So I have to admit that originally, I thought I’d try to stretch things out to 3 or 4 carnival posts….and now I’m on 6 and still haven’t had the chance to write about all the blogs! That’s simply amazing! I’m glad I was wrong
Bourgie, Interrupted shows you exactly where to find a young feminist–that is, not in the limited spaces defined by the previous generation, but in her own personal world, making changes: “I’m a 28 year old feminist. No, I didn’t major in gender studies in college. I wasn’t a member of any feminist groups on campus. I didn’t join the Women’s Law Caucus in law school. I’ve never written a thesis on feminist theory. I haven’t even read many of the authors considered to be the pillars of feminist thought. Still, I feel it’s appropriate to declare myself a feminist because of my values, actions and beliefs.”
She also explicates some of the seeming contradictions that yuongfems aren’t afraid of: “I like pink things. I wear high heels and watch porn (not at the same time but there’s something to think about). I listen to rap music with misogynistic lyrics. I like when ladies get in free. On the flip side, I fight for reproductive justice every day. I advocate to end violence against women. I believe that the economic empowerment of women and girls worldwide is key to the success and wealth of every nation. I believe women shouldn’t be treated as second class simply because we’re women. I ignore pre-determined and defined gender roles. Most importantly, I am constantly trying to learn and evolve into a better person while challenging others to do the same. That means calling people out on their sexist, anti-homosexual, racist, classist, bullshit.” All I can say is, hell yes! One of my mentors wrote an article about this exact thing— that youngfems embrace contradictory positions as an expression of AGENCY. (Renegar & Sowards, 2009). Maybe youngfems love of shoes makes some older generations think we don’t take our liberation seriously, and maybe that’s why they “can’t find” any of us.
Foxy Roxy at Foxy By Nature tries to understand why youngfems aren’t acknowledged by the older generations in the feminist movement: “But feminism has evolved and I wonder if they all evolved with it and, if not, if that’s why they don’t see young feminists standing right beside them.”
Penny Girl Pearl shows us how she came to feminism through music, and how she redefines the term young feminist: “I am not young to the belief in feminism and how it has impacted my life but I am young in a sense that I have found my voice much later in life.” Also, Stevie Nicks is like, oh, so, totally feminist! Love her.
Plenty of Otherwise shares an all-too-familiar story: “A few months ago, I added my aunt as a friend on Facebook. She took issue with some of my more politically-charged posts, and showed them to my grandmother, who called my mom and urged her to intervene, lest I “turn into one of those smelly feminists.”” Part of calling yourself a feminist is dealing with the fact that many of our families are not supportive of us. Of course, many also are, I mean–so I’ve heard. My conservative parents are not thrilled with my feminism, and I refuse to add them on facebook or show them my blog because frankly, it’s not worth the arguments. I know that when I have a wedding, my parents are going to pitch a fit about the traditions that I personally don’t want to be a part of (e.g. dad walking me down the aisle, changing my name).
But what Amelia points out about the situation is something I’ve never thought about: “But my grandmother never called me. So we haven’t talked about it. And that brings me to this: It’s incredibly important for women of different generations to communicate with each other. And we’re not doing enough of that. And so now there are older women who believe that young feminists don’t exist.”
That is a great illustration of the feminist mantra that the personal is political. Reaching out to other generations can begin within our own families.
Well today has been FABULOUS folks, and I am taking some self-care time and signing off for the night. THANK YOU to all the bloggers and tweeters who posted and responded–I am so glad we raised our voices as youngfems! This weekend I will update the participating blog lists to add in those who posted. I hope this blog carnival has kicked off the conversation about young feminists around the blogosphere! No more will people be able to say we don’t exist!