I am so excited to host the fabulous Katie from The Squirmy Popple. Katie is a talented writer who has often been featured on Mumsnet. Katie also loves nothing more than a feminist rant. I am a big fan of her feminist posts. Over to Katie.
Why are we still talking about feminism?
“Here is the quick way of working out if you’re a feminist. Put your hand in your pants.
a) Do you have a vagina? and
b) Do you want to be in charge of it?
If you said ‘yes’ to both, then congratulations! You’re a feminist.”
This quote from Caitlin Moran pretty much sums it all up for me. There is nothing controversial about feminism, ladies. If you want to be in charge of your own body, you’re a feminist. If you think that you deserve to be paid the same as a man for the same work, you’re a feminist. If you believe that your male partner is perfectly capable of washing the dishes, changing the baby and cooking a Sunday roast, you’re a feminist.
So that’s what feminism is about. Here’s what it’s not about:
- Appearance. Feminists come in all shapes and sizes. They wear skimpy dresses and baggy jeans. Heels and hardhats. Lipstick and chapstick. How they dress has nothing to do with how they feel about their vaginas.
- Career. CEO? Stay-at-home mum? Proud part-timer? It’s all good. You don’t need to have a high-powered career to be a feminist, but if that’s what you want, knock yourself out.
- Lifestyle. Some feminists refuse to get married because they think marriage is a sexist institution. Others get married but keep their maiden name. Others get married and take their husband’s name. Some feminists have kids. Some don’t. Doesn’t matter.
It sounds simple. It is simple. Sometimes it feels silly that we’re even still talking about feminism.
But then something terrible happens.
Internet trolls start sending rape threats to a woman with a strong opinion that they disagree with. People comment on a female politican’s appearance while ignoring the appearance of her male counterparts. Donald Trump brags about grabbing women’s pussies and still goes on to win the US presidential election. And then I think – oh yeah, THAT’S why we still need to have the feminism conversation.
I have yet to have this conversation with my daughter. She’s only 17 months old, and while I like to think she’s pretty clever, the concept of feminism (and gender in general) would be way over her head at this stage.
But the day will come when I’ll have to tell her what I want her to know about being a woman. I’ll explain how important it is for her to love her body and ignore society’s expectations about what girls can and can’t do. I’ll quote Caitlin Moran and she’ll be embarrassed because her mother is talking about vaginas.
I’ll show her how simple – and how powerful – feminism can be.
Do you agree with Katie? Is feminism simple? Let us know in your comments.
Katie blogs at The Squirmy Popple, where she writes about the (mostly) funny side of being a newish parent, with the occasional rant about feminism and politics. When she’s not blogging, Katie writes digital content for the public sector, which means that she spends approximately 12 hours a day in front of a computer.
You can find Katie:
We need you!
We are the real face of feminism. We are reclaiming it and redefining it. Yes, we might have children but we can still be a feminist. We mothers want our voices to be heard too. We are part of the feminist movement. We want to be seen and heard! The Mother Feminist series is inviting all of you to share what feminism means to you:
- Do you like the term feminism?
- What does feminism mean to you?
- Do you call yourself a feminist?
- Has your outlook on feminism changed post-children?
I want to hear your opinions, ideals and feminist role-models. If you would like to get involved then please drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
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