Why I don’t want to celebrate being a woman
OK this is admittedly a ludicrously sensationalist headline, but hear me out.
Recently I got an email asking me to take part in some Women of the Web type feature; it’s one of those editorial features that happen a lot, where woman are showcased for their great work and successes within the industry. This extends to women only awards, women only conferences, women only events and so forth. Essentially, what we are looking at is a collection of woman come good; celebrating women doing well in the heady world of business, or something.
However, whilst it’s nice to get recognition and I’d love to post my mum a copy, I’m not going to reply, simply because I don’t want to talk about being a woman in digital.
I love to talk about digital and will take part in any and all digital based event, conference and webinar that’ll have me. However I feel uneasy celebrating the “a woman in” part simply because there is, underneath all celebratory context, an unsettling undercurrent of surprise.
Whenever I see a headline saying “WOMEN KICKING ASS!” I feel like what it’s really saying is “In spite of everything WOMEN KICKING ASS!”.
As an overarching maxim; I’d say that for me at least, feminism simply means that I do not like people making assumptions about me based on my gender. Those can be (and sometimes are) negative or debilitating, though at the same time, those gender based assumptions can also be “positive”.
As long as we continue being alarmed and surprised by our own success just goes on to lengthen the time until when we get true equality. True equality in the sense that no assumptions are being made about me based on my gender because it’s bloody irrelevant.
As her lord saviour Deborah Meadon once said “I’m not a woman in business. I’m in business”.
Absolutely let’s continue to celebrate success and achievement of all those worthy of it and I do recognise (contrarily) that there’s value in the banging the drum for female success and it all comes from a good place.
However for me, I am just fairly sure that any successes that I may or may not have had to date, have had nothing to do with my labia.
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