How do you define feminism?

Everyone seems to have a different idea of what feminism is. Men seem to consider it an effort to depower them and for women to become superior, rather than for women to simply empower themselves and rise up as the equals of men, giving men nothing to lose from the deal.

On the face of it, feminism is a movement for empowering women for the sake of becoming equal to men. For equal pay for equal work and equal opportunity. For the most part, this has worked. Women are not 100% equal in these regards but the glass ceiling is very high and very thin. This aspect of feminism I am completely in favor of.

However, it is also a movement for equal social treatment. This part hasn’t succeeded as much as the others but it’s considerably better than it was when feminism first started.

Feminism has had its drawbacks however. Ideally, men would have nothing to lose from feminism. But they have. Women now have several double standards in their favor. Many men mistakenly put them up on pedestals. (neither women nor men belong on a pedestal)

I believe feminism has largely succeeded at the goals it set back when it started. But now I feel it may have gone too far. Many people closer to female supremists and misandries than traditional feminists have invaded it and screwed it up badly, working to give men more disadvantages rather than for equality.

Securing equality between the genders needs to be more about understanding humanity in general, to see what works in practice and what only sounds good on paper. Not empowerment. While I believe separating your gender from your identity is a good thing(and something I try to do), it may not work in mass practice.

So why don’t we call the race for equality “humanism” rather than “feminism”? Not pro-woman, pro-humanity in general.

Anyway, what is your definition of feminism? Do you agree with the things I’ve said above? Let’s hear it.

Update:

If women and men are so fundamentally different mentally that they cannot be truly equal, they can at least be equal under the law and in job opportunity. Technically, nobody is equal to one another. All men and all women are created different. Most women and most men may not be suited for a specific task, but the opportunity must still be there for the minority that are. I can’t imagine the frustration in a woman that isn’t quite like most women that they can’t do what they really really want to do because women aren’t typically suited for the task.

If women and men are so fundamentally different mentally that they cannot be truly equal, they can at least be equal under the law and in job opportunity. Technically, nobody is equal to one another. All men and all women are created different. Most women and most men may not be suited for a specific task, but the opportunity must still be there for the minority that are. I can’t imagine the frustration in a woman that isn’t quite like most women that they can’t do what they really really want to do because women aren’t typically suited for the task.

11 Answers

  • edith clarke
    1 month ago

    I am a second wave feminist who really did deal with inequities in educational and workplace opportunites, so I know there were a great deal of inequities to deal with, for both men and women. I think you’re assuming that all women are now feminists, which is anything but the truth and in addition you’re blaming feminists for women (and men) who act sexist and say they still want traditional things plus want women to be put on a pedestal. People who think like this are NOT feminists. I don’t consider women who want men to pay their way or treat them like they’re something to be protected as feminists, they’re non-feminists.

    If women (and men) promote men being the breadwinner and paying for all of a women’s needs, regardless of what both the man and women wanted, I’d consider them anti-feminists. If both the man and woman want to place the woman on a pedestal that’s their choice, but I would never consider them feminists, I’d consider them non-feminists.

    I don’t see what is supremist about leveling the playing field so women and men who want to work in non-traditional fields can without being harassed at their workplace for doing “another gender’s job”. I also want men or women who can find the money, to have the choice to pick whatever field they want to without being told “your gender doesn’t do that” I think both men and women should have the choice to pick the family structure they want, without men being pressured to be the provider or women pressured to be the caretaker. I’d like to see both men and women run for political office without the man’s sex life being scrutinized and the woman’s clothing, looks, and children being discussed instead of their political views. Those are examples of the economic, educational social and political issues I still see as problems that exist in our society, in spite of feminism. I don’t see what is superior about anything of those expectations.

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    What you’re saying is of course acceptable, but as usual the devil is in the details. Feminism isn’t a monolithic movement; it has as many interpretations among women as there are opinions about woman’s role in society in general. Things that you may not consider to be oppression (expectations of being “cute”, for instance) may be considered oppressive by some fraction of women out there.

    So, in general, yeah, anyone who advocates female superiority is obviously not in the majority or alongside what common sense would dictate as “right”, but the issue is much more complicated, and really may not have any mutually satisfactory solution.

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    If you want to be technical, men do inherently lose something by women being equal–their superiority.

    Personally, I don’t understand feminism. Men and women are different both physically and emotionally. So why are we trying to make them the same?

    The whole family archetype of the man being the breadwinner and the woman being a homemaker, where do you think that came from? It naturally occurred as far back as the cavemen. They figured out that men were more suited to do one type of task and women another. Seems like trying to reverse this is a step backwards for society.

    Not a popular opinion, I’m sure.

  • Anonymous
    6 days ago

    Feminism doesn’t make men less powerful, it’s supposed to make men realize they aren’t as superior as they think they are, and this is coming from a guy. I detest sexism.

  • S P
    1 month ago

    I’m going to go with the first paragraph. That’s fairly accurate. Though obviously feminists claim otherwise.

    Feminism is distinct from humanism, since it only cares about the welfare of one half of humanity.

  • Jeff
    1 month ago

    1) Go to http://www.google.com/

    2) Search “define:feminism”

    3) Eat tapioca pudding while enjoying the fruits of your labor.

    Just because you can.

  • Rio Madeira
    1 month ago

    I define feminism as “humanism/equalism with a focus on women.”

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    today’s feminists are very similar to al sharpton. they pose as problem solvers or equality dispensers. but underneath it all, they’re flame fanners.

    feminists do to women what al sharpton does to blacks. feminist’s don’t want women to be happy and prosperous because that would ruin their agenda. so they keep reassuring them that they’re being oppressed and are perpetual victims. they need to keep that anger flowing and hatred brewing so they can blame it all on “the patriarchy” to keep their cause alive.

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    I believe in equal opportunity for all.

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    Outdated! and it is apparent that you superkid are using me for your homework. The internet is good, no? In my day, and I am not that old, if I wanted this kind of feedback, I would have to go door to door.

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