International Women’s Day : Beware of the “Neo-feminist”


Feminism should not create the yardstick by which women should express themselves. It should create a platform to enable women showcase and express their diverse natures and features as women

“isms” crop up as soon as a minority or sect feel that their rights are not being adequately upheld. Their voices are either not heard or misinterpreted. I have never heard of “male-inism” to be the opposite of feminism. That’s because men by their nature feel very sure about themselves. Some of them even take it a step further by feeling that they are in full custody of self-expression.

Somewhere in the history of men and women, the need for feminism came into being to uphold the rights of women. It arose to address issues concerning women. It came about to bring equality between men and women. To say to mankind “hey what is good for the goose will not kill the gander. In fact it can actually be good for the gander!”

I do not think that the true purpose of feminism is to suppress man’s expression of himself. The purpose of feminism is rather to create an avenue for accommodating women’s needs.

Feminism should give women a voice so they can express their views and ideas. It should make them realise that their opinions matter too in every aspect of life as do men’s.

What I see sometimes is the existence of what I like to call neo-feminism. It’s like a twist to the real ideology of feminism. It is an ideology that proposes that women have now come of age and have now evolved from the position they struggled to attain-as equals with men, to a point of superiority to men and unfortunately even women who fail to imbibe their ideologies.

The neo-feminist says “I am superior” and you know what, I will do all I can to prove it!”

So this ideology begets a new group of women who create new norms and rules about what qualifies or disqualifies you as a feminist. They dictate these by their actions, ideologies and comments in the media. They in turn begin to feel superior to the rest of “womanity”. They do this by imposing their “perfect feminism” over women through their endless attempts at telling them what to do. They dismiss other women who do not appear to fit their mould while portraying their feminist images and incantations needlessly.

They would want to fool us into regarding the for-bearers of this said feminism as archaic. Our grandmothers, great-grandmothers and ancestors in the good old days once stood disheveled as they struggled to pay their own way in a world that treated them as second class and mostly articles and properties tied to “man”-kind. Where they found jobs, they were seldom remunerated fairly or appropriately. They had no say in all matters including those that affected them directly.

When they stood, they found the time to give other less privileged women a voice. They worked to include all women in their fight. They did not segregate them into pseudo-groups. When they clamoured for female emancipation during their hay days, It was with style, grace, eloquence and dignity. They were to me even more feminist than we all will ever be.

They were the truly oppressed who lived in a world were women did not matter as much. Yet their unity of purposed paved the way for what we now enjoy to a large extent as equality, unity and ultimately feminism.

Are they less feminist than women perpetually portrayed as feminist through their mostly material self projections in the press?

 

Thank you for reading.

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