Monday, November 29

Womanism is not feminism

Some say that women are capable of doing another policy. When I hear it I am stunned. On the one hand, I do not know very well which policy to be differentiated from: whether it is from the one carried out by the government or the opposition, whether from the one carried out in the city councils or in the European Parliament. And on the other hand, I do not know very well which women they refer to when making that other policy. Because if I think about women and politics, Adriana Lastra, Mónica Oltra, Irene Montero or Yolanda Díaz, but also Macarena Olona, ​​Isabel Díaz Ayuso or Rocío Monasterio come to mind. And I don’t know, it seems to me that they are all women, that they all do politics, that they all have the full right to represent citizens, but that they do it in a very different way.

Feminism should not be so fashionable if we have to explain that women are not a group with similar capacities and abilities for politics. The discourse that places women as more conciliatory, empathetic, cooperative, more capable of reaching agreements or having less ego is a sexist discourse. If from feminism we advocate that women and men can develop their lives outside of the roles and stereotypes imposed by this macho society, why would it be different in politics? Why would women be expected to behave in a certain way? It is unfair and a trap to expect different or extraordinary behavior from women in politics. If we want to achieve equality in the political space, constructing a discourse of excellence on feminine qualities can be as damaging as discourses that keep women in positions of inferiority or domination.

Women are present in the political space in their own right. The absence of women from political power is a conceptual and practical failure of representative democracy. Women are demosWe are the people, we are citizens, we are representatives and represented. And parity is nothing more than aspiring that the sex of women does not work against them. And that’s it. From then on, women can be on the left or on the right. Fascists, progressives or communists. Once that enormous obstacle posed by discrimination on the grounds of sex has been overcome, women in politics are whatever they want or can be. Although it should be noted, at this point, it is fair to recognize that the basic tool that facilitates the participation of all women, in all parties, are the parity electoral lists approved by the PSOE government in 2007. A battle that feminists they won with a lot of effort in their political organizations to take it later to the BOE and despite the unconstitutionality appeals of the right.

That there are women in politics is a basic question of democratic quality, but that does not guarantee that there is feminism in politics. Feminism is something very different from the presence of women. And it should be taken into account. Feminism in politics is making equality the goal of any public policy. Feminism is making the fight against sexist violence, labor inequality and sexual assaults a priority on the political agenda. Feminism can be seen if the budgets have a gender perspective, if diplomacy and international relations take into account the rights of women. Feminism is that the guarantee of sexual and reproductive rights of all women, anywhere in the world, is a matter on the agenda of governments. Feminism is thinking about urban planning and mobility policies with a gender perspective. Feminism in politics is to keep in mind, at all times, that the equality, security, freedom and dignity of women is not a matter or negotiable, or secondary.

Feminism in politics is not saying, it is doing. And, if we look at how governments led by conservative, liberal or fascist women behave around the world, and throughout history, it is easy to point out that feminism is not a question of being a woman, it is a question of political ideas. Confusing the presence of women, womanism, with feminism is a serious mistake. Because while it is true that the first is a basic condition of representative democracy, the second, feminism, aims to make these democracies not only representative, but also more socially just and safer and free for women. And for that we need feminists at the forefront because being a woman is not enough.

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