General Question

ainialyaman's avatar

What's the difference between a 'womanist' and a 'feminist'?

Asked by ainialyaman (19points) October 26th, 2007

What do male feminist call themselves ?

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6 Answers

brownlemur's avatar

Male feminists call themselves feminists. A ‘womanist’ or ‘womynist’ I have heard of only in the movie PCU, so I may not be current with the feminist terminology if that is a real thing.

gailcalled's avatar

The difference is that between a neologism and the Queen’s English, unless one can make up any word for any occasion. That does seem to be the case now. One says “womanizer” but not ”“manizer” at present. But get ready.

occ's avatar

I believe that the term “womanist” was coined by Alice Walker, an African-American writer. I remember reading a piece by her in which she explained that “feminism” was often seen as a white women’s movement because it only tended to address gender-oppression, and that many women of color felt alienated because they were forced to address racial and class oppression and couldn’t separate those from gender opression. So Walker’s idea of being a “womanist” is a term for feminist women of color, or women who are fighting gender, racial, and class oppression all at the same time.

occ's avatar

Also…there’s a famous quote by Alice Walker about the phrase that she coined: “womanism is to feminism as purple is to lavender.”

gailcalled's avatar

Occ has done her research. My apologies, altho I believe that “Womanist” is not yet part of the common parlance.

awaytoolong's avatar

After Alice Walker’s “In Search of Our Mothers’ Gardens” was published, there was a mini explosion of womanist writings, mostly with a theological (Christian) bent. Emilie Townes, Jacquelyn Grant, Cheryl Kirk-Duggan, Kelly Brown Douglas are a few of the people who have continued to flesh out womanist theory. “A Troubling in My Soul: Womanist Perspectives on Evil and Suffering,” edited by Townes is a nice intro to the field if you’re interested.

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