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July 16, 2018 | by  | in Features |
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Wikipedia says: “Feminism is a range of political movements, ideologies, and social movements that share a common goal: to define, establish, and achieve political, economic, personal, and social equality of sexes.”
There are at least 7 sub categories of the feminist ideology:
Liberal Feminism: Has a strong focus on legal and political rights for women, with the intention of making them equal to those of men.
Intersectional Feminism: Kinda the same as liberal feminism, but broadens the need for legal, political, social, cultural etc, rights for everyone, regardless of gender, class, race, sexuality etc.
Radical Feminism: The definition varies but usually there’s a lot of irl political action. Focus a lot on gender relations. Radical feminists get a bad reputation, due to groups like “trans exclusionary radical feminists” and occasionally being anti-sex work, imo there’s a mass difference between trying to squash male supremacy and trying to exclude other minority groups from a movement about equality.
Western Feminism: Eurocentric. “White female” focused feminism. Often lacks considerations of real life experiences by women of colour, gender minorities, and other oppressed groups.
Marxist and Socialist Feminism: Feminism with a bit of conceptual Karl on the side. Okay, so I didn’t read the chapters on Marx in first year sociology, but Dr. Google says “Marxist feminism is feminism focused on investigating and explaining the ways in which women are oppressed through systems of capitalism and private property.”

Eco-Feminism: Feminism about the environment, focused on a understanding of ecology — who knew that was a thing?! Cool!
Now, what are our members of Parliament saying?
When asked if he was a feminist by NewsHub in August 2018, Acting PM Winston Peters said he “didn’t know”.
Former acting PM Bill English said “I wouldn’t describe myself as a feminist. I don’t quite know what that means”.
Naturally, PM Jacinda Ardern said “Yes, I am a feminist. And I know what one is”.
Paula Bennett has said she’s a feminist “most days”, but sometimes when she’s busy she doesn’t think about being a feminist.
Feminism is an ideology, but it’s also about action. The ideology stems from beliefs of wanting to break down and undo the harm of oppressive social and institutional systems like racism, sexism, classism, and transphobia etc. But belief is one thing, and action another. Action is all about the actual undoing of this harm: working with feminist organizations, speaking with your peers about privilege, working on self education and campaigning.
Let’s be real, we already know the basics of feminism. We just need to start putting them in place. Feminism is a chance to be better, make the world better. Sounds like a good idea to me.

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