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Quotations:  Feminism


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Because I am a woman, I must make unusual efforts to succeed. If I fail, no one will say, "She doesn't have what it takes." They will say, "Women don't have what it takes." ~Clare Boothe Luce


I myself have never been able to find out precisely what feminism is: I only know that people call me a feminist whenever I express sentiments that differentiate me from a door mat or a prostitute. ~Rebecca West, "Mr Chesterton in Hysterics: A Study in Prejudice," The Clarion, 1913 November 14th, reprinted in The Young Rebecca, 1982


Women have been taught that, for us, the earth is flat, and that if we venture out, we will fall off the edge. ~Andrea Dworkin


The emotional, sexual, and psychological stereotyping of females begins when the doctor says, "It's a girl." ~Shirley Chisholm


Women belong in the house... and the Senate. ~Author Unknown


I think it's about time we voted for senators with breasts. After all, we've been voting for boobs long enough. ~Claire Sargent, 1992 Arizona senatorial candidate


Remember, Ginger Rogers did everything Fred Astaire did, but backwards and in high heels. ~Faith Whittlesey


I wish someone would have told me that, just because I'm a girl, I don't have to get married. ~Marlo Thomas


Women are the only oppressed group in our society that lives in intimate association with their opressors. ~Evelyn Cunningham


Nobody will ever win the Battle of the Sexes. There's just too much fraternizing with the enemy. ~Henry Kissinger


The thing women have yet to learn is nobody gives you power. You just take it. ~Roseanne Barr


Feminism is the radical notion that women are people. ~Cheris Kramarae and Paula Treichler


I, with a deeper instinct, choose a man who compels my strength, who makes enormous demands on me, who does not doubt my courage or my toughness, who does not believe me nave or innocent, who has the courage to treat me like a woman. ~Anas Nin


Man endures pain as an undeserved punishment; woman accepts it as a natural heritage. ~Author Unknown


Women who seek to be equal with men lack ambition. ~Timothy Leary


I see my body as an instrument, rather than an ornament. ~Alanis Morissette, quoted in Reader's Digest, March 2000


I'm tough, I'm ambitious, and I know exactly what I want. If that makes me a bitch, okay. ~Madonna Ciccone


I was told that whistling wasn't ladylike, but I knew even then that women were simply not supposed to be that happy. ~Anonymous, quoted in Kindling the Spirit by Lois P. Frankel


You don't have to be anti-man to be pro-woman. ~Jane Galvin Lewis


When I see the elaborate study and ingenuity displayed by women in the pursuit of trifles, I feel no doubt of their capacity for the most herculean undertakings. ~Julia Ward Howe


Being a woman is a terribly difficult task, since it consists principally in dealing with men. ~Joseph Conrad


History is herstory too. ~Author Unknown


Men are taught to apologize for their weaknesses, women for their strengths. ~Lois Wyse


No woman is required to build the world by destroying herself. ~Rabbi Sofer


I became a feminist as an alternative to becoming a masochist. ~Sally Kempton, attributed


It was we, the people; not we, the white male citizens; nor yet we, the male citizens; but we, the whole people, who formed the Union.... Men, their rights and nothing more; women, their rights and nothing less. ~Susan B. Anthony


One of the things about equality is not just that you be treated equally to a man, but that you treat yourself equally to the way you treat a man. ~Marlo Thomas


There is a special place in hell for women who do not help other women. ~Madeleine K. Albright


I ask no favors for my sex.... All I ask of our brethren is that they will take their feet from off our necks. ~Sarah Moore Grimk


I am working for the time when unqualified blacks, browns, and women join the unqualified men in running our government. ~Frances Farenthold


I do not wish them to have power over men, but over themselves. ~Mary Wollstonecraft


There are very few jobs that actually require a penis or vagina. All other jobs should be open to everybody. ~Florynce Kennedy


The test for whether or not you can hold a job should not be the arrangement of your chromosomes. ~Bella Abzug


Instead of getting hard ourselves and trying to compete, women should try and give their best qualities to men bring them softness, teach them how to cry. ~Joan Baez, "Sexism Seen but not Heard," Los Angeles Times, 1974


I've yet to be on a campus where most women weren't worrying about some aspect of combining marriage, children, and a career. I've yet to find one where many men were worrying about the same thing. ~Gloria Steinem


Most women are one man away from welfare. ~Gloria Steinem


I refuse to believe that trading recipes is silly. Tunafish casserole is at least as real as corporate stock. ~Barbara Grizzuti Harrison


Feminism directly confronts the idea that one person or set of people [has] the right to impose definitions of reality on others. ~Liz Stanley and Sue Wise


I asked a Burmese why women, after centuries of following their men, now walk ahead. He said there were many unexploded land mines since the war. ~Robert Mueller


Resolved, that the women of this nation in 1876, have greater cause for discontent, rebellion and revolution than the men of 1776. ~Susan B. Anthony


A man has every season while a woman only has the right to spring. ~Jane Fonda


How good does a female athlete have to be before we just call her an athlete? ~Author Unknown


The world has never yet seen a truly great and virtuous nation because in the degradation of woman the very fountains of life are poisoned at their source. ~Lucretia Mott


 
 
It matters more what's in a woman's face than what's on it. ~Claudette Colbert, quoted in Kindling the Spirit by Lois P. Frankel


To tell a woman everything she may not do is to tell her what she can do. ~Spanish Proverb


Oh! that I could so appeal to my brothers everywhere, that forever after they would regard women as of angelic order, to be approached only as they would approach the enthroned Goddess of Purity, upon whose presence none would dare presume, and whose favors it is theirs to merit and receive, rather than to command and appropriate. Look not upon her for selfish purposes, but rather to bless her, let that blessing depend upon what it may, even if to bless is not to possess. Other love than this is selfishness, and a profanation of the Holy Word. That is love which will bless the object, even if to do so is to yield it. Remember that it is a pretension and a fraud to think of ownership in, or control over, the person of a woman. This is her inheritance, never to be bartered, never to be sold, never to be given away, even; but only to be exchanged, blessing for blessing, when an all-absorbing, all-embracing, all-desiring love points out the way. ~Victoria Claflin Woodhull Martin, Tried As By Fire; or, The True and the False, Socially.


Women are not inherently passive or peaceful. We're not inherently anything but human. ~Robin Morgan


It is an old error of man to forget to put quotation marks where he borrows from a woman's brain. ~Anna Garlin Spencer


Men will often admit other women are oppressed but not you. ~Sheila Rowbotham


Be plain in dress, and sober in your diet;
In short, my deary, kiss me, and be quiet.
~Mary Wortley Montagu, A Summary of Lord Lyttelton's Advice


[C]elebrate the exquisite beauty of every woman. ~Cindy Olsen, co-owner of The Body Objective website, 1999


Advertisers in general bear a large part of the responsibility for the deep feelings of inadequacy that drive women to psychiatrists, pills, or the bottle. ~Marya Mannes, But Will It Sell?, 1964


Every time we liberate a woman, we liberate a man. ~Margaret Mead


Women's chains have been forged by men, not by anatomy. ~Estelle R. Ramey


I would have girls regard themselves not as adjectives but as nouns. ~Elizabeth Cady Stanton, "Our Girls"


Some of us are becoming the men we wanted to marry. ~Gloria Steinem


Sensible and responsible women do not want to vote. The relative positions to be assumed by man and woman in the working out of our civilization were assigned long ago by a higher intelligence than ours. ~Grover Cleveland, 1905


If all men are born free, how is it that all women are born slaves? ~Mary Astell


I listen to feminists and all these radical gals most of them are failures. They've blown it. Some of them have been married, but they married some Casper Milquetoast who asked permission to go to the bathroom. These women just need a man in the house. That's all they need. Most of the feminists need a man to tell them what time of day it is and to lead them home. And they blew it and they're mad at all men. Feminists hate men. They're sexist. They hate men that's their problem. ~Jerry Falwell


[Feminism is] a socialist, anti-family, political movement that encourages women to leave their husbands, kill their children, practice witchcraft, destroy capitalism and become lesbians. ~Pat Robertson


I think, therefore I'm single. ~Lizz Winstead


I can't be a rose in any man's lapel. ~Margaret Trudeau


We are living through the invention of independent female adulthood....After a long history during which living solo would get you labeled a pathetic spinster or, if you were lucky, a sexual iconoclast, being recognized as an independent person rather than as someone's daughter, wife, or mother is a new, shiny kind of liberty for women, one that has unlocked all sorts of doors. ~Rebecca Traister, "Love and the Single Girl: The Single Girl Revolution," 2012 May 30th, MarieClaire.com


Taught from infancy that beauty is woman's sceptre, the mind shapes itself to the body, and roaming round its gilt cage, only seeks to adorn its prison. ~Mary Wollstonecraft


The only jobs for which no man is qualified are human incubators and wet nurse. Likewise, the only job for which no woman is or can be qualified is sperm donor. ~Wilma Scott Heide


Whether women are better than men I cannot say but I can say they are certainly no worse. ~Golda Meir


Give a woman a job and she grows balls. ~Jack Gelber


It's wonderful to watch a pretty woman with character grow beautiful. ~Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook, 1966


How important it is for us to recognize and celebrate our heroes and she-roes! ~Maya Angelou, in Chris Orr, "Moms and Whoopi: Pioneers of Black Theater," Plexus, November 1983


American women are fools because they try to be everything to everybody. ~Viva


Several men I can think of are as capable, as smart, as funny, as compassionate, and as confused as remarkable you might say as most women. ~Jane Howard


Not only is women's work never done, the definition keeps changing. ~Bill Copeland


No man is as anti-feminist as a really feminine woman. ~Frank O'Connor


Men weren't really the enemy they were fellow victims suffering from an outmoded masculine mystique that made them feel unnecessarily inadequate when there were no bears to kill. ~Betty Friedan


It is now possible for a flight attendant to get a pilot pregnant. ~Richard J. Ferris


Sometimes the best man for the job isn't. ~Author Unknown


If Congress refuse to listen to and grant what women ask, there is but one course left them to pursue.... Under such glaring inconsistencies, such unwarrantable tyranny, such unscrupulous despotism, what is there left women to do but to become the mothers of the future government. ~Victoria Claflin Woodhull Martin, The Great Secession Speech of Victoria C. Woodhull, Before the National Woman's Suffrage Convention, at Apollo Hall, May 11, 1871


Scratch most feminists and underneath there is a woman who longs to be a sex object. The difference is that is not all she wants to be. ~Betty Rollin


When two people marry they become in the eyes of the law one person, and that one person is the husband. ~Shana Alexander, State-by-State Guide to Women's Legal Rights, 1975


Why is it that men can be bastards and women must wear pearls and smile? ~Lynn Hecht Schafren


You know, when I first went into the movies Lionel Barrymore played my grandfather. Later he played my father and finally he played my husband. If he had lived I'm sure I would have played his mother. That's the way it is in Hollywood. The men get younger and the women get older. ~Lillian Gish


Easy is an adjective used to describe a woman who has the sexual morals of a man. ~Nancy Linn-Desmond


Isn't that the problem? That women have been swindled for centuries into substituting adornment for love, fashion (as it were) for passion? ~Erica Jong


Young wives are the leading asset of corporate power. They want the suburbs, a house, a settled life, and respectability. They want society to see that they have exchanged themselves for something of value. ~Ralph Nader


Nobody objects to a woman being a good writer or sculptor or geneticist if at the same time she manages to be a good wife, a good mother, good-looking, good-tempered, well-dressed, well-groomed, and unaggressive. ~Marya Mannes


Women are the only exploited group in history to have been idealized into powerlessness. ~Erica Jong


It starts when you sink in his arms and ends with your arms in his sink. ~Author Unknown


To me, "sexual freedom" means freedom from having to have sex. ~Lily Tomlin


No one should have to dance backward all of their lives. ~Jill Ruckelshaus


When a woman behaves like a man, why doesn't she behave like a nice man? ~Edith Evans


We have to have faith in ourselves. I have never met a woman who, deep down in her core, really believes she has great legs. And if she suspects that she might have great legs, then she's convinced that she has a shrill voice and no neck. ~Cynthia Heimel


The reason there are so few female politicians is that it is too much trouble to put makeup on two faces. ~Maureen Murphy


Any intelligent woman who reads the marriage contract, and then goes into it, deserves all the consequences. ~Isadora Duncan


It's hard to fight an enemy who has outposts in your head. ~Sally Kempton, Esquire, 1970


I'm just a person trapped inside a woman's body. ~Elaine Boosler


Marriage is for women the commonest mode of livelihood, and the total amount of undesired sex endured by women is probably greater in marriage than in prostitution. ~Bertrand Russell, Marriage and Morals


Women are not the weak, frail little flowers that they are advertised. There has never been anything invented yet, including war, that a man would enter into, that a woman wouldn't, too. ~Will Rogers


We've begun to raise daughters more like sons... but few have the courage to raise our sons more like our daughters. ~Gloria Steinem


Our only hope for the redemption of woman from the thralldom of dress lies in the belief that her hitherto limited sphere of activities has been so insufficient for her intellectual occupations that she has been forced to expend her thoughts in decorating her person, instead of enlarging her mind. ~Mercy B. Jackson


There is more difference within the sexes than between them. ~Ivy Compton-Burnett, Mother and Son


Because women's work is never done and is underpaid or unpaid or boring or repetitious and we're the first to get fired and what we look like is more important than what we do and if we get raped it's our fault and if we get beaten we must have provoked it and if we raise our voices we're nagging bitches and if we enjoy sex we're nymphos and if we don't we're frigid and if we love women it's because we can't get a "real" man and if we ask our doctor too many questions we're neurotic and/or pushy and if we expect childcare we're selfish and if we stand up for our rights we're aggressive and "unfeminine" and if we don't we're typical weak females and if we want to get married we're out to trap a man and if we don't we're unnatural and because we still can't get an adequate safe contraceptive but men can walk on the moon and if we can't cope or don't want a pregnancy we're made to feel guilty about abortion and... for lots of other reasons we are part of the women's liberation movement. ~Author unknown, quoted in The Torch, 1987 September 14th


Why is it that only girls stand on the sides of their feet? As if they're afraid to plant themselves? ~Barbara Kingsolver, Animal Dreams, 1990


During the feminist revolution, the battle lines were again simple. It was easy to tell the enemy, he was the one with the penis. This is no longer strictly true. Some men are okay now. We're allowed to like them again. We still have to keep them in line, of course, but we no longer have to shoot them on sight. ~Cynthia Heimel, Sex Tips for Girls, 1983


I didn't want to be a boy, ever, but I was outraged that his height and intelligence were graces for him and gaucheries for me. ~Jane Rule


We haven't come a long way, we've come a short way. If we hadn't come a short way, no one would be calling us baby. ~Elizabeth Janeway


A woman is like a tea bag. It's only when she's in hot water that you realize how strong she is. ~Attributed to both Eleanor Roosevelt and Carl Sandburg ["A true warrior, like tea, shows his strength in hot water." ~Chinese Proverb] ["Optimism is a cheerful frame of mind which enables a tea kettle to whistle and sing although it is up to its neck in hot water all the time." ~Author unknown, 1914]


The little rift between the sexes is astonishingly widened by simply teaching one set of catchwords to the girls and another to the boys. ~Robert Louis Stevenson


Men define intelligence, men define usefulness, men tell us what is beautiful, men even tell us what is womanly. ~Sally Kempton


Sexism is a social disease. ~Author Unknown


Men are irrelevant. Women are happy or unhappy, fulfilled or unfulfilled, and it has nothing to do with men. ~Fay Weldon


One does not have to sleep with, or even touch, someone who has paid for your meal. All those obligations are hereby rendered null and void, and any man who doesn't think so needs a quick jab in the kidney. ~Cynthia Heimel, Sex Tips for Girls, 1983


Women are all female impersonators to some degree. ~Susan Brownmiller


All this pitting of sex against sex, of quality against quality; all this claiming of superiority and imputing of inferiority, belong to the private-school stage of human existence where there are "sides," and it is necessary for one side to beat another side, and of the utmost importance to walk up to a platform and receive from the hands of the Headmaster himself a highly ornamental pot. As people mature they cease to believe in sides or in Headmasters or in highly ornamental pots. ~Virginia Woolf, A Room of One's Own


You don't have to signal a social conscience by looking like a frump. Lace knickers won't hasten the holocaust, you can ban the bomb in a feather boa just as well as without, and a mild interest in the length of hemlines doesn't necessarily disqualify you from reading Das Kapital and agreeing with every word. ~Elizabeth Bibesco


My advice to the women's clubs of America is to raise more hell and fewer dahlias. ~James McNeill Whistler



Related Quotations:  WomenMenConfidenceWomen's GreetingsHistoryMothersDaughters  Human RightsFreedomEquality



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