By Saira Afzal
LSESU’s Intersectional Feminist Society have brought forward a motion to change the society name to ‘Feminism Society’, removing the word ‘Intersectional’. According to the society’s Instagram post on 21 November 2023, the change aims to broaden the society’s appeal. The society encouraged members to cast their vote via an online form, either for or against the change.
The motion stressed that the proposed name change does not intend to remove intersectional values from the society, but instead bring together all branches of feminism without excluding those who don’t identify with the “intersectional” label. The society clarifies that they remain “a place of inclusion and learning about intersectionality” and intend to host a wider variety of feminist speakers to “encourage inclusive debate and discourse”.
The Beaver reached out to the President of Intersectional Feminist Society, Aurelia, who described the “dwindling” turnout at last year’s events, which is why this year’s committee investigated potential reasons for low attendance. She explained: “One common theme we heard in feedback was that some felt intimidated because they had never come across the theory of intersectional feminism before.”
While committee members are strongly committed to promoting intersectional feminism, they “[understood] that many people, especially nonnative English speakers may consider themselves feminist, but aren’t deeply engaged with gender theory.” Thus, the committee decided to bring forward a motion to change the name of the society to ‘Feminism Society’. Aurelia added: “(…) so far, [we] have received almost unanimous support from the members who’ve voted.”
Current society members have expressed their thoughts on the motion. One student described themselves as “pro-name change”, maintaining that the society “will be able to cater to ALL feminists at LSE, uniting us together while still being intersectional at our core.” They added that feminists should all be working towards a common goal: “total equality and the dismantling of the patriarchy. Feminist subdivisions only weaken our collective power.”
Another student felt “sad” to see Intersectional Feminist Society change their name as “having intersectional in the name made the society seem like a beacon of inclusivity.” They added: “While the ethics of the society shall not change, I’m not sure new members will feel quite as confident in the society’s inclusive credentials upon joining.”