On Being Inactive

Tuesday, 26 May 2009

I haven't been posting much recently. I seem to have been incredibly busy and whenever I have ideas for a post in mind, I always feel like I don't have the time to sit down and devote time to writing it. This has started to get me down because I'm always thinking about stuff yet doing very little about it.

One thing I've really been mulling over for a couple of weeks now is the recent drama and infighting detailed in Cate's brilliant post over at BitchBuzz and also in this post at Vagina Dentata. Feminists receive bad enough press to begin with. Every other ignorant comment on a news story dealing with 'women's issues' accuses us of being nothing more than silly women. Newspapers print features about feminism today yet misquote those they interview in attempts to create more drama. And at the end of it all, people are still arguing over what a 'feminist wedding' should be like or whether a woman who considers herself a feminist should wear makeup.

I don't know why so much effort is put into being divisive, shaming women and telling them their choices aren't feminist enough. Why discussing how good a feminist you are for having had a certain sort of wedding (or no wedding at all) seems to be of so much importance when, as Naomi says in the post at Vagina Dentata:

...while we’re all having this little inter-feminist war the rest of the world is not listening. Girls are still acid attacked in Afghanistan for going to school. Women and girls are still being raped in shocking numbers in South Africa. As uncovered in the New Scientist, female foetuses are being sex-selectively aborted in Vietnam. Now is not the time to push feminists out of our ever-decreasing circle.

Like Cate, I'm bored with feminist infighting. I do believe that a lot of serious issues and discussion points end up being talked about when drama blows up in the blogosphere. But for every important issue and argument which makes everyone sit back and think a lot, there's a whole lot of criticizing of women's choices and beliefs and telling them how to live their lives. All it ends up with is women being shut out, made to feel resentful and like they have no right to call themselves a feminist - whether it's a class issue or a race issue or an issue of sexuality. Imagine putting all that energy and time into being more united, trying to change things and helping each other, not fighting over who the 'real feminists' are.

Image: Life Magazine photo archive (Google)

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