This morning I was reading a blog post by Kirsty (Other Stories) entitled, "Why is 'feminist' such a dirty word?" and it got me thinking... how do I perceive the word feminist and those that claim to be one? I'm sure I've written papers on feminism in the past - I know I've written at least two on works by Camille Paglia so there had to be some discussion of feminism in there somewhere - but I guess I never really thought about whether or not I consider myself a feminist. I always sort of analyzed the subject of feminism from the outside looking in. If you were to ask me, any time prior to this morning, if I consider myself a feminist I think I would have answered, "no." After reading Kirsty's post, though, I believe I've changed my mind. I am a woman after all. I believe in women's rights. No, I don't feel I've been slighted or denied my own rights because I'm a woman but I certainly don't deny that it happens to others. So why is it that feminist holds such connotations? Why is it often seen as extreme for someone to claim they're a feminist? I think I am one; I just never knew it.