Artwork for Fittstim (1999) by Linda Skugge, Belinda Olsson et al.

In correspondence the other day with a dear friend I labelled myself a new-born feminist and added that while I had not always been, issues relating to the equality of the sexes increasingly feel close to heart as Im getting older. Perhaps it's not so much a question of getting older as to becoming more reflected upon life and looking and reacting to things going on around me (i.e not being ignorant and close-minded) which should be a natural consequence of leaving babyhood into adulthood. It's however not very long ago; not more than some 8 years ago that I was first charged to give my take on feminism. Now, the inquirer in question was the very girl who for the mere purpose of making a statement had scribbled on her t-shirt for the graduation photo of elementary school that naturally she was a masturbationist (admittedly, at the time the provocative nature of the stint  seemed very bold and came across as somewhat shocking to me...today however, I'd be wildly amused and celebrate a female comrade's express manifest reclamation in such fashion of her sexuality against society's repression). Her views being well-beknowst to me at the time of this incident, I just might have had to expect that one coming. I figure the sidetrack about the t-shirt might serve you with a vision of the highly dictorial tone with which I was was faced during what appeared as an attack. 

Are you a feminst? Are you? Well...? You know everyone should be...?

Now I knew I wasn't about to let myself be corned in this way and be pressed into an expected yes for which I could not thoroughly stand but neither did I feel particularly inclined to say no, knowing quite well what was worse. Feminism as a concept was figuratively everywhere in Sweden during this era in time...every other classmate of yours, well at least females would proclaim to feminism and a good number of influential women in the media would voice up about it and and "feminist manifestations" as the raiding of Miss Sweden pageants would generate some not so insignificant coverage and debate. Somewhere along the way it had almost become a dirty, very charged word and the perception of feminism for some people might have been that of unending whine and complaint by and for women. And there was I, not yet fully able to comprehend or articulate the concept...Afterall, there still isn't a uniform approach on feminism and the different takes are far from cohesive. However, in my case I just really couldn't bother enough to even set my mind into trying...ignorance, why yes. I think a lot of guys were generally asking why they should even care, not being women. Today it makes so much sense; I care because I care...for women...and plenty of them for that matter.

Well are you at least an equalist? Do you believe in equality for all?

Now she was speaking in language I easier understood. Finally I said yes and this girl settled with that and backed off. Looking back at it now, the incident did have a great impact on me. I did however initially feel violated by being confronted with my views in this way.

To me as I see it and it feels like Im repeating myself on this point every other day, there's only one significant biological difference between the two sexes and that is obivously that women are able to give childbirth, men cannot...most of the rest, when we speak about differences between men and women just seem to me like gender roles that are enforced on us by society and to which we conform by peer pressure. Given that men and women are essentially the same, it's only natural that they should enjoy the same opportunities in life and not be restricted by sex. That's however not always the case; women don't always get to do the same things as men on the same conditions...we see it all the time; salaries, authoritive positions in society and God certainly knows that the hypocrisy of society don't grant women the right to have sex like men. And again, this just roots back to these same old fucking ancient stereotyped gender roles and perceptions of what men and women are like and supposed to be.

I don't know man, subscribing to feminism just seems like it should be a given to any sane person. And I say this despite generally not being very fond of resorting to labels; I don't like being labelled or labelling myself but needless to say, sometimes a label just is very efficient to express a point of view.

Postat av: Elinor

heja ashik!

2009-10-21 @ 09:18:45
URL: http://imsobumbled.blogspot.com

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