Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Jessa Crispin may hate 'Choice Feminism', but We Love It. (And so do many women.)

Guest post by Katie Bay

Jessa Crispin has been getting a lot of publicity lately with her book 'Why I Am Not A Feminist', in which she heavily criticises 'choice feminism' and instead upholds collective action and socialism. Apparently, 'choice feminism' is so prevalent right now, and she hates it so much, she cannot identify as a feminist anymore.

So what is this evil 'choice feminism'? Turns out it's as simple as letting women choose what they want. Which is what feminism should be about, right?

Crispin does make a fair point about not every choice made by a woman automatically being feminist. For example, I would say that what I chose for lunch today was not a feminist choice. But then, feminism should be about making sure women are able to make the same choices as everyone else. So allowing women to go into business without fear of discrimination is indeed feminism, despite the (unrelated) fact that socialists are sceptical of capitalism. And not every choice women make need to be collective either, because men are not bound by the same 'collective' requirement, right? Nor would that make for a happy sisterhood. For example, some women want to be stay-at-home mothers, while others want to work 60 hours a week in a high flying business career, and still others want to work part time while pursuing a writing career. What's wrong with that?

I get that Crispin really hates capitalism and wants us to be all socialists, but it wouldn't be gender equality if women couldn't choose capitalism (because men can). Like everyone else, Crispin is entitled to make her case for socialism. But she shouldn't demand women support socialism any more than men. After all, socialism and capitalism are not gendered concepts.