You know there was a time when women didn't have basic human rights. Taking part in practicing law, attending schools, ruling the country, or even forget practicing in Olympics, watching Olympics was a dream for them.
Then came the resistance movement with a mission to achieve gender equality, such as women’s suffrage, reproductive rights, equal pay, and maternity leave. Within these movements arose two different concepts:
The two terms seem similar but are much different. It can be explained by a simple daily life example. I am pretty sure everyone must have hired a maid to do their household chores.
Here, I want to question everyone, Do you involve these maids when you discuss the welfare of woman/ equal rights of the woman who are poor, who depends on your salary to get one day meal? I am pretty sure you don't, so when you say you want to raise or empower women, I am sorry to say you want to empower the woman of your status, not some women who are below your class.
Difference Between Feminism and Womanism:
We are aware of the concept of Feminism. Let's understand the concept of Womanism
The term "Womanism" was first coined by Alice Walker, an American poet and the author of the most critically acclaimed novel "The Color Purple" in 1983. It was a reply to the feminist who didn't value the perspectives/opinions of black women. The segregation came to an end in 1964 but the black women still faced socioeconomic discrimination, racism, and classism.
The feminist movement was limited to upper and middle-class white women. It failed to address the issue of a woman of color. This fall of feminism gave light to the rise of Womanism.
The term Womanism is completely different from that of feminism. Walker defined womanists as "black feminists or feminists of color who are committed to the wholeness and survival of the entire people (both men and women)."
It is to be noted that Womanism is a multi-layered moment. Where feminism focuses on sexual identity, particular class, and race, Womanism deals mostly with the employment of women as a whole. Womanism fights not only for gender equality but also against violence done on both men and women.
In other words, we can say Womanism is the darker version of feminism that includes the voice of both white women and color women, you are always marginalized in the text as well as in media.
In short, we can say that feminism stands for Gender Equality "Women are equal to men." Whereas feminism aims for Gender Reconciliation "Women and Men both have their own unique place." The concept of Gender Reconciliation says that both men and women are affected by the concept of "Patriarchy" and both need each other to establish a society name "Humanity."
I would like to conclude by quoting D.H Lawrence who said “the future of humanity will be decided not by relations between nations, but by relations between women and men.”
In the end, I would question all the feminists out there that "If your movement leaves some women behind, then for whom are you striving?"
Reference Used -
1. Color Purple ( By Alice Walker)
2. Article by Esha Saxena ( 15 May 2019)
3. Also some lines are taken from a seminar speech organized by Mr. Debasish Pati
P.S: Hey woman, be a womanist not a feminist
By Ananya Panigrahi