Posted by: jordandorsey09 | January 24, 2013

Feminism

To me feminism is defined as the movement toward social justice and equality for all regardless of the race, gender, class, age, etc.  To be a feminist means to be an individual who ACTIVELY strives for this equality.  I think the connotation of both words in popular culture is skewed and deviates away from what feminism is actually about.  Popular culture is essentially preventing otherwise passionate individuals from actively seeking out equality for all.  The ideas about feminism from popculture has thereby stereotyped it throughout our entire society as being a bunch of man hating, bra-less bitches.  Women who are out fro the equality of all can no longer identify with feminism for fear of being ostracized by the rest of society.  Many people see feminists as those entrepreneurial women who are more passionate about their careers than having a husband or children and are therefore deviant.  However, feminism does not require women to act in any one certain way.  You can still be a feminist, leader, and independent woman and be a stay at home mom.  Likewise you can be a career driven feminist woman and be just as fulfilled as your housewife contemporary.

Society should be less concerned with whether a woman is a bitch or a comforter and more concerned with the issues surrounding the lack of equality between men and women; this is what feminism is about.  For example men and women alike should be concerned with the devaluing of certain roles within society   Like the authors in the readings have noted, it is the devaluing of certain roles in society that puts certain groups at a disadvantage   Unpaid labor in our society is seen as less worthy labor.  Unpaid labor tends to be housework and childcare, both of which are STILL done primarily by women.  In devaluing a role in which women predominately fill, women are subsequently devalued.  This is an issue which should be talked about, and is an issue which concerns feminists.  Basically as a society we tend to focus on the more personal issues, such as whether a woman is a bitch or a comforter, rather than the larger societal issues that play into the smaller personal issues.  Feminism is about the big picture, equality is its most pressing concern.

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Responses

  1. Its hard for me to talk about this topic a lot becasue I personally feel that women and men are different for a variety for reasons. I think that equality is a great thing and that we have grown a lot as a country to get at the place that we are today. I think that God placed us all on this Earth for very special reasons and that there are things that women are meant to do and that that there are things that men are meant to do. I think that women are designed to be more nurturing and compassionate emotinally structured than men and that men are more emotionally stable and determined. We are designed in different ways but we should cherish that and use it to the success of our society. I think that there are things women can do better than men and vice versa. For example women are more than likely going to raise and nurture children more easily than men just becasue we are designed in that way. We have that initial bond with the child that starts from the moment that it is being created within the womb. Men on the other hand are designed to not only love the child but are determined to work hard to support the family and be there for it and protect it. I think that is important for people to realize these differences and use them to the advantage of our society. INstead of trying to make everyone pleased with equality in every shape and form, which is never going to happen, why not be happy with the qualitites that each of us have and work with those. We are so concerned about leaving others out we can’t even work with the things we have now.

  2. Traditional feminism is dead. What you are arguing for, as I take it, is that people need to worry less about individual woman’s characteristics, as these are often used to subject a whole group, and focus on the basic issue of inequality sparked by the devaluing of gender roles. While I completely agree inequality is not evaluated by the whole, the problem is that basic human instinct is too judge individually. We love to judge another person’s personality, actions, or demeanor more than judging our own. Growing up as kids through either public or private school systems, I think that can be agreed upon. People that stand out are immediately whispered about, while gossip and shit-talking are rampant. I do not think that will ever change as long as people are made genetically different from one another. However, feminism as a whole is not dead; the implementation has changed. It has evolved, because of the massive opportunities for woman, into something conspicuous. Instead of more people talking and trying to bash down the door, like the woman of the pre-1920’s, the fight now lies past the threshold. The problem is disguised, which means the fight is disguised as well, characterized by woman beating men out in job interviews, making gradual strides in their respective position, and earning the respect of their male employees. I am not saying that woman are being quiet, I am saying that woman are using their hard-work and will more than their words. They have the occupational positions traditional feminists never got the chance to hold, their goal now rests in climbing the ladder.

  3. I personally think the purpose of feminism when it was created was to point out the value of women and what we can bring to the table. Feminism and feminist revolts really began in the WWI time period when women figured out they could press the issue of higher pay because men were at war and the government had few others to replace women in the workforce. This was true around the world. Women at this time were fighting for equal pay, personal rights, and a world image more than of beauty and fluff. Now I believe we have gained many rights, for the most part equal pay, and we are depicted as more then vogue cover girls. But there are still people in the world who would not agree that women are worth more then their looks. In the Arab world alone women are still treated like objects, they are forced to look a certain way, women in Lebanon and elsewhere cannot leave the house without a male escort of her own family. Women are still being killed for speaking out and seen as a disgrace to Allah if they disobey a man. In America while not as drastic, we still have issues that need to be corrected. I personally attempted to get a job at a airsoft building and my boyfriend came with me. While I was inquiring about the job the man refused to talk to me but instead maintained eye contact with my boyfriend and asked him if he was looking for a job. Being stubborn I wouldn’t leave until he gave me some information and finally he told me to go to the airsoft store down the street and talk to the manager about the open position. When I got there the man I spoke to preceeded to tell me without hesitation there was no open position available, he then turned around to his friend and said “she couldn’t do the job”.

    As angry as this makes me it also fuels my desire for true equality. We may say America has made great strides and women are now closer to being equal then we have ever been but just because we’re close doesn’t mean we should stop pushing for total equality. I am a feminist. I believe women can do any job a man can do if she truly desires it. But I also believe that a man can do any job he truly desires as well. My point is, feminism isn’t dead to me and I don’t think it ever should be. When we loose the idea that we can be whatever we want to be then we loose so much of the progress that women have made over the past century and more.

  4. Concerning feminism, one of the comments made in class discussion really resonated with me. I know that when I think of a feminist, I don’t think of someone who fights for equality or the betterment of society at all. What comes to mind is exactly the stereotype you described, Jordan: someone who is so consumed with ‘winning’, not with achieving an equal standing point with men. And I wonder if this is our problem – however that stereotype gained such a foothold in society, it’s as if the cause they REALLY stand for (equality for all, not just women) is immediately lost in translation because of the connotation it has been given. Is there a way to reverse that?


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