so you’ve familiarized yourself with feminist and queer theory. you’ve realized that the gender binary is bullshit, that our society is incredibly sexist and racist and classist, that not everyone is born with the same privileges, that even feminist and queer movement itself has a lot of issues within itself. but what now? how can you, as an individual, practice your queer and feminist beliefs and, so to say, get them out there? how to turn the theory into, at least some form of, activism?
well, worry no further, i’ve compiled a short list of things i myself try to incorporate into my everyday life to act according to my beliefs and share them irl!
ask people for their pronouns – it can be as simple as saying “what are your pronouns?”. or saying “i’m Anna and i go by she/her. what about you?”. i really believe this is a practice we should incorporate everywhere and at every occasion to finally break the gender binary!
use gender neutral language – “they” instead of “he or she.” use other neutral terms when describing people. while it might seem like a whole new thing, this is actually incredibly easy in English. it might be more difficult in other languages that are very gendered by default, but it’s possible too.
don’t assume anyone’s gender until they explicitly tell you (and respect that after) – refer to people as “they” until you’re really sure how they identify.
continue to educate yourself – follow feminist and queer Instagram/Facebook/Twitter/… accounts, join online groups and forums, check out articles on websites and online platforms, read books, attend events,…
support/participate in the community – whether financially (if you can afford it) or just by your attendance or voluntary labor, there’s so many ways you can help out organizations promoting feminist agenda.
use your channels to promote feminism – people always slam social media but i believe they have a great potential in encouraging social change. share interesting articles. express your opinions. highlight others doing great work. of course, this doesn’t apply to the Internet realm only – you can also promote your beliefs simply by your choice of clothing and accessories (e.g. feminist merch such as tees, pins, stickers,…), talking to people around you, distributing leaflets/posters of like-minded communities and projects etc. etc. – the list is endless.
stand up in the events of violence and discrimination – of course, first you need to evaluate whether the situation is safe enough for you to challenge the discriminating person. but, you know, i really believe in the saying “silence is violence,” and by deciding to overlook occurrences of oppression, you are perpetuating and participating in it too.
educate others – share your knowledge. recommend articles, books, courses, videos and so on you enjoy. explain to others when they do something wrong, why it is not ok and how can they change their behavior.
empower others – step away to give platform to those less privileged than you. support causes that might not affect you directly but harm others significantly. think outside of your own reality, and support anything that goes beyond.
support others – highlight other activists that do brilliant work. amplify other people’s voices. sustain a supportive, strong community!
these are a few examples you can practice in your everyday life and contribute to changing the society, step by step. most of them are really simple and easy to incorporate, and while they might seem like they’re small acts that might not have much effect on their own, trust me, they can push the norms a bunch.
how do you incorporate feminism into your daily activities and who you are in general? do you have any tips? please let me know!