The changing woman throughout history has always been a topic of conversation by women and men. It is not only a popular subject but one that is important and extremely broad. A speech given by Sojourner Truth at the Women’s Rights Convention, 1851, ain’t I a woman? tackled issues about the limited rights women faced in our society for many years and the flawed perception men had/have over womens rights and where women stood in this so called ‘mans world’. Although many women support equality and female empowerment a fine line still exists between them promoting it but continuing to disconnect themselves from being identified as a ‘feminist’.
So what do we really know about it? Feminism confronts these issues and takes on a universal approach by women to promote equality and change and encourage woman to take control and feel important within society and create a balance for both women and men. Some people think a feminist is simply a man hating, bra-burning angry women who has had her heartbroken a few times by the man! But it couldn’t be further from that. A feminist is a gender equality activist that sets out to achieve the same rights for women as men have, but some people still mistake them for the minority of radical women activists from the 60’s and 70’s. Being independent and a strong woman is what embodies feminism and any and every woman should to a certain point reflect and promote this.
Women were associated with the body whereas the mind reflected the man. Throughout history and our changing society this has slowly started to change and woman alongside men have been seen for their intelligence and what they have and what they can accomplish and less about what is seen. The woman as a sex symbol and something beautiful to look at is still highly regarded today but there is now a balance of brains and beauty, of her mind being just as beautiful as her body and that is a major accomplishment of today’s society.
The objectification of women and their bodies is something which will always be seen as a current state of society, the ideologies of the changing state of mind through fashion, the media dieting and cosmetic surgeries has impacted this in a much larger way and is not only seeing the woman as an object but giving her this pressure to feel this is what is attractive and beautiful. So it moves from women trying to succeed and be equal to men to women trying to uphold this ‘perfect image’ whilst they are on this road to success and equality which men don’t feel as pressured to do. Women were the object for being seen and admired and as a housewife where as men were seen as the bread winner, working and making money and fighting wars and protecting their wives.
Although the feminist thought was ignored by the mainstream social theory a few decades ago it has started to become more viewed and accepted within the modern day way of thinking. This has encouraged cinema to become more dominated by feminism, the change of seeing woman as the helpless damsels in distress waiting to be rescued and whisked away by the strong handsome man is more of a thing of the past now. Although is still part of todays cinema, we are seeing more and more of the strong female character. The independent woman who depends on herself and has a man beside her, not in front of her making the decisions and saving her but alongside her working together and bringing equality and female empowerment to the front.
The feminist philosophy refers to the female approach and is seen through a feminists beliefs. It uses philosophy to help further the notions set out by the feminist movement and re-evaluate traditional philosophical ideas and theories and apply them from a feminist view. It allows women to use traditional ways of thinking and reflect them with current ideas and values and step away from a traditional lifestyle and bring new and important understandings to our society.
So this is my definition and understanding of modern-day Feminism. It is about uniting and empowering women and not about competing and disregarding mens values and traditions. It’s a movement that has continued for generations and is still going strong to bring equality to our society, politically as well as socially. As society we learn, grow and achieve and female equality is just another great achievement that continues to succeed. There is still progress to be made, and accepting the social changes and understanding the true value of feminism is progress in its own.
WE CAN DO IT!