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Explainer: Why is 'Confused Cats Against Feminism' taking over the internet?

It’s in response to ‘Women Against Feminism’.

LAST WEEK YOUR eyes may have been drawn to news about a Tumblr blog called Women Against Feminism.

It was accompanied by a hashtag on Twitter and a growing number of images of women holding signs which read ‘I don’t need feminism because…’.

feem

Anti-feminist blogger Janet Bloomfield explained to the BBC that she saw it as:

A space on the internet where all these young women are coming together to say “ok, hold up, we have some issues here and we want to discuss them without being called stupid, without being called ignorant, without being called uneducated”.

The creator of the Women Against Feminism Tumblr meanwhile gave several reasons (you can read them all here) for being against feminism, including:

  •  Believing that equal rights already exist, and feminists want more, and want to be victims
  • Believing that feminism is about censorship
  • Believing that feminism promotes a ‘helpless victim cult’
  • Believing that feminism is discriminatory, hypocritical, elitist and so on.

While the movement was quick to experience a surge in popularity, it was also the subject of online derision and disbelief, Twitter discussions and numerous media reports.

Blog posts were written in response…

res Source: I Wanted Wings

Retaliatory mages were posted on Tumblr and Twitter…

And now the latest retort is Confused Cats Against Feminism….

cas

Who are these cats and why are they confused?

Well, mostly because they’re cats, they can’t read, they don’t know what feminism is, and they don’t know what the signs they’re ‘holding’ say.

Okay, why are the cats ‘confused’ then?

The cats of Confused Cats Against Feminism are ‘holding’ signs because:

Cats need a place where they can post pictures of themselves holding signs denouncing feminism for assorted weird reasons that  that don’t seem to have anything to do with what feminism is actually about.

Okay, show me these cats

Here’s a selection:

tumblr_n9bqim0iX91thkqcyo1_1280 Source: Tumblr

tumblr_n9e31w2WiV1thkqcyo1_1280 Source: Tumblr

tumblr_n9e9odwsee1thkqcyo1_1280 Source: Tumblr

What are these ‘assorted weird reasons’ for denouncing feminism that they’re poking fun at?

Confused Cats Against Feminism is undeniably having a go at the practice of posting the ‘I don’t need feminism because…’ images on Tumblr and Twitter.

Images like:

tumblr_n9d1z5Tf1q1syitgfo1_500 Source: Tumblr

tumblr_n9cpk9ubqc1syitgfo1_500 Source: Tumblr

tumblr_n9e7j3r2xm1syitgfo1_500 Source: Tumblr

And what’s the reaction to the cats been?

Fairly positive.

cats

Was all reaction to ‘Women Against Feminism’ negative?

Not at all. A Time opinion piece by Cathy Young detailed that:

… while the anti-feminist rebellion has its eye-rolling moments, it raises valid questions about the state of Western Feminism in the 21st century.

Young goes on to say that historical anti-feminism was “invariably about defending women’s traditional roles” and that much of 2014’s anti-feminism reflects that. She also acknowledges that some anti-feminists are against the practice of ‘belittling and demonising men’ and encouraging women to see themselves as victims.

An article in the Scottish student newspaper The Journal details that:

The experiences of the members of Women Against Feminism paints a picture of feminism as a bullying and aggressive force that you can disagree with at your peril. They have experienced feminism as an isolating clique who dictatorially enforce one radical party line on matters feminist and political and who brand those who disagree with them as bullies and traitors.

What’s all this about ‘western Feminism’?

Some of the postings under the #WomenAgainstFeminism umbrella have made a distinction between ‘modern’ or ‘western feminism’ and feminism as a whole.

tumblr_n9gciwAIad1syitgfo1_500 Source: Tumblr

Young, writing in Time refers repeatedly to “western feminism” and states that:

Women Against Feminism are quite willing to acknowledge and credit feminism’s past battles for women’s rights in the West as well as the severe oppression women still suffer in many parts of the world.

The I Wanted Wings blog provides “fictionalised accounts of real events that have happened to real women living in our world today” – women in India, Pakistan, Niger. Women living with injustice. It details the past “250 years of women and men campaigning for women to be given equal rights to men to prevent these kinds of injustices and abuses on the grounds of gender taking place” and asks for the Pakistani woman, the Indian woman and the little girl in Niger to be considered:

Every second, a child will be born female in a country where she will persecuted for this random biological occurrence for the rest of her life. So before you hold up your anti-Feminist placard proudly and smile at your own sense of empowerment, think not what Feminism can do for you, but what it can do for that one girl. She needs someone to stand up for her. That someone could be you.

What’s going on with #WomenAgainstFeminism right now?

The blog is still accepting submissions daily, and the Facebook page is up to over 16,000 likes.

However the hashtag has been overtaken somewhat by people decrying its existence:

What about this meerkat?

Undecided.

mee

Read: The ‘Hairy Legs Club’ is telling women it’s ok not to shave – and it’s causing uproar>

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About the author:

Emer McLysaght

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