In Lisa Miya-Jervis’ article “Who Wants to Marry a Feminist” the common stereotypes of feminists as man hating lesbians who will never get married is explored and discussed with effectiveness and humor. She starts off her article talking about the view a friend’s university students had of her knowing that she is a feminist, from being shocked that Jervis wasn’t a lesbian and that she was getting married. Another story she tells comes from a women at a bookstore who swore she would never read the feminist magazine that Jervis works on again after finding out that she was married to a man who worked in the bookstore. These are of course at the far end of the spectrum in terms of how people react to feminist, but these are not opinions that are in the minority since anyone could go around public spaces and ask what people think feminism is and easily get at least half of the people interviewed saying things along the lines of what Jervis’ stories were saying.
Along with the idea that all feminists are man-hating lesbians, comes the idea that no man would want to marry a feminist because the woman would obviously only want the man to do everything that a woman traditionally does like cooking or cleaning. But from Jervis’ personal story, her husband is the one who does most of the cooking and cleaning and yet they remain happily married; a piece of information that would be shocking to many people still living with social views from the 1950s.
A couple of quotes from the article that I thought make great talking points when discussing feminism and its stereotypes are 1. “As long as the yeti of the antifeminist world- the hairy-legged man-hater (everyone claims to have seen her but actual evidence is sparse)- roams the earth, we need to counteract her image.” (375) and 2. “As long as wives are assumed -by anyone- to be obedient little women with no lives of their own, those of us who give the lie to this straw bride need to make ourselves as conspicuous as possible.” (375) These quotes are good because they easily sum up the best way to address the issues that are behind peoples ideas.