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Feminism movement regains prominence in 2017

Womanly Pride - Literature teacher Amy Voakes proudly displays her sign, smiling as she emphasizes her support of the rising feminist movement.

Womanly Pride - Literature teacher Amy Voakes proudly displays her sign, smiling as she emphasizes her support of the rising feminist movement.

photo by Camille Whisby

photo by Camille Whisby

Womanly Pride - Literature teacher Amy Voakes proudly displays her sign, smiling as she emphasizes her support of the rising feminist movement.

by Caitlin Whisby and Camille Whisby

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Feminism is a belief system characterized by an intense support for gender equality by emphasizing the importance of women’s rights.

“I believe in equal treatment for all people within a person’s limits and potential,” assistant principal Brenda Carter said.

Feminism is far from a novel term, as it first emerged in the 1890s. Since its inception, however, the term’s meaning has evolved and adapted  according to America’s changing  societal institutions.

Historians divide the evolution of modern feminism into three waves, with each wave focusing on a different aspect of women’s rights. The first wave began during the late 19th and early 20th century, as activists worked to overturn legal inequalities, with special emphasis on lobbying for women’s suffrage.

The Second-wave of feminism, which began in the 1960s and ended in the late 1980s, was more concerned with the protesting cultural inequalities, as they addressed gender norms and the role of women in society.

Current feminists are members of the third wave of feminism, and work to further women’s rights in a variety of categories, including economics, women’s empowerment and social justice. These individuals are seen to both a continue the work of the second wave of feminists and respond to their perceived failures.

Economic Equality

“I consider myself a feminist,’’ literature teacher Pamela Henderson said. “The rights of women is an important issue for me. We should be receiving pay that is equal to men. If I had to choose one sole reason as to why I’m a feminist I’d say economic equality.’’

According to research presented by the Advanced Women organization, until the early 1960s, newspapers printed in America published separate job listings for men and women. Jobs were categorized according to sex, with the higher level jobs presented almost exclusively to men. Some ads listed identical jobs for males and females—but offered lower wages to women.

However, the fight for economic equality has come a long way. Feminists’ ongoing demand for equal pay has caused the wage gap to shrink subbstantially.

Eradicating Gender Expectations

‘’I appreciate how feminism is sort of saying, ‘hey you don’t have to fit into society’s expectations’ and it’s okay for people to be themselves,’ sophomore Trinity McDuffy said.

Heteronormativity, the idea that heterosexuality is both normal and in some sense required, is a form of gender role enforcement.

The rise of rights in the LGBTQ community has completely challenged this thinking. Same sex marriage has been legal in the United States since June 26, 2015. For feminists and members of the LGBTQ community the legalization of same sex marriage was a huge step towards equality.

Women Empowerment.

‘’If I had to limit my reasoning as to why i’m a feminist I’d pick two words — resilience and strength,’’ said literature teacher Amy Voakes,  “During my daily work day I am faced with many things that I have to be strong enough to overcome and prove that I’m resilient.’’

Many women choose to be feminists because they’re proud of being women. It reminds them that they deserve the rights that past feminist waves fought so hard for.

The feminist movement has definitely come a long way since it first came about and it will continue to grow and expand to help gain equality for all human beings.

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The student news site of McEachern High School in Powder Springs, Georgia
Feminism movement regains prominence in 2017