Why feminism still matters

In case you were in any doubt about feminism’s relevance, here are a few recent events that show why feminism is still very much needed:

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5 Responses to “Why feminism still matters”

  1. Kristian Says:

    >> You can hold down a prostitute and rape her and be not guilty of rape.

    >> Courts can prevent a woman from seeking a second opinion on her pregnancy.

  2. Alice Says:

    While I agree that same-sex marriages not being considered equal (or even existent, really) under Australian law is a terrible and unjust state of affairs, I’m not 100% clear on how that relates to feminism. I’d love to read your thoughts on the matter.

    • doctorpen Says:

      Well, I think at its very simplest definition, feminism is about equality. This means not just equal rights for women, or equal rights for heterosexuals but equal rights for everyone. The fact that same-sex marriages are not legal in this country demonstrates that gay partnerships are not considered equal in our society. This needs changing.

      More broadly than “equality”, I see feminism as something that challenges power structures in society. A first point for feminism is generally sexist power structures that oppress women, but it also encompasses fights against other kinds of oppression. I don’t think the fight for gay rights can be separated from women’s rights or human rights more generally.

      [Related: there’s an interesting thread here where people discussed what counts as a “feminist issue”.]

      (As an aside, feminism has a long history, especially since the second wave, of challenging the institution of marriage itself, so of course not all feminists, nor all gay people, are of the same opinion when it comes to fighting for marriage rights.)

      Feminism fights for freedom from restrictive gendered roles and oppressive attitudes to sexuality. I actually find it hard to see how the issue of same-sex marriage could *not* be considered a feminist one.

  3. karenlgould Says:

    I still don’t think it’s an issue of feminism. I think feminism means equality as it pertains specifically to females having equal rights with non-females. If you want a word to use to discuss equality, how about the word equality? I think that would simplify communication – ie more people would know what you were talking about, which I believe is a worthy goal.

    My two cents of course.

    • Kristian Says:

      There is of course the fact that some women are gay, and so at the very least, if equality for -all- women is a goal of feminism, then this automatically translates to gay… well lesbian at least… marriage rights etc

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