10 Things That Feminism Could Do Better

Very brief and simplified summary of this article at AlterNet by Nina Power (British philosopher and feminist, senior lecturer in philosophy at Roehampton University):

  1. Feminism should realign itself with movements committed to social justice
  2. The word ‘feminism’ itself (and the battles it wages) should become much clearer and stronger
  3. Feminism should not be misled by the successes of individual women at the top of their professions (politicians, CEOs, etc.).
  4. Feminism should be concerned with all women everywhere
  5. Feminism should be wary of believing the fight has been won
  6. Contemporary feminism should avoid ghettoized debates of the ‘sex work good/sex work bad’ or ‘porn good/porn bad’ type. 
  7. Feminism should avoid reducing all questions of women’s lives to issues concerning sexuality and sexual behavior
  8. Feminists should be aware of the co-optation of the rhetoric of female liberation in the name of imperialism.
  9. The women’s movement should campaign for fairer and better work, even in the midst of an economic crisis.
  10. Feminists of different ages, with or without children, gay or straight, should be wary of seeing too many differences between generations of women. To this end, perhaps the talk of “waves” hides more similarities than it reveals.

I hadn’t seen such a good summary of the issues that have been bothering me about a certain type of feminist discourse lately. Sure, we all agree that there are shades and some differences to be expected within the movement, but it seems that lately, it has been co-opted by Cosmofeminism (of which Jezebel is the best example in terms of how it has been digested by pop culture).

Nowadays the battle seems to be between deciding if Botox is a feminist choice or if Diva cups are good for the environment. Sure, I am not minimizing the value of our personal daily narratives, but the danger is to turn these into the main topics whereas they are distractions and nothing more. Because if we are distracted with these minor matters we are not paying attention to the bigger picture.

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