Saturday, October 07, 2006

5 things feminism has done for me

1. My great grandmother was a suffragist (rather than a sufragette I learnt from Cathy's post last night) so the importance of being able to vote and therefore making sure that we all do vote has been passed along the female line ever since it happened - around 90 years ago. I have therefore voted at every opportunity - for the socialists. However in 2005 I was so disillusioned and felt so betrayed over Iraq that I didn't bother voting at all - and felt guilty about that for weeks afterwards.

2. My mother had an excellent education at a girls' grammar school where she was taught to consider herself equal to men - a view which she passed on to me. However I am not sure that this view was shared by the males in my family - and have long felt that I have to prove myself in a way my brothers did not.

3. I also had an excellent education in the physical sciences in my comprehensive school and then at university and for some time I was able to practise alongside other male scientists in a field that was dominated by men. However everywhere that I have worked the bosses have been men, often not as qualified - and have been resentful as a consequence.

4. I have been able to leave my family and travel alone unhindered. This has enabled me to explore the lives of remote people and discover interesting landcapes. However the fact that I have left temporarily left my family for weeks at a time (when they were quite capable of looking after themselves) has provoked comments of disapproval from some quarters as well as incredulity that my husband should allow such a thing.

5. I can wear what I like when I like. I am consequently less accepting of cultures that keep their women covered. I cannot imagine why any woman would want to wear a full veil and find such clothing disturbing and slightly threatening.

This is a meme passed on to me by Lee of Lowelands and I now tag three women from three different continents: CrimeFicReader in Europe, Anne S in Australasia and Twitches in north America.


Blogger Tammy Brierly said...

You have had an amazing life. The women before you would be proud, I am.

Sun Oct 08, 01:43:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was always slightly scared of the more rabid feminists (I know that's not who you're talking about.)

They always seemed older and bossier than me; school prefect types who told me off for arriving late.

NZ was the first country to give women the vote, but they say that was more because the population was so small they neded the voters!

Sun Oct 08, 02:50:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks Clare! I didn't see this until this morning as ntl was cut off in my area last night. I'll do a post later today, when I've had time to deliberate. I may even consult with my mother...

Sun Oct 08, 09:17:00 am  
Blogger mareymercy said...

Thanks, Clare, for tagging me! I'll get right on my answers.

Sun Oct 08, 03:15:00 pm  
Blogger mareymercy said...

I'm unfamiliar with memes; was I supposed to post my link here? Anyway, holy cow - I wrote a manifesto. Here it is:

5 Things Feminism Has Done For Me

Sun Oct 08, 06:48:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Meme now done.
Thanks for a thought provoking day, Clare!

Sun Oct 08, 09:40:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"...provoked comments of disapproval from some quarters as well as incredulity that my husband should allow such a thing..."

No one blinks an eye when a man leaves his family on lengthy business trips. When a woman, who's a mother, does? Unfortunately, there will always be a dividing line.

Execellent blog by the way. Very informative.



Mon Oct 09, 08:21:00 am  
Blogger Jan said...

On the hottest day for decades in mid August this year, I went with my writing group to the Pankhust Centre at 60-62 Nelson St, M/Chester. Having recently travelled all night through Thailand on a non airconditioned train (temp of 40 dgs and a grandchild of 13 mnths), I thought Id cope.. But however the visit was certainly worth the heat .
The Pankhurst Centre, once the home of Emmeline and family, is well worth a visit, either as a group or individual.There's an excellent library of Suffragette literature too. The website is at
I hope that helps/interests people!

Mon Oct 09, 01:51:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just read this meme over at Caroline's blog so it was quite strange to land here and see the same thing.

It's interesting that your g.grandmother was a suffragist and I can well understand why you felt guilty for not voting.

Mon Oct 09, 10:11:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks very much for the comments everyone and hello Khylan.

Great tag responses CFR and Twitches. Fascinating reads. Thanks a lot.

Tue Oct 10, 12:58:00 am  

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