Emma Watson, the 24-year-old British actress who was named a United Nations Goodwill Ambassador this summer, delivered a ten-minute speech to the UN on Saturday about the misconceptions surrounding feminism and her plans to put an end to gender inequality.
“For the record, feminism by definition is the belief that men and women should have equal rights and opportunities. It is the theory of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes,” she continued.
The young ambassador launched a one-of-a-kind campaign called “HeForShe” that will recruit men and young boys as advocates for gender equality.
“Apparently I am among the ranks of women whose expressions are seen as too strong, too aggressive, isolating, anti-men, and unattractive,” said the starlet.
Watson admitted that she became a feminist as a young girl after she was told that she was too “bossy” for wanting to direct plays and, at age, 14 she began to be “sexualized” by the press.
“I decided I was a feminist, and this seemed uncomplicated to me. But my recent research has shown me that feminism has become an unpopular word,” she said.
For the plan to work, it should be a combined effort between both men and women, according to the actress.
“I want men to take this mantle so their daughters, sisters, and mothers can be free from prejudice, but also so their sons have permission to be vulnerable and human too, and in doing so, be a more true and complete version of themselves,” she confessed. “Men–I would like to take this opportunity to extend your formal invitation. Gender equality is your issue too.”
The speech in full text can be found here.