Langnau Jazz Nights: Awarenss


Sexism: Sexism refers to various forms of discrimination against people on the basis of their gender (actual or perceived). Sexism also refers to the ideology underneath this phenomenon, which establishes a hierarchy of gender roles: men are privileged, while women are devalued or discriminated against. Sexism manifests in culturally- and historically-specific ways. Its effects are visible in the marginalization of women, trans, non-binary and intersex people.

Racism: Racism means the discrimination, devaluation and exclusion of structurally disadvantaged groups or individuals on the basis of actual or ascribed physical or cultural characteristics (e.g. skin color, origin, language, religion). For those affected, racism prevents equal participation in society. Racist degradation of BIPoC can lead to physical and psychological violence against them, or may even be used as a supposed justification for killings and genocides (»ethnic cleansing«). In addition to these offensively brutal forms of racism, subtle racism (especially also in the form of microaggressions) reproduces the racist system in everyday life. This subtle form provides constant reminders that a person is different and does not »belong«. While a person perpetuating discrimination may not do so intentionally, it is nonetheless exclusionary, hurtful, frustrating, and sows the seeds of more extreme forms of racism. There are many forms of racism. Distinctions can be made between anti-Black, anti-Muslim, or anti-Asian racism, anti-Semitism, or racist discrimination against Roma and Sinti. Racism is a social practice of exclusion that appears differently in different historical contexts. It creates hierarchies, differentiates, and devalues people by ascribing to them constructed, usually negative, group-specific characteristics and attributes. Specific forms of racism are »New Racism«, »Colorblind Racism«, »Cultural Racism« and »Aversive Racism«.

Ableism: From the English word ability, the term Ableism originates from the US-American disability rights movement. Ableism refers to defining or assigning value to people with disabilities on the basis of their (attributed) physical and mental abilities. This can reduce a person solely to their disability. This tendency can be negative or allegedly positive: either way, it stems from the belief that there is a physical or mental »normal,« from which a disability is a »deviation.« When people with disabilities are treated unequally or disadvantaged on the basis of this evaluation, this is discrimination. In German, the underscore may be used (be_hindert) to emphasize the role of external factors in disability: »dis_ability« is in fact created through external conditions, buildings and structures, rather than a person’s capacity or limitation. (For this reason, language that emphasizes the accessibility of spaces is preferred: call it an »accessible« toilet stall rather than »disabled«.)

Transphobia/cissexism: Transphobia* and cissexism refer to discrimination against trans people. This may be expressed through rejection, exclusion, anger, intolerance, prejudice, discomfort, or physical or psychological violence toward people who are, or are perceived to be, trans. Cissexism is the belief that that there are two defined, unchangeable genders, and that only cisgender identities are normal or right. In contrast to transphobia, cissexism also emphasizes how the binary gender system is deeply rooted in social structures, and also violently enforced. Cissexist thinking may not consider that trans people exist. An example of cissexism is the statement, »I date only women and trans men,« which frames one’s sexuality off of the gender/sex identity (forcibly) assigned at birth, rather than that person’s actual identity.

*The German term Transfeindlichkeit (trans-hostility) is seen as more accurate than Transphobie as -phobia means fear, and in most cases discrimination is based on hatred and rejection, not fear.

Homophobia: Homophobia refers to discrimination against gay and lesbian people. It manifests itself, for example, through rejection, anger, intolerance, prejudice, discomfort, or physical or psychological violence towards people who are, or are perceived as LGBTQIA+. Internalized homophobia describes homophobia directed against one’s own sexual orientation and thus against oneself. This often happens in a homophobic environment and/or before one’s own internal coming out.

Discrimination: Discrimination means »systematically preventing people from exercising their human rights on the basis of individual or group characteristics. International law assigns three main characteristics to discrimination: adverse treatment, based on unlawful grounds, and lacking an adequate and objective justification.« In the AGG (Allgemeines Gleichbehandlungsgesetz, or General Equal Treatment Act), discrimination is based on the effect, not the motive. In the instance of discriminatory treatment, it does not matter whether treatment was based on a hostile or derogatory attitude, or whether the disadvantage is simply the unintended consequence of a particular regulation.