Merriam-Webster Picks “Feminism” As Their Word Of The Year

by Amanda Brohman


A week ago, TIME Magazine announced that their 2017 “Person of the Year” would be the “Me Too” movement and all the “silence breakers” coming forward to speak out about sexual harassment and assault. And this week, dictionary Merriam-Webster has followed this lead with another victory by announcing that their word of the year is: feminism.

*brief pause for cheers and applause* 

“In 2017, lookups for feminism increased 70 percent over 2016 on and spiked several times after key events, ” the dictionary’s Editor-at-Large, Peter Sokolowski, told the Associated Press on Tuesday morning. He mentioned that some of these “key events” have included The Women’s March in January, Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign at the end of 2016 with her message of female empowerment (and her way of often wearing colors which referenced back to the suffragettes), as well as the “Me Too” movement and the impact thats had on powerful men being held accountable (and often fired) for predatory and misogynistic behavior towards women in the workplace and beyond 

The word “feminism” was first included in Merriam-Webster in 1841 by its founder, Noah Webster, and was at the time defined as, “‘The qualities of females,” Sokolowski told the Associated Press. Huh?!  Today, however (and thankfully), this definition has been updated and feminism is now defined in Merriam-Webster as, “The theory of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes.” 

Well, let’s hope that by highlighting feminism and bringing attention to what it means, more people will also join our movement and our fight for, yes, “political, economic, and social equality of the sexes.” 

Top photo: screenshot/Merriam-Webster 

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