Amanda Pendolino
July 05, 2013

Ellen Page Slams Celebrities Who Are Afraid of Feminism

Ellen Page is a feminist — and she’s not afraid to say it.

“I don’t know why people are so reluctant to say they’re feminists. Maybe some women just don’t care. But how could it be any more obvious that we still live in a patriarchal world when feminism is a bad word?” the 26-year-old actress says in a new interview with The Guardian.

“Feminism always gets associated with being a radical movement – good. It should be. A lot of what the radical feminists [in the 1970s] were saying, I don’t disagree with it.”

Ellen is unique among female celebrities, who either don’t identify as feminists or are afraid to admit they do. Behold:

Lady Gaga: “I am not a feminist – I hail men, I love men.  I celebrate American male culture, and beer, and bars and muscle cars.”

Melissa Leo: “I don’t think of myself as a feminist at all. As soon as we start labeling and categorizing ourselves and others, that’s going to shut down the world. I would never say that.”

Bjork:  “[I don’t identify as feminist] because I think it would isolate me. I think it’s important to do positive stuff. It’s more important to be asking than complaining. You could probably call my mother a feminist, and I watched her isolate herself all her life from men, and therefore from society.”

Demi Moore“I am a great supporter of women, but I have never really thought of myself as a feminist, probably more of a humanist because I feel like that’s really where we need to be.”

Beyonce: “That word can be very extreme… But I guess I am a modern-day feminist. I do believe in equality. Why do you have to choose what type of woman you are? Why do you have to label yourself anything? I’m just a woman and I love being a woman.”

Taylor Swift (when asked if she considers herself a feminist):I don’t really think about things as guys versus girls. I never have. I was raised by parents who brought me up to think if you work as hard as guys, you can go far in life.”

Lady Gaga Melissa Leo Bjork Demi Moore Taylor Swift Beyonce

No feminists here. / All photo credits: Shutterstock

Unlike these celebrities, who either shy away from the f-word to maintain a certain image or lack an understanding of the history of feminism (and how they may, in fact, be feminists in practice), Ellen welcomes the discussion. “If at times her argument gets a little ahead of her, such as expressing outrage that schools teach hardly any female authors other than Jane Austen (the Brontes? Toni Morrison?), what she occasionally lacks in precision she more than makes up for in refreshingly fearless passion,” writes interviewer Hadley Freeman.

“At one point I try to relate something she just said to her latest movie, The East, which we are meant to be discussing, and she does a double-take as if to say: ‘Why do you want me to do movie promotion stuff when we can talk about radical feminist Shulamith Firestone instead?'”

Could I love her any more? Ellen isn’t afraid to talk about feminism in the film industry, either. “Considering there are so few roles for women and the roles that do exist can be so narrow in their idea of what a woman can be, it is extremely important to me to be involved with projects where the girl is in charge of her own destiny and is honest and well written,” she said in a recent Reddit AMA.

Luckily, Ellen isn’t the only celebrity willing to advance the feminist cause. Zooey Deschanel got fired up in a Glamour interview earlier this year, saying, “We can’t be feminine and be feminists and be successful? I want to be a f–king feminist and wear a f–king Peter Pan collar. So f–king what?”

Let’s hope more celebrities join Ellen and Zooey and stop shying away from feminism.