ok...so i've been studying like a crazed individual the last two years. i've been reading everything i could get my hands on, in addition to the 4 billion reading assignments i've had to cram in. through all of this, i've realized something. i actually realized it quite a while ago...i just didn't know what to call it. are you ready for it? i'm ready to come clean....
I'm a Feminist!!!
who knew? certainly it wasn't me. feminism isn't a terrible word after all. it does not mean "anti-male" and you are not required to burn your bras. (although i've seriously considered it just because i feel like i'm being held hostage by the boulder holder all day long!!!) if someone would have asked me if i was a feminist 2 years ago, i would have said "hell no!" my ideas of feminism rested on the depictions of the feminists of the 1960's and '70s. those ladies were loud, very angry (it was warranted) and had to go to extreme measures to get their point across. without the activists of yesterday, we wouldn't have the movement toward equal rights that we so enjoy today; however, i believe the ideas and theories of feminism have evolved even though the movement is still clouded by aggressive images of the past.
during my masters program, a significant amount of my readings have circled around feminist theory, the evolution of feminist theory and how feminism pertains to my creative practice. through this research, i've realized many things, but one of the main points is that feminism is about equality, not success for one at the expense of another.
: the belief that men and women should have equal rights and opportunities1
this realization has allowed me to explain many things that i've done, or questioned, in my life: why on earth did i yell at two business men on my lunch break for catcalling a beautiful business woman, i didin't even know, as she crossed the street...when the construction workers working on that street didn't even say a word to her? why must i always do everything for myself???!! why did i yell profanities at men that catcalled me at the beach? why did i immediately leave the home of an old boyfriend when he hit me? why was i crushed when i found out that my former employer paid a previous employee at least $10,000 more than me for doing the same job? why did i do these things? because i recognized many of these behaviors weren't right. objectifying women, wrong. underpaying equally qualified women, wrong. domestic violence, wrong. strangely enough, my sorority's motto is "Real. Strong. Women." (you would have thought that would have clued me in to my feminist ideas a long time ago!)
ah. i feel so much better now. this public declaration has really freed my mind and removed the monkey from my back. now i can get on to creating more art. my thesis project is a real doozie. i'm not quite ready to make that project public, but in addition to utilizing feminist theory to support my thesis, i am also challenging traditional feminist theory as well. here's a series i recently started "Feminism isn't Dead." this series of text oriented art highlights feminist concepts found in pop culture. sometimes you'd be surprised at who is advocating equality among the sexes. the title of the work below is "Destiny's Child." it is a 10"x40" print.
thanks so much for clicking in. please feel free to comment...politely. feminism is a hot topic and some folks tend to forget their manners when they are addressing a controversial topic. so.....are YOU a feminist?