Concept creep

Concept creep: The tendency for the definitions of harms like abuse and prejudice to be gradually expanded over time.

In Gurwinder Bhogal’s “How Progress Blinds People to Progress“, concept creep could be the explanation how USA ended up on a list of one of the ten worst countries for women, despite fierce – and horrific – competition from nations such as India, Congo, Syria and South Africa. It’s a great article, explaining the use on the left and right and that it isn’t necessarily always a bad thing. But:

The case of the 548 experts who voted that the US is a more dangerous place for women than South Sudan therefore has an important lesson for us all; reality is based on definitions, and definitions are based on standards, which change from one country to another, and from one moment to the next. The next time the media accuse you, or your nation, or your era, or the world of getting worse, pause to wonder if it isn’t because it’s actually getting better.

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