Straight Man Cancer 直男癌

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:

Straight man cancer (Chinese: 直男癌; pinyin: zhí nán ái) is a Chinese neologism to conclude a group of men who are stubbornly sexist. Coined by the users of Chinese social networks Douban and Weibo in mid-2014, it refers to a group that uses a variety of reasons and actions to belittle women's value, harm women's rights, and hinder the movement for gender equality. "Straight man cancer" and "male chauvinism" in English are comparatively similar.

 

28 year old Chinese activist Zheng Churan is causing a tectonic shift in China’s “straight man cancer” culture, and on December 15th 2016 she turned her attention to the then president elect Trump and wrote him a letter (in Chinese) which she posted online. Excerpts include

  • “Feminists are watching you.”

  • "We are far away in China, but we have seen reports of your sexist behaviour.”

  • "Gender equality is a global issue and the feminist movement will not stop just because of 'straight man cancer'.”

  • "If those with 'straight man cancer' carelessly insult, discriminate, or are violent towards women, they will be made to pay a price for their actions and words.”

  • "We hope you know that feminists around the world are watching you."

 Zheng Churan (left) and Li Tingting. Photograph: Ng Han Guan/AP via  The Guardian

Zheng Churan (left) and Li Tingting. Photograph: Ng Han Guan/AP via The Guardian

Included in the letter was a list of “top straight male cancer” types of behaviour gleaned from an online poll with over 10,000 respondents, which included "using double standards" to judge women and "underestimating women's creativity and scientific knowledge".

 

In 2015, Zheng and the other members (Wei Tingting, Wang Man, Wu Rongrong, and Li Tingting) of the "Gang of Five" were detained just prior to International Women’s Day for “creating a disturbance” and “picking quarrels and provoking trouble” in an attempt to thwart the protests planned against sexual harassment on public transportation. All five women were released a few days later.

The “Gang of Five” are incredibly dedicated and creative in their pursuit of gender equality.

In 2005 they shaved their heads and thundered into men’s toilets in protest over inequalities in China’s system of higher education and the indignities female students face when waiting in long lines due to that lack of women’s toilets on campus.

They have been very successful in using performance to provoke social dialogue on gender issues... I think we can call them the first modern, independent, feminist, grass-roots actors in Chinese history.
— Zeng Jinyan, Blogger who studies Chinese feminist activistm
 The 'Gang of Five' -  Portraits of Li Tingting (top left), Wei Tingting (top right), Wang Man, Wu Rongrong and Zheng Churan (bottom left to right) during a protest calling for their release in Hong Kong on 11 April. Photograph: Tyrone Siu/Reuters via  The Guardian

The 'Gang of Five' -  Portraits of Li Tingting (top left), Wei Tingting (top right), Wang Man, Wu Rongrong and Zheng Churan (bottom left to right) during a protest calling for their release in Hong Kong on 11 April. Photograph: Tyrone Siu/Reuters via The Guardian

That same year, in an effort to bring attention to domestic violence, Chinese feminists wore red paint splattered white wedding gowns and marched through one of China’s most popular tourist districts chanting, “yes to love, no to violence.”

Zheng and the “Gang of Five” are marching, storming, shaving, writing and speaking out against patriarchy, sexism and gender violence in a country where theoretically citizens  have the right to protest but are more often than not prevented from doing so and detained under article 105 of the criminal code which is used to criminally prosecute individuals who exercise the right to assemble, speak freely and/or demonstrate. Others are sentenced to terms in forced labor camps.

 

These are some seriously brave badass feminist #Sheros who give a fuck. Follow and support the “Gang of Five” because real feminism is global and intersectional and we all need allies in the struggle for worldwide gender equality.

 

Article by Anna Quick-Palmer