Friday, 26 September 2014

#HeforShe: A Turning Point For Gender Equality

by Hattie Hammans 

'Men—I would like to take this opportunity to extend your formal invitation. Gender equality is your issue too.’

(source: Wiki Commons)

You may have noticed Emma Watson causing a global impact last Saturday. Her video has spread across the internet, with loud reactions from Twitter and Facebook- initially congratulations from men and women alike, and then soured by a fake scandal printed across British newspapers.

The actress and UN Women Goodwill Ambassador took her chance to speak out about feminism, combining combating assumptions about man-hating and inviting men to join the HeforShe campaign.

‘I’ve seen men made fragile and insecure by a distorted sense of what constitutes male success. Men don’t have the benefits of equality either.’

Emotional yet remaining in control, the Harry Potter star commanded the room and this seems to be a turning point within feminism - it was even hinted that there may be a new title for the movement, something more ‘uniting’ to encompass equality for both men and women.

However, the threat to release of Watson’s private photos followed soon after, seeking to put the actress ‘back in her place’. Although proved fake almost instantly, the threat displays a very real attitude and a deep issue within feminism: a women shouting out for herself caused someone attempting to humiliate her.

Emma received support and the hackers very little but mockery, but I don’t think this is something to be pushed aside and forgotten; if anything, ‘Little Miss Harry Potter’ should play this to her advantage.

See, also, Ciara Dossett's article, Is Feminism for Men Too?

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