Feminism and Men

Ever since I joined WordPress I have really enjoyed seeing what search terms bring people to my little corner of the internet.  A surprising amount of people also have a lady crush on Ramona Flowers. Some people have found me through the massive amount I’ve written about SlutWalk.  Others still have found me through searching for my family members.

But yesterday someone found me by searching “what do feminists think of men.”  I thought that was an interesting question.  More importantly, one that is important to talk/write about.  What do feminists think of men?

Pondering this question made me think a question that I have heard often, both in my personal life and in the media.  Perhaps people have asked you this question too.  It is, “What do you people want?”  ‘You people’ meaning women. This question is usually asked by men who are frustrated at their failures of connecting with women.  Asking one individual what an entire group wants seems pretty ridiculous.

So, back to the original question, “what do feminists think of men?” I will say that every woman I know is a feminist in some way, shape, or form. They all have different opinions about almost everything.  A feminist is simply someone (doesn’t have to be a woman) who believes that everyone should be treated equally regardless of their sex. Other than that, it’s pretty open for discussion.

While I would never presume to speak for all feminists, I will say that I certainly like men.  I like one particular man so much that I married him (and even took his last name!)  However, I can understand why some women who identify as feminists do not like men.  Particularly middle-class white men.  So, if you want to know what feminists think of men, ask a feminist in your life.  Don’t presume that everyone in the group has the same opinion because that’s presuming that everyone has the exact same life experiences and the exact same brain.  And ultimately, that’s just plain ridiculous.

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12 thoughts on “Feminism and Men”

  1. No problem. It’s funny because I just came across someone who has all these generalizations and assumptions about feminist; he claims that ALL have the same ill mindset and that they ALL hate men. It really irked me.

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    1. This same attitude bothers me a lot too. It just seems ridiculous to me that people think that one person can speak for an entire group (unless the group has elected that person to speak for them.)

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  2. Rachel, generalizations is generally what gets middle class white men in trouble! ha! I’m a feminist and I like men. I have never, however, taken the last name of any of my significant others but that’s only cause I’m resistant to having men think I belong to them in any way. I know this isn’t the case for everyone, but it’s how I feel. Which is significant of this post since most assuredly, every person is different. Every feminist is different. We all have a core belief but the degrees to which we take our beliefs can vary from individual to individual. I say, do not make assumptions or generalizations. Lets embrace individuality even if we’re on the same team! 🙂

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  3. Hi Rachel, you stated that a feminist is simply someone (doesn’t have to be a woman) who believes that everyone should be treated equally regardless of their sex. What I’d like to know is if that includes a woman who believes a man should be treated equally in such places as the family court? I ask this because traditionally feminist were seen as women who wanted rights equal with men and as most people say, hate men. Nice article

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  4. Well put Rachel. For those who don’t know, Frederick Douglass (ex-slave and abolitionist) was also a feminist. He was one of the biggest supporters of the suffrage movement and self-identified as a feminist. Lovely, isn’t it?

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  5. Judgment is what seems to get most people into trouble. It’s the root of all generalizations. The need to feel like we must put people in well-defined boxes, to have them figured out.

    And to the gentleman’s example above – feminism isn’t so much about being blindly pro-women as it is acknowledging each person’s right to equality and fairness. Some feminists may not be aware of that distinction because it takes much less effort and thought than just assuming the stance of pro-woman. We see this kind of thinking in all sorts of groups.

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    1. Definitely, judgment all around seems to get us into a lot of trouble. While it’s certainly easier to say “everyone who identifies as “x” feels “x” way about this issue” it is almost never accurate.

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