A new perspective of Feminism to the rising world
August 11 2021 · 5 min read
Is feminism anti-man? Is feminism against the foundations of marriage? Is feminism angry women shouting slogans? Or is it an alien concept does not have any applicability in our country?
Basically, feminism is a very redemptive idea. It is equality of rights and prerogatives, equality of gender, and gender role inside and outside the home for both women and men. Feminism is humanism for its struggle for an equitable society (equality across all social divisions; rational divisions, divisions of color, face, culture, and religion). According to an article, “the term feminism can be used to describe a political, cultural or economic movement aimed at establishing equal rights and legal protection for women.”
While the roots of feminism are submerged in ancient Greece, most identify the movement by the three waves of feminism. However, each wave has its own significance to play a role in to struggle for equal rights.
The first wave (1830’s – early 1900’s) focused on legal obstacles where women fought for equal contract and property rights. They aimed to gain political power (right to vote) to advocate change. The political schema emerged issues related to sexual, reproductive, and economic backgrounds. Moreover, the second wave (the 1960s-1980s) broadened into a wide range of issues. However, it concentrated on sexuality, the workplace, domestic violence, and progenitive rights. Women strengthen their voices to fight against inequality so that they can save their civil rights.
The third wave of feminism is an emphasis on the feminist movement which emerged in the United States in the early 1990s till the beginning of the fourth wave. The wavers felt the need to redefine femininity. It includes the origin of new theories and feminism; such as intersectionality, sex positivity, vegetarian ecofeminism, transfeminism, and postmodern feminism were witnessed. The services and gains of the second wave built the foundation of this movement. The public debates on rape and abuse of women, the formation and enforcement of sexual harassment policies in the workplace for women, the foundation of domestic abuse shelter for women and children, educational reforms were made (funding for education for women), access to reproductive services (legalization of abortion) and contraception.
On the other hand, the fourth wave is a newly emerging wave therefore it’s challenging to describe. This wave is action-based; campaigns, protests, and movements like #MeToo (is a social movement against sexual abuse and harassment). Social media makes it possible to break the silence and it helps to promote local stories with global narratives to highlight common structural inequalities. Internet not only provides space to share experiences but organize and battle against issues. It also encourages sexually assaulted women to openly talk. At the times, despite positive contributions, it offers a platform for sexism and misogyny.
Feminism is more way broader in today’s world, Ellisa Nolte mentioned somewhere in her feministic perspective that “Feminism isn’t just “women’s issues.” It helps fight racism, classism, ageism, patriarchy, homophobia, etc., and everyone can be a feminist, regardless of race, gender, class, religion, ability, etc.” Indeed, feminism is not a static notion, it evolves and changes throughout our lives and shapes by different lenses to different views. It is often the root of comparison when deconstructing contemporary conceptualizations of feminism.
Society has a false belief that women are less intellectual and physically not capable than men. The feministic approach is leveling the playing field that allows women to seek equal opportunities in various stances. Notably, gender roles should be given as a choice, not as a compulsion.
Our society seems to construct masculinity and femininity through socialization which expects people to look and behave in certain ways. However, movements are being controlled by society’s norms and stereotypes make it possible. Boys are asked to be brave, strong, and articulate which makes them feel superior. Girls are sub-dunned, do not be argumentative, to be gentle, they are told do not go out by yourself, come home before it’s dark. Why are these restrictions for women? If you break these rules and when you get raped you are to blame. Imagine the victim of a crime is blamed for the commitment of crime on her. What kind of justice is this?
Women can be sexually assaulted by men. Whereas, culprit moves freely in the society but the victim buries herself in the grave of shame for the sin she never has done. So who is to be blamed? Why do we end up saying this is our culture? But who makes a culture? People make culture, culture does not make us.
Feminism in each era has a similar objective, working for equality for both genders but the way of battling varies. Feminism is not considering women weak and inferior. Protesting on roads, shouting slogans, and making it viral on social media (especially in our country) is not the true sense of feminism. What I believe is that fighting for your right by protesting is not wrong but the way of doing it may not be right. Campaigning is to be aware of the world and show the strength of women with dignity. It’s easy said than done, so showing your capabilities by doing what you say is more important.
Despite all the facts, everyone is born the same and should be treated equally. Our gender must not decide what we deserve. Feminism is a wayfinding opportunity equally not to show superiority over men rather be standing by him, to be supportive to family, and to level the upbringing of mankind.