“A person who believes in the social, political and economic equality of the sexes.”
Yes. I said the dreaded, unpopular F word. Within the last two decades Feminism has been shunned by modern day ignorance. The ideology is ever changing and expanding; it’s no longer exclusive to women, it’s designed for us all. Don’t let the rants of Germaine Greer misshape your perceptions of this ideal, it’s worth your attention.
See, feminism is no longer about condemning men; instead the new modern structure supports our right to choose and eradicate discrimination. Don’t misconstrue it as an I hate men club, men are more than welcome to join (in fact it’s encouraged). In her most recent TED talk, feminist advocate Chamamanda Ngozi Adichie invited us all to be feminists. She describes feminism as a person who believes in the social, political and economic equality of the sexes. Notice her gender neutral pronoun? Person. We cannot think for a second that men don’t experience discrimination, that’s completely naïve. We’re fighting for them too.
The stereotypes are progressively shattering with many notable individuals stepping into the limelight and taking a political stance on the issue. Beyoncé has become an almost modern embodiment of feminism. In a recent interview with TIME she argues that her generation shouldn’t necessarily adopt the “a woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle” approach to feminism. Whilst, many have argued that men derail our lives and leave us to drown in domestic duties, Queen B has proven it’s possible to have a work/life balance.
On her newest album, Beyoncé does something new. Men and love are popular themes, but empowerment is what’s integral. She boldly addresses love and female sexuality, as well as sprinkling her tracks with strong messages of independence and motherhood. She’s told us that we can have it all, and for the first time in history we’re starting to believe it.
In my opinion, old-school feminism always appeared to condemn what made us intricately female. Femineity is delicately fierce; our emotions drive us, giving us empathy and power. Our gentle nature is cannot be undervalued; whilst we may be sensitive, we dress ourselves in a style of strength that men can’t comprehend. The ability to juggle emotions and logistics is beyond their comprehension. See, we can do two things at once.
But the new-age of feminism that Beyoncé and Chamamanda keep talking about is exciting. It’s inclusive, celebratory and no longer motivated by a grudge against men. Justice and equality aren’t trivial issues that can be degraded by ignorance, everyone knows about them and may even have experienced them. It’s time to get onboard with feminism.