This is something a little bit different because I’m not writing about books. But I am going to write about something else that is incredibly important to me.
I re-watched a film recently that I love, I had forgotten quite how much I loved it. Made in Dagenham is an amazing film with a wonderful cast. It’s set in the late 1960s in Britain and follows the story of the women’s strikes at Ford regarding pay equality.
It is a story of strong, real women who fought for gender equality long after Emmeline Pankhurst and her Suffragettes. This is not to say that the work that the Suffragettes did wasn’t crucial because it was, without it women may never have fought for other things like equal pay. But it does show that women’s fights are not over. They weren’t then and they aren’t now. The battle may be different but the war is still the same.
But after watching this film again, I started thinking more about feminism and I decided that I wanted to share my thoughts on it with you.
People laugh at third-wave feminism, saying that it’s ‘man-hating’ and ‘militant’, many people – particularly celebrities – refuse to identify with the label of ‘feminist’ because of these implications. But this just isn’t the case. This may be the case for a tiny minority but the majority of people who fight under the title of feminism want exactly what everyone else wants. Equality. What about that is militant?
The ideas encompassed in third-wave feminism are in fact, the most accepting and diverse. True third-wave feminism is about intersectionality, the inclusion of all women instead of the vile, prevalent ‘white feminism’ of the second wave. Third-wave feminism was designed to include women of colour and LGBTQ+ women. It is also incredibly important for men and non-binary people as one of the main focuses of third-wave feminism is about battling gender roles and expectations which affect everyone, not just straight, white women.
As with any group, there are a few who have taken it to the extremes, those who have taken an almost misandrist approach and those who having been oh-so-lovingly branded TERFs – to stand for trans-exclusionary radical feminists – but these are not the majority and thus, third-wave feminism is still the most accepting and open of all strands of feminism. That doesn’t mean there aren’t still massive issues that need to be fixed, as a white woman I am unable to speak on behalf of women of colour but I am aware that there are still issues surrounding their inclusion and issues of white women speaking over them about problems that only affect them. There are also issues within the community regarding the inclusion of LGBTQ+ women, mostly issues surrounding gender rather than sexuality but that is not to say that there are none.
So, no, I am not going to stand here and tell you that it’s perfect. Because it’s not. But then, nothing is so how about, instead of writing it off because of this, we work together to make it as close to perfect as possible.
Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed this something a little bit different. Let me know what you think and maybe I’ll write more like it.