Smoph's musings

Just my thoughts on the world

Feminism today

Feminism is a cause which has largely been lost on my generation of women, and maybe the Gen Xs as well. In the folly of my youth, I too denounced a tie to “feminism” and announced I was an egalitarian instead. Of course, it’s not quite the same, but I suppose that I found it less confrontational. Of course, I was dating a chauvanist at the time, but even when older and wiser I felt the need to distance myself from feminism and the image of fanatacism that term conjures.

In an era of (relative) prosperity, where one worker is the same as the other, what reason is there for not having equal rights and entitlements? Granted, most women will eventually have children and take time from work for those children. Even as they age, from time to time, they will need to be a mother. And although it seems they get the lesser responsibility for it, men are parents too. Why are they not penalised for being parents?

But consider the flip side of the coin. Less professional couples are having children, and they are having fewer children. These women will not have children to rush home to or take time off caring for. Why should this mean that they are penalised for other women’s choices to have children?

Surely, it should fall back to a system where if you value your employee, you show them. If they are talented at what they do, promote them or give them a pay rise if their skills won’t translate to other responsibilities. It is not a black and white world, nor should it be that way. But I cannot see any good reason why the start pay should not be the same, regardless of sex.

In this era of instability and uncertainty, shouldn’t we be striking out in the right direction? Fix what is wrong while we have the opportunity to do so? Let’s see feminism make a come back and give it the right connotations.

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  1. Kell

     /  May 3, 2009

    Absolutely! One of my greatest pet-hates is the issue over pay inequality. I have done quite a bit of work over the years on feminism in the 20th century, and you can easily ‘get’ why radical feminists were born of the oppression of first wave feminists. It’s interesting that the plight of women gets passed off way too easliy on the basis of a biological function.

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  2. Of course. The only way change starts is with the dyed in the wool, grass roots believers. Gradually it filters its way upward. I believe in the cause, but unfortunately the ones who initiate the cause are the same that hurt it in the long run. But they have thier place too.

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