Feminism In The 21st Century

12 Jul

The twenty first century is a very testing time to be a feminist. The issues that women face in these modern times are very different from those faced by our sisters in the 1970s.

One of the big changes is the rise of mainstream media and the effect this has on society. Women’s magazines can be accused of sexualising and objectifying women, they suggest that you are either a prude or have your body on display for all to see. The rise of lads mags culture also has this effect on society. Women’s magazine also encourage a lack of sisterhood and actively encourage women to be negative towards other women.

Women face huge issues with looks too, with the rise of airbrushing and celebrity culture, women of all ages are under pressure to look fabulous and perfect all of the time.

Although women are achieving better university grades than their male counterparts, men are still dominating the work place. One reason behind this could be down to the poor childcare system in operation, particularly in the UK.

Two women a week are killed due to domestic violence, the same number from the 1970’s, so has feminism really helped society at all?

There have been many changes in womens lives. Women are much more open about their sexuality, just like men are. Millions of mothers are now going out to work, despite the poor child care system and women are breaking into new industries and professions. It is now also much more acceptable for women to have children outside of marriage.

But what does it mean to be a twenty first century feminist?

To be in control of their own lives, women are learning that they must take control of their own bodies and their sexuality. Women have to fight against being regarded as objects – the rise of the ladette culture and things such as pole dancing and postmodern Miss World contests mean that women are still being judged as sex objects and they still need to fight against this.

Women’s traditional roles as a wife and a mother has been distorted to fit in with modern life, we are now expected to not only juggle work life balance, but also bring up children and carry out traditional roles too.

Another issue is that of domestic violence, rape and sexual abuse. This abuse is under-recognised and under reported. It was only in the 1970s that these issues began to be viewed as political at all.

Feminists need to reconnect with women of all ages and social classes and come together in a meaningful way. Feminism, let’s not forget, is about sisterhood. It’s about sticking together to protect our rights, it’s about coming together and being a positive force, rather than attacking male oppression.

It has also been argued that a new kind of post modern feminism is emerging. Many successful, intelligent women are deciding to give up their high flying careers to be homemakers and bring up children. Some argue that this would have the suffragettes turning in their graves, whilst others argue that it is simply an example of women taking control of their lives.

My view? I believe it to be the latter. I also believe that women still have a long fight against them to be considered entirely equal.

So, those are my thoughts on feminism frostings. Let me know your views in the comments!

Lots of love..
Kat xo.

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2 Responses to “Feminism In The 21st Century”

  1. Cafe Fashionista July 12, 2010 at 5:13 pm #

    I too feel that women have quite a long fight against them. While we have made strides in some areas; in others I feel as if we have backtracked centuries. 😦

  2. Kat Harrison July 20, 2010 at 11:16 am #

    I agree. It’s a difficult thing to be a feminist in these times, but hopefully things are on the up!

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