Women's Theory Of Oppression By Marilyn Frye

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Oppression, according to Marilyn Frye (2000), may differ drastically from the way others perceive the word and its meaning. In order to determine whether or not women are oppressed in Marilyn Frye’s eyes we must first examine her interpretation of oppression to see whether women are truly oppressed.
In Frye’s theory of oppression for a societal group to be oppressed there must be five levels or conditions to their oppression. The first being the presence of restrictions or rules, for a group to be oppressed there must be clear restrictions in place. These restrictions may not be necessarily straight forward, as we can see when Frye describes the ‘double bind’ situations. This is where the options in certain situations or even in everyday
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These options can lead from anything from whether or not to have children, to wearing makeup, choice of clothes and to job choice or profession. This, to me, is the most paradoxical and frustrating part of women’s oppression; as often the choices available are so few and it is so difficult to choose knowing that you will incur judgement no matter what; or as Frye says one must choose their ‘preferred form and rate of annihilation’. In this sense it is clear that women do experience the oppression Frye discusses as even at the very least, in the mainstream media, the judgement of women by their physical appearance is praised and circulated, however this is often perpetuated by other women so cannot necessarily be considered oppression as Frye considers it. One must wonder whether women are oppressed by Frye’s definition as it is often women themselves that place restrictions on other women and allow themselves and …show more content…
This can be shown in numerous examples where men enforce the oppression of women for their own benefit, for example the implementation of the idea of ‘promiscuous behaviour’ can be seen as man’s way of controlling women, and this can be seen in many cultures. This controlling of women’s sexuality by men can be clearly and almost overtly in many cultures especially in certain religions where women must wear the hijab in order to protect their ‘modesty’, this, to me, is clear oppression of women by men. The notion of a woman’s face being immodest shows the level of disparity between genders in this culture however this can also be seen in other societies without clear religious rules. The commonplace, which has even been seen echoed by judges in a court of law for rape or assault cases where women are said to be ‘asking for it’ or have warranted this attention by dressing or acting in a provocative

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