Difference between sexism and misogyny

There are differences between sexism and misogyny, two concepts that are often confused and used interchangeably, but with important nuances in meaning

We can define machismo as the “set of attitudes and sexist behavior aimed at establishing or maintaining the dominance of men over women, both in public and in private”.

By chauvinistic attitudes, women are discriminated against, both individually and collectively, to be relegated in the social structure. Examples of sexist behavior

Machismo may occur between men and women, as it has a strong cultural and educational, deeply rooted socially and even well seen in different cultures and eras component. However, it is mostly male.

Machismo is also seen in behaviors that are considered accepted, micromachismos.

A misogynistic person hates women and, by extension, all you have to do with what is traditionally the feminine is associated, such as maternity or family. Do not try to exercise dominion or control of women, but wants to eliminate any dependency directly with the female, he despises. Like racism or homophobia, it is studied as a behavioral disorder and belongs more to the individual than collective sphere.

Misogyny has been built over the centuries as an ideology and a position of intellectual extremism. It is based on Greek culture and myths and beliefs that associate women with evil or with an incomplete human being.

Alfred Hitchcock, Luis Buñuel, Aristotle, Nietzsche or Quevedo are part of an extensive list of misogynistic intellectuals.

The origin of the two terms is key to its meaning. The origin of “sexism” is Latin ( “macho” in Latin “masculus”) while “misogyny” comes from the Greek ( “miseo” means “hate; gyne” is “woman”).

In fact, part of the origin of misogyny comes from the Greek myths, like the Sphinx (woman’s face, lion body and bird wings) representing the devil, destruction and bad luck. The Catholic myth of Adam and Eve, with women as instigator of sin, also contributed to contempt or hatred of the feminine.

The term “sexism” has undergone further evolution in meaning. It is not contrary to “feminism” but it is associated with power, with a dominant position of men over women and very different values ​​of the female, that machismo considered a sign of weakness. It has a misogyny, closer to the psychology of the individual’s social and economic dimension.

To finish our approach to the difference between “sexism” and “misogyny”, we have chosen two official dictionaries, the Royal Spanish Academy (RAE) and Collins () that bring us closer to each of the terms from the point of linguistically.

For the DRAE

Meanwhile, the Anglo-Saxon Collins says the following meanings for American English

It is important to note that language academies are some of the organizations most questioned from the point of view of discrimination both low female representation (only 7 women against 1,000 men have sat in the 46 chairs of the SAR since its founded in 1713) and their positions on the use of language. For most feminist groups, the RAE does not represent the plurality or evolve when updating your dictionary and grammar rules according to social progress in equality.

Photo: The philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche is one of the intellectuals who have declared misogynist.