Monday, 10 March 2014


Lilly Allen recently announced the title to her new album 'Sheezus' which I initially assumed would be full of girl-power anthems and feminist messages. 'Hard out here for a b*tch' seemed to be trying to do these things although I think it was more of a publicity stunt. As it turns out Lilly Allen is actually against feminism for reasons which seem to me to be untrue and slightly naive.

This NME article about Lilly's views on feminism is very interesting but incredibly infuriating. She has been quoted saying that she hates the word feminism because she thinks 'it shouldn't even be a thing anymore'. 'Why is there even a conversation about feminism? What's the man version of feminism? There isn't even a word for it. Menanism. Male-ism. It doesn't exist'

I strongly disagree with her opinions on many levels; firstly her claim that sexism no longer exists. In the western world, among working, middle class women, it is easy for people to assume that sexism is no longer a problem as on basic levels we do have equal rights. We can vote, we can work; what more do we need? When you start thinking more deeply about the problems women face on a day to day basis (which I wrote about here) then you realise that there are still many obstacles which we need to overcome. Lilly Allen claims that there is no need for a 'conversation' about feminism. I think that this ongoing 'conversation' is a very good sign that things are changing and should be strongly encouraged. The rebranding of feminism is not being helped by people like Lilly Allen trying to give it a bad name.

The above argument excludes the obvious need for feminism in less developed countries where women are still suppressed; regularly being forced in to marriage, abused and denied education. Surely, if only for these women, we must continue to fight for equality. I do not know if Lilly Allen has forgotten these people or simply does not include them in her grand plans for feminist-bashing but I think somebody needs to remind her what is really going on.

On feminism; Lilly Allen also stated that she thinks 'women are the enemy'. She thinks that sexism is more of a 'competitive thing. It's weird. It's just really unhealthy and we're our own worst enemy.' The idea that really we are suppressing ourselves through jealousy seems ridiculous. Jealousy is not an emotion invented by women for the purpose of imposing its effects on other women. It is present within any group of people in the world. Furthermore the aesthetic competitiveness that Lilly talks about happens to be part of human nature which is massively exaggerated in women by the media (which, guess what, is mainly run by MEN). 


  1. I'm a Feministe commenter and I just saw your blog. Great post! I would like to add that there are many anti-feminist folks who actually say that women are only oppressed in "third-world countries" and so women in the UK, US, etc. (the West) are somehow not oppressed. That doesn't make any sense because just because one's living situation is worse, doesn't mean that your living situation has nothing wrong with it. I've been abused by some men before - does that mean that someone who has suffered more than I have is the only person who can legitimately claim to have been abused? And that's just one example.

    Also, it is important to address sexism in less developed countries. But it is also important to realize that a lot of white, higher-class people who claim to be fighting sexism in, say, South Africa are also being racist. Of course you can object to the rampant misogyny and sexual abuse in South Africa, but I have seen many people do this while also portraying all South Africans as "savages". It's very unfortunate, but even some feminists can be racist.

  2. Thank you! I totally agree sexism can and does occur within any social group.