Men and women alike have denigrated Feminism. It is characterised as excessive, man-bashing, and against the feminine ideal. But while men may disagree that women deserve equal rights, it is ironic that some women are fighting against the very thing advocating for their gender.
Feminists in Africa must step up to the challenge and redress the manner in which African women are portrayed in the digital age.
By now it is common knowledge that products marketed to women cost more. In some cases they cost multiple times more than the exact same products for men. This “pink tax” is imposed despite the fact that women are paid less than men. And in Africa, a lower level of quality seems to apply – as in the case of Proctor and Gamble’s Always sanitary products.
The visibility of #MeToo makes it easy to overlook the very powerful campaigns against sexual violence in Africa.
When people hear the term “sex positivity”, they think it is about having sex with everyone all the time, or having sex in wild and messy ways. In fact, sex positivity is about having a healthy and fulfilling sex life – no matter what that looks like, says Kagure Mugo.
Women have as much love for sex and pleasure as men do but often we do not engage with this. Whereas you can find 50 strip clubs for men in a city, women engaging with exotic dancers is always seen as a major event, despite the fact that there is a throbbing market for it.
Leaving no-one behind should mean focusing on both the abused and the abusers. This is the only way in which the 16 days of activism can be inclusive enough and ensure change for today’s and all future generations.
What happens when a girl experiences sexual abuse or violence in the name of culture? What happens when a girl is forced to leave her village to work in the informal, unregulated sector to raise money to pay her school fees? What would it take to end violence, sexual assault harassment, and discrimination against girls?
How the #MeToo campaign showed me my role in creating silences around abuse