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The Next Generation of Mormon Feminism

I think we are at an exciting moment as Mormon feminists. A new generation is refusing to accept things the way they are, while an older generation is educating and speaking out with renewed fervor. Spurred on by this momentum and by the supportive associations we've found online, several Mormon feminists (including myself) have banded together to create an advocacy group -- W.A.V.E -- Women Advocating for Voice and Equality. Our goal is to formally unite all the women interested in Mormon feminism to work together to advance the cause of gender equality within the LDS church. We want to support women seeking to practice their faith through their struggles with gender issues, communicate our feelings and perspectives to church leaders, and to deepen our experience with the gospel.

If we look for a model of effective change for women in the church, we can look to the issues of birth control and working women. For decades, leaders preached about the evils of birth control, until women flat out rejected the counsel. They preached about the dangers of women working outside of the home, but women continued to do it in greater numbers until leaders have had to accept it. Strict essentialist gender roles often bear so little resemblance to our actual lives, we just have to keep living in the manner best for our family, and things will catch up.

Tresa Edmunds writes about faith and feminism under the name Reese Dixon at FeministMormonHousewives.org. She can also be found at her lifestyle blog, reesedixon.com where she writes about motherhood and other creative endeavors.

8/9/2010 4:00:00 AM