Feminism makes society better for everybody. It should be taught in schools and its activists should be remembered and celebrated as heroes.
Instead, the feminist movement is ignored (a very effective form of censorship), ridiculed and linked with negative stereotypes which have nothing to do with what feminism is really about. If you declare yourself a feminist, you are instantly labelled a difficult, frustrated woman who has problems with men. Most women don’t want to be labelled in that way and shy away from feminism. To get people to reject an idea by suggesting that the same idea is shared by groups that they despise is an established propaganda technique. If people are convinced that there is something wrong with them if they associate with feminism they won’t, and so the status quo is preserved. As feminism challenges the status quo, it is natural for people in power to fear it. And because people in power own and control the media, they make sure that both feminism and its consequences, strong, free women in control of their own lives and fulfilling their potential are not promoted.
Without visible examples of either the women that fought in the past, their contemporary equivalents, or the women that have made the most of feminism’s achievements so far, women now have no role models to follow. The thread is broken and the fight has to start again with every generation.
This text was written in 2009 for the book Reclaiming the F-word. The New Feminist Movement by Catherine Redfern and Kristin Aune. Redfern asked me to write some paragraphs on propaganda against feminism. The first paragraph was used.