping through hoops to provide bread and circuses, who can unilaterally blame the women for cashing in on a continual free lunch?

  7. "So long as most white Swedish men continue being mental geldings and jumping through hoops to provide bread and circuses, who can unilaterally blame the women for cashing in on a continual free lunch?"

    I've heard a sizeable number of Swedish men are avoiding Swedish women and marrying out on some online newspapers and forums.

  8. On one side some Swedish men are marrying out because their state ideology encourages them to do so and on the other side some Swedish men find Swedish women repugnant and undesirable therefore seeking other races.

    Here is the story of the evolution of a Swedish man (being turned into an European conservative) ---

  9. If I had to put up with this nonsense, I'd welcome sharia law with open arms. Perhaps maybe this is why Swedish men are complicit in the open immigration policy...they're just biding their time until the reinforcements arrive.

  10. I'm sorry, but I'm conpletely dumbfounded both by the text and by the comments here. I live in Sweden and I'm a man, and I do not recognize your portrayal of reality at all. I have never encountered this radical feminism you speak of, except from some angsty hipster teenagers at the Lund university.

    As for Swedish men being "geldings", or emigrating en masse because we find our women "repulsive" - well, I just don't know what to say...

    The woman mentioned in the article apparently comes from the radical-feminist party "Feminist Initiative", Google tells me. They're a hysterical bunch with zero voting support and communist roots, and are just laughed at by men, women and politicians alike.

    The Swedish state, nation or people absolutely do not think heterosexuality to be a social construct, men to be inferior to women or any other rumours the author of this article seems to have heard.

    Maybe you should visit Sweden. You might be surprised at how normal we are.

  11. Anon,

    The Swedish parliament has adopted the ideology of a Swedish feminist called Yvonne Hirdman. This ideology is to be "mainstreamed" throughout all public institutions in Sweden.

    So although I'm glad that you laugh at the most radical of Swedish feminists like Tiina Rosenberg, you should take seriously the attempt by the Swedish state to radically reshape Swedish society along feminist lines.

    Here is what one of your representatives declared to the UN:

    Equality between women and men, girls and boys demands no less than a fundamental change of society. Our societal, political and cultural institutions, be they public or private, must be changed. In every field of life and whenever women and men are affected by political reforms and decisions, a gender perspective must be the point of departure. All political issues have gender implications and gender equality must therefore be addressed wherever political decisions are taken or resources allocated and wherever norms, rules and values are set.

    Read that carefully. It's saying that society must be changed fundamentally in every aspect.

    The Swedish state has embarked on a radical project of transforming society along the lines of a particular ideology. The state has great power - you should take it seriously.

  12. Sweden, the UK and other European countries seem to have bought into the whole politically correct multi-cultural agenda. Australia seems to have too from the outside. As far as I know no neck tie parties for the Muslim rapists in Sydney.
    Are there laws restricting speech in Australia too?
    Such laws muzzle dissent. Feminists in Sweden are wilfully blind to Islam or afraid to confront it for what it is. They seem to be trying to pave the way for a Muslim prime minister there. I expect the Islamist party will control the media too but imagine they'll govern a bit differently. Yellow and blue birkhas?
    Maybe all women secretly want to be dominated by men, even the feminists?