Feminism does not mean the act which brings strength to women as womenâ€™s are always strong, only the world has to determine it. Feminism is actually the movement for equal rights for both women and men. Nowadays this movement is seen as a fight against the system coming in the midway of womenâ€™s growth. Feminism is rooted in ending menâ€™s power over women. But actually this is the right for all genderâ€™s equality in all terms.
Womenâ€™s were considered equal and they had opportunities to establish themselves, which is already mentioned in our historical texts – Rigveda. The RSS â€œAkhil Bhartiya Itihaas Sankalan Yojnaâ€™(ABISY) mentioned the golden period of women in India as the Rig vedic age where they went beyond traditional roles. Women in that period of time could marry at mature age and they had a right to choose their husband. Widow Remarriage, inter-caste marriage, women as part of intellectual debates and at high positions in economic society was normal without any feminist movement. So when did menâ€™s and womenâ€™s inequality arises?
This was when we were invaded by the outsiders like â€œYavanas, Shakas, Huna, Kushanaâ€ and with several other reasons the status of women began to decline. After Islamic invasions later womenâ€™s education, rights, speech, freedom, choices everything was taken away. Women stopped living the life they actually had lived before. Womenâ€™s were treated as slaves and dowry system, sati pratha, child marriages were happening.
Women have started raising their voice against all the injustice done and started fighting back for their basic needs like education, job, equal pay, freedom, respect in society, maternity leave, etc. and this is a feminist. Feminism wasnâ€™t born out of an illusion, it was a seed that was sowed and matured after years of harassment, sexism, and discrimination towards women. After years of women, being treated as inferior to and by men.
The history of feminism can be divided into three phase: the first phase, beginning in the mid-eighteenth century, initiated when male European colonists began to speak out against the social evils of Sati, the second phase, from 1915 to Indian Independence, when Gandhi incorporated womenâ€™s movements into the Quit India Movement and independent womenâ€™s organizations began to emerge, and finally the third phase, post- independence, which has focused on fair treatment of women at home after marriage, in the work force and right to political party. The feminist movement has effected change in Western society, including women’s suffrage; greater access to education; more nearly equitable pay with men; the right to initiate divorce proceedings; the right of women to make individual decisions regarding pregnancy (including access to contraceptives and abortion); and the right to own property.
People fear that feminism will knock over traditions, religious beliefs and established gender roles. But feminists these days want to control the world and put men down and are protesting against menâ€™s action over women without searching the root of the problem. Feminists asks men to respect women, to encourage them to build their career, to provide better studies, support them mentally, socially, etc. True feminism is that men and women should be treated with the same amount of respect, should be accorded equal rights, and should not face any discrimination whatsoever based purely on gender differences.