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Like most other sane people, I agree with the basic ideas of feminism. Equal pay for equal work, freedom of choice, ending violence against women ,etc. I have never been much of an activist because I am a working class woman with limited time. Still, I respected and admired those who were fighting for our rights. Recently, I decided to find out more about feminist activism so I started doing research on the Internet and I came across a woman named Mary Daly. I'm sure you know who she is, but I didn't. From what I understand, she is a highly respected radical feminist and former college professor who was forced to retire under questionable circumstances.

What I read was an interview she did with a magazine called Enlightenment. In it, she spoke with so much utter contempt of men that I could almost feel her anger. She also spoke of her dream of an entirely female Utopia in which procreation is done through some sort of synthetic process.

Is that viewpoint representative of mainstream feminism? If it is then I'm sorely disappointed and disheartened and maybe I'm not as much of a feminist as I thought. I have many men in my life and I feel they add to my life experience.



I do know who Mary Daly is and I can assure you that her views don't reflect the views of the majority of feminists. Radical feminists have always seen men as the direct oppressors of women -- whereas other feminists see a patriarchal system as responsible for women's and men's "oppression." I think that the majority of feminists wouldn't see men as the problem, but as hindered by a hierarchical system as women are. I for one believe this -- and I see feminism's goal as liberating each of us from these limited stereotypes… whether it's men who are accountants, but want to be bakers or women who are stay at home moms, but want to be lawyers. The point of feminism is to free us all from the stereotypes and let each of us be who we want to be. Daly doesn't see it that way and while I certainly respect her opinion and her right to her opinion, I don't agree with her. Besides what I mention above, I have a problem with academics in general, because they are primarily about rhetoric and little about action. I hope this helps -- and I'm sorry again for taking so long. I hope you continue learning more about feminism and seeing all that it is made up of -- take care.

- Amy

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