Nicki Minaj. Beyonce. Emma Watson. Bel Hooks. Coco Chanel.
Powerful women who has made some type of success for themselves or even has left a mark on the career that they are in, correct? Absolutely. But, what do all of these women have in common? They are known as feminists, or women who believe in equality for everyone, including women.
However, what is feminism? According to Merriam-Webster, feminism is the belief that men and women should have equal rights and opportunities. From the period of when feminism began to now, there have been four waves of feminism.
The first wave began in the nineteenth and early twentieth century when women were not gaining that much respect or still being categorized in the traditional gender role as the type of women who needed to be in the homes, taking care of the children, providing for their husbands, and cooking + cleaning. However, there were many women who were taking a stand as being just known as objects and decided to fight for not only women’s rights, but also fighting for allowing many women to vote.
The second wave, however, started during the 1960’s and 1970’s when women were starting to now fight for discrimination against women, as well as fighting for reproductive rights and legal inequalities.
The third wave was started in the 1990’s when women were continuing to fight for respect, but incorporating many elements of cyberfeminism, girl power, anti-racism, and many other things during that time. In addition, many women were still being continued to seen as sexual objects.
In the fourth wave, it is still relating to the second wave of feminism, but in a new age. Now, we are in a wave of where women are still fighting for respect and equality for both men + women and women getting respect everywhere, including the workplace, school, or even in public.
Now, in today’s age, which would be considered the fourth wave, there are many women who are feminists and still trying to fight for the equality of both men + women.
But, in the media, the two women who are very popular is Nicki Minaj + Beyonce.
You may be thinking this questions: how are two women who “sexualize” themselves are known as feminists? Why are they feminists? How are they fighting for rights for both women + men when they dress, act, and talk a certain way?
This is why:
Nicki Minaj is a feminist because although yes she does dress and act in a way that is considered “un-lady like,” she is dominating in a male dominated industry. She is still fighting for respect for women everywhere, including in the rap game because women in that industry are still being treated as objects. Minaj is also a woman who puts on a short dress and high heels, but still demands respect from everyone, including men. Not to mention she inspires many women to become bosses and don’t have to take shit from anyone, including a man, to gain respect. This video is also a perfect example of why she is a feminist:
Beyonce is a perfect example of a feminist. (in a good way, of course) She gains respect by walking into a room and demanding that respect. In her career, as well as in the music industry, she has to work twice as hard as a man to really be able to walk into a studio or even go do a performance and demand a large amount of respect. In addition, she also fights for justice for equality for men + women everywhere, as well as both of her songs “Run The World (Girls)” and “Flawless,” in which a part of the song came from “We should all be feminists” delivered by Nigerian writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, who said that same speech at a TEDxEuston conference.
Why is feminism important, as well as women being feminists not a bad thing? It means that women who demand respect aren’t going to allow anyone, including a man, make them successful. Just because a woman is a feminist does not mean that she is a lesbian or she is a “bitch.” It just means that she, the woman, is only walking into a room and handling her business and trying to be as successful as she can.
A woman who holds her own and works hard for what she really wants and makes her own money, as well as still trying to gain a certain amount of respect? Now that, ladies and gentlemen, that is a woman of power.
Now, who run the world? GIRLS.