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We need to reclaim the word

”Feminism. We need the word ‘Feminism’ back real bad. When statistics come in saying that only 29% of American women would describe themselves as feminist – and only 42% of British women – I used to think, What do you think feminism IS, ladies? What part of ‘liberation for women’ is not for you?  Is it freedom to vote? The right not to be owned by the man you marry? The campaign for equal pay? ‘Vogue’ by Madonna? Jeans?

Did all that good shit GET ON YOUR NERVES? Or were you just DRUNK AT THE TIME OF THE SURVEY?

These days, however, i’m much calmer – since I realised that it’s technically impossible for a woman to argue against feminism. Without feminism, you wouldn’t be allowed to have a debate on a woman’s place in society. You’d be too busy giving birth on the kitchen floor – biting down on a wooden spoon, so as to not disturb the men’s card game – before going back to quick-liming the dunny.

But then, I do understand why women started to reject the word ‘feminism’. It ended up being invoked in so many bafflingly inappropriate contexts that – if you weren’t actually aware of the core aims of feminism, and were trying to work it out simply from the surrounding conversation – you’d presume it was some spectacularly unappealing combination of misandry, misery and hypocrisy, which stood for ugly clothes, constant anger and, let’s face it, no fucking.”

How to be a woman – Caitlin Moran


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