Radiantly Feminine – Proudly Feminist
As you’re most likely aware, March 8 is International Women’s Day. I always love attending IWD events – the buzz is great, the crowd is friendly and I get to listen to inspiring women speak. Or so I thought.
You see, at the last event I attended the first of the keynote speakers opened with, “I’m not a feminist because I like men”.
Firstly, talk about choosing your audience. Not. Even though this speaker went on to share powerful information she lost me, and pretty much all of the audience, after her “I’m not a feminist” declaration.
More shockingly the woman holds a managerial position in a very large global firm. It’s disheartening to benefit from the hard work of women who’ve come before you and then not use your power and influence to work on behalf of other women.
Secondly, when did feminism become about liking men? I’m a feminist and I like men. A few of them have been my greatest loves and I’m hoping to love a few more. Even men I know identify as feminists. What I don’t like is the structure known as patriarchy, the deeply flawed and oppressive system we live in.
To be clear the patriarchal framework oppresses almost everyone who lives under it. Rigid gendered roles hurt men as much as women, and most certainly excludes all people who identify as neither.
What does it mean to be a feminist?
Feminism is about the social, political and economic equality of women and in equality, there is no room for hating anyone. Tweet This
I’m a feminist because I believe that every woman, in fact, every human being, has the right to self-determination over her body, her work and her life.
I’m a feminist because I believe that every woman’s capacity for contribution is equal to that of men’s capacity for contribution and should be remunerated equally.
”I’ve always considered myself a feminist, although I was always afraid of that word because people put so much on it. When honestly, it’s very simple.
It’s just a person that believes in equality for men and women.”
“Earlier in her career, Swift deflected questions about feminism because she didn’t want to alienate male fans.
But these days, she’s proud to identify herself as a feminist. To her, all feminism means is wanting women to have the same opportunities as men.”
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
“My great-grandmother, from stories I’ve heard, was a feminist. She ran away from the house of the man she did not want to marry and married the man of her choice.
She refused, protested, spoke up whenever she felt she was being deprived of land and access because she was female.
She did not know that word feminist. But it doesn’t mean she wasn’t one. More of us should reclaim that word.
My own definition of a feminist is a man or a woman who says, “Yes, there’s a problem with gender as it is today and we must fix it, we must do better.”
“I don’t know why people are so reluctant to say they’re feminists. Maybe some women just don’t care. But how could it be any more obvious that we still live in a patriarchal world when feminism is a bad word?”
“Women saying ‘I’m not a feminist’ is my greatest pet peeve. Do you believe that women should be paid the same for doing the same jobs? Do you believe that women should be allowed to leave the house? Do you think that women and men both deserve equal rights? Great, then you’re a feminist.”
“Am I a feminist? Absolutely. The definition of a feminist is someone who wants equal. That’s all it is, it’s equal. And there’s nothing wrong with asking for equal.”
“I do not wish [women] to have power over men; but over themselves.”
“I myself have never able to find out precisely what a feminist is. I only know that people call me a feminist whenever I express sentiments that differentiate me from a doormat.”
“Equality is a practice, it’s not just about words.”
Equality as a practice is why I publicly identify as a feminist.
And to boot, I like men a lot.”
I’d love to hear from you.
Leave a comment below as to what feminism means to you.