Friday, May 27, 2011

Damon @ feminaust

feminaust is a new feminist blog, started by Cath Baterman and Josie Swords.  In their own words, it's a
small collective of contemporary Australian feminists dedicated to developing and maintaining an inclusive and robust community of women and men who believe in the central principle that women deserve equal treatment, access and opportunity for the benefit of all people…. and like to talk, debate, sometimes argue and always passionately live this principle.
I was invited to write for their 'Friday feminaust' post, and was chuffed to be asked.  You can read the full post here.  Here's a snippet:
My feminism is a small, intimate thing. 
Just a moment ago, I helped my sick two-year-old daughter put her doll into her toy pram. What’s feminist about this safe, gendered play? 
I’m here, for starters. My wife Ruth and I share the labours and rewards of child-raising, domestic work. I don’t leave at six in the morning, and return after dinner, bath and bed. I don’t vanish on weekends, for ‘boys afternoons’ on the bike or golf course. I can clean, cook, empty the potty, do the school run. Ruth can fix a broken door, mow the lawn, upholster furniture. We can swap jobs, and often do. It’s what Zorba the Greek called the ‘full catastrophe’, and we share it. 
We do this, not because of laziness, or a perverse longing for eccentricity. And certainly not for the money, which is less than average wage between us. At the heart of this is a strangely radical idea: Ruth is a human, not simply a woman. As I put it in The Age, “I recognise that she’s an educated, intelligent person with a vocation of her own – and she deserves to cultivate it. She’s a loving mother who wants to see her kids between the hours of seven and seven. And, finally, she’s a grown woman, who likes to spend time with her handsome husband.” 
In other words, this is feminism as a relationship; as the character of our bonds, rituals, ambitions. Hopefully this is part of a new movement, irreverently celebrated in the ‘Most Mentally Sexy Dad’ competition: couples who enrich and expand the idea of partnership.
(Photo: Iago4096)

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