Blog Takeover: Reeducate yourself—Feminism.

by - 11:14 AM



"Guy, do you know that the only reason why we can walk home this late is that we do not have a vagina?"

Those were my words to one of my friends on my way back from his house. He was seeing me off after a long evening of FIFA. It was almost midnight, we had totally lost track of time, you know how FIFA can be. However, this is not a story about FIFA. Instead, it's expository on the sad realities of being a lady in the society of now. I’m Tofunmi by the way and we’d be re-educating ourselves about FEMINISM.

Sexual abuse is just one out of many terrible things that women have had to go through for so long. They continue to face challenges like the fact that some men feel entitled to their bodies, the pay-gaps at work, gender discrimination and sexism amongst others. This observation is what brought the idea of Feminism. 
Feminism, by definition, is a range of social movements, political movements, and ideologies that aim to define, establish, and achieve the political, economic, personal, and social equality of the sexes. Quite simply, Feminism is about all genders having equal rights and opportunities. Initially, I wasn't too keen on being labelled a "feminist." But, as I grew older, I realized that Feminism is a valid and alive movement. It is a movement that does not intend to diminish anyone, rather it strives to empower. Its mission is not to mistreat others, but to bring hope to the misrepresented and enact meaningful change.

I'm a feminist because of the millions of girls sold into child marriages. 44% of girls in Nigeria are married before their 18th birthday, and 18% are married before the age of 15. According to UNICEF, Nigeria has the third-highest absolute number of child brides in the world – 3,538,000 – and the 11th highest prevalence rate of child marriage globally. Sadly, these girls have to give up their innocence and childhood against their will. I'm a feminist because globally, over a third (35%) of women have experienced physical and/or sexual violence by an intimate partner or sexual violence by a non-partner at some point in their lives. I fight because no one should have to experience something as scary and unbearable as abuse, especially from someone that they love.
I'm a feminist because according to a survey by Positive Action for Treatment Access, over 31.4% of girls there said that their first sexual encounter was rape or forced sex of some kind. According to UNICEF, six out of ten children in Nigeria experience emotional, physical or sexual abuse before the age of 18, with half experiencing physical violence. 

It disgusts me when I hear statements like 'Na woman, she no go fit do am'. Many Nigerians would have heard this whether it is on the road when someone is driving wrongly or slowly, and everyone suddenly assumes it is a woman before even checking who the driver is, or when it is time to choose a leader then suddenly everyone automatically believes that a woman won't be able to do a good job. All these actions are sexist and shouldn't be encouraged.
Sexism in a society is most commonly applied against women and girls. It functions to maintain patriarchy, or male domination, through ideological and material practices of individuals, and institutions that oppress women and girls based on sex or gender. Such mistreatment usually takes the forms of economic exploitation and social domination. Sexist behaviours, conditions, and attitudes perpetuate stereotypes, just like the examples I gave earlier.  According to such a view, women are the weaker sex and less capable than men, especially in the realm of logic and rational reasoning. They are, therefore relegated to the domestic sphere of nurturance and emotions and so they cannot be good leaders in business, politics, and academia. Although women are seen as naturally fit for domestic work and are superb at being caretakers, their roles are devalued or not valued at all when compared with men's work.


Finally, Feminism isn't about which gender is better than the other. It is instead a movement that encourages taking gender bias out of the equation and placing more importance on the individual and what he or she has to bring to the world. Instead of opposing each other, more change would occur if we'd use our energies to change something about the injustice both sides feel. I wish everyone would join in this fight, so that our daughters, the new generation of women, won't have to go through these same challenges again. I do not want this to get too long, so I guess I would stop here. Did I just say that? **laughs**

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8 Comments

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  2. Permit me to add, feminism isn’t about equality for both genders. It’s about equality for the female gender as regards the bias it faces against the male gender.

    And Sexism is suffered by both genders, the writer was too specific in his definition saying it is most commonly applied against women and going ahead to explain its function

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    2. Thanks for your comment, Chief Baby.

      Equality is incomplete without the premise of two things. So if you are going to talk about equality, it has to be across board. Equal opportunities for both genders.

      Yes, sexism is suffered by both genders and I think I highlighted that fact. However, if we are going to by statistics, it is mostly applied against women.

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    3. Exactly...and I think tofunmi emphasised on the female gender because of my last post. This is just to educate people on what feminism actually means and how it came to be. Yes...it’s as a result of gender bias but feminism actually is gender equality. That’s basically what it means.

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  3. I love your perception of Feminism.

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  4. God bless you for this piece❤

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  5. I think this post is very needed because a lot of people think they know these things when they actually do not. Thank you Tofunmi ❤️

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