How does the saying “the personal is political” relate to justice?

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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This is a saying that comes out of the feminist movement of the 1960s and '70s.  The basic idea behind this statement is one that supports the views of the conflict theory of sociology.  It is saying that the problems of women (even those that seem personal) are caused by the actions of men.  The saying, then, argues that justice has been denied to women through the actions of men.

The saying implies that the problems that women have are not personal problems.  Instead, they are problems of justice.  When women are not able to get ahead, it is not because they are flighty or because they lack the necessary determination and skills.  Instead, it is because the male-dominated society has socialized them to believe that they are inferior and because that society has put other more tangible barriers in their path to success.

This saying relates to justice, then, in that it is saying that women have been treated in unjust ways by their culture which has been dominated by men.


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