Femme and Fierce --- Part Three

Femme and Fierce - a sequence of profiles looking into inspirational women, that prove to the world that we girls are a force to be reckoned with.

 

This post is in collaboration with Courtney Jones, who, I’m excited to announce, has explored the absolute icon Aubrey Hepburn!

—— Read Courtney’s Femme and Fierce Part Two Here ——

Anthony Harvey&—Getty Images

Anthony Harvey&—Getty Images

Emma Watson

There is nobody I would rather write about for the Femme and Fierce mini series then Emma Watson. The actress and activist never fails to inspire me, whilst she continues to fight everyday for equality between men and women.

Watson has spent her entire career being a role model to women everywhere. As an actor, her roles include resourceful and intelligent Hermione from Harry Potter, rebel spirit Sam from Perks of Being a Wallflower and, more recently, Belle from Beauty and the Best. Each role Watson takes on portrays a complex, meaningful female perspective. However she has also been incredibly active off screen as well. She has been a Goodwill Ambassador for U.N. Women since 2014 and it was that same year she gave an incredibly powerful speech on feminism at the U.N. headquarters. The address launched the HeForShe campaign, a movement which was meant to educate men and women on gender equality and how it benefits everyone. She has continued every year since to spread wisdom about feminism.

I spoke briefly about Watson’s role as Belle in Beauty and the Best. A feminist role, in a position to inspire so many young viewers, however it still managed to stir up controversy whenVanity Fair published a photo shoot and cover story with Watson ahead of the film's release. Watson was pictured wearing a crotched bolero jacket with no top and bra underneath. She hit back at criticism, turning the incident into an opportunity to clear up misconceptions about feminism with this killer quote: 

Feminism is about giving women choice. Feminism is not a stick with which to beat other women with. It’s about freedom. It’s about liberation. It’s about equality. I really don’t know what my t*ts have to do with it
— Emma Watson
Photographer - Tim Walker

Photographer - Tim Walker

As well as the above examples, Watson has just basically nailed the whole idea of feminism. She was encouraged to not use the word ‘feminism’ in her 2014 UN speech because it might seem alienating and separating. Watson did it anyway, claiming that “if women are terrified to use the word, how on earth are men supposed to start using it?” She also continues to stress the importance of inter sexuality in feminism. Her campaign HeForShe was about men coming to support women for femininity and for feminine qualities.

If you want to read further into the ideals that surround feminism, you can look at my other blog post:

—— Read ‘Is It Ok To Be Confused About Feminism? Here ——

She also leads a feminist book club! Watson said that she started the club ‘Our Shared Shelf’ after the 2014 UN, when she started reading as many books and essays about equality as she could find. She recommends books bi-monthly and invited readers from around the world to discuss the powerful works that have a profound effect on society. Some of book club reads include The Handmaiden’s Tale by Margaret Atwood, Maya Angelou’s Mom & Me & Mom, Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur and The Hate you Give by Angie Thomas. Watson has also been known to hide little book treasures for people to find and read.

I’d like to finish with one of my absolute favourite moments of Watson’s - her answer when she was asked what important lesson she would want her daughter to learn. She replied:

“I would want her to know that she is a force to be reckoned with and never to underestimate her own power.”

Watson helps all of us girls to recognise this about ourselves - she encourages girls to live up to their potential. With grit and grace, she is helping to pave the way to a future with true equality.

Stay Perfect, Messy People