Friday, October 30, 2009
How do you define feminism?
by Priscilla P
Before I started getting involved with the WRC, I wasn't quite sure what being a feminist entailed. Words that came to mind were independent, empowered, and standing up against "the man."
Curious, I decided to go and ask a few people about their definition of feminist, and if they considered themselves a feminist. What are your answers to these questions?
How do you define feminism?
“I think it's the notion of women obtaining completely equal rights with men in all areas of society, as well as having the choice to act/dress as feminine as they please (I find radical feminist types who yell at other women for wanting to dress nicely to be completely counterproductive to the movement).”
“I define feminism strictly as the belief that women deserve the same treatment as men.”
“For me, feminism is the process of becoming aware of gender roles in our culture and then finding a means to counteract or change them, because I believe these gender roles have a largely negative impact on our progress as intelligent human beings. As these gender roles are initially forced upon us or encouraged by our upbringing, collective consciousness, and a large majority of our popular culture, they maintain a dominant influence in they way we live our lives and upholding females as inferior to males. Feminism is recognizing the way gender roles have impacted and continue to affect our self esteem, social interactions, available opportunities, and rights as human beings. Though, as I learn more about feminism, perhaps my definition will become more complex or change.”
“Feminism is a movement of a group of people rallied around the social, political, and economic equality of woman attributed by the shift of woman from households to manufacturing jobs due to WW1. As time progressed woman found themselves in the workplace under a pretext of values on how woman should act. Feminism wishes to rise above the glass ceiling of these prescribed normalities.”
“I am going to attempt to reconstruct some ideas I got from speaking with different feminist Philosophy students:
Philosophically there are several phases of feminism, the first being a viewpoint that women and men varied in an unreconcilable way (from a subjective viewpoint), such that a Man could never understand womanly-things and visa versa. It was a separatist theory. Assumed in this theory is the statement that if men and women have different subjective experiences, each is equally valid to one's self.
Then there was a period of what we usually think of as feminism, the equality of women in a broader sense, but not in terms of a subjectivity (at least not formally). This is what you might think of when you think of suffrage, and general womens-rights activism.
After this there is a splintering of the concept, which was way too complicated for me to try to deeply understand.”
“Feminism seeks to break down and examine gender constructs in order to liberate all sexes from oppression.”
Do you consider yourself a feminist?
"I am most definitely a feminist because I do not agree with the disadvantageous positions that primarily women experience as women are cast as the lesser sex."
"Although I strive for social equality on many levels including women's rights, I do not consider myself to be a feminist. I believe the right of being a feminist should be reserved for a selection of woman that understand the history and difficulties that has been placed around their place in humanity over the years, and should not be an excuse, offense, or rational for any other agenda except equality."
"I am the manifestation of feminism, so yes, I am most definitely a feminist. I consider myself to be an ecofeminist"
"Yes I am probably some sort of feminist, but more realistically I would hold the view of a general equality, one not specific to women."