As a feminist, I’m angry about a shitload of inequalities, disadvantages and prejudices, but lady-specific language is just not one of them.
Recently an article was shared in the Champagne Women Facebook group about cutesy hashtags and titles for women in business. The writer was not in favour of terms such as ‘girlboss’ ‘mumprenuer’ and ‘she-EO’, and believed these titles set women back on the search for equality and ‘empowerment’.
As much as I was nodding my head along to the words in front of me, and doing the ’finger vomit’ action, I also thought of the women who absolutely love this shit and thrive on it as source of inspiration, motivation and empowerment. Using these terms as hashtags suggests to me that these women are searching for their ‘tribe’ and like-minded females (not men). Seeing things from their point of view also made me realise that these women see power in words like ‘girl’, ‘mum’ and ‘she’. And it got me thinking about the lady words I love.
Who run the world?
I was listening to an interview on Double J a little while back. Myf Warhurst was speaking with Michelle Leon from the band Babes in Toyland about being a female in the very testosterone-heavy punk rock scene.
She asked how Leon felt about always being referred to as a ‘girl band’. The response was unexpected, and it made me power punch the air. She said, “I think it’s pretty special”. Like, how cool is it to be in a girl band? Way fucking cool. She took power from that label, because she saw strength in the sisterhood and being a ‘girl’.
Fight like a girl. Run like a girl. Cry like a girl.
Empowerment is in the mind of the beholder, and if you give female language the power it deserves and not see it as ‘less than’, then girls will run the world!
I know most feminists would disagree with me and call this politically incorrect, but I love the suffix ‘woman’. If I was a fire fighter, I would call myself ‘firewoman’, because to me that sounds super cool and heroic, plus I’d already have a theme song. I am woman, hear me roar! I’m a Wonder Woman, a superhero. I find so much strength in the word ‘woman’, and I hate that it’s been taken over by ‘person’. Boring! I am a ‘spokeswoman’! You will listen to me and my female point of view. Because it is important. It is valid. And I will not dilute it to make it easier for you to accept! Hear my lady voice and take it like a woman!
Phew, I need a lie down.
Seriously though, I am so passionate about not letting go of my femaleness. If that means reclaiming words to make them powerful again, then call me Madame!
Man words, just like their wardrobe options, are boring. I prefer the way lady words are jazzed up, like they’re accessorised.
So give me a she-wolf, she-devil and She-ra. That’s badass.
Or a dominatrix, aviatrix, any kind of trixxxxx.
Praise the suffragette. Or even fucking Smurfette.
Call me the hostess with the mostess and make my drink pink, because girls and women are awesome. And all those things that make our gender unique, special and all-powerful, should not be considered weak, inadequate or less-than. So let’s all grow a vagina and take back what is ours!