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Fri Dec 21, 2012, 12:32 PM

Who Needs Feminism?

Identify yourself as a feminist today and many people will immediately assume you are man-hating, bra-burning, whiny liberal. Perhaps a certain charming radio talk show host will label you as a “Feminazi” or “slut.” Even among more moderate crowds, feminism is still seen as too radical, too uncomfortable, or simply unnecessary. Feminism is both misunderstood and denigrated regularly on a broad societal scale.

We, the 16 women of Professor Rachel Seidman’s Women in the Public Sphere course at Duke University, have decided to fight back against these popular misconceptions surrounding the feminist movement. Our class was disturbed by what we perceive to be an overwhelmingly widespread belief that today’s society no longer needs feminism. In order to change this perception, we have launched a PR campaign for feminism. We aim to challenge existing stereotypes surrounding feminists and assert the importance of feminism today. We feel that until the denigration surrounding feminism and women's issues is alleviated, it will be hard to achieve total gender equality, both statistically and socially.

has decided not to release a single, “official” definition of feminism. The goal of our project is to decrease negative associations with the word that would keep anyone from identifying with the movement. However, we encourage you all to keep defining it yourselves… you have given better answers than we could have ever imagined!


And now of course the campaign will have to add that feminists are not responsible for gun violence such as Sandy Hook

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Reply Who Needs Feminism? (Original post)
ismnotwasm Dec 2012 OP
niyad Dec 2012 #1
DURHAM D Dec 2012 #2
seabeyond Dec 2012 #3

Response to ismnotwasm (Original post)

Fri Dec 21, 2012, 12:55 PM

1. proud, life-long feminist, and none of the slurs, comments and ugliness bothers me. time magazine

used to periodically (pun intended) a piece, breathlessly (and hopefully) titled "is feminism dead?" to which my response is, "not so long as I draw breath."

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Response to ismnotwasm (Original post)

Fri Dec 21, 2012, 03:41 PM

2. Thanks for posting.

It looks like the tide may be turning at Duke. I have a friend who taught in the Women's Study department at Duke and the female students always referred to feminism as the "F word". It was/is very upsetting.

She left Duke last year but I will make sure she sees this project.

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Response to ismnotwasm (Original post)

Mon Dec 24, 2012, 11:02 AM

3. womens condition. i was at hubbys company christmas dinner. the man i sat next to


is married, with three young daughters and another baby on the way. he was talking about when daughters get older and said he knew all about womens condition.


everyone is what?

womens condition. (how to talk to women, with their condition)?

anyway, so puzzled and not thinking i said

you know i am a feminist. i am really curious about this womens condition.

sigh... we dont use that word in this area. slipped out. du is a bad influence on me. there was quiet-ness.

never found out what he meant by women condition. the other three men verbally stepped back.... and the other two womens heads came up and intent interest on what women condition is.

we let him slide. christmas dinner and all.

still curious what he meant. i was sure to let him know, what he was saying with his daughters as they grow up, i did the same with boys. not so much about protecting a gender as a child.

i enjoyed reading our youths signs. thanks.

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