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  • Your excellencies, UN secretary general, president of the general assembly, executive director

  • of UN Women, and distinguished guests, today, we are launching a campaign called He For

  • She. I am reaching out to you because we need your help. We want to end gender inequality,

  • and to do this, we need everyone involved. This is the first campaign of its kind at

  • the UN. We want to try and galvanize as many men and boys as possible to be advocates for

  • change. And we don't just want to talk about it - we want to try and make sure it is tangible.

  • I was appointed as goodwill ambassador for UN women six months ago, and the more I've

  • spoken about feminism, the more I have realized that fighting for women's rights has too often

  • become synonymous with man-hating. If there is one thing I know for certain, it is that

  • this has to stop. 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. I started questioning gender-based assumptions a long

  • time ago. When I was eight, I was confused about being called bossy, because I wanted

  • to direct the plays that we would put on for our parents, but the boys were not. When at

  • fourteen, I started to be sexualized by certain elements of the media. When at fifteen, my

  • girlfriends started dropping out of their beloved sports teams, because they didn't

  • want to appear muscle-ey. When at eighteen, my male friends were unable to express their

  • feelings. I decided that I was a feminist, and this seemed uncomplicated to me. But my

  • recent research has shown me that feminism has become an unpopular word. Women are choosing

  • not to identify as feminists. Apparently, I am among the ranks of women whose expressions

  • are seen as too strong, too aggressive, isolating, and anti-men. Unattractive, even. Why has

  • the word become such an uncomfortable one? I am from Britain, and I think it is right

  • that I am paid the same as my male counterparts. I think it is right that I should be able

  • to make decisions about my own body. I think it is right that women be involved on my behalf

  • in the policies and the decisions that will affect my life. I think it is right that socially,

  • I am afforded the same respect as men. But sadly, I can say that there is no one country

  • in the world where all women can expect to receive these rights. No country in the world

  • can yet say that they have achieved gender equality. These rights, I consider to be human

  • rights, but I am one of the lucky ones. My life is a sheer privilege, because my parents

  • didn't love me less because I was born a daughter. My school didn't limit me, because I was a

  • girl. My mentors didn't assume I'd go less far, because I might give birth to a child

  • one day. These influences, were the gender equality ambassadors that made me who I am

  • today. They may not know it, but they are the inadvertent feminists who are changing

  • the world today. We need more of those. And if you still hate the word, it is not the

  • word that is important. It's the idea and the ambition behind it. Because not all women

  • have received the same rights that I have. In fact, statistically, very few have been.

  • In 1997, Hillary Clinton made a famous speech in Beijing about women's rights. Sadly, many

  • of the things that she wanted to change are still true today. But what stood out for me

  • the most is that less than 30% of the audience were male. How can we affect change in the

  • world, when only half of it is invited, or feel welcome to participate in the conversation?

  • Men, I would like to take this opportunity, to extend your formal invitation. Gender equality

  • is your issue too. Because to date, I've seen my father's role as a parent being valued

  • less by society, despite my needing his presence as a child as much as my mother's. I've seen

  • young men suffering from mental illness, unable to ask for help, for fear that it would make

  • them less of men - or less of a man. In fact, in the UK, suicide is the biggest killer of

  • men between 20 to 49, eclipsing road accidents, cancer, and coronary heart disease. I've seen

  • men made fragile and insecure by a distorted sense of what constitutes male success. Men

  • don't have the benefits of equality either. We don't often talk about men being imprisoned

  • by gender stereotypes, but I can see that they are, and that when they are free, things

  • will change for women as a natural consequence. If men don't have to be aggressive, in order

  • to be accepted, women won't feel compelled to be submissive. If men don't have to control,

  • women won't have to be controlled. Both men and women should feel free to be sensitive,

  • both men and women should be free to be strong. It is time that we all perceive gender on

  • a spectrum, instead of two sets of opposing ideals. If we stop defining each other by

  • what we are not, and start defining ourselves by who we are, we can all be freer, and this

  • is what He For She is about. It's about freedom. I want men to take up this mantle, so that

  • their daughters, sisters, and mothers can be free from prejudice. But also, so that

  • their sons have permission to be vulnerable and human too. Reclaim those parts of themselves

  • they've abandoned, and in doing so, be a more true and complete version of themselves. You

  • might be thinking, who is this Harry Potter girl, and what is she doing speaking at the

  • UN? And it's a really good question. I've been asking myself the same thing. All I know

  • is that I care about this problem, and I want to make it better. And having seen what I've

  • seen, and given the chance, I feel it is my responsibility to say something. Statesman

  • Edmund Burke said: “All that is needed for the forces of evil to triumph, is for good

  • men and women to do nothing.” In my nervousness for this speech, and in my moments of doubt,

  • I've told myself firmly: If not me, who? If not now, when? If you have similar doubts

  • when opportunities are presented to you, I hope that those words will be helpful. Because

  • the reality is that if we do nothing, it will take 75 years, or for me to be nearly 100

  • before women can expect to be paid the same as men for the same work. 15.5 million girls

  • will be married in the next sixteen years, as children. And at current rates, it won't

  • be until 2086 before all rural African girls can have a secondary education. If you believe

  • in equality, you might be one of those inadvertent feminists that I spoke of earlier, and for

  • this I applaud you. We are struggling for a uniting world, but the good news is that

  • we have a uniting movement. It is called He For She. I am inviting you to step forward,

  • to be seen, and to ask yourself - If not me, who? If not now, when? Thank you very very

  • much.

Your excellencies, UN secretary general, president of the general assembly, executive director

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Emma Watson HeForShe Speech【SUBTITLES】【EN】【日本語】【Руский】

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    Sicai Lin posted on 2014/10/07
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