[Feminisms Fest] People of Valor

It’s been a wonderfully full week for Feminisms Fest. Over 100 blog posts have been written about feminism, what it means, and why it matters. People have been incredibly open and honest about their experiences, their hopes for the future, and how their journey affects their relationship with feminism.

Today, we’re supposed to be sharing what we’ve learned, talking about things that we’ve read this week, what we found helpful, and what surprised us. And there were certainly things that I learned through this synchroblog (starting with the fact that “feminisms,” plural, is a thing!). However, of the over 100 links that have been submitted so far, I’ve probably only read about 20-30 of them, simply because of time.

So, I’m bending the rules a little bit. Next week I’ll probably do my own wrap-up, as well as a list of contributions that I thought were particularly helpful or well-done. In the meantime, I’m going to write something that’s on my heart: I want to speak a blessing over everyone who has participated this week.

First, to the women:

Eshet Chayil! Woman of Valor!

Eshet chayil to the women who are new to the terminology, eshet chayil to the women who have been involved in feminism for years, eshet chayil to the women who grew up with patriarchy and trying to teach their children a better way.

Eshet chayil to the women for whom feminism has simply meant finding the courage to speak their own minds, and eshet chayil to the women who literally burned bras in solidarity with others.

Eshet chayil to those who build yurts so that both spouses can be full-time homemakers. Eshet chayil to those who planned their weddings to reflect their beliefs in the full equality of men and women. And eshet chayil to the ones advocating for justice.

And to the men:

Gibor Chayil! Man of Valor! 

Gibor chayil to the men who are partners in advocating for the full equality of women, in both society and the church.  Gibor chayil to the men who are teaching their sons and daughters a better way. Gibor chayil to the men who are still learning what feminism means.

Gibor chayil to the men who were vulnerable in sharing their stories of how patriarchy has harmed them. Gibor chayil to the men who write beautiful prose bringing out the equality of men and women in the Scripture. And gibor chayil to the men who are pediatric nurses and refuse to conform to our society’s roles for gender.

Gibor chayil, too, to the men who are not sure where they fit in a world where men and women are fully equal, or are not sure how feminism applies to them, who grew up assuming they were to be strong and tough leaders simply because they were men, and are now opening their ears to listen to this conversation. Gibor chayil to the men who are asking questions. Gibor chayil to the men who are new to this conversation but want to learn.

God bless all of you, and I hope you continue to write. I hope you continue to tell your story. I hope you continue to ask tough questions. I hope you continue to advocate for justice and equality, both online and in “real life.” I hope that a few years down the road, we’ll look back upon this week and be able to see that it was, for many of us, the beginning of something big.

And whatever that something looks like as it plays out, I hope you’ll be a part.

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  • http://twitter.com/EstherEmery Esther Emery

    Yes!! EnCOURAGEment, here this week. So good.

    • http://www.shaneyirene.com/ Shaney Irene

      And you have encouraged ME very much!

  • http://www.wideopenground.com/ Lana

    love this.

    • http://www.shaneyirene.com/ Shaney Irene

      Thanks Lana!

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  • N.

    Hi Shaney, I was a previous HRM at the Reb. forums, as well. I just read your comment on the new blog post and wanted to thank you for what you wrote. As a long-time HRM, I got reports from multiple girls about male leaders on the forum sexually harassing them in serious ways — including one of the male “founders” of the modesty survey. I reported the issues to Brett and the other male leaders on the forum and they called me a liar (and refused to look at any proof I offered), slandered me, and refused to do anything about the male leaders still harming girls. So I voluntarily resigned, then made the issues public on my blog and through comments on the Reb. blog, until they were forced out of embarrassment to remove any young men continuing to harm young girls. Are they really concerned with how young men treat young women? Seriously?

    • http://www.shaneyirene.com/ Shaney Irene

      I just e-mailed you.