It has been a few days into March, therefore it is officially Women’s History Month. This celebration highlights historic achievements by women, however, how intersectional is it?
Being inclusive of all women is important to include in your feminism. This is being accepting and supporting of women of color, queer women, disabled women and transgender women.
The history of the women’s rights movement has a past of leaving women out of the narrative that are not white or heterosexual. Susan B. Anthony is a so-called “pioneer” in the white feminist movement, yet she is also a racist.
“I will cut off this right arm of mine before I will ever work or demand the ballot for the Negro and not the woman,” Anthony said.
White feminism appears in many forms, whether it’s by whitesplaining, policing non-white women or the white savior complex. Intersectionality is not a second thought among those who only practice non-inclusive feminism. An example of this contradicting mindset on feminism can be seen when discussing a controversial tweet from the Women’s March.
“Rest in peace and power, Barbara Bush,” the @womensmarch tweeted April 17, 2018, followed by a picture of the late First Lady.
The controversial tweet was under fire after many Twitter users mentioned that Bush was not a feminist figure.
Twitter user, @portageepeach, quoted the late Bush on her statement concerning the Hurricane Katrina evacuees, “What I’m hearing, which is sort of scary, is they all want to stay… so many of the people in the arenas here, you know, are underprivileged.”
In some cases, inclusion can be used as a cloak to maintain a status of being “woke.” This performative feminism is commercialized during Women’s History Month, by companies and celebrities. Shirts that are titled “girl power” are cute, but what exactly are they doing for the movement?
All women should be viewed as equal, versus only being included in the conversation. Be an ally to the voices that need to be represented rather than just claiming to be “woke.”
With all of that being said, I will be celebrating Women’s History Month throughout March, but my thoughts will be with the women that aren’t represented equally in women’s history.
If your version of feminism isn’t intersectional, then you need to re-evaluate your definition of feminism.