QLF discusses different faces of feminist movements

Christina Stavale

Sophomore sociology major Kat Rybski speaks about lesbian and women rights at the Queer Liberation Front meeting last night, next to QLF Chair Trae Ruscin, sophomore photojournalism major. STEPHANIE DEVER | DAILY KENT STATER

Credit: DKS Editors

Since the days of radical ideas and Lesbianism Feminism of the ’70s and ’80s, the Feminist Movement has begun to encompass different people and different ideas.

Sophomore sociology major Kat Rybski led a discussion of lesbianism and feminism at last night’s Queer Liberation Front meeting. Rybski, who said she is a lesbian, was going to be president of the Feminist Union this year before it was disbanded.

“For Lesbianism Feminism, lesbianism was a choice, and you did it because you were resisting,” Rybski said.

These people, she said, saw men as oppressive and rejected masculinity. They did not wear makeup or bras, did not shave and grew their hair long. They also wanted to change the spelling of “woman” to “womyn” to take the word “man” out of it.

This kind of feminism, she said, followed the first wave that focused on voting rights. Today, the feminist movement is in the third wave, which focuses on child care and reproductive rights. But the stereotypes still remain.

“A lot of times, people of today stick to stereotypes,” she said. “Feminism is sometimes perceived as unattractive.”

She said this is evident in people being against Hillary Clinton running for president because she is “too aggressive for a woman.” They see aggression as “unfeminine, and therefore undesirable for a leader.”

“With the Feminist Movement, we’ve lost a lot of femininity, but we’ve gained a lot of rights,” Rybski said.

She said she defines feminists as people who believe women are equal to and as intelligent as men. Despite having similar convictions as feminists, some women are turned off by the movement because of the stereotypes that follow.

“(Today) we don’t think of it as feminism, as much as just how it should be,” she said.

Now, some lesbians are feminists and some aren’t, and she said a vast majority of feminists are straight women.

“It’s not the ‘all men must die’ mentality anymore,” she said.

Contact minority affairs reporter Christina Stavale at [email protected].