Feminist: it's definitely a charged word. Some people interpret it as meaning women are greater than men. Some feminists feel oppressed by men and want to burn their bras and stop shaving. Others interpret the meaning of feminism as women are equal to men, therefore women should be able to do everything men do. That also means that men should be able to do things that women do: raise kids, cook, cry when they are sad, etc. Think about it: when men are shamed, it is usually for doing “feminine” stuff. So in our opinion, the latter is the true meaning of feminism. Lots of celebrities have spoken out about feminism in the past few years, saying they support the cause or consider themselves a feminist. However, some women in the entertainment industry do not wish to label themselves and try to avoid the title altogether. This is understandable because as we said, it is a charged word. Hopefully, more women can learn about feminism and these awesome celebrities can celebrate the concept. Here are 15 female celebrities who definitely don't seem to be feminists.
15 Sarah Jessica Parker
Some people prefer the term “humanist” instead of “feminist” -- even though they essentially mean the same thing. Sarah Jessica Parker feels that there are more important issues than women’s rights, and that is why she identifies as a “humanist.” On one hand, she understands that women’s rights used to be an issue. “I’m enormously appreciative of the work that my mother’s generation did. We are the beneficiaries of a lot of disappointment, heartache, discouragement, and misunderstanding,” she told Cosmopolitan UK. However, she does not consider it to be that big of a problem these days: “But I see a lot of people trying to sort out their roles. People of color, gays, lesbians, and transgenders who are carving out this space. I’m not spitting in their face or being lazy about what still needs to be done — but I don’t think it’s just women anymore. We would be so enormously powerful if it were a humanist movement.”
14 Shailene Woodley
Actress Shailene Woodley is quite progressive and unique in her views, so it is interesting that she had this to say about feminism: “I love men, and I think the idea of ‘raise women to power, take the men away from the power’ is never going to work out because you need balance. With myself, I’m very in touch with my masculine side. And I’m 50% feminine and 50% masculine, same as I think a lot of us are. And I think that is important to note. And also I think that if men went down and women rose to power, that wouldn’t work either. We have to have a fine balance.” Some could argue that giving women power does not necessarily mean taking away from men. She went on to clarify, “The reason why I don’t like to say that I am a feminist or I am not a feminist is because to me it’s still a label. I do not want to be defined by one thing. Why do we have to have that label to divide us? We should all be able to embrace one another regardless of our belief system and regardless of the labels that we have put upon ourselves.”
13 Lana Del Rey
Singer Lana Del Rey finds the subject of women’s rights to be, well, boring. She has said, “For me, the issue of feminism is just not an interesting concept. I’m more interested in, you know, SpaceX and Tesla, what’s going to happen with our intergalactic possibilities. Whenever people bring up feminism, I’m like, God. I’m just not really that interested.” Someone needs to inform this talented chica that you can care about space as well as feminism! They are not exactly mutually exclusive subjects. This caused quite the controversy when Kim Gordon, member of the band Sonic Youth, responded harshly to Lana Del Ray’s comments: “Today we have someone like Lana Del Rey, who doesn’t even know what feminism is, who believes it means women can do whatever they want, which, in her world, tilts towards self-destruction, whether it’s sleeping with gross older men or being a transient biker queen. Equal pay and equal rights would be nice. Naturally, it’s just a persona.” Ouch!
12 Marissa Meyer
Marissa Meyer is, of course, the CEO of Yahoo. Naturally, you would think that this woman in a position of power would be all about feminism. Instead, she had this to say: “I don’t think that I would consider myself a feminist. I think that I certainly believe in equal rights. I believe that women are just as capable, if not more so, in a lot of different dimensions. But I don’t, I think, have sort of the militant drive and sort of the chip on the shoulder that sometimes comes with that. And I think it’s too bad, but I do think feminism has become, in many ways, a more negative word. There are amazing opportunities all over the world for women, and I think that there’s more good that comes out of positive energy around that than negative energy.” Maybe instead of reinforcing the stereotype that feminism comes with “negative energy,” she could show feminism as empowering and welcoming to all.
This multi-talented star also insists that she is not a feminist. When she was asked why not, she was quoted as saying “Because I think it would isolate me. I think it’s important to do positive stuff. It’s more important to be asking than complaining.” Along with equating fighting for equal rights with “complaining,” she also believes feminists stay away from men. “You could probably call my mother a feminist, and I watched her isolate herself all her life from men, and therefore from society.” Good news, ladies: being a feminist does not mean you have to isolate yourself from men! In fact, you can simultaneously love men and be a feminist. It is a common misconception that feminists are “man-haters”. This is simply just not true! And it is also not true that feminists stay away from men in general, either. By definition, it does not appear that Bjork’s mother was a real feminist or should be considered one.
10 Sinead O’Connor
Controversial singer Sinead O’Connor has taken on many different causes, so it is interesting that she feels she in uneducated about the subject of feminism. She has said, “I don’t consider myself engaged in the feminist movement, I’m not educated about it to be honest. I tend to avoid anything with an ‘ist’ attached to the end of it.” Fair enough, but maybe if she did more research her mind would be changed. After all, Sinead is known for her strong, provocative viewpoints, and opinions. It is surprising that she has not spoken out about the largely debated subject of feminism. In addition, in the past, she has criticized Miley Cyrus about female empowerment in a brutal open letter, which included her saying “Real empowerment of yourself as a woman would be to in the future refuse to exploit your body or your desirability in order for men to make money from you.” Yikes! That letter is also debatable. Is it exploitation if you are choosing to be a desirable person? This has been up-in-the-air for the feminist community for a while.
9 Carrie Underwood
Carrie Underwood recognizes she is a pretty kicka$$ chick but refuses to take on the label of “feminist.” She has said, “I wouldn’t go so far as to say I am a feminist, that can come off as a negative connotation. But I am a strong female.” She is not definitely wrong about being strong. After all, country fan or not, who hasn’t rocked out to her hit “Before He Cheats”? But unfortunately, she has shied away from the feminist movement due to the damaging stereotypes that come with the title. Once again, we have to stress that feminism does not have to be a negative thing. Even men can be feminists! Since she identifies as a “strong female,” we wonder if she would be less wary of title if the false rumors surrounding the issue were dissolved. Either way, there is no denying Carrie is a gorgeous, talented singer. If only she understood the true definition of feminism!
8 Kelly Clarkson
Powerhouse Kelly Clarkson, another alumni of American Idol, buys into the negative stereotypes that come with the word too. When asked if she was a feminist, she responded by saying “I wouldn’t say feminist — that’s too strong. I think when people hear feminist, it’s like, ‘Get out of my way, I don’t need anyone.’ I love that I’m being taken care of, and I have a man that’s a leader. I’m not a feminist in that sense.” Feminism is not about not being taken care of, it is about having the choice to want that or not and not have expectations thrust upon you. You can be a feminist and a housewife! When asked to clarify, Kelly said “I was saying that in the past decade, I feel people have associated the word ‘feminist’ with ‘b!+ch’ and ‘man-hater’ and all these things. And I’m definitely not that girl. That’s what I meant by that.”
7 Demi Moore
Actress Demi Moore is another actress that chooses to use the word “humanist.” She does not think it is as big of an issue as people make it out to be. “I am a great supporter of women, but I have never really thought of myself as a feminist, probably more of a humanist because I feel like that’s really where we need to be,” she said. “I think clearly times have changed and women have made their mark in many different arenas.” We understand what she means about humanism— there are other issues out there that are important to be aware of. But feminism is an issue of its own, and it is certainly not a thing of the past, unfortunately. While it is definitely not as bad as it once was, woman-related problems are still prominent in our communities and around the world. Sure, women have made their mark, but we still have a long way to go.
6 Lady Gaga
This is an especially surprising one as Lady Gaga is known for fighting for the rights of everyone. Weirdly enough, she was quoted as saying “I’m not a feminist. I hail men, I love men, I celebrate American male culture — beer, bars, and muscle cars.” We really need to fight off the belief that feminism means hating on or not appreciating men or masculine activities. Even stranger is that it is clear Lady Gaga is supportive of women’s rights: she’s been a vocal supporter of the LGBT community and wrote a song about assault called “’Til It Happens To You" for the movie The Hunting Ground. She gave a powerful performance at the Oscars in 2016 where she was joined on stage by a group of victims who are attack survivors, bringing the audience to tears. Although it's important to note that men cause be victims too, and the issue is not exclusive to women.
5 Katy Perry
One would think Katy Perry would be vocally supportive of women. After all, she does not mind kissing them! But the bubbly singer has denied any involvement with the cause, stating “I am not a feminist, but I do believe in the strength of women.” This is beyond confusing—feminism is believing in the strength of women! Once again, it seems that this definition has been put on the backburner in favor of the belief that feminism means hating men or thinking women are better than men. Feminism is about equal rights for men and women, or as some celebrities have called this, “humanism.” Katy is right that women are strong, but seems to not understand that this is what feminism is all about! Katy has sang many songs that are intended to inspire, such as “Firework” or “Roar.” We believe she could be even more inspiring if she spoke out about feminism and equality!
“I’m not a feminist, I’m a humanist,” Madonna said. There is that darn word again! While it is important to care about human rights in general (Madonna has been very supportive of the LGBT community), there are many problems that are an exclusive attack on either females or feminine-related things. For example, the idea that boys can’t cry because it is “girly”. Not to mention the additional issues that affect women on the other side of the world. Madonna has always been progressive and shocking, so it is weird to see she is not ahead of the game with this subject. If someone maybe explained to her why feminism needs to be a word that stands on its own, perhaps she would change her mind and identify as a feminist. Unfortunately, Madonna is probably another misguided celebrity that buys into the idea that feminism means women are greater than men.
3 Susan Sarandon
Susan Sarandon went on a confusing rant about feminism, saying “I think of myself as a humanist because I think it's less alienating to people who think of feminism as being a load of strident b!+*hes and because you want everyone to have equal pay, equal rights, education, and health care. It's a bit of an old-fashioned word. It's used more in a way to minimize you. My daughter who is 28 doesn't even relate to the word 'feminist' and she is definitely in control of her decisions and her body." So basically, it seems like Susan is a feminist in every way except for name. We are not quite sure what she means by the word feminist being minimizing or old-fashioned, but we do know she is perpetuating the idea that feminists are, as she so lovingly phrases it, “strident b!+*hes.” Let’s fight off these negative stereotypes and prove that a woman can be both warm and powerful!
2 Evangeline Lily
Lost actress Evangeline Lily seems to have a serious misunderstanding about the word feminism. She has said, “I'm very proud of being a woman, and as a woman, I don't even like the word feminism because when I hear that word, I associate it with women trying to pretend to be men and I'm not interested in trying to pretend to be a man. I don't want to embrace manhood, I want to embrace my womanhood.” Feminists are encouraged to embrace their femininity (or lack thereof if that is the kind of woman you are (and not try to be like men. It is like Evangeline got the exact opposite definition of what the word feminist is. True feminism is about being yourself and getting treated equally to your peers. That’s it. No one is asking you to take up masculine things or become anything that you are not. It seems like this lady is a little lost (pun totally intended)!
1 Joni Mitchell
Joni Mitchell also has a confusing definition of feminism: “I’m not a feminist ... I don’t want to get a posse against men. I’ve got a lot of men friends. Too many amazons in that community. The feminism in this continent isn’t feminine, it’s masculine. Our feminism isn’t feminism, it’s masculinism.” Uhhh… what? We think she is trying to say that, in North America, feminists act more like men than they do women, which is simply untrue. You can still wear a bra and shave your legs if you want to while still identifying as a feminist. And you can definitely have male friends if you are a feminist too! Many of these celebrities seem to think that declaring yourself a feminist means giving up certain things --- mainly, giving up males. But luckily, both you and your man can speak up about equality without having to change anything about you! Feminine, masculine, or somewhere in between, anyone can call themselves a feminist.