Monday, September 26, 2011

Question of the Week: What (Who) is a Feminist?

In response to last week's post, "Confessions of a Child Feminist," Brett wrote the following comment:

"This is a funny title for me: I don't claim it, but others apply it to me. The first time I was called a feminist was by an ex-girlfriend's mother, who apparently thought some of my blog posts were very interesting. I know there's no litmus test required here, but what does the word feminist even mean?"

I'm not sure I'd ever considered what "feminist" means, in light of NAW's commitment to avoid litmus tests. Obviously, we don't want to be prescriptive around here. The contributors often disagree - you have a Mormon feminist like me, who thinks eliminating pornography and sex work would go a long way toward creating a more equal world; and alongside my feminism, you've got a bi-sexual, Catholic feminist like Erica, who believes that sex work and pornography can empower women. We have radically different views in that area, but we get along.

So, I'm going to throw this question back at our readers: what does the word feminist mean to you? Does it have a plurality of meanings that change depending on context, or do you have one steady, constant definition?

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