Fem·i·nist: ” person who believes in the social, economic and political equality of the sexes” – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Mas·cu·lin·i·ty: possession of the qualities traditionally associated with men.
When I think feminism, I think equality. Unfortunately this is not the case with everyone. It make my blood boil to know that when some people hear, read, or encounter the word feminism at all, they think man-hating feminists. In Feminist Masculinity, Bell Hooks states, ” When contemporary Feminist Movement first began there was a fierce anti-male faction.” She continues to say that women began to come to the movement from unhealthy heterosexual relationships, men who were brutal, unfaithful and harsh. Needless to say, the women coming from these relationships were pretty pissed off and used that as incentive for women’s liberation. Eventually, as feminism advanced, there was a realization that actually, these dudes weren’t to blame. The real culprit was sexism, patriarchy and male domination. Things that men are taught. And in, fact, women have something to do with it.
In Man Failure, Part 1 in Gender Failure when Rae talk about going to a gay bar for the first time with their two friends Micah and Steve, they talk about something that is exactly what gave feminism its bad rep and stereotype. They talk about how when they entered the gay bar they still felt odd. No one had been paying attention to them right from the moment they entered the bar. Finally Rae Is out for a cigarette alone and a women with purple hair comes out and asks if they had brought the two men to the bar. Turns out that most of the women in the bar were uncomfortable with them being there because they are anti-men. The purple-haired women assures Rae that she doesn’t like men because she is a feminist. Bell Hooks talks about how being anti-men sexist thus adding to the one of the main reasons the feminist movement originated.
I couldn’t help but think to myself, what she is stating from the beginning of the feminist movement still happen today. She talks about how the mass media represents feminists as anti-men, and how it is hard to get positive things in the spot light out there about feminism. According to Bell Hooks, less than 10 years into the movement, feminists started thinking about how patriarchy was bad for men and deprived them of certain rights. Men against the movement were great at voicing their opinions but despite all their firm statements, a small group of men arose who believed that the feminist movement was pretty legit. They stuck around and became allies. converting to feminism as a man had repercussions, however. Men outside the movement weren’t a fan of you and the anti-male women among the movement didn’t want you there either.
My opinion on Bell Hooks-Feminist Masculinity, in a nut shell, is that simply we must re-define masculinity. We must focus on self love, both men and women. Men are in a troubled position with patriarchy just as I am as a woman. We both deserve equality and love.
“ A feminist vision which embraces feminist masculinity, which loves boys and men and demands on their behalf every right that we desire for girls and women, can renew the American male. ” – Bell Hooks
Here is a link to Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie giving an unreal speech about feminism!
Thanks for reading!
-Leeanna Affleck ( 141847 )