Sunday, April 14 2024

On the occasion of International Women’s Day, which is celebrated all over
the world on March 8th, we would like to

talk about a serious lack of respect that is often shown towards women:

proposing a deformed femininity, that is without its fruitfulness
(meaning in a wider sense than the mere biological connotation) and its
tenderness. An example? The “woman object” of advertisements…

Women as objects of pleasure in advertising

If it is true that there are no cases in which women are shown full of
energy to spend on their loved ones, their children, their homes, their
work, and their passions, the danger of seeing an “woman object” presented
as a function of men’s pleasure and used (in the most petty sense of the
term) for their sexual appeal to sell products, then it is also true that
this outcome is always just around the corner.

Many advertisers shun the image of the mother, to show a “free” woman,
without constraints, a “hedonist” woman, devoid of commitments and dreams:
a woman closed off to life – or closed off to the other, not only to a
potential child – who, while deluding herself that she is more fully
herself, ends up becoming a victim of the logic of consumption.

But do we really want women to be painted this way?

It provokes a little sadness that on the day of 8th March, groups of
heartfelt feminists align themselves with this vision more than the one
they believe, yelling that with their bodies – perceived as an object, not
as a part of the person, understood as a result of the perfect unity of
mind-body-soul – they “can do what they want,” even if that means “selling
it.”


March 8th, an opportunity to reflect on the profound meaning of
femininity

Every year the anniversary of International Women’s Day brings with it
initiatives, celebrations, and slogans often full of claims.

They organize concerts and celebratory evenings, and the locals show up in
droves. Florists and confectioners work almost as much as they do on
Christmas day.

At the base of all these happenings, there should be the intent to remember and promote the dignity of a special creature
too often trampled over through the centuries and in different
civilizations – in order to foster a greater recognition of her qualities and rights.

But is that, in fact, what happens?

The danger of exploiting and promoting “false rights”

Honoring women should imply encouraging a contemplative look at the beauty of femininity.

Unfortunately, however, that is not always the case: it happens – and not
infrequently – that women become a brand to sell and it
may also occur that the “rights” decanted in its favor are more in
conformity with mere ideologies than with a real good.
Some examples? The “right” to live sexuality in absolute “freedom,”
regardless of its generative scope or

the “right” to access pornographic content with the same ease of man.

We may be a bit old-fashioned, but we believe that the first right of every woman is to be loved: in a complete
way, without lies and half-done agreements.


No competition with men: women are appreciated for their specificity

In addition, women are not in competition with men. They must not
“overcome”; on the contrary, they must be able to remain themselves, benefiting from the same
respect.

Instead of “forgetting” that they can create life, they have the right to
be valued and admired for the miracle they are able to accomplish.

This

does not mean that, for her to be a fully woman, she must necessarily
bring children to life

. There are innumerable ways in which a woman can be fruitful and give
life. We think of the ability, totally female, to “bring someone into the
world” thanks to her way of caring, consoling, and sharing, with a

care more linked to her being than to the number of children she has.

A challenge for the media: to rediscover femininity

It is regrettable to see how, in many contexts, especially in the media –
in the name of an emancipation that denies femininity instead of exalting it
– women are deprived of this innate motherhood, as if amputating her were
signs of progress.

So, advertisers, this year, on March 8th, we are launching you a challenge:
to recover the authentic meaning of femininity. Cannot you represent a
woman as a mother, perhaps without a child in her arms and not necessarily
inside a house, cleaning and tidying?

How so? We leave the task of imagining it to your own creativity …

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