Society Magazine

Feminism v Women's Rights

Posted on the 26 February 2013 by Itszappy @itszappy
“Equality is not a concept. It's not something we should be striving for. It's a necessity. Equality is like gravity. We need it to stand on this earth as men and women, and the misogyny that is in every culture is not a true part of the human condition. It is life out of balance, and that imbalance is sucking something out of the soul of every man and woman who's confronted with it. We need equality. Kinda now.”
― Joss Whedon
“I myself have never been able to find out precisely what feminism is: I only know that people call me a feminist whenever I express sentiments that differentiate me from a doormat.”
― Rebecca West
(^^Good Quotes)
This is a short post on a much longer thought process I have on this.
While they are the same thing, there seems to be much more negative connotations to the word "feminist" to "feminism" than there is to "women's rights". The word feminism has history, nuances, and different ideologies and movements associated with it. Saying women's rights is usually a lot more direct, and it usually tends not to distract from whatever the woman/feminist is going to say next. Both men and women who don't want to hear someone talk about the issues of women will instantly be skeptical, mocking, and close-minded when the word feminism or feminist is attached to it. Some men and women will still scoff if they see the word women's rights to an article. And really, there's not much you can do.
Also, a lot of people don't seem to realize that there are different types of feminism, which is another reason that there is so many people cut off from it. Women's rights is a universal term for our issues; feminism comes in 32 flavors. Radfems, liberal feminists, cultural, conservative, socialist, ecofeminists. It's incredibly complex---and somewhat vicious. It actually kind of makes me sad. Instead of forming a united front and trying to actually achieve rights for women, we tend to get stuck arguing with each other on what it just means to be a feminist, what other people are saying are feminists, arguing our ideas all day to people who, at the end of the day, may not even care.
I write about women's rights because it's important to me. I defend my ideas, I critique others. Words are powerful, and ideas don't die. But I want to move my ideas into action. I want to actually help other women who may not have gotten help while everyone is caught up on the word feminism---both for and against.
To clarify, I'm by no means saying that everyone is like this. But it's important to understand not just what the
word feminism means, but what other people---incorrectly or not--think it means.

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