Here is an example of first-hand experience with those who believe women ought not to attend college. Rachelle comments in this essay about what she terms “conservative feminism*” and how it relates to the education of women.

For a long while I would not have called myself a feminist and what has really made me rethink the whole issue has been my introduction (more recently) to what I call the anti-feminist. The person who tells me on the phone that he won’t send his sons to the college I work for because we educate women and that my being in the workplace is contrary to Scripture and an affront to my husband; the homeschooling speaker who only allows women to work for him if they are working under the supervision of their husband, father, or brother, who also receives their wages; the woman who tells me that she doesn’t know anything about the family finances because that would be usurping her husband’s authority; the woman who tells me that our country would be much better off if women didn’t have the right to vote; the girl I met with at her high school who speaks four languages (several of them self-taught) and whose eyes light up when we she asks me what they teach at my college but whose high school counselor tells me privately later will never be allowed to go to college because her parents are afraid that if she were educated “no man would have her.” It is these people who have shown me what I am, a feminist. But I am uncomfortable with the term. Probably because of the name that socialist, radical and liberal feminists have made for the movement. But wait! There’s a new label. (Actually several. Cultural and eco-feminism have been added too.) Conservative feminism. And that is the label I feel the most comfortable with, even if there are those in this arena that I am not entirely too sure about.

*Conservative feminism ” criticizes the feminism which “adopts a male model of careerism and public achievement as female goals, thereby denying women’s need for intimacy, family, and children.” They fear that “equality means death to the family.” They often reject the popular feminist epigram, “the personal is political.”

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