Myth: Feminism is inherently anti-men

No. Feminism is, by definition, about gender equality.

I was honored to be asked to debate feminism at the Oxford Union, the site at which many of the world’s most significant debates on major issues take place.  My side won!

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Having a different take on feminism, or doing something bad in the name of feminism, does not give someone the right to redefine the term.  In my arguments linked above, you’ll hear that it’s not just about a dictionary definition.  An extensive examination of the term’s usage in the “corpus” found that feminism is indeed about gender equality.

Some people ask why not call it “gender equality” instead of “feminism.”  It’s fine to say gender equality or gender equity — I use those terms all the time.  It’s also helpful to understand that for generations, the leading movement fighting for gender equality has been feminism.  Working, marching, and organizing for equal legal rights for women was, and still is, a battle for gender equality.  A look at some countries around the world provides a stark reminder of the need for that cause.

Writing off the movement as anti-men hands the term over to those who misuse it.  And worse, it’s a disservice to all the feminists who have fought for, and continue to fight for, real equality.