Many posts have discussed the topic of Feminism in reference to the uneasiness that men feel when the topic is discussed. I am actually more interested in the way in which even women tip toe around this subject. In my own experiences, I find this subject to very threatening. It is not difficult for me to understand the men’s view, when I myself whisper the word in public. Why is this word so socially unacceptable even to women?
In class someone brought up the idea that many women don’t want to be linked to the extreme cases of Feminism that have been seen throughout history. It seems that if a woman is to identify herself as a Feminist, they are lending themselves to the sole identity of a workingwoman who remains independent and refuses all the preconceived characteristics of the stereotypical housewife. This is where the problem occurs. The idea of Feminism is not in itself threatening, but the outdated definition of the word causes many women who actually do believe in their rights, to stand back and keep their mouths shut on this subject.
I am guilty of doing just that. Instead of standing up and saying that I believe in women’s rights, I would rather brush over the word whenever it comes into a conversation. The word Feminism goes onto the list of topics you just “don’t” talk about in public: Politics, God, and Sex. It is very sad to think that even women go around this word. It seems that many want to rename the concept. This could also be due to the fact that a percentage of women actually want to stay home and raise their children. Many can’t identify with being a Feminist because if they do want to be at home, then they may seem hypocritical. However, it is possible to be a housewife and still believe in equal pay and equal opportunities.
This is mostly seen as a negative subject in reference to males, but I think that many women are also uncomfortable with the connotations that come with the word itself. This may just be my opinion, but I usually have to think twice before I affirm that I show Feministic ideas. I feel like I get the concepts of the movement, confused with the stereotypes when the stereotypes themselves should not interfere with the actual value behind the cause. Even though I do believe in the equalities between men and women, I just don’t know why I can’t get past the word. I sometimes feel like I don’t want the word Feminist to be a describing factor of my character, which is interesting to contemplate.