What is femininity?

Campus & Local

By Makenzie Plusnick

Opinion Editor

Makenzie Plusnick

I keep seeing a reoccurring post stating that through women claiming they can do everything a man can, we are losing what makes us unique and ‘feminine.’ My question is: what is femininity? Is it determined by the career we choose, the clothes we wear or what hobbies we have?  Just because I was born a female, am I required to be ‘feminine?’

I believe anyone can do anything, whether that means a woman wants to work on an oil rig or work in any male-dominated field. We can do just as much as any man. I do not mean women who are born women, I believe anyone who identifies as female, nonbinary, or as anything can do whatever we desire. What we choose to do with our lives and our careers is not determined by our gender.

In 1849, Dr. Elizabeth Blackwell graduated from medical school and became the first female doctor in the United States. She changed the face of medicine and opened a door for more women to become doctors. Now, it is normal for women to be doctors. No one questions it. But at one point, only men were accepted into medical school. She was able to become a doctor and succeed in what was a fully male profession.

This is just one example of a woman who was brave enough to fight for what she wanted and succeed, leading the way for every woman following her. She was just as good, if not better, than the male doctors around her. Her gender had nothing to do with it. It did not change that she was still ‘feminine.’ Being a woman did not make her any less capable of doing the job.

Blackwell’s story is one that everyone should remember. Whether you are a woman or a man or somewhere in between, you can do anything that you want. Work for it, fight for it, and do not let anyone else’s opinion discourage you. You are not any less masculine if you are a man who enjoys theater or fashion or things that are considered ‘girly.’ You are not any less feminine if you enjoy football or weightlifting either. Do what makes you happy, strive toward whatever your goals are, and do not feel as though just because you are a certain gender you cannot do anything you want.

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