So I have been following a discussion on Twitter about whether a feminist wedding is possible or what makes a wedding a feminist wedding?
First off, is it possible to take a traditional institution like marriage and the rituals associated with it and make it feminist? Are some of the parts in the wedding ritual too traditional to be recast with a feminist replacement?
Several items in the debate on Twitter identified some feminist changes- making a speech, not wearing heels, not changing your name and not making a vow of obedience.
To me, some of those changes aren't necessarily feminist but just moving with the time. I haven't seen a vow of obedience in the last 5 years since I started attending weddings, and keeping your own name is more common for career reasons than feminism.
Meanwhile, wearing heels and making a speech or not is more a case of personal choice. I'm a feminist and I wear heels and makeup, and it does not make me less of a feminist. As for making your own speech, fair dues to you if you're comfortable speaking in public but many are not.
Kinda feels a bit like feminist bingo when you start listing out ways to make something feminist.
Your thoughts? Can you have a feminist wedding?
Weird Cat Lady
How about a female priest? *thunder bolts and lightning* Wait, hear me out... How about a female priest presiding over the wedding of two women? That's a lot of potential for jealousy and colour clashing in the one room. Someone should give Sinead O'Connor a call in the meantime. We're probably talking another few millennia before it formally happens.
Can't think of any other modifications to a wedding ceremony unless it coincides with ovulation and the choir could do a special ode to the passing ovum called Hear Me Howl. Or maybe that's what we should call the choir. PM me if you want the lyrics. It's a work in progress this morning.
A feminist marriage on the other hand is fairly achievable and negotiated between the couple, but I do get nostalgic for the marriage bar. Especially on Monday mornings.
The bride being given away like chattel, I suppose you could scrap that to have a more feminist wedding?
I'd love to hear more of that song WCL, Hear Me Howl for Christmas No. 1, the campaign starts here!
I'm with LadyLizzie there. The thoughts of Dad giving me away... At my age? Cringe!
The Today show on RTE1 (on now) will be talking about feminist weddings later on today's show...someone in RTE must be following the Twitter debate!
Girl From Mars
I don't think a wedding should be seen as feminist or not. It's about a couple uniting themselves and therefore gender is not the issue, or at least that's how I'd see it.
Tassajara I was following that discussion on Twitter last night and I got really wound up!
I would consider myself a feminist, but then who here wouldn't?! To me feminism should be about women being free to make their own choices without being judged by other. I felt so many involved in that discussion were sneering at anyone who didn't make some huge stand on their wedding day. I made a speech on my wedding day, I didn't promise to obey in the vows and I haven't changed my name. But I did these things because I wanted to. My Dad did walk me up the aisle, because I wanted him to and loved having that time before the ceremony with him. I didn't see it as him 'handing me over' to himself. And I wore really high heels and a full face of makeup - shock horror!
Girl From Mars, I agree completely, the wedding is about the couple and should reflect them as a whole.
To me,it sounds like a load of nonsense.How can you turn the biggest day of two peoples lives into a feminist affair? As someone else said,its about two people vowing to spend the rest of their lives together. If the bride wants to make a speech,then fair enough,something different.Being walked up the aisle by my father,i wouldn't change for the world.I loved every minute i spent with him that morning and its all part of tradition.
I Dream in Disney
Argh, this shiiiite annoys me so much. It's people trying to pigeonhole feminists and ensure you have to fit such a stereotype to want to be treated as an equal, it's a bit hypocritical is it not?
For me a feminist wedding is when both parties commit, in a manner decided by themselves, to love and respect and support each other all the days of their lives. So basically, a happy wedding where neither party are diminished by the union.
I'm not saying that anyone here is being hypocritical, it's just the kind of thing that gets on my goat.
Is Here Me Howl available on itunes?
I think the Twitter debate was being led by the person they were interviewing on RTE. So many parts of it bothered me as well, Cookbook Collector- it seemed like total one-upmanship, rather than actually discussing whether it matters whether a wedding is feminist or not.
Yeah, I know there are some parts which are symbols of patriarchy and I hate it when priests and celebrants try to make awkward cracks about a wife's role, etc. I think as long the bride recognises the tradition it is based upon and then makes her own decision about whether she wants her dad to walk her down the aisle or not. After all, our dads are huge parts of our lives as well.
For me, I'm going to walk down the aisle with my fiance. I don't see myself as starting a new life with my new husband and needing a family member to give me away. I see it as an extension of our life together.
As far as I'm concerned really, the main thing is that you have a relationship which supports each partner equally and fairly, and a wedding is just one day in all that.
Hear Me Howl for No 1!