Before you roll your eyes and write it off as the "subject du jour" and something that does not apply to you, ask yourself this; Do you believe in the equity of all genders?
If the answer is yes, then you are a feminist.
“Some people ask: “Why the word feminist? Why not just say you are a believer in human rights, or something like that?” Because that would be dishonest. Feminism is, of course, part of human rights in general—but to choose to use the vague expression human rights is to deny the specific and particular problem of gender. It would be a way of pretending that it was not women who have, for centuries, been excluded. It would be a way of denying that the problem of gender targets women.”
I have been having an internal battle with myself (a white, cis-gendered female) over whether or not to write about Feminism, because far too often it is voices like mine that speak over others, so I want to refer you to one of the most important voices in Feminism, Kymberlé Crenshaw, the scholar who coined the term Intersectionality, which encompasses the way different power structures further marginalise minorities. This is THE most vital part of Feminism and needs to be addressed if there is to be any shift in the patriarchal structures that we are currently confined to.
When speaking of feminism in Australia, it is impossible to go past the total legend that is the writer Clementine Ford. I hugely admire her resilience- She cops a LOT of ridiculous, ignorant, abuse from MRA fools, yet she keeps on intelligently and articulately fighting the good fight, via her twitter, Facebook and Daily Life.
But what has feminism got to do with fashion? Um, well, everything. The two concepts are intrinsically linked in so many ways, not least due to the fact that 80% of garment workers are female identifying people. Furthermore, the fashion industry is extremely gendered, as all clothing is marketed as being either 'mens' or 'womens' which excludes those who don't identify with either gender (non-binary), sure, there is clothing that can be worn in an androgynous way, but that is up to the wearer to use there own energy to make it so. Remember what I was saying about intersectionality? This is where that comes in.
Oh and THEN there is the whole body image monster to consider, the monster that dictates what women are "allowed" to wear what based on what measurements they have... *cue dramatic eye-roll*
On that note, I'll leave it there as I've hyperlinked the shit out of this post and have provided enough reading/viewing material to tide you over until dinner time. For post dinner reading and beyond I recommend you check out a really good resource that I love to refer to, Everyday Feminism.