I am a feminist.
I would argue that this is evident in the things that I do in my everyday life. However, when those 4 words come out of my mouth, many people feel that it gives them the right to place me in a box. This box is complete with assumptions, stereotypes, and harsh words. Another response that I often hear when claiming this identity is “I’m not a feminist but…” which is then followed by a list of beliefs or stances that many feminists hold.
What do these two responses have in common? They highlight the negative connotations associated with the word feminist.
In the last month, I have made it a point to bring up this word in everyday conversation in order to see the type of response I receive from the people around me. Hours of my personal, scholastic, and professional life have been spent discussing what a feminist believes, who a feminist is, and what a feminist stands for.
What I have learned is that many people feel this word is outdated, irrelevant to their lives, or too radical.
CALL is working on an installation which seeks to demonstrate how this word is still significant in our lives. A group of 5 second semester mentors have explored the constructions of gender in politics, magazines, health, television, and music. They will be presenting their findings in an interactive display on October 22nd and 23rd between 9 am -8 pm on the first floor of Fletcher library. The installation will be complimented by the Who Needs Feminism? Campaign.
Come and witness this installation and join the conversation about what it means to be a feminist and share with us your reason for needing feminism.
As for me, I need feminism because my potential should not be limited, determined, or affected by my gender.