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Fourth Wave Feminism- What it Means For You

What does it mean?

Feminism: A multi-disciplinary approach to sex and gender equality understood through social theories and political activism. (EKU Women and Gender Studies)

History identifies three distinct waves of feminism.

·        The first wave began in the late 19th century and continued into the 20th with the suffragist movement.

·        The sixties gave rise to the second wave, during which women fought for equality among both gender and race, as well as for peace. 

·        The last wave of feminism started in the nineties and stressed the removal of gender stereotypes and heteronormativity.

 

What is the fourth wave?

Some argue that fourth wave feminism began in 2013. Through the internet and modern communication, this latest wave of feminism has reached many corners of the world. Online projects, Twitter hashtags, and blogs are at the forefront of the fourth wave. The fourth wave is fighting gender inequality, the wage gap, heterophobia, transphobia, racism, and more in an effort to make everyone truly equal. There is no central issue in fourth wave feminism because men and women all over the world are fighting for what’s important to them.

Modern feminists utilize all the resources available to them. For example, the hashtag #YesAllWomen gained popularity in May 2014 as a way for women to show the dangers they face every day. The newest wave of feminism relies on activism to educate and reform.

Feminists fight for equality for all. Feminists do not hate men. The fourth wave is supported by all genders who acknowledge the importance of feminism. It is just as much for men as it is for women. Campaigns such as Emma Watson’s HeForShe emphasize “A solidarity movement for gender equality.” Feminism impacts us all. It is the reason that women have jobs and can vote, and it something we are very thankful for.

Shruti Kansara is a sophomore at Bryant University majoring in international business with a double concentration in applied analytics and computer information systems and a double minor in French and international affairs. In her spare time, she volunteers with Dorcas International Institute of Rhode Island and serves as a local titleholder for the Miss Rhode Island America organization.
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