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中国日报网 2015-01-23 09:49





Today we are launching a campaign called “HeForShe。”



I am reaching out to you because I need your help. Wewant to end gender inequality—and to do that we need everyone to be involved。



This is the first campaign of its kind at the UN: wewant to try and galvanize as many men and boys as possible to be advocates forgender equality. And we don’t just want to talk about it, but make sure it istangible。



I was appointed six months ago and the more I havespoken about feminism the more I have realized that fighting for women’s rightshas too often become synonymous with man-hating. If there is one thing I knowfor certain, it is that this has to stop。



For the record, feminism by definition is: “The beliefthat men and women should have equal rights and opportunities. It is the theoryof the political, economic and social equality of the sexes。”



I started questioning gender-based assumptions when ateight I was confused at being called “bossy,” because I wanted to direct theplays we would put on for our parents—but the boys were not。



When at 14 I started being sexualized by certainelements of the press。



When at 15 my girlfriends started dropping out oftheir sports teams because they didn’t want to appear “muscly。”



When at 18 my male friends were unable to expresstheir feelings。



I decided I was a feminist and this seemeduncomplicated to me. But my recent research has shown me that feminism hasbecome an unpopular word。



Apparently I am among the ranks of women whoseexpressions are seen as too strong, too aggressive, isolating, anti-men and,unattractive。



Why is the word such an uncomfortable one?



I am from Britain and think it is right that as awoman I am paid the same as my male counterparts. I think it is right that Ishould be able to make decisions about my own body. I think it is right thatwomen be involved on my behalf in the policies and decision-making of mycountry. I think it is right that socially I am afforded the same respect asmen. But sadly I can say that there is no one country in the world where allwomen can expect to receive these rights。



No country in the world can yet say they have achievedgender equality。



These rights I consider to be human rights but I amone of the lucky ones. My life is a sheer privilege because my parents didn’tlove me less because I was born a daughter. My school did not limit me becauseI was a girl. My mentors didn’t assume I would go less far because I might givebirth to a child one day. These influencers were the gender equalityambassadors that made who I am today. They may not know it, but they are theinadvertent feminists who are. And we need more of those. And if you still hatethe word—it is not the word that is important but the idea and the ambitionbehind it. Because not all women have been afforded the same rights that Ihave. In fact, statistically, very few have been。



In 1997, Hilary Clinton made a famous speech inBeijing about women’s rights. Sadly many of the things she wanted to change arestill a reality today。



But what stood out for me the most was that only 30per cent of her audience were male. How can we affect change in the world whenonly half of it is invited or feel welcome to participate in the conversation?



Men—I would like to take this opportunity to extendyour formal invitation. Gender equality is your issue too。



Because to date, I’ve seen my father’s role as aparent being valued less by society despite my needing his presence as a childas much as my mother’s。



I’ve seen young men suffering from mental illnessunable to ask for help for fear it would make them look less “macho”—in fact inthe UK suicide is the biggest killer of men between 20-49; eclipsing roadaccidents, cancer and coronary heart disease. I’ve seen men made fragile andinsecure by a distorted sense of what constitutes male success. Men don’t havethe benefits of equality either。



We don’t often talk about men being imprisoned bygender stereotypes but I can see that that they are and that when they arefree, things will change for women as a natural consequence。



If men don’t have to be aggressive in order to beaccepted women won’t feel compelled to be submissive. If men don’t have tocontrol, women won’t have to be controlled。



Both men and women should feel free to be sensitive.Both men and women should feel free to be strong… It is time that we allperceive gender on a spectrum not as two opposing sets of ideals。



If we stop defining each other by what we are not andstart defining ourselves by what we are—we can all be freer and this is whatHeForShe is about. It’s about freedom。



I want men to take up this mantle. So their daughters,sisters and mothers can be free from prejudice but also so that their sons havepermission to be vulnerable and human too—reclaim those parts of themselvesthey abandoned and in doing so be a more true and complete version ofthemselves。



You might be thinking who is this Harry Potter girl?And what is she doing up on stage at the UN. It’s a good question and trust meI have been asking myself the same thing. I don’t know if I am qualified to behere. All I know is that I care about this problem. And I want to make itbetter。



And having seen what I’ve seen—and given the chance—Ifeel it is my duty to say something. English statesman Edmund Burke said: “Allthat is needed for the forces of evil to triumph is for enough good men andwomen to do nothing。”



In my nervousness for this speech and in my moments ofdoubt I’ve told myself firmly—if not me, who, if not now, when. If you havesimilar doubts when opportunities are presented to you I hope those words mightbe helpful。



Because the reality is that if we do nothing it willtake 75 years, or for me to be nearly a hundred before women can expect to bepaid the same as men for the same work. 15.5 million girls will be married inthe next 16 years as children. And at current rates it won’t be until 2086before all rural African girls will be able to receive a secondary education。



If you believe in equality, you might be one of thoseinadvertent feminists I spoke of earlier。



And for this I applaud you。



We are struggling for a uniting word but the good newsis we have a uniting movement. It is called HeForShe. I am inviting you to stepforward, to be seen to speak up, To be the he for she. And to ask yourself ifnot me, who?if not now when?



Thank you。




















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