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Womxn

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by

Ashley Flores

on 1 March 2015

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Transcript of Womxn

Womyn
Definition:

This is a term used by feminists who feel that having the word "man" in the word "woman" makes women a subset of men. So, to make themselves a non subset, they changed the letter 'e' to a 'y'.
The Michigan Womyn's Music Festival (MWMF)...
"Michigan is a festival that brings together the artistic, political and personal expression of womyn from every generation, from urban and rural communities, from different cultures, ethnicities, countries and beliefs." The weeklong festival takes place every summer on the 650 acres of private land in Hart, Michigan. Michigan Womyn's Music Festival is produced by We Want The Music Company (WWTMC), a for-profit corporation registered in Michigan.
Wom
x
n
...The 'y' does not account for marginalized womxn groups or the many other feminist movements that have occurred throughout hxstory, such as third world feminist movements.
In short, the 'y' is a very white liberal way to look at feminism. It excludes womxn of color, trans-womxn, and other folks who may identity as womxn from the conversation and the movement.
...Also, I like the fact that the letter 'x' is formed by creating two lines intersecting together.
You know, like
intersectionality
."
The MWMF Controversy...
The MWMF has a policy that only "womyn-born womyn" can enter the land of the festival. The term "womyn-born womyn", however, refers to individuals who have lived their whole life as a female. This policy is exclusive to the some members of the trans* community ("transsexual people") because they have lived or do live as a male. This policy also excludes genderqueer people who do not identify as male or female. There were several individuals who were evicted from the festival in 2000 because they refused to identify as "womyn-born womyn".
The policy, however, is not enforced easily due to another policy similar to "Don't Ask, Don't Tell". Regardless of the do not question policy, fear still exists and instills fear in the excluded individuals who choose to risk attending the festival.
ALL IN ALL...
While the term womyn had great intentions and was a start in inclusivity, the term womxn is more inclusive to members of diverse cultures and communities. The "x" is also somewhat of a mystery as to what it could represent, which is also why it is more accepted now. It also promotes intersectionality.
The Symbols
Wom
y
n
"The 'y' was meant to be an inclusive, progressive term that not only sheds light on the prejudice, discrimination, and institutional barriers womxn have faced, but to also show that womxn are not the extension of men (as hinted by the classic Bible story of Adam and Eve) but their own free and separate entities.
The 'y' was to promote female empowerment and liberation, but in reality, as I have learned recently, the terms 'hystory' and 'womyn' are not as inclusive or empowering as some feminists (mostly white liberals) make it out to be.
...
Sources
http://eminism.org/michigan/faq-intro.html
http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=womyn
http://sampaguitagirl.tumblr.com/post/59740039071/what-does-the-x-in-hxstory-represent
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Womyn
Womyn → Womxn
Full transcript