Feminism. Some still class it as a dirty word, as though the words “I am a feminist” need to be whispered into the ears of trusted confidants in the back alley of a city street, scared of the stereotypes that come with it.
It’s a term with many forms and ideologies, and perhaps the definition has changed a lot since its origins. Some see it as a synonym for misandry, others see it as purely a political movement. For me, when I say I am a feminist it means I believe in equality of the sexes. It’s the recognition that women’s rights are just as important as men’s – it’s not because I think women deserve more than men or that their rights are superior – it’s about raising the underprivileged into an equal position.
I’ve never been too afraid to admit that I’m a feminist. I owe that to the (unintentional) work and influence of my older sister, who highlighted inequality in gender to me at an early age. As a woman, to not want equality for my gender would be a true blow to those before me who have strove to get us to where we are now, a betrayal to those of the sisterhood who are yet to enjoy the privileges I enjoy. Definitions and ideologies aside, isn’t that the crux of the matter? To see ourselves as equal, regardless of gender. So yes, we should all be feminists. And Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie says it a lot better than I do – head over to YouTube and watch her TED Talks.