POSTS BY ASHLEIGH BARNES

Third Gender Categories, Homosexuality and Transgender Identity

The capitalist mode of production requires a continually growing workforce in order to meet the production demands of a ‘constantly expanding market’. This, in turn, requires continued and widespread heterosexual reproduction in order that capitalist states continue to profit from overpopulation.Beyond the active workforce, the capitalist mode of production also requires overpopulation in order to…

‘Not All Men!’ and Other Responses to Sarah Everard’s Death

The discovery of missing 33 year old Sarah Everard’s body has drawn substantial media attention over the past few weeks. The subsequent arrest and charging of a serving Met police officer in connection with her murder has sparked national and international outrage. Women across the country are sharing their experiences of male violence, including harassment,…

A Marxist Analysis of Violence Against Women

Though the coronavirus pandemic continues to dominate public attention, rising rates of domestic abuse, rape and femicide suggests that women are experiencing a dangerous and deadly pandemic of our own: misogyny. However, data from the Office for National Statistics shows that while the rate of male homicide victims is on the decline, the number of…

Women Behaving Badly: Meghan Markle, Meekness and Misogyny

The ongoingcMegan Markle controversy reached new heights this week after her tell-all interview with American TV show host, Oprah Winfrey. After facing years of mounting hostility, Meghan is now considered an element hostile to the Royal family and has found herself the subject of a very British denunciation. In speaking publicly, Meghan is guilty of…

Women, Wages and Labour during the Industrial Revolution

A significant contributing factor to the current trend of conceptualising ‘gender’ as a standalone form of oppression is a lack of familiarity with its application throughout history as the intense ideological enforcement of material female oppression. Here, it is useful to explore periods of history where the significance of sex (as opposed to gender) is…

Difficult Women: The Silencing of Alexandra Kollontai

Communists often hail the work of Alexandra Kollontai, holding her up as a decorated Marxist feminist and member of the Soviet Central Committee. In reality, Kollontai’s favour with the majority male leadership of the Soviet Union was highly dependent upon her compliance, and she spent much of her political career combatting the Communist Party’s disregard…

Sex Work Is Not Work: A Marxist Feminist Analysis of Prostitution – PART III

Part III: We cannot abstract labour from its social context ‘value converts every product into a social hieroglyphic.’ Marx, Capital Vol I In light of the enormous sex disparity between producers and consumers within the sex industry(majority female sellers; majority male buyers), prostitution and other ‘sex work’ cannot be considered outside of its historical, material,…

Sex Work Is Not Work: A Marxist Feminist Analysis of Prostitution – PART II

Part II: Can ‘sex work’ be considered ‘labour’? ‘all [commodities] are reduced to one and the same sort of labour, human labour in the abstract.’ Marx, Capital Vol I Marx tells us that ‘human labour power’ is expended in the production of commodities — that ‘human labour is embodied in them’ — and that it…

Movies For Feminists To Enjoy This Valentine’s Day

Singletons, cynics and feminists unite! The 14th of February, as we all know, signifies the annual commercialisation of romantic love. As Marxist feminists, we at OTWQ see Valentine’s Day as a homage to the bourgeois nuclear family — pah! Of course, we couldn’t let it pass without criticism. With that in mind, we have ten…

Sex Work Is Not Work: A Marxist Feminist Analysis of Prostitution – PART I

Part I: Can sex be considered a commodity? ‘A commodity appears, at first sight, a very trivial thing, and easily understood. Its analysis shows that it is, in reality, a very queer thing, abounding in metaphysical subtleties and theological niceties.’ Marx, Capital Vol I In an attempt to move beyond the moralism that frequently surrounds…

Netflix, Cuties, and the Disturbing Rise of Paedophile Culture

Netflix’s new film, Cuties, has attracted a significant amount of criticism over recent days and weeks due to its overt sexualisation of young girls — both in its promotional material and in the film itself. The original thumbnail used by Netflix to promote the film (the featured image of this article) has since been replaced…

WAP: Women As Property

The internet is awash with reaction to Cardi B’s new music video for her song Wet-Ass Pussy (WAP), known mainly by its radio ‘clean edit’ version Wet And Gushy.  The reaction has largely been one of derision and dismissal though, predictably, the sex-positive left have gallantly made the case for women’s continued sexual exploitation under…

Marxist Feminism Part IV: Historical, Material Oppression

This article is part of a series. Read Part I here. Read Part II here. Read Part III here. A significant contributing factor to the current trend of conceptualising ‘gender’ as a standalone form of oppression is a lack of familiarity with its application throughout history as the ideological enforcement of material female oppression. Here,…

Marxist Feminism Part III: Division of Labour

This article is part of a series. Read Part I here. Read Part II here. In The Origin of the Family, Engels attributes the ‘world historical defeat of the female sex’ to a single event: the overthrow of matriarchal lineage. This achieved male control over paternity and sexual reproduction — the original means of production. Through this new,…

Marxist Feminism Part II: Social Reproduction

This article is part of a series. Read Part I here. Rejecting dualist and identity approaches to women’s politics, Marxist feminists argue that the domestic sphere and the capitalist mode of production are not separate, autonomous systems; but that social reproduction (including the vast amount of unpaid work which takes place outside the workplace) is…

Marxist Feminism Part I: Fragmented Feminism

The left is plagued by a paternalism which treats feminist issues and organising with condescension at best; at worst, with contempt. This attitude demonstrates not only the prevalence of individual prejudices towards women but, more importantly, a significant theoretical misunderstanding which fails to adequately consider the totality of the capitalist mode of production. Due to…

Prostitution or Sex Work? Language Matters

The term ‘sex work’ has come to replace the word ‘prostitution’ in contemporary discussions on the subject. This is not accidental. The phrase ‘sex work’ has been adopted by liberal feminists and powerful lobbyists in a deliberate attempt to steer the narrative on prostitution. Smoke and Mirrors Superficially, the term ‘sex work’ is intended to…

The Gender Debate: A Marxist Feminist Perspective

This article is written in response to an article entitled ‘Are All Marxist Feminists TERFs?’. The article can be found here. The author of the above article argues that Marxist feminists (or ‘Red TERFs’) deny the ‘actual lived experiences’ of transwomen. Not only is this ironic, as gender identity theorists regularly dismiss women’s extensive lived experiences of male violence and…

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