Un Stereotyping Feminists

Feminism, is an ideology that has been misunderstood, stereotyped and misinterpreted across ages. When I asked people about their opinion on feminists, I got mixed responses. “Feminists are modern working women who hate men” was one of the response I got from a 20-year-old living in a metropolitan city. Radical, man-haters, lesbians, uptight and angry are responses I got from my sample. Unfortunately, there are only few people who understand feminism and feminists in the right sense.

According to a 2013 YouGov poll, and a 2006 study published in Psychology of Women Quarterly found that “many people think that feminists are ugly, uptight, angry, aggressive, harsh, strident, demanding, dogmatic, man-hating lesbians,” (Weiss, 2005).

Feminist believe in the simple ideology of equality, where men and women stand on equal groundings. Feminists do not vouch for a single identity for women but accept every woman and embrace every aspect of her. They do not believe in a binary opposition where men are the self (superior) and women the other (inferior).

A major misconception that people have is that they assume that all feminists are women. The pages of history show us that right from the ninetieth century, we have had male and female feminist writers like Virginia Woolf, John Stuart Mill, Simone De Beauvoir, Betty Friedan, Rabindranath Tagore, and Kamala Das who have written powerful texts to drive home the point of social, economic and political equality. People assume that all feminists are homosexuals.  ‘To be a feminist is to be a lesbian’, is the general understanding that people have.  Some feminists are homosexual but there are many heterosexual men and women who believe in feminism. To be a feminist is to believe in the ideology of equality, it has nothing to do with one’s gender or sexuality.  It is not an ideology that is imbibed only by the elites in a society.

Our society has perpetuated these stereotypes through the different forms of media like television shows, movies and advertisements. Opinion makers have reinforced these stereotypes time and again.

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Pat Robertson, former Southern Baptist minister, media mogul and televangelist, described feminism as “a socialist, anti-family, political movement that encourages women to leave their husbands, kill their children, practice witchcraft, destroy capitalism, and become lesbians” (Wikiquote).

The word ‘feminist’ continues to be connoted as a negative term. Because of this negative connotation attached to it, individuals are scared to call themselves feminist as they will be judged as people who are aggressive, harsh and demanding.

The current Indian female population is 48.8 %, feminism is an ideology that effects every member of this population.  It changes the way we look at gender and helps construct a healthy, growing and developed nation where men and women have equal opportunities and enjoy an equal status in all realms of life.

It is a joy to see famous YouTubers like East India Comedy and All India Bakchod clear out the stereotypes attached to feminism. We need to sensitize people about the actual meaning of feminism. Even though it a mammoth of a task, we should do our bit to raise awareness and erase these stereotypes.  Instead of blindly giving into these stereotypes we should be do our bit of research and establish truth values before we form opinions that are invalid and irrelevant. We ought to be conscious and aware individuals as feminists give us new perspectives that change the way we look at gender.

Works Cited:

Weiss, Suzanna. (2015, December 30). 6 Reasons People Believe Stereotypes About Feminists (Even Though They’re Not True). Retrieved from  https://www.bustle.com/articles/132468-6-reasons-people-believe-stereotypes-about-feminists-even-though-theyre-not-true.

Pat Robertson. (2016, December 15). Wikiquote. Retrieved from https://en.wikiquote.org/w/index.php?title=Pat_Robertson&oldid=2202888.

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Abandonment

Wrinkles on her cheekslonely-old-woman

Stooped back

Blurred eyes

She sits in her lonely corner, all day long.

 

She lives in a big house, with lots of people,

But no one makes her feel at home.

She has no one to talk to,

She just has the cold frosty air surrounding her.

 

She brought her sons up with at most care and love,

She prayed day and night for them to be successful at work.

Her prayers did work, successful and proud they were,

But no one thanked her for her selfless efforts.

 

The only interaction she has with the world is through a phone call,

She speaks each word with effort, conscious of every letter she mumbles.

It is as though she has forgotten how to talk.

 

In her own house, she is abandoned,

She doesn’t complain about anything.

She bears all the hurt and the pain,

She sits there and prays for a better day.

 

She has but a few years left, will she be remembered?

Will she ever make it into a nostalgic conversation?

Only time will tell.

 

I think about this and wonder.

You give up everything for your children, you take on a selfless existence

You shower them with heartfelt prayers, gifts and unconditional love,

Only to be treated like an invisible entity when you need them the most

Isn’t old age supposed to be a blissful time?

A time when your sons and daughters show gratitude, give back the love and care?

 

 

 

 

 

Teddy

They swore to be together forever

Dreamed a life time together

They had just begun to know each other

And had started to understand each others behavior

 

Oh! The fur ball was her biggest stress buster,

His eyes were dreamy and his fur was comforting

She began to understand his different meows

The purr was her absolute favorite

 

The little one loved her in all ways possible

Would welcome her with his dreamy eyes everyday

And ask for food in the cutest of ways

Sunday was their favorite day, both of them would sun bathe !

 

Fate played the role of the devil

Too soon it was all over

Teddy was reduced to a tiny star

Void followed after

 

 PS: My cat passed away a few months ago and I miss him dearly. He was like the little brother I never had! Teddy, I hope you are happy where ever you are .

I love you. Immensely

 

 

 

 

 

A Companion

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Lunch dates

Long conversations

Silly tiffs

It was as though life was perfect !

 

They started out as strangers

Thought they would never share a bond

Life works in funny ways

As they became the best friends as the years moved on

 

They shared smiles

They shared tears

Discussed their latest crushes

We’re always there for each other

 

It was tough to stay in touch

As time challenged them

It intruded them

But they were strong , their friendship only grew deeper

The bond only grew strong

 

Some bonds are never broken

Some people just stay in your life forever

They see the different facets of you

And accept it with open arms

 

No judgements, only love

A lifetime of respect and commitment!

Graduation !

college-graduationAn unforgettable journey

Bitter- Sweet moments

Friends that will last for a life time

Gazillions of memories

 

She has changed as a person ,

Reached new milestones , touched new peaks

Experienced new things

New horizons, newer destinations

 

She stood tall wearing her graduation robe ,

Her broad goofy smile accompanying her

She remembers her first day at college , shy and apprehensive was she

But today she is a wiser, bolder personality

 

A few failures and some hard earned accomplishments

Three years of college life has been a topsy- turvy ride !

Star Studded

The sky is adorned with jewels

Each stud seems to tell a story

They see millions of people ,

Each with its own unique destination

 
The stars are the little angels created send by the master

They are the observers

The little diamonds don’t judge you

They look the same, shine the same to you and me

 
The night sky with it’s glitters is the internal bride ,

Beautiful, mesmerizing and glowing

She has wisdom worth thousands of years , yet she is humble

She has seen you grow , she has seen you change

 
What are you waiting for !?

Unwind , relax and strike a conversation with the master’s most beautiful carpet !