When Emma Watson was featured on the cover of the latest issue of Vanity Fair, with an accompanying extent that sees her braless with a cut out top, she got a fair bit of criticism online from all sides. And while the star of Beauty and the Beast had not responded before, she recently did a press interview for the new film. “Is there a dispute about this?” she asked sarcastically.
It just always evidences to me of how many misconceptions and misunderstandings there is about what feminism is, the 26-year old Emma Watson told about the response to the Tim Walker photograph. 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.
The photos are very photography.
Feminism should not be used as a measuring stick to criticize and sneer other women, but it should advocate for a woman’s right to choose how she presents her body and emotions. Watson’s track record doesn’t exactly reflect that, as some have pointed out.
Emma Watsons also commented about Beyonce’s album. She sad she felt very conflicted. She felt her message felt very conflicted in the sense that, on the one hand, she is putting herself in a category of a feminist, but then the camera, it felt very male, But wait, as we all know, it’s Beyoncé who makes the final decision on how she is portrayed, in every sense. So what’s the difference?
Watson sad feminism is about giving women a choice. It was her choice to emerge in the way that she did in Walker’s photograph. It was partially her version, apparently, as she was creatively involved in the shoot. But wasn’t Beyoncé, as well? Hasn’t she engineered and directed all aspects of her career and her image, since firing her father back in 2011? Wasn’t she also creatively involved in the final look of her album?
To be fair, Watson may have developed since her original statements and come to understand that one can be both a feminist and appear in lingerie. One can be both sexy to men and attributive about the rights of women. And while it’s her choice whether she reveals this maturation to the public, doing so could go a long way toward letting people understand her seemingly contradictory positions.
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