Is gender a political ideology

Make sex : Gender ideology in Germany

“It is all too well known that the accusation that one is in the ideology is always made against others, never against oneself,” wrote the philosopher Louis Altusser in his essay Ideology and ideological state apparatus (1970, German 1971, online at It "(especially) those who are in the ideology believe (...) outside the ideology". Only a scientific approach makes it partially possible to gain an outside view of ideology. Although this view can (and often will be) limited, because ideology also permeates the sciences.

Althusser takes a critical look at the various areas of society in which ideology - which he understands as unquestioned activity - is the primary form of governing people, while repressive forms remain secondary. The school and the churches "train" (repressively) with the appropriate methods of punishment, exclusion, selection, etc., but the children there are essentially non-repressively integrated into the ideological structure of society. They are used in schools, churches etcetera too Subjects shaped and by means of ideology made governable.

Ideology is the main form of domination

ideology In such a scientific-analytical sense - which is often lacking in current debates - it is not something that a person simply accepts and expresses, but ideology must always be viewed in the context of social relations of domination and order structures. That is why Althusser also speaks of “ideological state apparatus” because in the areas of society that the Italian Marxist Antonio Gramsci called “civil society”, ideology is the most important form of exercise of power. Althusser leads religious life, school, the family, the judiciary, politics, the trade unions, the media and culture in their entirety as areas in which ideology is primarily active and which are accordingly to be regarded as “ideological state apparatus” Breadth, from literature to sports.

Bourgeois ideologies functionalize women as housewives

A clear and well-known example is the demand that came from the women's movement to view the private as political. In private life, in the family, the social structures and bourgeois ideologies were evident - such as the functionalization of women into housewives and child carers. Current feminist congresses address these and other issues, such as the double burden for women of gainful and reproductive work (care work), and the intersectional entanglement of gender relations with racism and class relations. White women also benefit from the racist conditions and the over-exploitation of the global south by the north.

It is - in the scientific-analytical understanding of Althusser - once around racist ideologythat limits the spaces of people who are marked as “migrant” in German society, and on the other hand around one Gender ideologywhich narrows and defines the space even of white bourgeois women - and even makes their situation appear to these women as “just” and “sensibly justified”. These examples are well known - just remember the books Good morning you beautiful (Maxi Wander 1977) and the opening volume of the Black German women's movement Show your colors: Afro-German women on the trail of their history (1986 edited by Katharina Oguntoye, May Ayim and Dagmar Schultz). - black is by definition capitalized here also in the adjectival form, since it is about a marginalized position, not about any feature that could be essentialized.

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