Video by Sierra Hancock
As a women’s studies course came to an end in December, three Webster students decided they wanted to continue the discussion of feminism. Sophomores Maggie Hake and Maggie Nagel and freshman Rosie Jones spent their winter breaks filling out the forms necessary to create Webster University’s Feminist Collective.
“It’s not like it’s a group built around an interest,” Jones said. “It’s built around a way of life.”
Jones said the idea of the group is to spread the ideals of feminism and debunk the myths surrounding feminism.
The Feminist Collective’s executive board stresses the misconceptions they battle while addressing feminism.
“There are many ideas that feminists are man-haters, dress a certain way and are always angry,” said club’s adviser Kate Parsons, associate professor of philosophy. “I think a group like this can do a lot of consciousness-raising and change people’s preconceptions of what feminism is.”
Feminism — as described by both Hake and Parsons — at the core is a movement that seeks social, political and economic equality between men and women.
“People are like, ‘Women can vote. What more can you possibly want?’ Well, there’s a lot more that we want,” Hake said. “If you want women to get a job and be paid the same and be respected in the same way, then you’re a feminist.”
Student Government Association (SGA) unanimously approved the creation of the Feminist Collective on Jan. 8.
“I think this club can really thrive on a campus like this that’s so supportive,” Hake said.
The club has had two meetings since its approval in January with an average of 25 members in attendance.
As of March 19, the Webster University Feminist Collective Facebook page had 97 likes. Nagel said their Facebook is very active. She said people post on it everyday.
“The Facebook group fosters group discussion, people post current issues,” Hake said. “This allows us to know what our members are interested in.”
The members post videos, memes and articles to the Facebook page that provide topics of discussion for the group meetings.
“We’re really trying to encourage a lot more men to join because the group is really about equality because we want everyone to be represented within the collective,” Nagle said.
Hake said they want men to join the group because it would give men a chance to be aware of things that might not affect them directly, but affect the women they love and the women around them.
“We’re trying to show that anyone can be a feminist,” Hake said.