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Feminism has garnered a lot of hate - both online and offline. Is this hate justified? What exactly is Feminism, after all? This post has the answers!
Feminism has garnered a lot of hate – both online and offline. Is this hate justified? What exactly is Feminism, after all? This post has the answers!
Some words are crystal clear. “Rape,” “violence,” and “abuse” are some words that have it “easy” as compared to their counterparts. They are definite. They are an entity within themselves. They convey without hesitation, and haunt without restriction. Then come the words that, at a meagre glance, would seem absolute but dwell deep within, and suddenly you are caught off guard, in an ocean of contempt, hatred, and power, but at its root is a word misplaced.
Feminism, like most new, badly “translated” words is under fire. It pops up every now and then on our Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr feeds and every time it does, it leaves a sour aftertaste, often evoking a raging disgust. Unlike “assault,” “murder,” or “rape,” this word (feminism) is regrettably misunderstood in today’s world. So, here is my attempt to explain feminism — not to convince you or deviously manipulate you- but simply to make you aware, so that you can choose to be associated with this word, or not.
Feminism is a movement. It is a spiritual, physical, virtual movement. A movement (or cause) that promises equality and respect at all fronts for both women and men. Why do we need feminism?
We need feminism because every time in the United States when one individual gets paid 77cents and the other makes a dollar for the same work just because of the category society put them in, a large portion of equality is snatched right out from under our feet. We need feminism for every time a woman who is sexually assaulted is asked to “keep it quiet” or is blamed for the assault while her perpetrator is able to roam the streets freely.
Contrary to popular belief, feminism does not aim to take power or jobs away from men. We (for I am a proud feminist) are here to enable equal opportunity for women and to share this power with men. Often, people, especially men (read any feminist article, website or blog and you’ll see this heinous trend), love to berate the ‘fact’ that feminists “hate men”.
Why? Because feminists merely want women to be able to be credible engineers and scientists and not just tokens? Because feminists know that women are as good as men at math? Because women, like men, should have the right to choose a career over marriage? Because a woman’s clothing shouldn’t determine her character?
Why is it that when women stand up for themselves, for their bodies, and for their choices, they are shamed and bullied for it?Never miss real stories from India's women.Register Now
Why is it that when women stand up for themselves, for their bodies, and for their choices, they are shamed and bullied for it?
Why should loving yourself be equivalent to hating someone else? Why is it that when women stand up for themselves, for their bodies, and for their choices, they are shamed and bullied for it? How come when men do the same they are applauded for it? Feminism wasn’t born out of a figment or illusionary context, it was a seed that was sowed and matured after years of harassment, sexism, and discrimination towards women. After years of women being treated as inferior to and by men.
To enable equal opportunity, individuals need to be seen as equal, irrespective of gender. And as simple as that concept may sound, we still somehow struggle with it in the 21st century. Everywhere we look, women are the “lesser” beings. Hollywood, Bollywood, engineering, cooking, athletes, you name it. It’s abundantly clear, when The Huffington Post or The Guardian choose to make a symbol of a woman who succeeds in engineering or computer science, that we clearly have not made enough progress. Why is it that when a woman does well, it’s still newsworthy?
Feminism isn’t petty. It has various forms, definitions, and branches, if you will, as does every movement — some of which I don’t necessarily agree with, and some which I actively defy. In a world where so many opinions and experiences exist, perspectives will differ and they must. And while this may often lead to misunderstanding, conflict and even hate, it ultimately helps pave the way for better solutions.
Most, if not all, schools of feminism aim to empower women. They aim to give women a choice — a choice to live her life however she wills it, to have sex (gasp!) if she wants, to not have babies (even bigger gasp!) if that’s her choice, and to wear what she wants. But most of all, feminism aims to recognize women as individuals first and then as “women,” and not just as baby-making machines.
Women are no one’s right and they owe society nothing. They are a whole being, not a link or an association, and that is what feminism preaches – equality. That’s it. Not so complicated now, is it?
Pic credit: evaekablad (Used under a CC license)
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Chetan Bhagat had no business slut shaming Uorfi Javed or any other woman. If he wants to 'guide' young men in the 'right direction' then he should take accountability for his words.
Chetan Bhagat, one of India’s bestselling authors, thought it was an ingenious idea to slut-shame Uorfi Javed, an Indian actress and influencer, at the Sahitya Aaj Tak literature festival.
“Phone has been a great distraction for the youth, especially the boys, spending hours just watching Instagram Reels. Everyone knows who Uorfi Javed is. What will you do with her photos? Is it coming in your exams or you will go for a job interview and tell the interviewer that you know all her outfits? On one side, there is a youth who is protecting our nation at Kargil and on another side, we have another youth who is seeing Uorfi Javed’s photos hiding in their blankets.”
Uorfi Javed responded with a video on her Instagram stories calling out Bhagat’s bluff. She shared the screenshots of his previous chat conversations with Ira Trivedi, author and yoga instructor, which came to light during the #MeToo movement.
While boys are taught to naturally own the space they enter, girls are taught to give up, to accommodate, to adjust since "it is their primary responsibility to keep families and relations together."
Yesterday, I was watching these 4 young girls around 16 – 17 years old play badminton. They were having fun, goofing around with all 4 of them equally involved in the game.
In some time two of their male friends joined them, and as part of round robin, the 2 boys replaced two of the girls. All good.
As the play continued, I started noticing a change in the way the game was being played. The shuttle was played most of the times between the two boys and there was a sense of competition and aggression brought in. The other 2 girls playing soon starting losing interest in the game as they hardly got any game time. Even if the shuttle came towards them, the boy in their team would move and play that shot. They soon moved to the sidelines as the boys continued to play.
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