“Intersectionality” is a term you may have heard being tossed around recently; it certainly has been a buzzword in the feminist realm. But what does it really mean to be an intersectional feminist? To understand intersectionality, specifically under the lens of feminism, one must understand that women experience varying degrees of oppression based on the different “intersections” they live at and identify with, whether that include race, class, religion, sexual orientation, or other key aspects of one’s self.
An episode called “Intersectional Feminism 101” from the “Stuff Mom Never Told You” podcast further explains that “cultural patterns of oppression are not only interrelated but are bound together and influenced by the intersectional systems of society.” This means that an intersectional feminist would not only advocate for women’s rights and equality between the sexes, but would understand how the various aspects of a woman’s identity have a direct correlation with the way she personally experiences oppression. The dismissal of this notion by “white feminists” has resulted in a detachment to feminism in certain oppressed groups who live at various intersections, as they have not felt throughout history that the feminist movements supported minorities.
The Time’s Up movement has thus far demonstrated its support to the larger scale of survivors that it aims to empower. In a statement of solidarity published on January 1st by the Time’s Up movement, it states: “…we seek equal representation, opportunities, benefits and pay for all women workers, not to mention greater representation of women of colour, immigrant women, disabled women, and lesbian, bisexual, and transgender women, whose experience in the workforce are often significantly worse than their white, cisgender, straight peers.” This integration of intersectionality is a necessary approach when it comes to this next wave of more inclusive feminism.
The Time’s up and #MeToo movements also touch on a crucial element of feminism: the recognition of male survivors of sexual aggressions. It is vital to understand that this new wave of feminism has the goal to advocate for anyone suffering from inequality. It’s 2018 and it’s about damn time we recognize women as human beings and put an end to aggressions!
For all these reasons and so many more, we have created the Dawson Feminism Union: a club with the aim to spread feminism through the Dawson community. It is open to anyone who wishes to discuss feminism and fight for equality. Our first meeting will be announced shortly.
Join the Dawson Feminism Union Facebook Group to find out about upcoming events!