Vulgar Feminism- Do we need to be ‘vulgar’ to be equal?

On my daily journey through the internet for my day job as a social media manager, I come across a lot of things that evoke emotion in me. From cat videos that make me laugh, to political options or human actions that offend or shock me, I see it all on a daily basis and have considered myself to be quite jaded to what the world has to say.

However, every now and again, something will catch my eye and last week, it was an article that talked about modern day feminism. My personal relationship with feminism is quite a disconnected one, and I very rarely have an opinion on it but one word within the title of this article pulled me in.

Vulgar.

Search for vulgar feminism online and you get a very hazy view of what it might be, however it appears to be a new wave of women that are rejecting the standard ideas of feminism all together. Women that have no opinion or interest in the feminist movement. And it appears, that now people have started to write about it, it is something that is growing in numbers enough to get noticed

Celebrity names such as Courtney Love and even Lana Del Ray are mentioned as women that idolise the ideas of vulgar feminism. Lana Del Ray herself has said on various occasions that she is not interested in the feminist movement and has come under fire for it, but why is this something that people are so angry about?

Why, just because you are a woman, are you expected to be a feminist of some kind? And why, if you don’t have an opinion on woman’s rights, are you suddenly vulgar and open to attack? I know that there have been a few occasions where I have been attacked by other women for stating that I don’t see myself as a feminist. That I am an awful woman for not fighting the cause with the rest of them.

I don’t see myself as a feminist, but then again, I have never encountered a situation in my life where I have been made to feel unequal because of my sex. I earn more than most of the men in my office and always have. I have always been able to not only hold my own in a room full of men, but challenge them in both intellect and conversation and I don’t remember a time where a man has ever tried to make me feel less of a person based on my gender.

It is hard to feel that you need to fight for something when you’ve never experienced the pitfalls of it for yourself. I am also very aware that I am incredibly lucky and that women all over the world are still struggling to have a voice or even have the same basic opportunities that I have had such as an education. I am very happy that there are women out there that feel so strongly about it that they are helping to raise awareness and actively fight for women’s rights every day and I am humbled and grateful for those women that fought for the rights that I have today that give me the life that I have.

I also wouldn’t say that I am a vulgar feminist either though, and do not reject the idea of it completely; I’m somewhere in this grey area of feminism, but I can kind of understand why more and more young women seem to be losing interest in it.

We see successful women in the media every day. We see our mothers with careers rather than having to choose between a family and a job.

Beyoncé sings about how empowered we are through our iPods and we see articles about how women are topping the highest earner lists year in year out, so it must be very hard for young girls in this country at least, to see why there is still a need for feminism or room for it in their lives.

There are still articles being written about the other side of it all too; female celebrities fighting back on the red carpet when asked about their children or their outfit over their professional accomplishments, however if you ask young girls about this they just kind of laugh and shrug it off.

Does this mean that feminism is reaching a tipping point? That young girls no longer feel that they have to fight for equal rights because they are now growing up in a world where they don’t experience the same sexist inequality that say our mothers and grandmothers did?

Or have we got a generation of young girls following behind us that can’t be bothered anymore?

I would love to hear your opinion on ‘vulgar feminism’ and your thoughts on feminism as a whole so please comment below

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8 thoughts on “Vulgar Feminism- Do we need to be ‘vulgar’ to be equal?

  1. I think feminism is still important. There are still inequalities in our society. But I understand why you might question the need for it. For me, I began to see the need for it when I realised that I never see women walking alone in the countryside. The threat of rape seems to be something that limits women’s movements about the world. Also, it seems like there is a certain pressure on women NOT to age, which men don’t have, and I just think, wtf? Women are also under-represented in many industries: how many female film directors can you name?

      1. This is a good point. But men must be reinforcing this behaviour: think of all those actors with wives half their age.

  2. This is a very interesting take on feminism. I personally think there are subtleties in our society which still limit or impact women, although they may be less apparent than issues faced by women on a global scale. I also believe the feminist movement is just as important for men as it is for women because the main outcome it seeks is equality, and there are plenty of areas where men face inequality too.

    I think the reason that a similar movement for men has not been created is due to the very social barriers that prevent men from discussing such topics. They cannot fight for the right to express themselves emotionally because such a fight would have to begin with the expression of feelings.

    I feel that feminism therefore, inherently seeks equality. Of course, those who disagree with me may have a different interpretation of it or maybe just have a different opinion on what equality itself is. To me, equality here means that everyone feels comfortable and unrestricted by gender stereotypes.

    On that train of thought , I guess the vulgar can continue to be vulgar and those who aren’t can be themselves too – ultimately its personal preference really, but it doesn’t have to be gender dependent. Ultimately I feel the goal of feminism is to free everyone so that we don’t feel repressed or bound by unwritten rules.

    Thanks for such an insightful article too, the third wave of feminism really gets you thinking 😛

  3. I sure hope not. But part of re-education is making the vulgar commonplace—therefore “normal”. Something to do with “enforcing” relative, situational ethics and values—easier to control the masses that way!

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