#Feminism: I Am A Feminist! Huh?

I am a feminist. That I know. It has little to do with the fact that I am female, but a lot to do with the fact that I am female. Right. Confused? I thought so. So I asked my friends and acquaintances to tell me what came to mind when someone told them they were a feminist. The responses were very interesting!

  • Someone who advocates for equal rights & opportunities for women. Though usually it feels like they advocate a bit too strong hadi people don’t like them.
  • I believe you mean you support anything related to females.. E. G, their rights hivi hivi… 😜
  • Mtetezi wa haki za wanawake…
  • It means fighting for the rights of women and equality for both genders.
  • They are very passionate about gender studies and equality.
  • The person fights for women’s rights.
  • A feminist believes in equality between men and women (not just superiority of women which is what most people wrongly assume).
  • A feminist is anyone, male or female, that holds the truth of women being equal to men in every characteristic and facet of life, and that there isn’t a disparity or inequality inherent between genders.
  • Ngai Fafa! Its a women thingie…..something like that.
  • They seriously advocate for female rights, the girl child and what not..
  • Ride or Die Female for Females😅
  • A tough lady who actually know what she deserves and is prepared to fight to have it.
  • Anti sex workers.
  • A woman who consciously commits to the struggle of women. A femminist takes sides, defending the woman championing her cause.
  • A feminist is a person who does not like the way women are treated _ patriarchy, inequality, oppressive laws against them, being treated as second class citizens etc.
  • A feminist is a that rare breed of human that doesn’t take the ‘its our tradition’ narrative sitted down.
  • When I hear the word feminist my mind clicks on a woman with a vagina.
  • A feminist is a heroin…she takes a stand for the rights of women who dont have a voice and would otherwise be treated as no more than a few pieces of brass or silver.
  • Creepy. Someone who won’t stop fighting for their rights everywhere I go….complain about each and every injustice and inequalities among genders. Most of the time they are those bitter people! So bitter about it!

Fascinating answers! I personally wouldn’t have thought of this. I remember a few years back when I had a conversation with this person who was seemingly intelligent and they just couldn’t understand why I kept saying and insisting that I was a feminist. And yup, he was a man. No surprises.

Not that there aren’t men out there who aren’t feminist, no. There are. It is just that the concept of feminism clashes with the ingrained mindset of misogyny and patriarchy that we have grown up learning every single day of our lives.

When you tell your little girl “sit up and straighten your dress”, you are perpetuating patriarchy. Basically, it is a system where women are lesser than men. How many times have you heard boys being told “don’t be a sissy!” or “don’t do that, its girly!” – you know, as if being girly is something to be ashamed of, or rather, something lesser than anything ‘manly’. How many times have you heard women saying “she’s so manly!” and sneer at the person or whenever someone in power like, say, Martha Karua who is referred to as the “Iron lady” and considered to be “too manly for a woman” and so forth.

I don’t want to get into too much detail, but to sum it up, seems my friends and acquaintances do understand what feminism is, although we still see that quite a number have a skewed view of feminists. Not to blame them too much though, some feminists have indeed gone overboard in their “feminism”, going as far as stating that it is about “women taking over the male world”, which is absolutely incorrect.

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie sums it up simply:

We teach girls to shrink themselves, to make themselves smaller. We say to girls, “You can have ambition, but not too much. You should aim to be successful, but not too successful. Otherwise you will threaten the man.” Because I am female I am expected to aspire to marriage
I am expected to make my life choices. Always keeping in mind that marriage is the most important. Now marriage can be a source of joy and love and mutual support. But why do we teach girls to aspire to marriage and we don’t teach boys the same? We raise girls to see each other as competitors. Not for jobs or for accomplishments, which I think can be a good thing. But for the attention of men. We teach girls that they cannot be sexual beings in the way that boys are.

Feminist: the person who believes in the social, political, and economic equality of the sexes.

What comes to mind when you think “Feminism“? Comment below!

iOut!


5 thoughts on “#Feminism: I Am A Feminist! Huh?

  1. What comes to mind when I think feminism? Myself, because I am a self proclaimed feminist. But seriously, though: I think the right to respect, I think the right to move freely without being harrased, I think the right to make choices about our bodies. I think equal rights across genders.

  2. As a Sociologist feminism is about advocating for equal opportunities for women in the society. The current trend of ‘feminism’ pushes women to view themselves sort of superior to men. This is wrong. Any way I’m in total agreement with your thoughts.

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