7 Things We Owe To Feminists
“Feminist” seems to be one of the most misinterpreted words of this century. The most undesirable effect of the misconception is that even some women are against feminism. They view feminists in the wrong light whereas in reality, feminists have done so much for the well being of women and welfare of the society. All women owe so much to the feminists.
Feminism is not an overnight struggle that has broken out very recently but it is a tireless striving for equality, which covers over two and a half centuries, initiated and voiced by people across the globe and across the ages. Some people did not even label themselves as ‘feminist’ but still did it for the egalitarian principle in them. They were provoked by their conscience and calling themselves ‘philanthropists’, ‘social activists’, ‘humanists’, etc. they contributed their share for women’s liberation. Though they took different names they all had the same undying humane spirit in them– to liberate women from the prejudiced patriarchal norms under which women were constantly enslaved and stereotyped. These 7 things would have just remained a dream without the feminists-
1. Academic Pursuits: Today women top the list of various fields . But there was a “Once upon a time” when girls were not even given the basic right to education. But, due to these feminists the girls are now being given the opportunity to leave no stone unturned in the academic platform.
2. Professional Platform: A professional life for a woman was like something that she can never even dream of. But now, women continuously prove themselves to be multi-taskers. Gone are the days, when women’s place was meant to be only the kitchen.
3. Right to Voice: Feminists gave women the right to voice out what they feel. They showed the world that women can also frame opinions. They proclaimed to the world that women are the epitome of ‘beauty with brains’. Without them, the patriarchal world would have continued the injustice of silencing women.
4. Freedom from Menstrual Taboos: Some days back, women on their menstrual cycle were isolated and prohibited even from the normal chores of life. They were confined to a limited space but today that is not the case. “Those days” can never be an obstacle to any part of their routine activities.
5. Right to dress up: Imagine! What if saree was the only outfit option you could opt for? Today if your wardrobe has fanciful varieties of outfits to choose from, apart from the saree it is just because of a feminist’s thought and effort.
6. Mobility: There was a time, when women were never let out without being guarded by a male-member of the family. Modern day women have got the courage to move around independently. Added they own permits to drive and they know to move on their own wheels.
7. Inheritance and Property Rights: Women of the contemporary era have got the right to inherit and own properties. It is again the feminists’ struggle to get equal rights for women.
Unfortunately, even their least move to voice for a lofty purpose of women’s welfare is labeled “Outrageous”. But still nothing can deter them from what they wish to achieve—emancipated and empowered women. As the misconceptions clear their way, the voice of feminists will grow stronger and stronger–there will be many voices joining this force to strengthen the fight for a noble cause. All these apart, the truth is, we are all feminists at heart as long as we have humanity in us. Feminists are humanists! They deserve respect!
— About the Author: This article is contributed by Gayathri Devi. Gayathri has completed her M.Phil. in English Literature from Tamilnadu. Literature instilled her in the thoughts of feminism. And gradually, she was attracted towards this concept and she says it has changed many of her perspectives towards our community & that is how she landed to Respect Women.