It’s always so important to continuously educate ourselves on topics like feminism, which works towards ensuring equal rights as well as opportunities for women. Here are some pointers to help raise awareness on various aspects of feminism and how to make it more inclusive, intersectional, and international.
Learn to unlearn
Feminism isn’t a one-size-fits-all type of thing. During most discussions about gender equality, the focus is usually on white, heterosexual women, excluding women of different ethnicities, sexualities, and abilities. Therefore, we cannot assume that what we know about feminism applies to all women equally. We need to unlearn certain assumptions we may have and reflect on being inclusive towards women with different backgrounds.
Read books and listen to podcasts
Books can be incredibly educating and interesting. Feminist literature is so vast, you can choose what best suits you – autobiographies, essays, nonfiction. And make sure you don’t only read from white, heterosexual women but get an international perspective. Podcasts are also a great platform to educate yourself. Why not go ahead and download a few to listen to while travelling?
Listen when other people speak
Aside from simple politeness, chances are you’ll learn something new when you let women with other experiences speak. You may see that when white women try to speak for everyone, they may not be aware or conscious of other issues effecting women from different backgrounds or ethnicities. So be sure to listen when other people have something to say to broaden your perspective.
Follow feminist accounts on social media
By following a few accounts about inclusive feminism and intersectionality on social media, you can easily learn more every day! Try to make the accounts you follow diversified and international, so you can listen to other perspectives.
Respect someone’s preferred pronouns
Of course, you can’t ask the preferred pronouns of every single person you meet, but if you’re in doubt, just ask! And if someone tells you to use certain pronouns make sure to use them, as it is a way of promoting equity and inclusion for transgender and genderqueer people.
Educate yourself about the issues women face around the world
Unequal access to education, child marriage, female genital mutilation, China’s one-child policy leading to infanticide of countless baby girls as well as forced sterilizations of many Chinese women… The struggles women face abroad are many. If we want to make our feminism more international, we can’t remain ignorant and have to educate ourselves on these topics.
Look into the history of women of colour
Women are traditionally left out of the history books. Especially women of colour have had their achievements attributed to men or go unrecognised. You can pick up a book about the history of women of colour, or read an article online, or watch videos about it… There is a lot of different ways to educate yourself.
Use your voice
It’s not your job to explain feminism to anyone but taking the time to be vocal about women’s rights issues can go a long way towards achieving gender equality. Encouraging men to support women’s rights, discussing feminism with your friends, or using a platform available to you in order to spread awareness… If you want to, you can do a lot, and your voice matters.
If donation is an option for you, consider giving money or time to an organization supporting women’s rights locally or internationally.
We hope those points on how to be more informed about various aspects of Feminism have inspired you! During the Malta Sustainability Forum we organised a module titled ‘Women’, if you would like to view the session please click here
Hughes Maciver, How to educate yourself on Feminism, https://blog.mozilla.org/en/internet-culture/deep-dives/digital-carbon-footprint/ [Accessed 23 August 2021].
Enoche, 2015, How To Make Your Feminism More International, https://www.bustle.com/articles/120492-5-ways-to-make-your-feminism-more-international [Accessed 23 August 2021].
Castile, 2016, 11 Little Ways To Be An Intersectional Feminist, https://www.bustle.com/articles/148822-11-little-ways-to-make-your-feminism-more-intersectional [Accessed 23 August 2021].
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