​Cosmo, Ms. Foundation Name Emma Watson Feminist Celebrity of 2014


It certainly has been quite a year for feminists (or maybe just the word “feminist“) Over the course of the last month or so, the Ms. Foundation for Women and Cosmopolitan magazine held an online poll, asking readers to choose their top celebrity feminist. Congratulations to Emma Watson and all, but I don’t know what this means.

The top ten feminist celebrities from the survey are:

  1. Emma Watson
  2. Laverne Cox
  3. Rachel Maddow
  4. Beyoncé
  5. Cher
  6. Amy Poehler
  7. Tina Fey
  8. Meryl Streep
  9. Mindy Kaling
  10. Ann Curry

In a statement, Ms. Foundation President and CEO Teresa Younger explained:

“We celebrate all feminists every day, but today we’re giving a hat tip to celebrities who are helping to promote women’s equality…Every celebrity on the list has either embraced the term ‘feminist,’ spoken out for women’s equal rights or battled against sexist oppression.”
“Celebrities who embrace feminism or speak out for women’s equality are helping to spread the word and build support for women’s rights. With this survey, we’re expanding the conversation about women’s empowerment to even more people.”

I’m obviously not going to knock on women’s empowerment or the people who call themselves feminists, but I’m not sure voting the top feminist from a list of already high profile women is the way to go here.

All these women have different kinds of feminism—they may believe in the same general ideals of equality, but Laverne Cox’s feminism is probably different than Ann Curry’s. Feminism is about embracing the intersectionality of women, their causes and experiences, not ranking them. Yes, Emma Watson is a celebrity who is also a great feminist. But it doesn’t help us at all to say she’s the top feminist.

Image via Getty.

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