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I am a 17 year old in my Junior year in High Schhol. I am a Feminist. Recently I got in a debate over what feminism is and was. I couldn't believe the response that I got from the girls. They were rude, and mallicios. On the other hand some of the guys in my class were very supportive. Now I am the leader for a presentation on feminism in the 1960's. I want to make an impact. I would appreciate it if I could get some opinions of what feminism meant in the sixties and how it changed. Thank You.

Thanks for your note to FEMINIST.COM--and I'm sorry that you have had to "be on the front lines" of the battle against feminism. As public opinion shows, people do not fear or even resist feminism when they know what it means. The problem is that people misinterpret its meaning. If you look up feminism in the dictionary it will say the movement for the full "social, political, and economic equality of women." You might want to look it up in your dictionary for your presentation--and remind your classmates that that was the same definition used in the 1960s. Also, don't let anyone fool you into believing that feminism was about "bra burning"--in fact, no bras were ever burned--and about "man hating"--if they question you on this--ask them which feminist has ever been a "man hater." You will likely find that people can't answer the question, because their ideas of feminism are based purely on interpretation, not on what actually happens.

For the 1960s aspect of feminism, you should reference a book called Feminist Chronicles: 1953-1993 which includes a detailed time-line of feminist activities during those years. I hope this helps--and what might help the most, is knowing that you are not alone. Feminists have been fighting misrepresentation as long as it has been around. It's a mark to the necessity of feminism that we are still waging these battles.


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