Quickie Guide To Feminism (And Why You Probably Are One Even If You Hate The F-Word)September 6, 2010 1 Comment
When I explained to a friend of mine that this website is a feminist site he was shocked. He just didn’t believe me.
What was he expecting? Anti-man diatribes? Militant lesbians? Kill the patriarchy messages?
Feminism has changed and evolved over the years and it’s not what a lot of people expect it to be.
So here’s a short guide to feminism for those of you who might be confused. And here’s also why most people are feminists even if they hate the f-word.
First-wave feminism refers mainly to what was going on in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The main idea women were fighting for at this time was that “women are persons“. This was about recognizing that women are equal to men and securing them the right to vote and take part in politics.
Second-wave feminism was what they called the movement in the 1960s and 1970s. These women were fighting the inequalities in society. They wanted the right to choose their careers, their families, their sex lives, and to make sure they had control over their own bodies through reproductive rights.
Third-wave feminism is from the 1980s until now. This current wave of feminism has moved beyond specific ideals and arguments to the idea that men and women are equal, and anything that encompasses that is feminist. These feminists might be powerful career women or they might be stay-at-home moms. They might be militantly anti-porn or they might be sex workers. They don’t think there’s a right way to live and think that so long as we respect every woman’s (and man’s) choices, and don’t inflict our own agendas on other people, then we are doing the right thing.
It’s because this current wave has no specific agenda that people often get confused about what it means to be feminist today.
Do you think women have the right to vote?
Do you think women should take part in politics?
Do you think women should be able to choose when and how to have children?
Do you think women should be able to choose whether they want a career, to stay at home with kids, or something in between?
Do you think men also should have all of these rights?
Do you think men and women should never be judged solely on their sex, but rather on their individual strengths and weaknesses?
If you agree with these questions then, regardless of any other political leanings you might have, you are a feminist.
So stop worrying about whether or not you identify with the word and get on with life. As long as you live by these ideals and fight for justice wherever you see inequality for all human beings, regardless of their sex, gender, race, or culture, then you are on our team and we welcome you.
Women’s rights are men’s rights are human rights and we all have a duty to make this world a better place by fighting against injustice.