Feminism is a general term used to describe a very broad and complex ideology. There are lots of different feminist theories and approaches, as well as several different types of feminists. The most straightforward meaning however describes it as ‘a movement advocating the rights of women and of their social, political and economic equality with men’ (Roger Scruton). Feminism views the personal experiences of women and men through gender – gender identity (how people think of themselves), gender roles (how people act), and gender stratification (each sex’s social standing) are all rooted in the operation of society.
Although feminists are united by their common desire for sexual justice and their concern for women’s welfare, there is a wide spectrum of ‘feminisms’ (Ann Oakley). These can be divided into four broad groups, liberal, radical, Marxist/socialist and Black. This essay will only however look at the former two in more detail.
Those who consider themselves to be feminists disagree about many things (this mainly depends on which of variants they fall into); most feminists usually support some general principles however: ‘All the varieties of feminism contain at their heart a paradox – requiring gender consciousness for their basis, their political rallying cry is the elimination of gender roles.’ The importance of change is obviously paramount in feminist thinking as feminism is definitely political since it links ideas to action. Feminism is critical of status quo, and promotes social equality for women and men. ...Show more