Monday, January 19, 2009

Are you a feminist?

A friend asked me if I were a feminist. And this question popped up because I demanded a recognition for myself as an independent individual and not just as someone's daughter or a wife or a mother.

I came home later and started looking for the real meaning of feminism. I got some definitions from the web:

- Belief in the social, political, and economic equality of the sexes.

- A doctrine that advocates the equality of women and men.

- Feminist theory aims to understand the nature of gender inequality and focuses on gender politics, power relations and sexuality. Feminism is also based on experiences of gender roles and relations. Feminist political activism commonly campaign on issues such as reproductive rights, violence within a domestic partnership, maternity leave, equal pay, sexual harassment, discrimination, and sexual violence. Themes explored in feminism include patriarchy, stereotyping, objectification, sexual objectification, and oppression. ( Taken from

Well, let me summarize what my thoughts are:

* Today there is no field where women are not a part of. You will not be able to find any type of job where women are not involved.

* But I also understand that by nature the physical strength of a man and a woman are very different. I have always felt that though men are physically stronger, women are mentally tough. We go through periods, PMS, pregnancy, post-pregnancy times, menopause and endure so much pain that makes us tougher all the way.

* Today a woman contributes financially by being a career person and also looks after family and home. It is definitely an applaudable feat. At the same time, it does not take away the credit from the home makers who have dedicated themselves to look after their family and home. I always look upon them as super human beings because they are capable of handling everything alone.

* Many a times, we would not mind being in the shadow of our loved ones. We would be the happiest when our men take the limelight.

So with all these thoughts, sometimes if I ask for an individual identity for myself, does that make me a feminist? If I say that I am proud to be a woman and I should not be looked down upon, does that make me a feminist? Then maybe I am one.:) I am also glad that I have a daughter who would earn an identity for herself and become proud of being a woman.:)

I found this beautiful quote on

"I have never been able to find out precisely what feminism is; I only know that people call me a feminist whenever I express sentiments that differentiate me from a doormat." - Rebecca West, 1913.


Chhaya said...

Hey Madhoo ! What a beautiful post ! I agree with you completely :)
Thanks for linking my blog...I am linking yours with mine too !

Madhooo said...

Thanks, Chaya. :)