Feminism is not just a trend for Emma Watson. As a UN Women Goodwill Ambassador, one of Emma's biggest projects is working toward gender equality. She currently represents the UN HeForShe campaign, a solidarity movement of gender equality that wants men and boys to come together to help end inequalities toward women and girls.
After a speech she gave for a special event for the campaign went viral, Emma became a new face for the global push for feminism. Earlier today, she participated in a chat at the Facebook offices to answer fan questions about feminism and talk about how the movement influenced her. Here are 10 choice quotes from Emma's chat.
1. "I think it starts young, I think it starts really young with girls and boys being told what they can be."
Emma said societal gender inequality starts young. In order to combat inequality, we need to raise the next generation to be more open, welcoming, and equal to each other.
2. "For women, it's about feeling comfortable about admitting that there's a problem."
Despite our beliefs that women treat all other women fairly, that is not always the case. Some of the hardest criticism Emma has heard came from other women. "We need to understand that we are complicit," she said.
3. "If you believe in equality, you're a feminist. Sorry to tell you."
Many people try to make feminism more complicated than what it is. Believe in equality among the genders? You're a feminist! It's as simple as that.
4. "We don't acknowledge how much pressure we put on men to conform."
Feminism is not just an issue that women face. Gender equality gives women more opportunities and it also disrupts our limited ideas of masculinity.
5. On her fake nude photo scandal, Emma said, "If anything, it made me so much more determined. I was raging."
After her inspirational UN speech, a website was created claiming they would release nude photos of Emma if she didn't back down on her stance toward equality. Although the situation was downright horrifying, Emma also said it "was a wake up shock" for the men around her who were more neutral about feminism.
6. "We need yin and yang. We need that balance. We need female representation. We need female leadership."
There's a big problem of female access in the film industry and Emma knows it. That access is just as profound as it is in any other field. Gender equality affects us all and goes all the way up to the wealthiest and glamourous fields we know.
7. "Chivalry should be consensual. Both parties should be comfortable with that."
She shared a cute anecdote about taking a man out on a date and how it was initially awkward. However, they were soon able to make the situation easier to digest by talking it through. Emma still appreciates chivalry, but doesn't think it should remain a one-sided action. Why can't everyone just be kind to each other all of the time?
8. "Oppressions are interlocking and intersectionality is a really important word here."
Emma heard the initial criticisms about He For She and its limited point of view and she agrees with them. He For She can be a movement for everyone, not just straight men.
9. "It's not about men saving women."
He For She is "not a men's club," Emma said. "It's an equality club for both genders." We can all come together to support each other, regardless of your gender identification.
10. "If you've got a beating heart and you care about things, that's so great."
Expressing your emotions should not be left to one gender. In fact, it's part of our nature. "I'm really disturbed by this idea that men can't cry," Emma said. "It's crazy. It's what makes you human, how you feel, how you express yourself."