Gloria Steinem talks Marriage, Porn and Global Issues : London

March 1, 2016 Written By Toonika Guha

Last week, Gloria Steinem was in London for the launch of her new book On the Road. The How to Academy took advantage of this occasion and organized a chat between her and Emma Watson, which was indeed a treat for feminists of all ages in the city. Older feminists came in to hear and see Steinem, while many younger women came in for Watson, who is now a feminist in her own right.

While the central theme of the event was the new book, Watson cleverly steered the discussion to many other feminist issues. Opening up about the relationship between marriage and feminism – a tussle many women have to face, Steinem talked about the need to base all aspects of our society on equitable gender relations, especially marriage. She linked this issue of gender inequality in marriages to bigger issues in society such as wage gaps, thus bringing home the fact that while working mothers continue to be seen as ‘distracted’ and working fathers are seen as ‘responsible’, our society will continue to have issues in terms of wage gaps. She went on to say, “If we don’t have Democratic families, we will never have Democratic Societies. It is deeper than just families and societies on their own.”

Steinem also stressed upon the need to establish a difference between porn and erotica. In an engrossing discussion, she dispelled ideas that suggest that being anti-porn is being anti-sex. She based her argument upon the etymology of the two words, emphasizing upon the fact that while both have ancient Greek origins, ‘porn’ is associated with sexual violence, while ‘erotica’ with pleasure. Thus, she called for the need for articulation and appreciation of sexual acts based on pleasure, rather than violence, and the first step towards this is through language. Thus is called for the use of words like ‘erotica’ over ‘porn’.

Image Source

Apart from this, the two dabbled in several other discussions on gendered issues, which all in all made for a very feminism-positive evening for all in the audience, a welcome relief from our everyday patriarchal world.

Gloria Steinem talks Marriage, Porn and Global Issues : London

March 1, 2016 Written By Toonika Guha

Last week, Gloria Steinem was in London for the launch of her new book On the Road. The How to Academy took advantage of this occasion and organized a chat between her and Emma Watson, which was indeed a treat for feminists of all ages in the city. Older feminists came in to hear and see Steinem, while many younger women came in for Watson, who is now a feminist in her own right.

While the central theme of the event was the new book, Watson cleverly steered the discussion to many other feminist issues. Opening up about the relationship between marriage and feminism – a tussle many women have to face, Steinem talked about the need to base all aspects of our society on equitable gender relations, especially marriage. She linked this issue of gender inequality in marriages to bigger issues in society such as wage gaps, thus bringing home the fact that while working mothers continue to be seen as ‘distracted’ and working fathers are seen as ‘responsible’, our society will continue to have issues in terms of wage gaps. She went on to say, “If we don’t have Democratic families, we will never have Democratic Societies. It is deeper than just families and societies on their own.”

Steinem also stressed upon the need to establish a difference between porn and erotica. In an engrossing discussion, she dispelled ideas that suggest that being anti-porn is being anti-sex. She based her argument upon the etymology of the two words, emphasizing upon the fact that while both have ancient Greek origins, ‘porn’ is associated with sexual violence, while ‘erotica’ with pleasure. Thus, she called for the need for articulation and appreciation of sexual acts based on pleasure, rather than violence, and the first step towards this is through language. Thus is called for the use of words like ‘erotica’ over ‘porn’.

Image Source

Apart from this, the two dabbled in several other discussions on gendered issues, which all in all made for a very feminism-positive evening for all in the audience, a welcome relief from our everyday patriarchal world.

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