At BCC this spring, we had a nice panel discussion about Feminism(s) with my colleague Erika Baldt and awesome new Dean Nichole Bennett-Bealer. It was a nice discussion that was very broad in its topics. At one point the topic of men and feminism came up. I have for many years openly proclaimed my discomfort with men labelling themselves as "feminists." There are many power/privilege issues with that label and I think men have a different role to play in this process. This got argued around the room, with some people really not understanding what I was getting at, which was no fault of their own as I think many of them had not ever consider the point.
I tried to point out that men need to take a more supportive role in this process that does not center them, but I am not sure if I was totally eloquent about it. What I was trying to say can be summarized by this fantastic quote I found on Tumblr (and had retumbled and could not find during the panel):
Men who want to be feminist allies do not need to be given a space in feminism. They need to take the space that they have in society and make it feminist. That’s what women had to do in the first place, and women have fought much too hard for what little space they have to be giving it to men.