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Here is a piece I wrote for Varsity Comment about responses to current ‘sextremist’ feminisms and whether these are received positively within and external to the’feminist movement’.

Once a Davison Girl, always a Davison Girl…

Many women, and men, feel uncomfortable calling themselves feminist. The meaning of the word has changed like so many over the years and people frequently have to justify what ‘they mean by feminist’. Coined in 1837 by the French philosopher Charles Fourier, the term was used to advocate his belief in women’s rights and that job access should be based on aptitude and skills rather than gender, and criticised the institution of marriage as a device that impinged on women’s rights. Although, feminist movements grew throughout the 19th century, the term of feminism is most strongly associated with that of second-wave feminism in the 1960-80s (the first-wave feminism being that of the 19th/20thcentury suffrage movements). Second-wave feminism campaigned for legal, social and vocational equality for women. It was in this era that the so-called ‘angry feminist’ was born (although to me a lot of those suffragettes seemed pretty angry to me). [Rest.]