Feminism and Women’s Day

Once upon a time, Nita had tagged me to write my take on feminism that is what it means to me. Due to laziness and lack of inspiration, I had not done the tag. But now what would be a better occasion to write the post than International Women’s Day on March 8? Wikipedia defines feminism as the belief that women should have equal political, social, sexual, intellectual and economic rights to men. Before I tell what it signifies for me, I would like to point out one thing regarding feminism. As Nita has rightly said in her post , some women do take feminism to its extreme and fail to realize that they have become misandrists (those who hate men). Similarly there are men who label their acquaintances or colleagues as “feminist” while describing as if it were a bad word!! That is wrong too.

west-doormat

Now for me, feminism is the feeling which makes me want to be smart, to be aware, to know stuff and to not be mediocre. Its the belief  which inspires me to believe in myself, to be strong, to be confident, to be financially independent, to have an opinion and to take decisions on my own.  It is the feeling which makes me assert my right as an equal human being. It is what make me speak out against stupid sexist jokes or discrimination on basis of gender or illogical sexist traditions or religious beliefs or societal norms. I would say to me feminism is the understanding that I too am a human being with equal needs, desires, dignity and rights.

feminism-2b

Because women’s work is never done and is underpaid or unpaid or boring or repetitious and we’re the first to get fired and what we look like is more important than what we do and if we get raped it’s our fault and if we get beaten we must have provoked it and if we raise our voices we’re nagging bitches and if we enjoy sex we’re nymphos and if we don’t we’re frigid and if we love women it’s because we can’t get a “real” man and if we ask our doctor too many questions we’re neurotic and/or pushy and if we expect childcare we’re selfish and if we stand up for our rights we’re aggressive and “unfeminine” and if we don’t we’re typical weak females and if we want to get married we’re out to trap a man and if we don’t we’re unnatural and because we still can’t get an adequate safe contraceptive but men can walk on the moon and if we can’t cope or don’t want a pregnancy we’re made to feel guilty about abortion and…for lots of other reasons we are part of the women’s liberation movement.  ~Author unknown, quoted in The Torch, 14 September 1987

x—x—x—x—x—x—x—x—x—x

international_womens_day

IWD is a global day celebrating the economic, political and social achievements of women past, present and future. Here are some good videos. This year the United Nations will mark the International Women’s Day on March 8 under the slogan, entitled “Women and Men: Unite to End Violence against Women.” How ironic!! Just when young women are being abused and attacked on the pretext of wearing western outfits by the so called saviours of Indian culture in the tech hub of the country.

Lastly, on Women’s Day I wish all the female bloggers whose blogs I read – a Happy Women’s Day! This is my first attempt to make a video.

womensday2a

Phenomenal Woman by Maya Angelou

Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.
I’m not cute or built to suit a fashion model’s size
But when I start to tell them,
They think I’m telling lies.
I say,
It’s in the reach of my arms
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips.
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.I walk into a room
Just as cool as you please,
And to a man,
The fellows stand or
Fall down on their knees.
Then they swarm around me,
A hive of honey bees.
I say,
It’s the fire in my eyes,
And the flash of my teeth,
The swing in my waist,
And the joy in my feet.
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

Men themselves have wondered
What they see in me.
They try so much
But they can’t touch
My inner mystery.
When I try to show them
They say they still can’t see.
I say,
It’s in the arch of my back,
The sun of my smile,
The ride of my breasts,
The grace of my style.
I’m a woman

Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

Now you understand
Just why my head’s not bowed.
I don’t shout or jump about
Or have to talk real loud.
When you see me passing
It ought to make you proud.
I say,
It’s in the click of my heels,
The bend of my hair,
the palm of my hand,
The need of my care,
‘Cause I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

My Other Posts on feminist topics:-

Bias towards fair skin in Indian society

Pro men Indian customs

Bias against the girl child in Indian society

Prejudice against jeans and cosmetics

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43 thoughts on “Feminism and Women’s Day

  1. The poem was exceptionaly good. I think that represents the spirit of being a woman. I think women ought to aspire to get the kind of self respect that is being conveyed in the poem. This is the best post on feminism that I have come across.

    Destination Infinity

    Reema: Yes the poem is wonderful. Thanks!

  2. I second on Destination Infinity. Undoubtedly, the best post on that Feminism tag and probably, the best on Womans day too (yet to read all of them).

    And kudos to the video too. creative indeed. Now, I know why you took a lot of time in posting this. LOL :D and you know what, for the first time, I wished I wasnt there in the video :p

    Brilliant effort.

    Reema: Thanks!! Yeah the video took a lot of time. I have kept it simple. Next time it will be better.

  3. First here!! Loved the video obviously!!
    Loved everything … including this …
    I say,
    It’s the fire in my eyes,
    And the flash of my teeth,
    The swing in my waist,
    And the joy in my feet

    (trying not to gush!)

    Reema: Welcome first lady! :) Thanks!

  4. Reema, good post. A post that illicits emotion in everyone, and in men too! That’s wonderful, if you can connect with the guys about feminism. I too think this is the best post on feminism. I liked each and every part of the post. It was moving, coherent, balanced and well written! Way to go lady!

    Reema: Awww i m honored. Thanks!!

  5. Reema, I really liked reading what feminism means to you personally. As far as Iam concerned, there is no question of women being equal to men….because women are far more superior, I believe.

    Reema: Mogambo khush hua!

  6. what a powerful post. i absolutely loved the unknown author’s description of women. and the poem is very energetic.

    i feel great to be a woman and being able to celebrate it.

    Reema: Thanks!! Yes I think the keyword is “being able” to celebrate womanhood.

  7. Hats off to you Reema,for the time and effort you spent on creating the video..I know its not that easy..3 mnt video would take you hours of effort..Kudos from all of us…

    and yes,the poem is very very powerful-simple yet solid..

    They try so much
    But they can’t touch
    My inner mystery.
    When I try to show them
    They say they still can’t see.

    I loved these lines.. ((hugs))

    Happy Women’s day Reema Teacher :)

    Reema: Thanks!! SAME TO U!

  8. *Applause* *Applause*

    A terrific post Reema. What a way to celebrate Woman’s day! Excellent!

    It is a great read. The push for feminism in my opinion has never been influential enough to create counter-movements in our society. Men still don’t understand the term feminism. The point, which I’m implying to make, is that not every single issue that has to do with women in general is a feminist issue and the women themselves have sky rocketed it and that the problem is that the current feminist mindset is totally outdated precisely because it never has proven its concern to resolve any of the issues that it addresses. In simple terms, feminists are good just making a lot of noise but have not been good enough at problem solving and at leading. Wrong notions about feminism has bought divorces and failures in marriages and the younger generation are seeing it changing their lives. A woman is a woman and cannot change her role in the society. They simply have to take the message across that feminism is more to do with women empowerment and not a role change!

    Keep Blogging!!

    Reema: Awww. Thanks!! Interesting POV but won’t empowerment automatically lead to change in role of a woman??

  9. Happy Women’s Day! And this was a great post.
    The video was cool. It showed that you had taken pains to create it.

    Reema: Thanks!! It took more time to upload than to make :)

  10. Happy Women’s Day! I was up at 5am, inexplicably, and I searched Google for anything blogged about Women’s Day… you came up. I’m a man, I like girls, and I go to a small, depressingly backward, private university. I too, am a feminist.

    And, although I cannot fully understand what it’s like to be a woman, I still want to help. Besides, non-feminists (or worse… anti-feminists) are no fun to date!

    Subscribing to you,
    Gun

    Reema: Welcome to my blog! Thanks. Keep visiting!

  11. awwwwwww look at our ree. she is now being all so creative too. awwww how sweet!!! i am unsure it will only get better from here. keep at it.

    and agree with u on every word u write about feminism. it’s a great tag cuz i feel everyone should explore the concept of feminism … once a while!!

    thanks ree!!! and that song … is amazing! love it! abso love it!

    Reema: Thanks!!

  12. Nice post! :)

    As a rule, I never watch videos. But I saw it as you said it ws ur first attempt, obviously I am pleased :blush: :p

    I see Mary Angelou on almost all female blogs for women’s day post. She has a huge body of work, ain’t it?

    Reema: Thanks!! yes she seems to have written a lot on women.

  13. I really liked this post. I have one question though… when it comes to being equal and independent… I am personally striving to get at a place of interdependence. Because I am equal to my brothers I can recieve from them and give to them. They respect me and I respect them.
    Financially independent! I am living it and it stucks! I can’t wait for the the day when I can look at my hubby and smile while he pays a bill for me.

    But then granted I am learning how to take care of myself….so maybe I won’t need that day to come.

    Reema: Each to his own! I too am working but I would never want to ask for money from my husband. Paying bills as a couple and buying gifts are fine!

  14. wow a wonderful post there! I so agree with your views on feminism. Why just one day, wish you i happy woman’s years all the way :-)

    Reema: Thanks! Yes every day should be a happy women’s day!

  15. oh that was really nice of you to put me in your list, thank you so much! i read the post but skipped the video cos my speakers are broken so i usually skip any videos. thanks for letting me know. happy international women’s day! *hugs*

    Reema: Thanks!

  16. Amazing post and you have created such an inspired movie! I also liked that poem by Maya Angelou. Although I’m late: happy women’s day!

    Reema: Thanks! :) Better late than never

  17. Wishes.. :) and that was cool video.. done well.. ok, so now u gotta do something for MM .. be ready..

    Reema: No further work without payment :P

  18. Hey!! Sorry for the delay …
    Happy women’s day! (late by a day…sorry!!)

    Just so a Reema post :) I read the post on my reader yesterday and just watched the video! Thanks a lot – am so touched by your mention!!!

    Reema: Its ok!! how was your women’s day? Thanks! U r most welcome!

  19. LOL! I like that “What can I do? Plenty, Sister!” pic!! :D
    Happy Women’s Day! May this message trickle down to not just the educated once, but to the millions of other women across the world, who lead their lives in slums and gutter. It is their prosperity that actually brings some change!

    Reema: Thanks! Amen!

  20. I have been terribly busy so missed coming here.

    First let me tell you that I am honored by the mention on your video. Thank you Reems! Happy Women’s Day to you too!

    A well written post which emotes the true feeling of what a woman should stand for and what women deserves. Beautiful poem!

    Reema: The pleasure is all mine! Thanks!

  21. The whole post is so beautiful.
    Thank you for getting me out of cynicism and anger with your lovely words.
    And your lovely gesture. Love the vid :)

    Reema: Thanks! I m glad to make you smile :)

  22. Reema! How have you been? Sorry I took a little long break. :) But don’t you worry, ’cause I will make it up. :)

    Coming to the topic, I feel women and men are equal and none of them needs any special attention. A woman is as good as a man in whatever that doesn’t involve pregnancy. I believe women to be the bearers of the sweet poison; PREGNANCY. The gift of bearing a life within you, nourishing it and then help it come out into the world and show that life the way of the world is invaluable. But what many men think of women is that they are nothing more than child producers; incubators of their family name to be precise.

    This would take a whole post for me to express my views on feminism. But one last thing I want to say before I finish this comment is that, “Women ARE men’s equals. They shouldn’t expect to be treated specially and demand more attention.” I hope you understand what I said. :)

    Reema: Hey!! welcome back! Be regular now :P Hmm wish there would be more men who thought women are their equals.

  23. Pingback: Funny Stuff and Best Post « My Random Thoughts

  24. Feminism is one of the most mis-understood word this days.. and why do women want to equality with men? y dont they be themselves.. this itself shows that men are better.. cos.. v usually try to follow some one better than us lle???

    Reema: Welcome to my blog. Women don’t want to be equal to men. They want equal rights, equal pay, equal respect as men enjoy right from birth. Not everyone tries to follow someone better than themselves. The society doesn’t let women be even human beings. And that is why they need to assert their right to be equal to a human being (which is wrongly almost synonymous with the word man in our world). Keep visiting.

  25. reema nice blog, happy womens day,
    dont say it belated because everyday should be womens day as females fight each day to prove themselves

    Reema: Welcome to my blog. Thanks!! Don’t worry I wont as I too believe that. Keep visiting!

  26. thank you so much for mentioning me!
    nice first attempt.
    you used windows movie maker is it?
    what song is that?

    Reema: Thanks!! I used Picasa. The song is “She’s always a woman to me” by Billy Joel.

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