Pros Of Feminism In Contemporary Society

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To what extent is feminism supported and/or criticised in Australian contemporary society, and what do you think might explain this? Feminism is a movement seeking equality in society for all men, women and transgender people. Many feminist movements focus on eliminating the oppression of women as well as pushing for women's rights and interests. Feminism has been through a number of waves, the first wave demanded women have the right to vote (week5 text). Feminism is now said to be entering its forth wave. The forth wave focuses on opposition to violence against woman and sexual harassment, it is also associated with the use of social media. In Australian contemporary society, some people may view those who support the feminist movement as…show more content…
The feminism movement has many supporters as well as many who criticize it. Since the 1970s there have been groups of Australian men who felt oppressed by the feminist movement, campaigning against it. In particular they have campaigned against legal reforms that relate to no-fault divorce, parenting rights, child support payments as well as protections against domestic violence. In Australia women are more likely to initiate divorce and separation compared to men (ABS). In an Australian study it was found that more than 20% of the women surveyed had ended their marriage due to some kind of abuse from their partner (https://aifs.gov.au/publications/towards-understanding-reasons-divorce/perceived-main-reasons-divorce). Men's rights activists claim that these statistics and claims are malicious fabrications and if any of them are true that they "characterize domestic violence as the product of understandable male grievance in the context of anti-male discrimination catalysed by feminism" (salter, pg73). Men's rights activists have also claimed that men who murder their wives or children due to care disputes have been "provoked by anti-male judicial bias" (salter pg74). Criticism towards feminism doesn't just come from men's right activists, it can also be found all over the media, internet and social…show more content…
Australia has been supportive of the feminist movement since the first wave. Australia was one of the first countries that gave women the right to vote. Australia has seen women in powerful political positions. Julia Gillard was elected as the first female Prime Minister of Australia. She was first elected into Parliament in 1998 served in a number of roles and then went on to become Prime Minister in 2010 (http://primeministers.naa.gov.au/primeministers/gillard/). Gillard becoming Prime Minister was a win for feminism as the role of a Prime Minister in Australia had traditionally been held by a male. Other women have also held other powerful positions in Australian such as Quentin Bryce who was Governor-General from 2008 and Julie Bishop who is currently the Minister for Foreign Affairs. Women are also taking over roles in the Australian Defence Force that were traditionally male only roles such as infantry (https://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/nsw/australian-army-bans-male-recruits-to-get-female-numbers-up/news-story/69ee9dc1d4f8836e9cca7ca2e3e5680a), this gives female recruits who can meet the criteria of an infantry soldier the same opportunities as a male recruit. The Australian Defence Force has been predominantly been a male organisation however female numbers in the defence force has been rising and by 2023 it is expected 25% of the defence force will be female (http://www.defence.gov.au/AnnualReports/15-16/Downloads/Women-in-ADF-Report-2015-16-online-only.pdf).

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