Gender equality and women’s empowerment is more than the historically documented fight for the women’s vote by the suffragettes and the ratification of the 19th amendment. As important they are, if you limit the fight for women’s empowerment to the ratification of the 19th amendment and to the story of Susan B. Anthony’s and Elizabeth Cady Stanton’s fight for the enfranchisement of the women’s vote — as the only narrative for women’s rights — then I recommend you read and listen to the voices of scholars and of everyday women, who are, at times, still silenced. Jessica Enoch’s “Survival Stories: Feminist Historiographic Approaches to Chicana Rhetorics of Sterilization Abuse”, Gesa E. Kirsch and Jacqueline J. Royster’s “Feminist Rhetorical Practices: In Search of Excellence” essay, Judith Butler’s “Performative Acts and Gender Constitution: An Essay in Phenomenology and Feminist Theory”, Bell Hook’s “Feminism: A Movement to End Sexist Oppression” — are just a few contemporary examples of feminist literature. I will list a few more that you can take a look at, if you’re interested (I hope you are) at the end of this post. I will just say that you have not read true horror until you have read Jessica Enoch’s “Survival Stories.”
On September 20th, 2016, HeForShe, a gender equality movement by UN Women — the United Nations entity for gender equality and the empowerment of women — was launched by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and UN Women Global Goodwill Ambassador, Emma Watson. HeForShe’s purpose is to achieve a solidarity movement in which “men and boys can engage and become change agents towards the achievement of gender equality.” The HeForShe symbol, pictured below, was created to represent their push for solidarity. It’s a blend of the traditional female and male gendered symbols, and it shows both the partnership that women and men must have — for gender equality and women’s empowerment — and an amalgamation, a combination, of both symbols that represents a new symbol of unity.
Alongside the movement is the more recent push for #ShiftYourPerspective — an action made, I reason, to help other’s empathize with the movement for gender equality and women’s empowerment. HeForShe has used the #ShiftYourPerspective hashtag to ask people to critically think about how to create change and/or to critically examine their own perspective and that of their fellow human’s. The #ShiftYourPerspective hashtag is one that isn’t limited to gender equality and women’s empowerment. Its influenced is gained by applying its intended meaning to all areas of difference. #HeForShe is all about standing together, giving value to each other’s words, lives, world views, and perspectives. I hope you take the time to learn more about HeForShe by looking at their website and by researching the UN Women’s website.
¡PSST! ©2016 The Black Lion Journal