It’s a complicated question, but one that is becoming more important to address as the definition of “sexism” continues to evolve. We all have some ideas about what types of sexism there are, and it is probably fair to say most of them are, on the whole, untrue. We’ve come a long way since the days when a man would be called a “hoe” or “trailer” by some lazy girl for not picking up her kids from school. So, what types of sexism are there? There are basically three types:
The first one is visible bias, which occurs in subtle forms of sexism such as jokes or comments. This type of sexism can be easy to spot because of its gender-neutral nature – you know, they’re not really targeting anyone’s gender, they’re just making fun of the person. This type of sexism is usually used in order to humor those who participate in it, so it’s easy to see why it can be difficult to recognize. If you make a joke about a woman, for example, but your friend is a man, chances are you didn’t think much of it.
The second type is systemic sexist remarks. Systematic meaning they are practiced over a period of time, systemic sexist remarks often go on without being noticed over time. They are usually comments that men and women alike regularly make without even thinking about it. You might make a comment to a friend about how all men are capable of violence, but then your husband or boyfriend is on his team and he just uses those jokes to make fun of you all the time. If this is going on in your life, chances are you don’t even realize you’re a victim.
The third type is unconscious or subconscious sexism. Unlike systemic types of sexism, unconscious sexism doesn’t occur with intent. It just happens on an instinctive level.
The fourth type is hostile sexism. This is most commonly directed at men rather than women. It includes examples like telling a male friend you’re not attracted to him because he has a penis, telling your female friend that she wouldn’t be a good female partner because she would get pregnant too fast or making suggestive comments to your male friends that you should stick your fingers where your vagina is. While these are examples of general hostility towards women, it’s important to note that many men actually enjoy making these types of comments
So, when you start to have those uncomfortable feelings about sexism, remember that you aren’t alone and you aren’t the only person with those feelings. There are also other people out there with similar beliefs. You don’t have to deal with them though – you can fight back against them by understanding what they are saying and responding appropriately. By understanding the different types of sexism, you will have greater success in getting past the issues that they cause.