Tuesday, March 13, 2012

I am a strong believer in shades of grey


It's difficult to know when to remain silent and when to speak louder. I think that, often, women are perceived as living at one or the other end of a spectrum. Silenced or decidedly soft spoken and conservative, they fulfill a certain kind of femininity. Alternatively, with conviction, articulation, and opinion women paint a picture of defiance. For some reason, it's assumed that we're supposed to diverge toward the more reserved end. At the same time, I think that women have this idea that to be heard we need to stomp about raging, our voices trumpets in a quiet street of neighbours
This can be so negative and so not true. 

I have met women that are certainly strong-willed, intelligent, and passionate whose energy to speak for their rights or on the discerned behalf of certain groups is at times exhausted. Sometimes we need to breath, listen, learn, and accept our abilities in their own right as valid. In feminism I see this eagerness to confirm, inform, and speak. Often we're enraged, other times we want to learn, and sometimes we don't know where to begin. It is the recognition of our ability to speak freely that enables us to live within an area of ambiguity comfortably because we are constantly moving forward, learning, and challenging even in moments of silence. Balanced, a woman can find herself between quietness and spirited sound. 

It's important to teach young women that they have a voice, that this voice 
has something to say, and that their opinion ⎯ whatever it may be ⎯ is valid. 
It is also vital to teach women how to use their voice affectively to inspire change. 

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