Awareness surrounding feminism and the treatment of women has been a heavily discussed topic in our country for the last several years, and now, these conversations are making their way to Auburn, with the creation of the “Feminists at Auburn” club.
This new club, started this semester by President Bella Russo, aims to “address gender issues on our campus in order to make the Auburn family accessible to all members."
Bella Russo, sophomore in rehab and disability studies, said her goals in creating this club were to spread positivity behind feminism, show how these issues impact everyone and address topics such as toxic masculinity and gender roles.
Right now, the club is meeting exclusively on Zoom every other Tuesday, and a typical meeting includes a discussion around a hot topic concerning feminism, an activity associated with it and goals on how to further their message to the community.
According to the official club page on AU Involve, they plan to have "intentional discussion about intersectional feminism and targeted engagement in the community, bettering women’s status on Auburn’s campus.
Russo said the club started as an inside joke when she was studying with friends and the topic of gender came up in conversation. One of her friends commented that men and women should be equal, and another friend said that she did not believe that was true.
“We looked at her so flabbergasted, thinking she was joking but she wasn’t," Russo said. "That is when we realized that so many people are misinformed on what feminism is and what equality entails."
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Brooke Vinzinski, vice president of the club, said, through the club, she hopes to reduce the stigma around the feminist movement and teach the Auburn community that feminism truly benefits all members of society.
“I feel Auburn clings to traditional and religious views that severely hinder the success of Auburn’s women," she said. "I founded Feminists at Auburn to change this obsolete culture."
Both Russo and Vinzinski said creating the club was a lengthy and difficult process, that included drafting a full constitution, establishing events and goals, recruiting members and participating in an Organization Board hearing.
Currently, the club has about 80 members. While they are mostly females, Russo said there are a few males who have recently joined the club.
“I hope that Feminists at Auburn can bring a new view on feminism to Auburn’s campus," Vinzinski said. "Feminism is so commonly labeled a radical, leftist movement, but equality should never be politicized or labeled radical."
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