Fear and Silence

It’s pretty obvious that one of the tactics used to silence women’s voices – women’s dissent with the way things are, whether the criticism is valid or invalid – is fear. Fear of physical and verbal violence – rape, murder, abuse, assault, harassment, kidnapping; fear of rejection – from family, friends, boys, society in general; and fear of dismissal – not being taken seriously. And all of this contributes to women literally fearing to speak, especially when combined with the praise that the stoic, self-sacrificing, and calm women get (think Hazrat Khadija – there’s a reason she’s so exalted by a specific type of men) and the promise of the afterlife (because this argument has the added benefit of painting you as a non-believer and traitor, and as such a lesser being, if you argue).

And then men have the audacity to wonder why we don’t always speak up.


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