What do primary school children think about feminism?

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This International Women’s Day follows a year of women speaking out, including the #MeToo and Time’s Up movements – but how much of the discussion has trickled down to children?

Here, a group of 10 and 11-year-olds from Burdett-Coutts & Townshend Foundation Primary School in London offer their thoughts on feminism, feminists and the challenges women face.

What does feminism mean?

Because you should always be equal between women and men. I don’t think men should be at the top of everything because women can achieve.

Tayah: It’s the opposite of a male, which is a female. That’s what I believe.

Mohamed: It’s about women’s rights and they should be able to have their own rights and be able to do the same thing as men.

They always used to think men were always better than women and so women wouldn’t be important to the world.

But if they weren’t important that wouldn’t be fair for everyone because everyone needs to have their own rights and show that everyone is the same.

Mohamed with whiteboard
Mohamed’s understanding of feminism (Georgie Grouse/PA)

What is a feminist?

Sonia: Sometimes people also think that a feminist is a female who is really powerful and confident.

Sonia and Aram
Sonia (left) and Aram (Georgie Grouse/PA)

Tayah: I believe it’s someone who never gives up and they like to face challenges like giving birth, and they always reach for their goals.

Do you know any feminists?

Christiana: Rosa Parks. Black people had to sit at the back of the bus and she didn’t think that was fair. So she sat at the front.

She got arrested but it boosted all the black people up so they didn’t give up.

Every day I wake up and I look up to her and I always try to achieve something good.

Christiana’s understanding of feminism (Georgie Grouse/PA)

Ernest: My mum, my sister and my sister-in-law.

When I was in my mum’s womb she used to work even though she wasn’t supposed to work and then when I was born my sister and my sister-in-law used to look after me when she was working.

What challenges do women face?

There are times when you have self-doubt because of what people say but to be a good female you need to be able to overcome those and reach for your goals.

Tayah: I think men and women have to face the same challenges because everybody should be treated equally, it’s unfair for one gender to do something and another not to do it.

Ruth’s definition of a feminist (Georgie Grouse/PA)

Eyob’s definition of a feminist (Georgie Grouse/PA)

Who are your female heroes?

Aram writing about feminism (Georgie Grouse/PA)

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