I identify as a feminist. A proud and vocal feminist. My New Years resolution this year was to read more feminist literature, at least a book a month (keeping it so far!), which perfectly coincided with my hero Emma Watson setting up her He for She book club on Goodreads.
The He for She group is doing some awesome specific activities in the name of feminism and it’s inspired me to write a post about some of the simple but subtle things that I try to do every day in the name of gender equality. It’s not just the big acts that make a difference.
- Make a concerted effort to support and build up other women wherever you can, especially in the workplace. Don’t be bitchy about another woman if you wouldn’t say the same thing about a man.
- Remember another woman’s success doesn’t take anything away from you. Don’t be jealous. There isn’t a limited pot of success. Often, another woman’s success helps create opportunities for you.
- Don’t tolerate sexist jokes and comments just so you don’t rock the boat or seem uptight. Rock the goddamn boat. Remember the triangle (below) and why this is important.
- Breastfeed in public, share brelfies, contribute to helping normalise breastfeeding. Free those beautiful nipples!
- Stop doing things that cause you discomfort in the name of looking attractive in a patriarchal society. For example, wearing heals, too tight clothing, waxing. The list is endless. If you want to do it then cool, but it should be your choice, not because you feel you have to.
- Consider gender stereotyping when raising your kids and how it might influence them negatively. For example, the language we use, the behaviour we promote, the toys we buy. I don’t want my son to be told ‘don’t be so soft’ or my daughter to be told she talks too much. I don’t want my daughter’s first thought on growing underarm or pubic hair to be one of shame like mine was.
- Support female arts projects – TV, film, books. Some of my favourite shows at the moment are Broad City, Girls, How to get Away with Murder, Orange is the New Black. You can really tell when TV is made by women by the diversity of characters, body types and sex being more realistically portrayed.
- Support female led businesses and businesses that treat women well.
- Support charities that support women. I love Women for Women International that helps women from war torn regions rebuild their lives. Papa Ginge recently bought me this bracelet for Mother’s Day that donated profits to Women for Women International. Or how about sponsoring a girl’s education with Plan UK.
- Be whoever you want to be. Trust your gut. Follow your dreams and don’t let societal norms hold you back. I’m pretty sure if you are reading this, you are a badass bitch and a total KWEEN so give the patriarchy hell – you got this!
With all of these points, it should go without saying that especially support women who are marginalised in additional ways – such as race, disability and gender identity etc.
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