seraphcelene: (beautifully devestated)
I was asked what felt like a combo question: 1 - why did Emma Watson need to make this speech, and 2 - what was the purpose of her making the speech? In answer: it's not about redefining the word feminism or reclaiming the word from negative stereotypes. In fact, she admits to having no real solution to the growing disdain (and it's kind of news to me) for the word feminist. Instead, Watson's speech is about incorporating the idea of gender equality (perhaps simplistically focused on integrating social/emotional equality for men) into a discussion that has been primarily about the social, political, and economic equality of women. I still disagree that the speech is a recalibration of the meaning or image of what feminism is. Rather, she seeks to offer an alternate, explicitly inclusive entry point for men into the discussion of women's rights by encouraging them to consider and eradicate biases that exist for BOTH genders. The idea is that improve one situation and the other will, by natural extension, also improve. Shifting the focus from feminism, which is just about women, to gender equality, which is about BOTH genders, is an act meant to reduce the us versus them stereotype that some people have about feminism. The 'it's not my problem' syndrome. It also sidesteps what she initially presents as the PR image that feminists are facing. Which, again, surprises me to some degree. But then again, at more then 10 years younger than me, she was also surprised so I'm wondering what that demographic of naysayers looks like.


Emma Watson HeForShe Speech at the United Nations | UN Women 2014

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seraphcelene

August 2016

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