When I was growing up there was an icon that every little girl wanted to either be, or be best friends with. A few of you know her as her upcoming role in Beauty and the Beast. To everyone else, she was Hermione.
Emma Watson is classy, educated and stands up for women’s rights. The successful actor was appointed in 2014 as a UN Women Goodwill Ambassador and gave a beautiful speech that same year about the upcoming campaign HeForShe. A program where men advocate for the voice and rights of women.
Being at the age of 8 she questioned assumptions based strictly on gender-roles. At age 14 was being sexualized in different roles she had in different films. When she was 15 her friends didn’t want to feel masculine and at 18 her boy friends couldn’t express their feelings accurately. Watson realized the flaws in this thinking and knew that in her thinking the journey would be complicated.
In Emma’s speech she noted that feminism isn’t simply ‘hating men’. It’s more than that. It’s the sense that men and women should have equal rights. Her speech struck the hearts of many women across the world and had others decide as well that they were also a part of the feminist movement.
Education for girls is a large part of Emma’s platform. Emma herself studied at Brown University. She has visited several countries such as Bangladesh, Zambia and Uruguay. In Uruguay she gained 4,000 signatures to call for the inclusion of female characters in parliament. In every country she visits, hearing from the individuals on the front lines is something that is very important to her. In 2016, the Emma Watson Scholarship became available to global youth.
Emma Watson isn’t just Hermione, she is a feminist icon. She is a voice for young women globally.