Is The Feminist Movement Trapped Behind Our Screens?
Start writing a post
Politics and Activism

Is The Feminist Movement Trapped Behind Our Screens?

Discussing feminism in the digital age.

205
Is The Feminist Movement Trapped Behind Our Screens?
This.org

Is the feminist movement trapped behind our screens? I started to wonder this after I came across an article discussing this idea. Author Rebecca Traister writes, "Feminist Internet discourse doesn’t do much for me, no matter how robust it may be or how much money it gins up for the people and causes that happen to have gone viral on any particular day. People talk—and talk— about everything on the Internet, but that doesn’t mean the talk changes anything". So, is the feminist movement doomed to lose momentum if most of the action we are taking is through hashtags? Can progress happen if the conversation is mostly being discussed digitally? Here are my thoughts on the matter and my somewhat comprehensive answers to these questions.

I came to first really understand and gain knowledge about the feminist movement through the Internet. My defining moment of calling myself a feminist was after I watched Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s beautiful speech, “We Should all be Feminists”, online. I learned more about my feminist icons through Google searches. But does my feminist identity begin and end online? Most of the fighting I do for the gender equality movement is through Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr. Is that enough?

During my senior year of high school, I was hesitant to wear a shirt with the word “feminist” sprawled across the chest. I was worried about the judgmental looks I would get for wearing it, since the gender equality movement was unfortunately misunderstood there. Untrue tales of bra-burning, men-hating feminists were whispered through the halls. But I was not hesitant to retweet a link to Emma Watson’s HeforShe speech the night before. Why? My feminist beliefs are not just an online gimmick that I should be afraid to share with the world. I am a feminist, I am proud to be one and my feminist identity should not just exist on the Internet.

I wore the shirt.

Fighting for gender equality outside of the screen does not just mean wearing shirts, either. There are conversations to be started, ideas to be shared, minds to be changed, progress to be had, people to stand up for and events to be planned in the real world. Not to say that the progress being made online is not real. It very much is. The Internet has helped this new wave of feminism thrive. There are many resources for women of all ages online that promote the feminist message. But we as a society must not trap the feminist movement behind our computers and phones. Let us use the power of the Internet to leverage our voice and power. We can cover double the ground, we can share our beliefs to double the number of people and we can add double a number of voices to our fight.

Allow me to answer the questions presented at the beginning of the article. Is the feminist movement trapped behind our screens? It surely exists behind our screens, which is a good thing, but I do not believe it only exists there.

Is the feminist movement doomed to lose momentum if most of the action we are taking is through hashtags? No, the hashtags have power. There have been many important hashtags that have trended on Twitter in the recent years. #AskHerMore promoted the media to ask women questions other than ones regarding their appearance during Hollywood’s red carpet season. #EffYourBeautyStandards was started by plus-sized model Tess Holliday to promote body positivity. #EverydaySexism was started by Laura Bates, the founder of The Everyday Sexism Project to show the subtle ways women encounter sexism. These hashtags and many others enable ideas to be shared, which is important to any social movement. I believe online force can translate into outside force.

Can progress happen if the conversation is mostly being discussed digitally? Absolutely. The Internet allows conversations to be started, which is where all progress starts. The Internet allows voices to be heard that would be quieted without it. Jessica Valenti, founder of the blog Feministing, said, “Social media is not just another way to connect feminist and activist voices - it amplifies our messages as well”.

I actively advocate feminist change online but strive to do more in reality. My goal as a feminist from here on is to equally spread the word and make change digitally and in the real world.

I believe the digital age and the feminist movement can make monumental progress when put hand in hand.

So keep on posting, sharing and reblogging, my feminist friends. But let’s not let the fighting end there.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Sports

The Gift Of Basketball

The NBA playoffs remind me of my basketball journey through time

1135
Syracuse Basketball

I remember that when I was very little, my dad played in an adult basketball league, and I remember cheering him on with everything in me. I also remember going to Tuscola basketball games when the old floor was still there and the bleachers were still wooden. I remember always wanting to play basketball like my dad, and that's just what I did.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

Plus Size Appreciation: How I Learned To Love My Body

Because it is okay to not be "skinny."

2660
www.hm.com

In America, we tend to stick up our noses at certain things that aren't the norm. For example, people who are overweight, or the politically correct term “obese." Men and women who are overweight get so much backlash because they are not skinny or "in shape," especially, African-American women, who are typically known for having wider hips and thicker thighs. Robert Darryl, an African-American filmmaker, explains the overall intention of the body mass index in his follow-up sequel, “America the Beautiful 2: The Thin Commandments."

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

It's More Than Just A Month

Mental Awareness reminds you that it's always darkest before the dawn.

3888
Wordpress
Odyssey recognizes that mental well-being is a huge component of physical wellness. Our mission this month is to bring about awareness & normality to conversations around mental health from our community. Let's recognize the common symptoms and encourage the help needed without judgement or prejudice. Life's a tough journey, we are here for you and want to hear from you.

As the month of May begins, so does Mental Health Awareness Month. Anxiety, depression, bipolar mood disorder, eating disorders, and more affect millions of people in the United States alone every year. Out of those affected, only about one half seek some form of treatment.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

Pop Culture Needs More Plus Size Protagonists

When almost 70% of American women are a size 14 or bigger, movies like Dumplin' are ridiculously important, while movies like I Feel Pretty just feel ridiculous.

6361
Dumplin'

For as long as I can remember, I've been fat. The protagonists in the movies I've watched and the books I've read, however, have not been. . .

Keep Reading... Show less
How I Met My Best Friends In College

Quarantine inspired me to write about my freshman year to keep it positive and focus on all the good things I was able to experience this year! In this article, I will be talking about how I was able to make such amazing friends by simply putting myself out there and trying new things.

Keep Reading... Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments