Feminism is a social justice movement that has been around for nearly an entire century, and while it has made significant advances in society, there is still much to be done to end the discrimination and violence faced by women in today’s society.
As stated by bell hooks “Feminism is a movement to end sexist oppression”, therefore it is essential that we recognize the various forms of oppression women experience.
This includes, sexism, racism, classism, homophobia, transphobia, ableism, sizeism, and more.
It is impossible to achieve true gender equality without acknowledging and responding to all types of oppression.
Misogyny, which often goes unrecognized or is considered less important than other forms of discrimination, is still very prevalent in today’s society.
Examples of it include sexist language, sexual violence, and objectification of women.
To address misogyny, we must challenge gender roles and stereotypes and work to create a society where each person is respected regardless of their gender identity or presentation.
Furthermore, we must also ensure that the workplace is a safe and productive environment for all gender identities and expressions.
This requires updating workplace policies and practices in order to make them inclusive, and hold those in positions of power accountable when they abuse their power.
It is also essential to recognize the intersection of race and gender in order to create real progress in society.
Racial minorities experience higher levels of discrimination and violence based on their gender.
For example, African-American women are four times more likely than white women to experience sexual violence.
This intersection of race and gender can also be seen in wage inequality. African-American women earn 61 cents for every dollar earned by white men, and 82 cents for every dollar earned by Hispanic men.
These kinds of disparities can only be eradicated through increased awareness and with policy reforms that target the intersection of race and gender.
Additionally, intersectional feminism should seek to erase the stigma associated with childbearing and motherhood.
Women who choose to have children are often faced with discrimination in the workplace, as well as being judged and scrutinized for not conforming to societal expectations of how women should be and behave.
It is essential that maternity leave is extended, and that the stigma associated with single mothers is debunked in order to ensure that women who do choose to become mothers have proper support and that they are not unduly financially burdened.
Overall, while there have been significant improvements since the onset of the feminist movement, there is still much work to be done in order to achieve true gender equality. Intersectional feminism is key to this progress, and we must remain committed to challenging the systemic oppression of women and all gender identities in order to ensure that our society is equitable and just.