First I need to indicate that this blog post is response two (2) of four (4) and is in reference to the comments made to the previous post, “Feminist with Traditional Values/Beliefs http://brendamarin.blogspot.com/2010/06/feminist-with-traditional-valuesbeliefs.html – Answer to blog post question.” If you haven’t already you may want to read the comments to the mentioned post so that this new post makes sense to you.
The reason I believe I was feeling the Lord speak so strongly to me about looking at what is my female legacy was because of what I believe this younger generation believes makes women strong and powerful and those traits seem to be centered around their sexuality. The more media I paid attention to with regards to women and young women, the more modern books I skimmed through and the more young girls I listened to and observed my heart continued to break. The pendulum on feminism and femininity seems to be swinging in a really bad direction. The message that is plastered everywhere and even in our churches (which I will talk about a bit later) is that being sexual will bring you power and success. The female lead on television and in books are beautiful and use there “female ways” to get them through situations, but those “female ways” in the majority of circumstances are centered around how well she used her body or female assets. We went from a women’s movement fighting to being equal to our male counterparts with regards to our rights, our dress, our speech, our approaches, our pay, etc. what many would deem the quintessential feminist woman to what we are now seeing today in this next generation of women (and maybe even my generation) that are swinging so far away from the “feminist” woman to an over sexualized woman that needs sex to gain power, acceptance, love, and success. I for one do not want this to be the legacy that I leave to the young girls coming behind me and I do not want the “fourth wave” of the women’s movement to describe a women who used her body and the assets she either was naturally given or enhanced to be accepted, loved, powerful, and/or successful.
The Church, I explained in my talk/conversation, has done little to prepare young women for the “modern” world and the expectations and roles placed upon women. Additionally, the church seems to still blame females and their bodies or sexuality for the shortcomings of males, which was confirmed when I spoke with many women at the conference who worked with youth. This blame unfortunately leads to shame in who they are and the bodies they were given. No wonder they are quite confused when they enter the world which tells them their bodies are powerful if used for desire/sex and can get you love, power, acceptance, and success.
These young girls have read, as I did, about the women in the past that fought for our rights and they don’t feel the struggle. Sure you could say because the books were probably written primarily by men and maybe they had a male teacher but those are excuses and cop outs for what we as women are not doing to portray ourselves as different to this world and to this next generation. I agree with one of the comments made on the previous post that as Western women we need to be movers and leaders for all women on a global scale, but yet in that we cannot figure out what that message is to be.