Tuesday, January 4, 2011

The F Word

In my Face-to-Face WS 405 class, I often show a video called The F Word: A Video About Feminism.  You can read about the video here. Unfortunately I can't find the video online, but I did want to share a handout from the film. The video includes a number of interesting quotes by various people about feminism. As we talk about feminism this term, it will be helpful to have these definitions about what feminism means.  Here are the quotes:

The F Word: A Video About Feminism  
(10 minutes.  1994.  New York City: Women Make Movies.)
Directors: Erin Gallagher and Marcia Jarmel

Key Quotations from the Video:

Feminism is
A) The principle that women should have political, economic and social rights equal to those of men
B) The movement to win such rights for women
- Webster’s New World Dictionary

Feminism asks the world to recognize at long last that women aren’t decorative ornaments, worthy vessels, members of a “special interest group,” they are half of the national population.  – Susan Faludi

The feminist agenda is…about a socialist, anti-family, political movement that encourages women to leave their husbands, kill their children,  practice witchcraft, destroy capitalism and become lesbians.
– Pat Robertson

Feminism is the political theory and practice to free all women: women of color, working-class women, poor women, physically-challenged women, lesbians, old women, as well as white, economically–privileged, heterosexual women.  – Barbara Smith

I myself have never been able to find out precisely what feminism is: I only know that people call me a feminist whenever I express sentiments that differentiate me from a doormat.  – Rebecca West

If the feminist movement does not address itself to issues of race, class and imperialism, it cannot be relevant to alleviating the oppression of most of the women of the world.  - Cheryl Johnson-Odim

Feminism is a method of approaching life and politics, a way of asking questions, and searching for answers, rather than a set of political conclusions about the oppression of women.  – Nancy Hartsock

There is and must be a diversity of feminisms responsive to the different needs and concerns of different women and defined by them for themselves.
- Nilufer Catatoy, Caren Grown, Aida Santiago


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  2. My favorite quote from the movie was "a feminist doesn't let anyone think for her" i think the movie just generally quoted a French feminist.

  3. Yes--that was a great one! To be clear there are two F-Word videos, the one I found online, and another that is available only on DVD. But interestingly, they both used a number of the same quotes. While the F-word video online is not of the highest technical quality, it has some great info in it and covers the basics about defining feminism, feminist stereotypes and a bit about feminist history.