#105: Feminist

Happy International Women’s day! I made it in just under the wire.

This comic was inspired by an awesome Twitter conversation I had with @annetdonahue and @_unicorntears_ today. We remembered our years of saying, “Oh, but I don’t like those extreme feminists” and “I think men and women should be equal but I wouldn’t call myself a feminist.”

“Feminist” isn’t a bad word. Accept it, already! It’s an awesome thing!

On a less serious note, don’t forget to check out this week’s Twice Shy comic!

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15 Responses to #105: Feminist

  1. Lisa says:

    I generally like your comic, but “feminist” is an identity that you can’t force on anyone. I am a trans woman, and I call myself a feminist, but only to be understood without longwinded explanation. In general, I would rather not identify with many feminists. There are other trans woman who support equal rights for all genders, but refuse to call themselves feminists due to the discrimination they’ve faced at the hands of feminists, such as those who attend michfest.

    • Ariadne says:

      hear, hear. And that discrimination from so-called “feminists” extends beyond the trans community (not to lessen your experience, but to expand the circle of discussion) — the hatred a friend of mine received from “feminists” after getting a college degree and CHOOSING then to become a stay-at-home mother, those extremists who do indeed believe that the only purpose for men is to donate sperm to create more women, etc.

      Kat, perhaps what needs to be accepted is that there are indeed people who believe in equal rights, but not in the connotations associated with the modern feminist movement. Why are you so adamant that we accept YOUR labels?

      • aktettenborn says:

        It’s not my label. It’s the dictionary’s.

        feminist (ˈfɛmɪnɪst)
        — n
        a person who advocates equal rights for women

        I obviously can’t speak to your experience, but there are plenty of “feminists” (yes, I agree with your ironic quotation marks) who are actually just assholes. Feminism isn’t about bringing men down so women can lord above them, and it’s not about criticizing women’s choices; anyone who thinks this isn’t a feminist, even if they call themselves one.

      • Ariadne says:

        There’s a reason a chose the word connotation, rather than denotation. Your dictionary definition is a lovely denotation, but as with so many words in the English language, the “meaning” of feminist for many has shifted.

      • Lisa says:

        I agree completely with your expansion. The true meaning of a word does not exist in the dictionary, but in the minds of people speaking and hearing the word. Although the dictionary says that a feminist is “a person who advocates equal rights for women,” as long as the people using the word understand feminist to mean something different – as someone who has some of these other prejudices, that IS what feminist means, because that is how the word is being used. Language is fluid, and dictionaries are always playing catch up.

      • aktettenborn says:

        Which is exactly why I made the comic.

        And I can call myself a unicorn all I want; I’m not actually a unicorn.

      • Lisa says:

        Yes, you CAN call yourself a unicorn, all you want, and I will not disagree. You CANNOT tell me that I have to call myself a unicorn. Only I can say who I am.

  2. Clem says:

    I’m a guy, and not at all afraid to say I’m a feminist! :D

  3. swankybanana says:

    I always thought of “feminist” as an ugly word. Well, that is, until people tried to treat me differently than the boys. Then I realized it wasn’t an ugly word, but a basic right of self respect.

    In response to the people who are so upset about “labels”, sorry ladies, but just because some militant feminists are psychos, doesn’t mean you aren’t/can’t be/shouldn’t be a feminist. Like AK pointed out, it’s a definition from the dictionary, not really up for much debate. There will always be militant extremists in any group, and just because they may earn the group a bad name, doesn’t mean that that is the reality of the group’s point of views, or that even that the whole group has the same point of views.

    Last of all, just to point it out, being angry a woman chooses to stay home after school….well, that isn’t feminism, period. I’m sorry you/your friends had that experience. These are exactly the scenarios that made me become a proud feminist, because women’s rights to equality inlcude the right to choose your own life path. As a woman, and a feminist, I have the right to be ANYONE I want, not just a power woman.

    Kat, I friggin love your comic. :) You helped inspire me to be the proud proud feminist I am today!

  4. Katie says:

    Fantastic comic!
    happy international women’s day from a fellow feminist :)

  5. Paul says:

    I just got into a way-too-longwinded “internet debate” regarding men within the feminist label (over here… I’m the guy with the Liz Prince comic as my user icon [alovesupreme]). Normally I try to not have debates online at all, but this particular dude was being very adamant (and a little arrogant) that men should not identify as feminists. The funny thing was every person who identified as a female in that discussion encouraged him to consider himself a feminist.
    This was a nice comic to see after that whole situation.

  6. Pingback: why are people frightened of being feminists? - CurlTalk

  7. Brooke says:

    Does anyone else realize this is a webcomic? It’s something Kat does for fun and something we read for fun. No one cares about anyone else’s opinion on this thing. Shut your traps and enjoy the funny webcomic.

    • Lisa says:

      If someone made a comic saying that it was okay to call a person of colour the N word because that’s how the dictionary defines it, I would complain. This is of a similar nature, and I will complain, because it is not okay.

      • aktettenborn says:

        And on that extremely offensive (and unnecessary) note, I’ll be disabling comments.

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