Sunday, March 4, 2012

I choose my choice!

I am the breed of feminist that enjoys pink (clearly), cooking, baking, skirts and dresses, high heels, necklaces, and doing things for other people.  Some day, I'll have a house with a yard, and i'll probably enjoy gardening too, if I can get over the fact that there are bugs, and possibly spiders, among the dirt and weeds.

What I don't like are other feminists who seem to think they have a monopoly on feminism, and that because I'm not doing it there way, I'm really jsut another mindless tool of the patriachy.  Part of the problem is there are so many waves and branches and movements of feminism and that modern feminism is very-- well, un-defined.  So we're left to either ascribe to one of the previous views of feminism, or decide for ourselves what we think it is, and how it plays out in our lives.

I am a feminist because I belive men and women are equal.  I am a feminist because I do not hold the sterotypical "men's work" above the stereotypical "women's work" or vice versa.  I am a feminist because I beleive that all people are equal of the same respect, and that we should be judged on what we think and what we do, not what's between our legs.  I am a feminist who belives in maternity leave, but also paternity leave, and I am a feminist who thinks its awesome if either parent chooses to stay home, and who thinks that marriage and love should be a partnership, regardless of whether that marriage is between a man and a woman, two men, or two women.  Or hell, if its a polyamorous relationship.  I know its not something I'd want, but if someone else can pull it off in a loving, respectful manner, who am I to judge? 

It bothers me that the phrase "I choose my choice!" has become a rallying cry, on, at least, against feminists who choose to act in ways that are steotypically feminine.  I'm sorry, but I don't think cooking dinner for my boyfriend will make him respect me less, and I don't think wearing a skirt means I'm trying to please the male eye-- although, if a girl is dressing in a certain way to appeal to, say, her boyfriend, why is that bad?  What is it that makes my choices WORSE to some feminists?  Simply that some of my choices are sterotypically feminine? 

If I am making an informed choice to act in certain ways that are labelled girly or cute, if I choose to express my individuality and my personality through acts and clothing and anything else you can think to label-- I'm sorry, but I refuse to believe that that, in any way, damages the feminist cause.  

tomorrow:  a little more on why I like some of the girly things I like.


Anonymous said...

Hi Amanda,

I clicked over from the Just Posts.I think what you're referring to are feminists who reject femininity in favor of masculinity for women. Which, I thought, we figured out doesn't really work.

I guess we need to keep talking about it.

(I'm pretty excited about your Fall class, too. Any chance you'll blog during the semester?)

Amanda said...

Thanks for the comment, de!

Feminists who reject femininity for masculinity are part of the problem-- but there are also feminists who reject both for a sort of gender neutral middle ground. I don't think those work, and I think we DO need to keep talking about it-- we need to talk about because of all the men I know who think I can't be a feminist because of my interests, and all the young feminists who think I can't be a feminist because I'm not branded as anti-feminine-stereotype.

(and I'm totally going to blog about my sexuality class, and anything else that comes up in the semester :-) )

Anonymous said...

I so agree with this. That is one aspect of Jezebel that annoys me, as well. Women who choose motherhood, heels, or pole dancing classes are seen as being sub-par, faux feminists. It irks me greatly.