Tag Archives: height/heightism

Issues, Identities, and Progressive Social Change

In the U.S., we tend to organize politically according to identities.  For example, we have a Gay Liberation Movement, a Women’s Movement, and the Civil Rights Movement, to name three big ones.  All of these are personal characteristics made political.

The cartoon below, by Miriam Dobson, does a great job of showing one of the downsides of fighting for progressive social change in this way.  For one, it can make people who carry multiple marginalized identities (for example, gay black men) feel unwelcome. And, two, it makes it seem like people without the identity can’t be part of the movement.

One solution is to think about oppressions in terms of intersectionality: we are all a mix of identities that resonate with each other in complicated ways.  This is a rich idea, but one lesson that it has taught us is that the strategy of divide-and-conquer has been an effective way to keep multiple groups marginalized.

Instead of emphasizing identities, we could identify issues. And if our issue is oppression, we can join-to-resist.  As the graphic explains: “oppression of one affects us all.”

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Via Sociology SourceAnother Angry Woman, and The Sociological Imagination.

Lisa Wade is a professor of sociology at Occidental College and the co-author of Gender: Ideas, Interactions, Institutions. You can follow her on Twitter and Facebook.

Heightism in Action

A while back we featured a guest post by Geoffrey Arnold about discrimination against short men.  He collects examples of heightism at his blog, The Social Complex, and has agreed to let us feature some of his examples here.

Think heightism doesn’t exist? Think again.

Bridesmaids include “Getting put with an usher who is not shorter than you” among good things in life (at 15secs):

Anne Hathaway takes her shoes off when standing next to a shorter guy (just the first 30secs):

Bravo TV executive Andy Cohen talks about being heckled backstage the 2011 Miss Universe pageant by Miss Montenegro and Miss Sri Lanka (unfortunately the clip ends with the host affirming Cohen that he’s not short instead of just condemning the contestants’ behavior):

Better to be tall: “Why be average, when you can XL”?

Short men are ridiculous and laughable, internationally.

American DirectTV commercial:

Chilean (I think) Doritos commercial:

Korean commercial:

American CRV commercial:

This ad, Arnold observes, actually “uses a statistic about heightism in order to justify and encourage the prejudice itself”:

See also Arnold’s guest posts introducing the concept of heightism as a gendered prejudice and discussing heightism (and other icky stuff) at Hooters.

Lisa Wade is a professor of sociology at Occidental College and the co-author of Gender: Ideas, Interactions, Institutions. You can follow her on Twitter and Facebook.

Height Norms and Framing the Shot

We have a fun post about the various ways in which Prince Charles was posed with Princess Diana in order to obscure the fact that she was about his height.  Building on this, Geoffrey Arnold at The Social Complex has collected a couple examples of men’s height being manipulated in order to preserve the social illusion that men are taller (or at least not shorter) than women.  Here’s an example:

I’d love to start a collection of these, so send ‘em in if you see ‘em!

See also Arnold’s guest posts introducing the concept of heightism as a gendered prejudice and discussing heightism (and other icky stuff) at Hooters.

Lisa Wade is a professor of sociology at Occidental College and the co-author of Gender: Ideas, Interactions, Institutions. You can follow her on Twitter and Facebook.

Sunday Fun

Shared on Facebook by a friend.  If anyone knows the original source, please let me know.  Perhaps Behance?, says PDK.

Lisa Wade is a professor of sociology at Occidental College and the co-author of Gender: Ideas, Interactions, Institutions. You can follow her on Twitter and Facebook.

Are Americans Aware of Heightism?

It seems so.

According to a Gallup poll, “Americans believe that one’s stature has a decided effect on a variety of important dimensions.”

More people would prefer to be taller than shorter:

People think that taller people have a greater likelihood of getting respect at work, and even getting promoted:

 

Via Geoffrey Arnold, at The Social Complex.  See also Arnold’s guest posts from The Social Complex introducing the concept of heightism as a gendered prejudice and discussing heightism (and other icky stuff) at Hooters.

Lisa Wade is a professor of sociology at Occidental College and the co-author of Gender: Ideas, Interactions, Institutions. You can follow her on Twitter and Facebook.

Unconscious Bias Against Short Men

This four-minute video reports research showing that, even if we’re not aware of it, most of us have unconscious biases against short men.  (It’s also a great description of Implicit Association Tests.)

You, too, can take any multitude of implicit association tests.  Simply go to Harvard’s Project Implicit.

Borrowed from The Social Complex, a heightism blog. See also guest posts from The Social Complex introducing the concept of heightism as a gendered prejudice and discussing heightism (and other icky stuff) at Hooters.

Lisa Wade is a professor of sociology at Occidental College and the co-author of Gender: Ideas, Interactions, Institutions. You can follow her on Twitter and Facebook.

Height Discrimination Goes to China’s Supreme Court

This seven-and-a-half minute segment follows Jiang Tao, a child of farmers who graduated from law school only to discover that law firms discriminate against short employees.  After confronting minimum height requirements, he sued.

Borrowed from The Social Complex, a heightism blog. See also guest posts from The Social Complex introducing the concept of heightism as a gendered prejudice and discussing heightism (and other icky stuff) at Hooters.

Lisa Wade is a professor of sociology at Occidental College and the co-author of Gender: Ideas, Interactions, Institutions. You can follow her on Twitter and Facebook.

“Elevator” Shoes for Men: The Market Responds to Heightism

Marketers are happy to respond to and create insecurities.  Here’s one we haven’t covered before, shoes and inserts for men that covertly increase their height:

Borrowed from The Social Complex, a heightism blog. See also guest posts from The Social Complex introducing the concept of heightism as a gendered prejudice and discussing heightism (and other icky stuff) at Hooters.

Lisa Wade is a professor of sociology at Occidental College and the co-author of Gender: Ideas, Interactions, Institutions. You can follow her on Twitter and Facebook.