Yesterday Emma Watson was in New York City to give a speech on gender equality to the United Nations as the UN Women’s Goodwill Ambassador. It’s part of a new online gender equality campaign called HeForShe, which, as The Daily Dot notes, aims to “galvanize as many men and boys as possible to be advocates for gender equality.” The goal, in a phrase, is to abolish the “us vs. them” attitude that all-too-often happens when we talk about gender issues.
Part of her speech focuses on how “feminism” has become a dirty word because too many numskulls douchebags out there associate equality with man-hating. In her own words:
I was appointed six months ago and the more I have spoken about feminism the more I have realized that fighting for women’s rights has too often become synonymous with man-hating. If there is one thing I know for certain, it is that this has to stop.
For the record, feminism by definition is: “The belief that men and women should have equal rights and opportunities. It is the theory of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes.
She elaborates on what this has meant to her, personally:
I started questioning gender-based assumptions when at eight I was confused at being called “bossy,” because I wanted to direct the plays we would put on for our parents—but the boys were not.
When at 14 I started being sexualized by certain elements of the press.
When at 15 my girlfriends started dropping out of their sports teams because they didn’t want to appear “muscly.”
When at 18 my male friends were unable to express their feelings.
I decided I was a feminist and this seemed uncomplicated to me. But my recent research has shown me that feminism has become an unpopular word.
Emma Watson has this lovable ability to do almost anything with grace. Watch, Bros and think about what Emma has to say. It’s provocative. Hermione Granger, FTW: