I’m struck by Daliya’s comment on The Third Wave.
Daliya, I’m interested in this especially:
Although I find myself at times reluctant, if only for a moment, to call myself just a “feminist,” Thus, I use the terms womanist or black feminist.
This is the case because I always feel somehow left out and out of place in this “movement.” The term feminist conjures up the image of a white middle class woman, and this is speaking out of experience. There’s this barrier between feminist women of color and white feminists. In a sense, it feels like white feminists are the drivers of the movement and women of color are merely subjects, students, projects…etc, but rarely ever equal members, unless they conform to an imaginary set of rules that I haven’t laid my hands on yet.
That being side, I find many women of color who cringe at the word feminist or see that it has no place for them.
I believe we need feminism more than ever, because women are getting too comfortable (“we have enough rights, what are these other women still complaining about?”…etc) but what they don’t realize is, what we have can just as easily be taken away. If we are not in constant awareness. Just because we have relative equal opportunity does not mean that we are getting it.
OK…now that I’ve quoted you to death, Daliya, my question for you (and others) is: if we need feminism more than ever, but women of color may feel left out of this movement (whether we want to call the movement the women’s movement, a feminist movement, a womanist movement, etc.), how can we get women of color – or anyone who’s felt marginalized by the movement, for that matter – involved in it?
I’ll ask it another way: as a young woman of color who defines herself as a black feminist or a womanist, what kinds of things/activities/programs would you/do you/would you want to participate in?