A Feminist a Day: Patrick Stewart

Who is he?

patrick-stewart 2Patrick Stewart is an accomplished stage and screen actor, best known as Captain Jean-Luc Picard in the TV series, Star Trek: The Next Generation.

Patrick is an outspoken advocate for raising awareness of violence against women, particularly domestic violence. He was raised in a household with a violent father, during a time when domestic violence was barely spoken about. He writes about it in this amazing article, talks about it in this incredibly moving video and campaigns for the UK domestic violence organisation Refuge.

Why should we thank him?

There aren’t many high profile people who speak out about domestic violence, particularly those who’ve experienced it first-hand. Patrick has raised awareness of the prevalence of domestic violence, all the while acknowledging his position of privilege as a man.

Best quote

“People won’t listen to you or take you seriously unless you’re an old white man, and since I’m an old white man I’m going to use that to help the people who need it.”

A note on men and feminism

Can men be feminists? It’s a tricky question, and one I certainly pondered before publishing this post. Certainly, I don’t think men can ever understand what it’s like to experience sexism, just as white men (and women) can’t ever truly understand what it’s like to experience racism first hand.

But if the true definition of a feminist is someone who believes in equality for men and women and advocates for feminist causes, then I believe a man can be a feminist.

Now we just need more of them in the world.

 

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A Feminist a Day: Patrick Stewart

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