By Wendy Morrison
On October 24th, 2012, Dr. Christina Hoff Sommers spoke for a group of students at the University of Virginia on the topic of Conservative Feminism. Her speech, entitled, “The Case for Conservative Feminism: How the once noble cause of feminism lost its way, and why it may take conservative women to get it back on track”, dealt with what Dr. Sommers believed to be the logical and philosophical problems with late twentieth century feminism. A self described “freedom feminist”, Sommers applauded the first two waves of feminism for championing the cause of equal opportunity for women and securing essential negative rights.
Using countless examples of hyperbolic claims and misrepresented statistics from a variety of current women’s studies material, Dr. Sommers demonstrated how modern day “gender feminists” have shifted their focus from freedom and equal opportunity to securing entitlements and equality of outcome for women, while casting modern American women as victims of a male patriarchy. These trends in feminism are dangerous, said Dr. Sommers, not only because of their inaccuracy, but because they distract from serious issues facing women and men, particularly in the third world.
Wendy Morrison is a student at UVA and member of UVA NeW. She also wrote about this event for the Virginia Advocate.