With a seeming war being waged against the modern feminist movement, sometimes it helps to be reminded what we are fighting for. Like, for instance, quotes about feminism everyone needs to hear. Because the wise words of the women who have waged this battle before us and who are forging ahead with the good fight as we speak have the power to embolden us. These people have stood on the frontlines and know the unique burden we carry: to campaign for the equal rights of all genders, yet being largely demonized for doing so.
It's a strange thing, huh? It's not as though feminism is making outlandish requests. Women have held the right to vote for less than 100 years — of course there is still work to be done to ensure that women enjoy all of the same fundamental rights as men (and that everyone has the same rights as everyone else, for that matter, regardless of gender, gender identity, race, sexual preferenace, and countless other characteristics). Alas, there is a stigma surrounding modern feminism in Western culture that makes it difficult for feminists to break through the misconceptions and make progress.
The next time you start to feel doubt creeping in, take a look at the following quotes about feminism. Everyone stands to be empowered by these words of truth and wisdom from fellow feminists.
"We cannot all succeed when half of us are held back." — Malala Yousafzai
"Why do we have to take a backseat [to men]? … Let’s face it, money gives men the power to run the show. It gives men the power to define value. They define what’s sexy. And men define what’s feminine. It’s ridiculous." — Beyonce
"Though we have the courage to raise our daughters more like our sons, we've rarely had the courage to raise our sons like our daughters." — Gloria Steinem
"I am not free while any woman is unfree, even when her shackles are very different from my own." — Audre Lorde
"The fallacy in Hollywood is that if you’re making a ‘feminist’ story, the woman kicks ass and wins. That’s not feminist; that’s macho. A movie about a weak, vulnerable woman can be feminist if it shows a real person that we can empathize with." — Natalie Portman
"Feminism isn't about making women stronger. Women are already strong. It's about changing the way the world perceives that strength." — G.D. Anderson
"My idea of feminism is self-determination, and it’s very open-ended: every woman has the right to become herself, and do whatever she needs to do." — Ani DiFranco
"The day will come when men will recognize woman as his peer, not only at the fireside, but in councils of the nation. Then, and not until then, will there be the perfect comradeship, the ideal union between the sexes that shall result in the highest development of the race." — Susan B. Anthony
"It's important to remember that feminism is no longer a group of organizations or leaders. It's the expectations that parents have for their daughters, and their sons, too. It's the way we talk about and treat one another. It's who makes the money and who makes the compromises and who makes the dinner. It's a state of mind. It's the way we live now." — Anna Quindlen
This Thing That Will Absolutely Infuriate You:
"Feminism was established so as to allow unattractive women access to the mainstream of society." — Rush Limbaugh
Definitely infuriating. But that's the point. Go forth, proud feminists, and fight the evils of misogyny (and Rush Limbaughs, er, misogynists) in the world. If equality existed, there wouldn't be a space for vacuous comments like this one. Women and men should have equal rights. End of story.