'F' stands for Feminism

Sunday, December 10, 2017

la luna vita blog

Feminism is a word that has gained popularity over the last couple of years. Merriam-Webster dictionary defines it as:

  • “the theory of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes” 
  • “organized activity on behalf of women's rights and interests”

For centuries it was believed that women were the ‘weaker’ sex. Everyone remembers Charles Darwin for the evolution theory, but how many recall him stating that “males [were] more evolutionarily advanced than females”? And if we go way back to the ancient Greeks, Athenian women were considered to be lower than slaves in the social scale. They were not allowed to attend festivities, go to theatre or act in plays.

Fast forward several centuries and many rallies later, and women are able to access higher education and vote. But have we reached equality? Women in CEO positions only make up 4.2% of America’s top 500 companies, that equals roughly to 21 companies. If we look at the scientific fields, “less than a third of those employed in scientific research and development across the world [are women]”.

Time’s latest issue reflects how far feminism has come, even though there's plenty more to work on. They named People Of the Year celebrities and non-celebrities that came forward about sexual harassment. Before, these actions would go unpunished or were even considered normal. The perpetrators see women (or other men) as mere objects which they can control. Women (and some men) are starting to speak out about these issues because they no longer feel powerless, their voices are starting to make a difference.

In my country, the rates of femicide are alarmingly high. The hashtag used to raise awareness was #NotOneLess, making a reference to “not one woman less, not one more death”. It is sad, getting up in the morning and having breakfast to such horrible news on TV. Reports about women getting beaten up or killed by their spouses, boyfriends or ex-partners. Women here are staring to speak up too, local actresses and news reporters, no longer afraid of sharing their story.

All over the world, women and minorities are still facing injustice. Being the only woman in the top executive workforce or in a science faculty is something that can be dealt with. But on top of that, add the harassment and murder? Now, I’m not saying that only men have aggressive tendencies, unfortunately some women do too.

Not to mention the stigma of surrounding the concept of feminist. There’s a dichotomy because some women are simply searching for equality while others go overboard. Radical feminism seeks to abolish any male presence in the system, but that’s absurd (in my opinion). That would just be acting the same way as men did years ago. Why take the same actions them? Shouldn’t we be setting an example for the greater good?

Truthfully, it is indignant to see the amount of hostility humans carry around and spread. Why allow the 'dark side' to take over? It is up to us as a society to not only teach kids respect towards any gender, race or social status --but also practice it ourselves. We should seek an equality beyond labels.

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