I believe in gender equality, not feminism, says Saba Qamar

I believe in gender equality, not feminism, says Saba Qamar

Saying you believe in gender equality and not feminism is like saying you believe in breathing, just not oxygen...
Updated 07 Jun, 2020

We’ve been loving Saba Qamar’s wholesome YouTube channel content so we were a little disappointed in what the actor had to say in her latest interview.

In conversation with Samina Peerzada for her #RewindatHome series, the Hindi Medium star opened up about working with Irrfan Khan, alongside love and the meaning it brings to her life.

"I want to live life, not just spend it," says Qamar, as she reveals she is afraid of abusive relationships and the expectation from partners to compromise.

"I would never marry a stupid man. Someone who argues, someone who fights, I cannot stand that."

She went on to say, "We're still stuck in male, female, feminism. I don’t believe in, you know.. I believe in gender equality."

"Men and women are equal," said Saba. "They feel hurt equally. It's not solely a man’s responsibility to get five sisters married. In Pakistan it happens that one man has 10 mouths to feed, we have to change that. We don't have acceptance, we are not taught otherwise."

She was joined in by Peerzada who agreed that everyone should be economically independent.

While we get that Saba’s heart is in the right place, we’d like to point out that according to the Oxford dictionary, the word feminism literally translates to "the belief and aim that women should have the same rights and opportunities as men."

Saying you believe in gender equality and not feminism is like saying you believe in breathing, just not oxygen. It’s strange to see actors like Qamar, who have always unapologetically advocated for feminist values, avoid the term like the plague.

It is feminism which advocates for little girls to receive an education, for women to be economically and financially independent and to be able to contribute to that same household that Saba thinks people eat from "dishonourably" when they're dependant on one breadwinner.

Yes, the burden of running a house shouldn't solely be on men; that's why we say traditional gender roles hurt everyone involved.

Kalki Koechlin said it best when she said: “Anyone, who believes men and women are equal, is a feminist. If we would have been living in a matriarchal society I would be a meninist, fighting for equal rights of men.” You can watch Qamar’s entire interview here.


alam Jun 06, 2020 01:12pm
What is the diference between gender equality and feminism?
Murli Jun 06, 2020 01:19pm
ha ha ....In your country You cant be a feminist, even if you want to be. Both genders are not equal... get real saba
Arshad Jun 06, 2020 01:50pm
Well said. Fully agree.
VIRUZA Jun 06, 2020 02:11pm
Saba needs to revisit her definition of feminism. The term feminism is all encompassing, including the things she mentioned about gender equality. Influencers need to get their concepts right, otherwise they exacerbate things instead of making a good difference.
Khan Jun 06, 2020 03:05pm
It seems like she is unclear about the term “feminism”. Which is okay since gender studies is not her field. Her beliefs are not in contradiction with feminism and she is championing breaking traditional gender roles. More power to her.
Dr. Doctor Jun 06, 2020 03:34pm
Try winning a match with two captains.....
Andrew Jun 06, 2020 03:37pm
What she is saying is, that she doesn't believe in labels such as 'feminism'. A lot of people don't. I don't either.
kIMkLOz Jun 06, 2020 04:28pm
Maybe she meant Misandrists and not feminists and used the wrong word??
HonorBright Jun 07, 2020 07:33am
Is the title important as long as people have the same healthy ideas about gender equality? It's like calling yourself a westernized liberal if you don't like what Taliban stand for. (Forgive the extreme analogy, i couldn't cook anything lighter)
Laila Jun 07, 2020 03:46pm
I loved Saba since I say her in Baaghi, she is now my favourite artist. But dearest Saba, I am not loving your comment which is, well, nonsensical. Feminism, 100+years old, has detailed definition available in English dictionaries, thesauruses, even a Wikipedia, which explain feminism as being about gender equality in terms of rights. Women being socially, ecomically, legally equal in rights. Females are not inferior to males. Feminism is not about women becoming men. Men are beautiful and women are beautiful in their own ways, through their physical/psychological differences and compliment each other. It is culture that created misogyny, gender inequality, inequal rights and patriarchy. My dear Saba, kindly educate yourself on this topic. Just because most Pakistanis use western, liberal, feminist, equality as slurs do not make these words so. It just means we have many "educated jahil" who are threatened when after a few decades of oppression, women are standing up for their rights
MA Jun 08, 2020 01:27pm
But that's... that's literally what feminism is. It is gender equality. It is called feminism because you need to address the problem of women not being equal currently. The same way that anti-racism protests are being called Black Lives Matter and not All lives matter. Do celebrities not know this? Are people allergic to reading feminist literature in Pakistan? I am very curious why so many people in Pakistan believe gender equality and feminism are not the same when they are literally the same thing.