Allies for Feminism is a new student association this semester that intends to raise awareness about gender equality and the social stigmas surrounding feminism on campus.
The student association plans to emphasize the race and gender-encompassing aspects of feminism. They will attempt to dispel the stigmas associated with feminism, and partner with other student organizations to spread the word across campus.
The group promotes a He For She campaign which states feminism is for men and women.
“Basically, we are all about raising awareness for gender equality and taking back the name, feminism, because it has a really bad name,” said Joyce Schuster, president of Allies for Feminism and senior composite interdisciplinary major from North Richland Hills.
They want to involve everyone on campus, to eliminate the stereotypical notions of feminists and provide the impetus for change within the student body and administration.
“We really think that patriarchy and the lack of feminism hurts men as well as it hurts women,” Schuster said. “We really just think that equality for all people is important.”
The group believes feminism continues to be a large problem on campus, Schuster said. She hopes the group can begin broaching tricky topics and removing the social constructs and barriers that exist across campus.
The first campaign, Take Back The Name, will occur around Halloween. Participants will wear costumes that evoke negative feminist stereotypes. Other planned events include Take Back The Night and Jeans Day.
At the first meeting, two weeks ago, Schuster asked attendees what was important to them and what they thought should be done.
“Considering we are in the planning stages, I think it’s important for the students of ACU to decide what’s important,” Schuster said.
Abbey Moses, sophomore political science major from Abilene, is one of the new members.
“I think the feminist movement on ACU’s campus is going to do a lot of good because, within church settings, there is a lot of oppression and shame for women in different ways,” Moses said. “This group will really provide a space on campus to talk about what those oppressions are and what that shame feels like as a female at a Church of Christ university and as a citizen of the United States and the global community.”