Today we’ve got a topic that I’ve been broaching a little bit in the captions of my Instagram posts but have yet to dedicate a full blog post to… the F word. FEMINISM. Let’s do this.
So first, a little info about something that recently happened in my life to prompt some more ~feminism~ in my life. Back in May, I spent a week at Leadershape. Obviously, the focus of the camp is leadership, but what I love about Leadershape is rather than molding you into a leader, it’s about helping you develop as a person so that you naturally become a great leader. I dug into some topics like diversity, values, morals, integrity and more.
Vision, however, was what got me. Leadershape challenged all of its participants to come up with their “vision,” or essentially their ideal vision of world. In a way, it was coming up with our own ideas of how we wanted to leave the world; it was coming up with our legacy. My mind went straight to feminism.
I envisioned a world in which women* of all ages, sexualities, races, etc. respected themselves and were respected by others. I envisioned a world in which rape no longer occurred, women were more often at the helm of the ship (business) and in STEM fields, women no longer earned less than a man for the same job, etc. In short, Leadershape served to reaffirm my feminist values and when I thought long and hard about what I’ve been doing to honor those values, I realized I haven’t really been doing much.
I began my blog for a number of reasons, but one of those was to create a platform for my own feminist voice and also to lift other women up. I didn’t quite know how I intended to do that when I first began my blog, but starting this summer, I’ll be partnering with more brands focused on empowering women.
This Friday, actually, I’m collabing with FEM Project and the lovely Katiee for a Menstruation Celebration! You guys will get the hear the juicy details of my personal tampon horror story from this post I wrote for babe. I’m also gonna be speaking with the lovely Grace Yeh on her podcast about feminism as well, so watch out for that!
So what is feminism to me?
I hate saying “equality” or anything along those lines, because I really don’t think that should be the goal here. When we say equality, it sounds like once men and women receive equal pay or equal treatment, we stop. That’s not it at all. It also seems like we’re implying that men and women are the same and thus we need “equal” treatment. I disagree.
Men and women are inherently different not only biologically, but in terms of the realities we live in and the needs we have. And that’s not even considering intersectionality. An Asian woman experiences different issues than does a black woman than does a white woman. A transgender woman experiences different issues than a cisgender woman. Get the idea? Furthermore, I think the notion of “equality” scares some men. I think they believe that in order to attain equality, we want to bring men down to meet us. Obviously. That’s not the case.
Instead, my brand of feminism is empowerment. It’s about acknowledging the different needs of different kinds of women and acting in accordance with these to lift all women up. I will never ask for “equality” because it implies that at some point, I will be content to stop.
In the meantime, I wanna hear from you guys! Do you consider yourself a feminist? What’s feminism to you?
* Terminology can be a bit tricky when you’re talking about things like this, especially if you’re an academic, so I want be clear here that when I say women, female, girls or anything like that, I do mean all those whom identify as female, not just those whom are biologically female.