Feminism is the belief in the social, political, and economic equality of the sexes. It is the idea that women should have the same rights and power as men.
Despite the early popularity of the feminist movement, women are increasingly declaring themselves against feminism. According to one survey, only 20 percent of women in the US consider themselves feminists. In another New York Times survey, results showed that only 18% of Americans consider themselves feminists, although 85% claimed they believe in ‘equality for women’. Popular social media movements like Women Against Feminism have managed to mobilize thousands of women who have turned their backs on feminism.
Let us look at some reasons why women are up against feminism.
Opposition to Men, not Systems
Although over half the world’s population of women are in a position of less power is a fact, this doesn’t make men wrong. This makes the systems wrong. Unfortunately, feminism has traditionally targeted men instead of the systems that put men up there in the first place. These systems still exist, stronger than ever, which is why boardrooms are still dominated by male CEOs. Feminism should be about equality and feminists should be fighting for a good life for everyone, men included. Every man and woman should be free to live happily in safety, respect, freedom from violence or slavery, and the right to have the same choices.
Promotion of “Unfeminine” Feminity
Women want to be popular, seen as desirable and positive by society. It is now fashionable to be ‘not a feminist’. Feminism has come to be perceived as something unfeminine and belonging to women who are aggressive, ugly and mostly single. However, there is no dearth of great “female” feminist role models in the world today, like Malala Yousafzai, Jane Goodall, Ellen Page, and others. The world needs this feminine power, not masculine women trying to fit into a patriarchal world. The need is to bring feminine qualities to the corporate world, and feminine values to education, health and communities.
Exclusion of Men
The traditional feminist movement tends to exclude men from its issues and forums. Even when it addresses men, the tone is strident and forceful rather than compelling and inclusive. The real feminist movement is not a revolution of women, but a revolution of feminine values, an awakening in both men and women.
Until the feminist movement understands, acknowledges and rectifies these errors, there will be a rising tide of women in opposition to it.