Feminism: yay or nay?

Apparently Margaret Atwood, the woman who practically invented feminism, is now declaring she isn’t sure if she is a feminist or not. This has sparked an interesting debate: is the idea of feminism out of date?

A friend of mine admitted she didn’t know where she stood. Yes she agreed that women are still mostly stuck under the glass ceiling but then it doesn’t apply in her personal life. She has a very lovely fella who looks after her pretty well, which is nice :)

Anyway, I responded with ‘I’m not a feminist, I’m a woman, is that not enough?’

There have been some very interesting books written on women trapped under the male gaze, such as John Berger’s Ways of Seeing. And it’s true that most things in a woman’s life are influenced by what she thinks men will think of her. Women try to look their best for men, they interrupt them during conversations to show they are listening and interested (even though men hate this), and they talk about men when they are not there.

Historically, women were keepers of the nest and men were hunters. And up till recently, women’s roles were still to stay at home/bring up the children/create a nice home the man wouldn’t want to leave.

Feminism was a reaction to this situation. It made women burn their bras, make a stand and say they weren’t interested in what men thought of them anymore, and that they would not be ‘controlled’ and stay at home. These women wouldn’t be limited by the male gaze, they would do as they pleased.

Men looked at each other blankly at this stage as most had no clue about this ‘male gaze’ thing. Some on the other hand, knew exactly what was happening and they weren’t too happy about it. Since then equal opportunities for both genders has been a major issue in all types of industries, hoping to be politically correct.

So what is the situation like today? Well, it seems that women have managed to gain financial independence through higher paid jobs, whilst still keeping up all the girly things like pearls and cocktails going. Just because we don’t care what men think anymore about what clothes we wear or perfume we wear, doesn’t mean we don’t! Women now dress for themselves first, then their friends and then their other half/men.

Let’s face it, whether ‘feminist’ or not, women today don’t need men. We just want them! Always have, always will

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