Feminist: a person who believes in the social, political and economic equality of the sexes
What is your definition of feminism? Can men be feminists? One of them told me no because it’s just the way life is. Like what gender has conformed each man and woman to do cannot be reversed. Don’t you agree that it is the high time we raised both boys and girls differently? That indeed there is a problem with gender? Who agrees with me? Or more so Ngozi?
In this short vintage book Chimamanda was first ridiculed as a child to be a feminist but she bragged it off till she wrote the purple hibiscus book where shades of feminism revolved her. She takes a reader through a unique setting of why we should be feminists. So, she thought?
- She couldn’t become a class monitor back in school since the teacher told her that role was preserved for the boys
- The parking assistant thanked the man she was with when she gave him money instead of thanking her all because he thought the man must have been the provider
- The waiters in hotels did not say hi to her but to the man who had accompanied her
- In bars and clubs she was denied access since she was alone and she needed to be with the company of a man for her to be checked in
- Back in the day a woman and man would do the same task but the man got the higher pay
- Most of the positions of power and prestige were occupied by men
Flash forward, she takes us through today’s society on how our upbringings can diminish oneself. For instances:
- women are taught on how to be likable, to attract men and they should worry about how men think of them but who teaches the boy child on been likable and how to please girls?
- We teach men of masculinity and put them in the hard cage but on the other hand the girl is taught she cannot be aggressive, angry and tough!
- We teach the girls to shrink herself and if she is the breadwinner she should pretend not to be one since she will emasculate the man
- at a certain age in life if am not married and am a girl that is one deep personal failure but the boy can take his time since it is said he hasn’t found his pick yet
- if we have sons we don’t want to know who their girlfriends are but we sure want to know who your daughters are dating since they are alerted not to be sexual beings
- We praise girls for virginity but we don’t praise boys for keeping their virginity
Gender prescribes how we should be rather than recognizing how we are. True or false? Today things have changed due to laws and policies in place but what really matters is our mindset and attitude. Our ideas have evolved but not that of gender. We must do it differently, much better and all of us.
Ps: I laughed about this part where she kept telling her friends who she is “i am a happy African Feminist who does not hate men and who likes to wear lip gloss and high heels for herself and not for men.”