FEMENISM or MALE-BASHING? – The thin line in between

“The history of men’s opposition to women’s emancipation is perhaps more interesting than the history of emancipation itself”

Virginia Woolf

If we are asked what kind of society we live in, inevitably most people will agree that we live in a patriarchal society.

Our society mostly comprises men and women.

Is our society pragmatic?

Yes. Probably…

Are men and women in our society judged as equal?

The simple answer is no.

Women had to wrestle with society and drop blood, sweat, and tears to gain the freedom they enjoy today. But in a third-world country like ours, it is not always possible to enjoy that freedom. Women suffer in silence as loads of misogynists tend to squeeze the breath out of them.

Therefore the woman who is suffering inevitably gets angry. She either spirals into the dome of insanity or starts male-bashing.

Feminism is about equality

Male bashing is passive-aggressive behavior from the side of the sufferer.

What Is Feminism?

Feminism is a concept that believes in the social, economical, and political equality of sexes.

The proper feminism movement mostly originated in the Western world around the 18th century. But later the theory was distributed throughout the world and a major movement started to manifest.

“We are equal to our male counterparts”

women of the world

History Of Feminism

Throughout the history of the Western world ( including the Eastern world), women were confined indoors doing household chores and taking care of children while their male counterparts were the bread earners.

Women did not have the right to work except a Governess, which is a fancy term for a nanny. And if somebody was very lucky they were able to do clerical work.

They were not able to study in school as there was no school for women. They had to wear a veil or barrette to ‘cover’ themselves from the male gaze.

Above all, they did not have ownership of their property or asset. The male in the family was supposed to be the heir. Even if for some reason the woman was an heir she was betrothed to a man who became the owner of the property she had in her name.

She did not even have the right to her children. In the case of separation, the father owned the children.

Women were nothing but an object for the male to satisfy their need.

In the 2020 film, the movie adaptation of “Little Women”, we see Saoirse Ronan or Jo who was a writer is constantly being asked by the publisher about her husband.

They society could not believe a woman could survive without a man.

Some or most of them still don’t.

Irrespective of that change had to come.

The history of feminism goes as far back as the 3rd century BCE where Roman women blocked the entrance of Capitoline Hill because a consul tried to instill a law that would have prevented women from using luxurious goods.

“As soon as they begin to be your equals, they will have become your superiors.”

Cato

After that, in the Renaissance period more women came forward and talked about their uncomfortable dresses chosen by men and they spoke up about their intellectual equality which is the right to schooling or Education.

They also wanted to choose whom they would marry. So that they can have a proper and stable relationship where both had an equal partnership in life.

Now the important part is human rights.

The Renaissance movement was just an eyeopener for women who did not realize what they’d be exempted from. It was also an eye-opener for men who realized what women were capable of.

So obviously they were scared and resorted to suppress them by not giving them citizenship rights.

That means women could not vote.

This was not in the case of India though. After the freedom from the shackles of colonial rights, in 1950 the women’s suffrage in India granted all women citizen voting rights.

The suffrage movement in the Western world still had a long way to go.  

In the 19th century there came Radical feminism was more female rights centric and fierce. Women supporting these refused to go by society’s rules and regulations and their sole motto was to get out the mindset call “Domestic mythology”.

After a long battle with the male-dominated society, they were finally recognized as a citizen and were given the right to vote. It did not happen everywhere all at once but gradually it took place everywhere.

The Blurring Line Between Feminism And Male Bashing

“Mansplaining”

“Manspreading”

“Manosphere”

Does any of these words sound familiar to you? Then my friend you have entered the circle of hardcore ‘feminists’.

Even these hardcore feminists are bashed by both men and women as ‘feminazi’.

But why do some women forget the motto of equality and resort to male-bashing?

Till now in this article, we saw how women had to fight with clenched teeth to get their basic rights in the first place. Still, women are not paid the same wages as men in work at various places in the world.

So some woman does have the right to get angry.

But should they resort to male-bashing?

Well, it is a personal choice.

In India where violence on women is at a peak, it is natural many women may resort to male-bashing. When the Nirbhaya incident happened, you cannot deny you were scared of every male person and hated them to the core. At least I was and it took some time to let go.

Male bashing is not practicing feminism. It is rather a bi-product of toxic masculinity.

Indian men are often made to be believed by their mothers that they are superior to others, especially women. With this belief, they grow up but when they enter the professional arena, they realize there are plenty of women who are better than them.

He feels insecure.

Moreover, he had always been encouraged not to show any emotions.

So, the cumulative effect is the perverted expression of emotions at home, at the workplace, or anywhere in the world.

Note: Not all men are like this because they have sensible parents.

I believe this is the main cause of male-bashing.

If boys can grow freely without the comparison then real equality will prevail and no -ism will be needed then.

Conclusion

In this modern era of social media where we are always connected, it is easy to create a new movement every day.

Feminism is now an ultra-active movement than ever since celebrities and politicians are joining and have a say regarding the topic. Everybody has a say on this topic nowadays.

Even when in the 19th-century Fashion Designer Coco Chanel relieved women from the Victorian gowns and adorned them with A-line skirts and tweed jackets, people had a lot to say. A woman has a lot to say about a woman.

The objective is to coexist peacefully without bashing each other.

As a popular actor and feminist Emma Watson said,

“Here’s what I think, feminism is not here to dictate you. It’s not prescriptive, it’s not dogmatic. All we are here to do is give you a choice.”

If you discard male-bashing, then women empowerment is one step away.

Its always one choice away.