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  • Writer's pictureSayaka

It is true, unfortunately

We just had a week of lecture and tutorials on "women and society" in our history 101 course. We instructors were excited to teach it, and we tried to make it as relatable as possible, and I hear from some students that they got inspired by the analytical lens of gender. We did not get to talk about sexuality, but there is only so much we can do in an introductory class.

I couldn't tell them one important thing that I really should have, however. Sad truth: it is once they graduate from university and start working or having a family that you will feel gender inequality everyday. (Though, obviously, some students become aware even before that.) Sexism is everywhere. At a few occasions doctors refused my reasonable and minor requests furiously, such as my request of a certain blood test and a referral to a specialist. I learned it in a hard way that I need to "lie" my symptoms to get them: and the results proved they were necessary. John Oliver had a joke, "bring a white man"--it is sadly true. Or rather, it became my way of knowing whether I'm facing sexism-racism: when I believe bringing a white man would solve the issue, I most likely am.

As I grew older, I am stunned to hear an increasing number of cases of sexism and nonsensical institutional response to sexual harassment across the world. I couldn't tell that to my students, either.

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