Eco-feminism – An Explanation

(featured image from https://www.thecuriousreader.in/features/ecofeminist-margaret-atwood/)

Welcome back everyone! Happy International Women’s day in arrears! I think women should be celebrated every single day. So I have decided to set myself a goal to post at least once a week, as I do better putting it into my weekly schedule, rather than deciding to write on a whim, as many times I get so consumed in University work and just life in general that I just forget to post on here. So (hopefully) expect at least a post a week from me!

Right, i’m sure write a few of you have heard of the term Eco-feminism, and probably went like, “What?” like I did the first time I heard the term. So, i’m going to save you the trouble (as it is a widely misunderstood term) and try to explain how our relationship with the planet transcends into active inter-sectional feminism.

Based on the wikipedia explanation of Eco-feminism,

“Eco-feminism is a branch of feminism that sees environmentalism, and the relationship between women and the earth, as foundation to its analysis and practice. Eco-feminist thinkers draw o the concept of gender to analyse the relationships between humans and the natural world. “

Its name was coined by French feminist Francoise d’Eaubonne in 1974.

This branch of feminism asserts the idea that the way the environment is treated and exploited is the exact same way women, femmes and LGBTQ+ individuals are treated; as objects, things to be exploited and picked apart constantly, not to be left alone to grow and flourish.

Climate change and the degradation of our planet also disproportionately affects women and other people of colour in non-western countries like it would affect a white man living in a western country. For example, there are many people of colour, especially women of colour, who rely on the flourishing of the land and natural resources for an income, especially if they have no financial access to mass farming and production technology like most agriculturists in western countries do. There are a lot of people of colour who also rely on flourishing land to live a fruitful life, as their beliefs might suggest that a barren land represents peril, or they might not have living spaces equipped for climate change and natural disasters due to cultural practices.

Because of the fact that the people living in these countries are affected more by the degradation of our planet, yet western countries continue in their terrible habits that are affecting the planet suggests a sense of feeling like these people are essentially disposable.

There are also parts of Eco-feminism that suggest that women have a larger connection to nature such as menstruation and childbirth, but I disagree with this aspect because I feel like this is a very binary and exclusive statement that aims to alienate other groups of people are also oppressed by the patriarchy and capitalism and who could also benefit from Eco-feminism, such as transgender women, gay, bisexual and pansexual individuals, transgender men, e.t.c.

Do I believe in the Eco-feminist movement? to a degree. I absolutely agree with the fact that the societies attitudes towards the environment are intrinsically linked to attitudes towards marginalised groups of society. If you are a feminist (which you, to some degree, should be) then I highly suggest looking more into the Eco-feminist movement in more depth and seeing what you think about it. We all have space to learn, even me and you. Even I am still learning more about this concept.

Thanks for reading! If you enjoyed this pot, please give it a like, and comment below what you think of Eco-feminism, and things I did not include or got wrong. Hopefully see you back here next week!

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