Discover How Capitalism Can Be Viewed as the Pervasive Source of Oppression in Modern Society

Oppression thrives on interconnectivity. Nothing is independent.

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Racism, homophobia, sexism, it all stems from the same place-
the system, society.

No one is born with the awareness of their differences.

So, where does the sense of ‘othering’ that we so often feel come from?…

Capitalism.

It’s all rooted in capitalism and how society thrives on oppression and domination to uphold that very system of oppression whereby;

the rich keep getting richer,
the poor keep getting poorer,
and the world keeps getting more and more (and more) divided…

The purpose of human existence, as set by capitalism, is to maximise profit, to yield financial gains, to make the rich richer.

Everything in society is done to uphold power, and without oppression, without the subordination of others, the ‘othering’ of others through the creation of an us vs them dynamic, there can be no power.

Unlike socialism, the antidote to capitalism which calls for equality and shared resources, the actual definition being:
‘A political and economic theory of social organisation which advocates that the means of production, distribution, and exchange should be owned or regulated by the community as a whole’
capitalism is all about inequality, actual definition:
‘An economic and political system in which a country’s trade and industry are controlled by private owners for profit.’

It’s always about profit.

This is what every form of oppression boils down to… the oppressed being used as a cog in the profit-making machine of the greedy, power-hungry oppressor (see examples below).

Women are constantly made to feel bad about their appearance, always ‘lacking’ somehow, in something. Why? Because, by constantly shifting trends, what’s in today, tomorrow I ‘wouldn’t be seen dead in’, women are constantly buying what’s ‘in’ to ease their insecurities…

Ten years ago, ‘Does my bum look big in this?’, insecure women would ask their husbands. If the answer was anything other than ‘no’, they would be queuing up outside Slimming World. ‘Too fat.’ ‘Diet starts tomorrow.’ Whereas now when women ask ‘Does my bum look big in this’, they want the answer to be yes. ‘Heroin chic’ having been replaced with ‘thickness’, for which women are now paying for implants; bigger lips, bigger bum.

We are literally having fat, the thing that we used to be told was the ‘root of all evil’, injected into us just to keep up with the constantly changing trends.

But this is the thing.

The female body has become a commodity…

By all means, have the operation, get the implants but, when everything we do is to uphold capitalism, and capitalism profits from our insecurities, in a few years, full 360, skinniness will be back in.

Everything you bought to ’emphasise your curves’ will be OUT.
All the latest trends will then be IN
.

And it’s always women who are at the brunt of such advertising campaigns. Why? Because capitalism is all about keeping the rich and powerful (men) in power.

By keeping women focused on their appearance, reminding them, daily, of everything that is ‘wrong’ with them — ‘too much’, ‘not enough’ — they have no time to think about what’s actually wrong. The system.

Capitalism.

As explored in socialist feminism, an off-shoot of mainstream feminism that emphasises the importance of class struggle in addressing social inequalities, we can’t achieve gender equality without overthrowing capitalism. Likewise, we can’t overthrow capitalism without achieving gender equality.

Despite the rise in ‘egalitarian’ relationships, where men and women are both in full-time employment (72.1% of women are employed, as of 2023 in the UK), contributing roughly half of their combined earnings, studies have shown that women are still spending more than double the amount of time on housework per week than men (4.6 hours for women vs. 1.9 hours for men), and almost two hours more per week on caregiving. Not because women are just ‘naturally’ supposed to be the cleaner/caregiver, (if that were the case, then it would apply to all women’s relationships, not just heterosexual relationships), but because of capitalism, because capitalism relies on people (women) who will support the workers who work tirelessly to line the pockets of someone else.

In heterosexual relationships, it’s easy to uphold the division of labour via the presence of long-held gender roles where the man is the breadwinner, and the woman the homemaker (even when both work full time). As the ‘inferior’ sex, the woman’s work obviously isn’t as important so when she gets home she must do all the other work, unpaid, too…

In same-sex relationships, however, such gender roles aren’t so clear-cut.

When same-sex couples have had to fight for their right to even just exist as equals to their heterosexual counterparts, they are more likely to prioritise equality in every aspect of their relationship, including the division of chores, etc. This poses a threat to a capitalist system which relies on the subordination of women.

Data from the Women in the Workplace survey (2021), which included over 30,000 people in opposite-gender couples and over 900 people in same-gender couples found that, while 53% of women in opposite-gender couples said they did “all or most” of the housework, only about a quarter of women in same-gender partnerships said so.

It is such outdated gender norms that serve to contribute to straight men asking queer women in lesbian relationships who the ‘man’ is. A clue in the name ‘lesbian’, there is no man. But, in a society that is centered around the subordination of women at the hands of men, some people just cannot fathom how a relationship could possibly exist without a man in it, or at the very least, without clearly defined ‘masculine’ and ‘feminine’ roles.

But evidently, they can. As this Guardian article states;

‘More than one in ten young women (1.65 million people) identify as lesbian, gay or bisexual.’

And, such relationships focused on equality thrive.

Arguably the biggest victim of oppression at the hands of capitalism, is the world itself.

Even though without nature, like women, we wouldn’t be here, when nature is the very foundation of life, it is still exploited by power-hungry men, operating under the same hierarchical structure that grants them power, thus allowing for the exploitation of both women and nature (the supposed ‘subordinates’), in which both are merely viewed as being ‘resources for reproduction’, a ‘means to an end.’

The people at the top are prepared to do whatever it takes to stay at the top, even if they destroy the planet in the process.

Denying our generation the right to freedom.
Denying future generations the right to life.

When all systems of oppression work hand-in-hand to benefit each other and profit from the people they control, the only way for people to be truly liberated, for the planet to be truly liberated, is to dismantle capitalism and all systems of oppression,
in their entirety.

Calls for the eradication of racism and homophobia and misogyny and the patriarchy and the whole shit show of fascism (capitalism), calls for the embracing of equality and equity (i.e. no more bigotry), for not just humankind, but the whole planet.

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