What is the Philosophy of Feminism?
Feminist Philosophy, the term has two parts, and each piece has a meaning of its own. So there are two meanings to the term, and both may overlap each other, the applications differ. In the twenty-first century, what feminism means and how is it misunderstood more than often, is a highly debatable topic. Usually, the attempts to describe feminism arise as responses to criticisms or dismissals of feminism being man-hating, angry and irrational. The term feminism is so extensively controversial and ridiculed that people determinedly conclude that they are not feminists, in spite of adapting views and values, what others might consider feminist.
Feminism is retaliation to the norms of the Patriarchal Social Structure
So, the main question arises that what is feminism all about and why the fuss about it. Feminism stands for equality. Equality is the demand and right, not only for the women but for the people irrespective of their gender, caste, creed, religion, sexuality, ability, nationality, class, age or race, also.
When one studies feminism from a sociological point of view, all the above concerns become more prominent and shed light on the light on the same. When viewing feminism from a sociological perspective, one can see that feminism is all about bringing in a change to the patriarchal strata of the society. The aim of the criticisms of a feminist is towards the social system, which are the designs of the men and who benefit the most from it. The design of the social order by men is the result of manoeuvring by the gender-specific worldly views and experiences, and this design is as such to privilege only the values and experiences, that too, at the cost of the others.
Who the men are may vary from place to place, in terms of their race or class, and that is not the primary concern here. But, in terms of global world views, especially taking in considerations the Western Nations of the world, the men in power in history are heterosexual, cisgender, white and wealthy. The men in power dictate the operations of the society and their determinations are based on interests, perspectives and experiences which do not lead to the creations of unjust and unequal systems.
Fringing the male perspective is what feminism is all about
Inside the discipline of social sciences, the developing of perspectives and theories which are feminist is always about shifting the focus from the privileges of the white male view perspectives and questioning their framing of the social problems and their approaches towards studying them, rather than how the study should be and what are the conclusions drawn. And, feminism only tries to come to a solution and an end about the same as a society. The discipline such as philosophy and social science begins by banning the assumptions which are the derivations from the views of a specific standing point of privileged white men. This calls for a reconfiguration of social sciences and other disciplines not to favour men but calls for fringing of the concept of white, middle and upper class of strata of the society, Heterosexuality, ability and the various other elements which are prominent insights in creating a community which tackles inequality and encourages equality by including it in the organisation.
Feminism is not only about Gender
Viewing feminism in this approach that it is not about gender is an identification of the systems of the power and privilege and those of oppression, all work side by side, converge and depend upon each other. This approach is by Patricia Hill Collins, who is one of the most accomplishes and an eminent American Sociologists, who are alive today, address this notion as viewing the world and the people as intersectional. The approach is in the middle of feminism today, as an understanding of the intersectionality is primary to understanding the fight of inequality.
Living the reality of the fact, Collins’s further illumination on the concept is the fact which makes nationality, class, sexuality, race and ability amongst many other necessary things to include in the perspective of a feminist. As one is never only a simple woman or a man: the experiences, perspectives, life chances and values is what on a particular note defines an individual and the operations within the other social constructions which have exceedingly genuine outcomes.
Then what is feminism all about on the literal plane?
So, by now, it is clear what is the fuss all about feminism and why there are so many controversies revolving around the understanding of the topic. Feminism is gravely misunderstood by most of the people of the society, and our high profile celebrities are also not far away from having avoiding themselves from being called feminists. In an interview, in 2012, Taylor Swift, carefully avoided herself calling a feminist and supporting feminism. But, later in 2014, she came forward and clarified the fact that she considers herself as a supporter of feminism and is a feminist. She further stated that she earlier comments in the 2012 interview on feminism were because of her misunderstanding of the concept and the term of feminism. It is an indication that many separate themselves from feminism only because they do not understand the idea or the term feminism. It is because they have some considerable misunderstanding and misconception of what feminism is all about and what it means in reality.
But, in spite of all the chaos and mayhem, the real question remains unsolved. What are the fundamentals of feminism? And, like the question, the answer is also very simple and straightforward. When we use the term feminism, it is all about fighting for equality in all terms and in all forms which include xenophobia, heterosexism, homophobia, global corporate colonialism, racism, classism and the most obvious one being the relentless pre-existing problem of sexism. Feminism is surely everything about challenging these concerns and issues on the global platform and not only within our colonies, countries, communities or societies. Feminism and the fight for inequality must operate on a worldwide scale since we all have mutual connections globally because of the systems of governance and economy. And, because of this shared connection, power, privilege and inequality operate worldwide.
Author: Frank Taylor