A collective door-to-door effort to spread the message of feminism is needed for the movement to begin anew, to start again with the basic premise that feminist politics is necessarily radical. And since that which is radical is often pushed underground in our setting then we must do everything we can to bring feminism above ground to spread the word. Because feminism is a movement to end sexism and sexist domination and oppression, a struggle that includes efforts to end gender discrimination and create equality, it is fundamentally a radical movement.
Confusion about this inherent radicalism emerged as feminist activists moved away from challenging sexism in all its manifestations and focused solely on reforms. Advancing the notion that there can be many ‘feminisms’ has served the conservative and liberal political interests of women seeking status and privileged class power who were among the first group to use the term ‘power feminists’… Parasitic class relations and the greed for wealth and power have led women to betray the interests of poor and working-class women. Women who once espoused feminist thinking now support public policies that are anti-welfare. They see no contradiction in this stance. They simple give their ‘brand’ of feminism its own name. The representation of feminism as a lifestyle or a commodity automatically obscures the importance of feminist politics. Today many women want civil rights without feminism. They want the system of patriarchy to remain intact in the private sphere even as they desire equality in the public sphere. But visionary feminist thinkers have understood from the movement’s inception that collusion with patriarchy, even patriarchal support of some aspects of feminist movement (i.e. the demand for women to work) will leave females vulnerable. We saw that rights gained without fundamental change in the systems that govern our lives could be easily taken away… Gaining civil rights within patriarchy has proved dangerous because it has led women to think that we are better off than we are, that the structures of domination are changing. In actuality those structures are re-entrenched as many women move away from feminism."
Feminism is for Everybody, by bell hooks. (via woolfygrin)