These days, we find ourselves discussing insensitive gender equality issues in every corner we turn, on the internet. There are so many of such conversations and so many tags — so much that they have all started to overlap and the lines bounding them are thinning every day. These conversations leave us confused. Are feminists the same as people who preach for gender equality? Who are humanists? How do we describe misogynists? Who are misandrists? Are they similar or dissimilar? What is about women who identify as feminists?
Amidst this, is another category of netizens who sit on the fence wondering how and when all these -ist tags where born. A lot of revisions are happening to the structure of human society as we know it. In the last hundred years, there has been a nonstop clamor for women to assume more active roles in the family and society, and as such, there has been a reduction in the number of stay-at-home moms and an increase in ‘breadwinner’ mothers.
But, of course, “usurping” the stronghold of patriarchy in (a country neck-deep into patriarchy as) Nigeria also upsets the state of relationships. Ergo feminists have become choosier in picking the men they date and so have men.
What is about women who identify as feminists?
In a new survey carried out by Posh and Venus, women who actively and publicly campaign for gender equality are more likely to be in relationships compared to women who identify as feminists.
Now, we’ll go back to the beginning. What is gender equality and what’s feminism? Aren’t they the same? Are they? Do they overlap? Maybe a little. Although the difference might appear thin on paper, in the real world, there is a sizeable gap between feminism and gender equality.
While gender equality activists fight for a society where opportunities and responsibilities are not limited by gender, feminists, on the other hand, do a bit of this and also proceed to champion the cause of women.
Both of these institutions are necessary, you might say, but the average Nigerian man shies away from entering into relationships with feminists because of the sentiment that mainstream feminism (which is often laced with a tinge of misandry) brews obstinate women.