Yahoo did a fairly interesting article on the issue, but I thought it was about time I address my feelings towards it.
It’s taken some time, and I still don’t truly understand the term and what it stands for, but while for all intents and purposes I agree with the issue, it also leaves a level of discomfort in it’s wake. Feminism can be defined as: the advocacy of women’s rights on the grounds of the equality of the sexes.
While I’m all for equality of the sexes, I feel that the term feminism, and many movements surrounding it (e.g. Emma Watson’s “He for She” campaign) negate those who are not cis-gendered. Feminism, and indeed those who advocate it most prominently, emphasise the idea that women should be of equal standing in the workforce, politics and everyday life, that women should not be deemed or made to feel inferior by men or other women.
But what of those who don’t fall within the ‘traditional’ gender spectrum? What of those who have traditional, societal gender roles enforced on them, but identify, whether entirely or partially with another gender or potentially no gender at all? What of the non-binary, agender, transgender+ spectrum?
How do those people fit in to feminism? Where is the inclusiveness?
For this reason, the fact that so many variations of the gender spectrum are negated in these arguments, causes discomfort in labelling myself a feminist.
Another article, states:
Sociologists make a distinction between gender and sex. Gender is the perceived or projected component of human sexuality while sex is the biological or genetic component. Why do sociologists differentiate between gender and sex? Differentiating gender from sex allows social scientists to study influences on sexuality without confusing the social and psychological aspects with the biological and genetic aspects. As discussed below, gender is a social construction. If a social scientist were to continually talk about the social construction of sex, which biologists understand to be a genetic trait, this could lead to confusion.
To be honest, I find the whole thing rather confusing. When campaigns such as ‘He for She’ are initiated, do they take these things into consideration? Do they sit and ponder their phrasing to be inclusive and well-rounded? Or do they stick with the perceived societal norms?
The real question I feel here, is that are feminists, especially those who are actively campaigning, addressing it as an issue of the perceived notions of the biological sex, or are they claiming it is a gender issue based on the societal norms and idealisations?
If anyone has any input I’m more than happy to discuss, because I truly don’t get it yet, and until such time, cannot confirm nor deny my status on feminism.