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More and more, young women are coming to terms with the everyday sexism and oppression they face. They are fighting to make themselves heard and taken seriously, but a prominent issue faced by the modern feminist comes from within the community. Feminism has become white–washed to the point where “white feminism” has become an entirely separate group, with a seemingly alternate agenda.
The problem with “white feminism” is that these women completely disregard the existence and rights a huge percentage of the women who their feminism claims to protect; women whose problems go far beyond the “fight to reclaim the word basic.” Real feminism, in this case, intersectional feminism, fights for the rights of all women, regardless of identity or orientation. Intersectionality, by definition, is the understanding that two or more forms of oppression, domination or discrimination can affect one individual. In this case, that intersection might be between sexism, and racism, or between misogyny and homophobia or transphobia.
In the world there are far fewer white women compared to women of color, an exact statistic i was unable to find due to the fact that so many women of color are not even counted in some countries (another subject for another time). An estimated 2-5% of women are transgender, and about 4% of women identify as queer. All of this is just to point out how irrelevant “white feminism” is in the grand scheme of things, and why intersectionality is so important when discussing feminism.
- Do you consider yourself a feminist? Why or why not?
- How do you think feminism impacts your life?
- Syy- as a reminder, intersectionality is the understanding that two or more forms of oppression can affect one individual. For example a black woman who experiences racism as well as sexism. Why do you think it matters that people have this undertanding?
- Kiajai- why do you think it is important that women of all orientations and identities have a voice and are respected?
- Leo- how do you think men should engage feminism?
- What have you learned in this round table, and how will this information changed how you might engage the subject in the future?