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Radical Feminism: An Overview


Most of us are aware and accustomed to the concept of “feminism” but not everyone is familiar with “radical feminism”—a sub-branch of feminism that demands the root and branch reconstruction of the society previously devised on patriarchal standards. The philosophy stands on the ground of elimination of male domination in society leading to the oppression of women. Patriarchy divides the societal rights and privileges of women, leading to oppression.

Opposing patriarchy, not MEN:

Feminism is considered a very scary concept, and here radical feminism may be perceived as the women plotting against men and demanding an extreme elevation of female status in society. It’s just demanding the reconstruction of the society, rearranging the norms, and cultural reset of the society on equality basis and not on the dominant-submissive relationship. Anti-male Agenda: Radical feminism is viewed as females demanding the eradication of male power of the society. Equating the radical feminism to man-hating is the same as the idea of an inseparable bond between men and patriarchy. And Neither of them are correct.

Dominance-submissive Relationship: The dominant-submissive relationship is one where one party, the one in power, exploits the other party in order to fulfill its demands, resulting in the assault and oppression of the latter. Patriarchy and this dominant relationship go hand in hand. The radical feminism is a concept of demolishing this relationship of patriarchy and men for the society to be built on equal grounds for both classes. Men and women.


Radical feminism-the the ideology:

The ideology of radical feminism came to light as a component of women’s liberation movement. Many women who were a strong believer and supporter of this idea were previously a part of the “civil rights movement”- a protest against racism. In 1960 the concept of radical feminism was proposed and gained momentum. During the anti-war protests, they found themselves excluded from the equal rights and power from men, even when the underlying message of the protest was empowerment. Many of the famous feminists Shulamith Firestone, Kathie Sarachild, Ti-Grace Atkinson, Carol Hanisch, and Judith Brown, played their part in voicing the idea during the second wave of feminism.

Consciousness-raising groups:

Radical feminists often are known for arranging such consciousness-raising groups where women are given awareness on how they are being oppressed. They argued that rape was not a biological disposition among men but the inherent concept of men treating women as objects — a result of patriarchy.

Core issues:

The basic issues highlighted by this subgroup of feminists by highlighting today’s discussion will be concluded include

1. Freedom of choice and Rights of reproduction. The right to give birth, have an abortion, use birth control, or get sterilized.

2. Considering Rape as a patriarchal act, not a mere sexual frustration or sex seeking expression.

3. Prostitution under patriarchy to be an act of oppression both economically and sexually.

4. To dismantle all the cultures and norms based on patriarchy.

5. Considering prostitution an industry reflecting the patriarchy in the purest form, causing harm to women during the act of production. 


In my opinion, the above-mentioned core-issues which radical feminists want to shed light on, on an institutional level are legit and should be surely given due attention to ensure not only the equality but the equity among both genders.