A common critique of today’s feminism is that it has ‘gone too far’. Some say that we’ve ‘created’ a gender ideology, that we hate men, that we cook up harassment stories, and that we’re easily offended, angry or radical. Others want to belittle feminism by calling it a fad.

‘Today’s feminism’ implies that, once upon a time, there was a more acceptable, amicable and effective feminist movement. When people criticise ‘today’s feminism’, they assume that ‘yesterday’s feminism’ was preferable. And I wonder, was it?

The first wave of feminism took place between the 19th and early 20th centuries. It focused on achieving women’s suffrage among other basic rights. These feminists were known as the Suffragettes. The right to vote, to property and to divorce may seem like obvious demands now, but they were met with ridicule at the time.

Suffragettes were depicted by media outlets as disgusting, boisterous and radical.

Men who supported them were publicly mocked. Anti-suffragists claimed that women’s ability to vote would grow radicalism, increase domestic terrorism, and generally turn the world on its head.

Anti-Suffragette Cartoon from 1908


A second wave of feminists emerged in the 1960s. These women fought for sexual and reproductive freedom, against strict beauty norms and for their right to work outside the home.

Second wave feminism suffered a tremendous backlash.

Society declared them ‘petty’ for discussing bras and body hair instead of ‘real problems’. Feminists at this time were heavily stereotyped as being humourless, hairy-legged, man-hating and unhappy women. Media outlets censored their fight by using the past tense when referring to feminism and falsely declaring that feminism was ‘dead’.

As a backlash to the backlash, a third wave of feminism sprouted in the 1990s – largely influenced by punk and underground trends. Third-wave feminists fought for social justice and focused on increasing the intersectionality and inclusivity missing from earlier forms of feminism. However, once again, they were demonised with the same arguments: man-hating, ugly, crazy, going too far.

I make these brief historical references to point out that no feminism has ever been fully celebrated. And in the current fourth-wave of feminism, which uses digital tools to strengthen the fight, anti-feminist voices are as loud as ever.

Anti-feminists have been critiquing ‘today’s feminism’ for decades.

Doing so allows them to acknowledge that widely-celebrated changes from the past were good, while simultaneously attempt to halt current and future progress.

Most people today will agree that to vote is a basic right and that women deserve economic independency and sexual agency. But not everyone understands yet that trans women are women, that sexism is an everyday problem and that the pay gap exists.

In 30 years time, we will look back and think of the #MeToo movement as a crucial point on the feminism timeline. It will be recognised as a necessary step on the way to equality – in the same way that no one now doubts that women’s suffrage was worth the fight.

One day in the future, 2019’s feminism will be normalised and seen as worth the fight. But for this to happen, we must never let them tell us that we’ve gone too far.

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Category: Feminism    Rights    Society
Tagged with: #MeToo    antifeminism    backlash    feminism    Gender    Gender Equality    Human Rights    Reproductive Health    Rights    suffragettes    universal suffrage    waves of feminism    Women's Empowerment    women's rights    women's vote

Georgina Diaz

@dgeorgina

Georgina is a feminist communicator passionate about tackling gender inequality and SRHR issues among the youngest generations. She holds a Degree in Marketing and a Masters in Education, Gender and International Development from UCL. Georgina has worked in communications and project management roles with several international and grassroots NGOs in the United Kingdom, Uganda and Nicaragua. Her work has focused on sexual and reproductive health, sex workers' rights and supporting women in conflict-affected countries.

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  • Avatar

    There is no reason to scream girl power. I think there is no need for such labels as “feminist”. It just makes women look ridiculous. Women should ofcourse try to get fair treatment and respect, but its all about choice and practical solutions. In other words, as long as women’s needs are well taken care of and their society is doing right by them there is no need to worry or go crazy with protests.

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    Shannon a

    Funny, I see many articles like this that are for equality, so I ask if feminist, so active about gender equality like Georgina Diaz the author, 1. What are rights men have that women don’t ? I can spout of 5 rights women have that men don’t with ease. 2nd, if it’s about equality whatbfemist organisation is championing men’s issues of inequality, like family court, paternity fraud, 6x the rate suicide, due process (Metoo, title 9) domestic violence (single violent abuse in couple is 70%women abusers, agreed my both men and women in the study). Co violence at 50/50 between men and women with women most likely to initiate violence and more likely to use weapons. The only exception is that once a male is confronted by violence the reciprocal defence by men is stronger and more capable and thus more likely to injure women. But that falls under “if you know a bear can tear you apart, don’t kick the bear. Then 30 of married men are unknowingly raising another mans child. Choice in parenting such as not having the right to know they are a father, or allowing the father choice to raise thier child vs no say in adoption. Male genital mutation in baby boys. The completely debunked wage gap, support flexibility so a man is not an indentured money source and won’t go to jail if unable to pay. Equality in sentences, men get 65% longer for the same crime. Female dominated education systems catering to female learning stiles. Equal treatment by teachers and grades. Experiments shown that a assignment written by a girl will get 2 letter grades higher then the same paper submitted with a boys name ie A when it’s a girl, same paper, c for boys. The list goes on, many of which were addressed by Casey Jay the producer of the movie “the red pill” and her great ted talk on the issue. (That was banned in multiple theatres by Gary feminist protester without ever sing the movie).

    Oh, Metoo, fuc u. Is seems that women have no responsibility in the casting couch. I once had a women blow me for back door concert tickets without me ever asking, I’m not saying any of it is ok but strong independent women seem to regress to fainting couch helpless women when it’s undoubtedly a tool for some women to get their big break. Second, I have played the victim game with multiple feminist, I tell my story of a job that resulted in a average of 900 sexual assaults by women in 1 year. Seems when women sexually assault and molest a man, that fine. To put a chary on it, I was raped 3 times that year by women. Long story, but my attemp to get justice for one of those rapes that lost me my fiancé and many friends , after you can’t rape men, even if he’s drunk passed out and she imitates you’re Fiancée and has sex with me. Can’t happen, oh ya it can. You don’t have to be awake for my happy place to respond to stimulation. Think I can Metoo several hundred women for sexual assault and harassment and have justice by getting fired and shunned like men are. Not if trying to get justice for being raped is any indicator

    So call bullshit. Feminism is absolutely sexist, it’s in the very name, and it’s not about equality, its revenge.
    There is also speculation about getting the vote. Women in western countries got the vote in late 1919 and enacted in 2020, (yes I know at first they had a age limit of 31, but it was lowered to men’s age not long after. Who else got the vote in the same time frame? Give up? MEN! There are some exsetions like the USA wher men could vote very soon after the war is rebellion from The UK. But most countries only aloud nobility, land owners and prominate business owners. (Oh and women voted in many places were they had one of those prerequisites. But it was rare and if a land owning widow got married again they lost her vote to her husband. I digress, common men were given the vote in 1918, what changed to bring in this huge expansion of voters. Wel it was ww1. 11 million dead and millions of wounded paid the ultimate price for their homelands. When a huge population of hardened soldiers came home it was easy to foresee those vets starting thier own rebellion and with numbers and experience in war making it very likely they would quickly overthrow their upperclassmen ass holes and start copying the French revilotion by killing all royalty and Aristocracy. So the price paid in blood and death earned the vote.

    Now, suspend the bias and dogma and pretend that in 1919 married men and women actually liked each other, that men were paid less then. 2$ a day in today’s money so they had to work hard and lots to feed and clothe thier families, at the same time house wives had life and death chores in raising kids feeding the family and do the same things we do today but without washing machines, dish washers vacuumed dryers running water, fridge, stove. You get the point. Those responsibility’s where crucial . Keeping the house clean and more important the food prep areas poorly cleaned often resulted in food poisoning or other infections. The lose of three days wages if the husband got ill from poor hygiene it could destroy a family just getting by and likely resulted in less food expenditures and mom secretly going without so the kids could eat. And that’s if your lucky. Cholera and disintary killed people regularly. No shows or baths, no Peptobismal to stop the diarrhea pumped water and a medical profession that routinely made things worse not better. We so people shit themselves to death. So a couple worked in unison to survive and produce heathy kids. So if you can lower the patriarchy outrage you can see that the swift action to give women the vote, even with no sacrifice of 11 million was likely championed by the common man, now voter with the voting power of huge numbers to force through almost anything.

    So in more then one way, common men were a huge influence in getting women the vote, some may say it was the only reason women got the vote. Yes women had some influence in the change but the more likely argument is it was men, husband and fathers that gave women the vote.

    So get off the victim cart, the patriarchy isn’t holding you down. If we are the patriarchy we’re doing a shitty job, vote, school, workforce, degrees, family court divorce rape. None of this would be an issue if we were a repressive patriarchy and women sure as hell wouldn’t aborting out children, walking naked through the streets on the slut walk, divorce, shelters university entrance and domination. Ya that’s the evil patriarchy.

    It’s a shame you got all those degrees but fell into the feminist tar pool, you should be better then that and believe all that feminism dogma, many x feminist agree that once indoctrinated in feminism you become virtually undateable.

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    Feminism has definitely gone too far. Just watch Dr.Shaym’s video on 30 questions from feminist. The courts are unfair towards men, and if for example a woman files a false claim of rape, the man will always be the guy who was accused of rape, while the woman is not even punished for a blatant fraud, but encouraged and glorified and is told that she is empowered by her fellow feminists. Feminism is a fucking joke, it has gone too far and has started to cost lives through cancellations of mens suicide awareness events due to feminist protests. You got your fucking rights just like the rest of us, and even more, so shut the fuck up. Please go and watch Dr.Shaym’s video, he has many more points besides this, if he doesn’t change your mind then no one will.

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    Agrima Kumari

    You know what i think, is that some women do take advantage of all this, you will know that #boyslockerroom case, a girl did that all. But that is her mistake and their are fault in every human being and she should not take advantage of being girl or feminist or whatever. But people only see that women take advantages of feminism and shit they don’t know that what a women has to go through for fighting in a men’s world. Just because they are physically more strong and they have dick. I dont see any more difference than that and men and women. Just that usually men are a tad blessed in strength dept, in other places women are emotionally stronger and other qualities are comparable. Can you guess till when India’s and whole world gonna be a men’s world?

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    MGTOW really is the way to go isn’t it? Sucks to be a society built on pleasing women. Have fun with your empty bars.

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    Shaun Snapp

    This entire article uses the logical fallacy of a staw man or paper tiger argument. It also has not aged well. Let us take this quote.

    “In 30 years time, we will look back and think of the #MeToo movement as a crucial point on the feminism timeline.”

    No, #MeToo, with Joe Biden has been modified to #MeTooIfYouBelongtoTheOpposingPolitialParty or #MeTooButNotifJoeBiden. Amber Heard ruined the whole “believe all women trope.”

    Women have been exposed as entirely hypocritical on #MeToo.

    Here is another problematic quote.

    “Most people today will agree that to vote is a basic right and that women deserve economic independency and sexual agency. But not everyone understands yet that trans women are women, that sexism is an everyday problem and that the pay gap exists.”

    What is economic independency? Does this mean a continual transfer of wealth from men to women through family courts? Because that is what women in the US and in Europe are currently doing. What is sexual agency? Does that mean women have the right to pay for kids they do not want? Because again, family court to the rescue. Does it mean that women are selfishly entitled to be single mothers with no partner — even though we know the outcomes of single mothers — on average, poorly performing and adjusted children? What is the pay gap? The often quote pay gap of 77% is not for the same jobs. It does not account for the significantly smaller amount of time women spend in the workforce. If you are quoting the pay gap in the developed countries, at least, you are not investigating things, or are bad at math, or are lying to make a point.

    Modern feminism is not about “equality,” it is about superiority. Women want to dominate the home environment (and receive preferential family court treatment) and also the professional environment. They want high-status jobs and leave all of the difficult and dirty jobs for men. Modern women see the world as a buffet line where they can pick and choose the good things and leave the bad things, the difficult things to men. THAT is modern feminism.

    So yes, modern western women have lost their minds. And something else — the arguments presented by feminists actually illustrates the point that even though more women graduate from college than men now, they on average have a significantly lower logical reasoning ability than men. Secondly, modern western women live in a fantasy land, where they do not realize who is doing most of the work to hold maintain their standard and style of living. Women live in houses their sex does not build, own furniture they do not move, rely on technologies their sex had little hand in creating and rely on a repair and maintenance system they have little involvement in supporting.

    The sexes used to have a more reciprocal relationship — but now feminists have tricked women into thinking that are men and that they do the same things as men, that they can do things they cannot do or have a poor aptitude for doing.

    This is all false. And these false claims are put out by women studies departments which aren’t academic departments as much as professional grievance entities, entities which know nothing about biology and say idiotic statements like “sex is only a social construct.”

    However, because of the logical problems so many women have, it is impossible for most women to understand these facts.

  • Avatar
    Nosherwan Ali

    Just watch a few media broadcasts of these women’s rights protests and other clips, of which many you can find on the internet of women basically harassing men for making a “sexist” comment or any related action. These men are not only being harassed but these public dialogue exchanges lead to a disturbance to the public and the woman’s refusal to abide by the laws even when security asks them to shut it, which might I add, would lead to a more physical conclusion towards a male. I myself am a victim of this. I have no prejudice against women, in fact, I think women, not exactly rights, but are deserving of a higher level of respect than men if they dont take advantage of that. You give a woman almost anything, she is capable of making it better. They deserve opportunities in professional jobs but there is no excusing the fact, that the keeping together of a house, which is no dishonorable job, can only be done by a woman. While many think that the first human was a man, in religious terms, I believe that it was a woman. What she is capable of cannot be undermined. This might be a goofy analogy, but women can be viewed as elves while the males are dwarves in terms of the lord of the rings. The elves, a gentle and elegant race of immortals, living in there magnificent castles in forests while the dwarves, lords of stone, halfwits and rough yet also capable of being kind and loyal. I hope that made sense.

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