Less than a third of women are feminists

February 23, 2016, 3:56 PM GMT+0

Most Americans reject the label of feminist, with many thinking feminists are 'too extreme'

The prospect of a female president has caused controversy among liberal feminists as they battle each other over whether it is more important to support Hillary Clinton or the self-described socialist Bernie Sanders in the Democratic primaries. Gloria Steinem and Madeleine Albright criticized young women who are supporting Bernie Sanders, with Steinem even saying that this was because they were seeking attention from men. Given how few Americans describe themselves as feminists, however, the debate may not sway that many votes.

YouGov's latest research shows that most Americans (53%) say that they are not feminists, though just over a quarter (26%) say that they are feminists. There is a noticeable gender gap, however, as while a third of women say they are feminists less than a fifth of men say the same.

The youngest Americans under the age of 30 (30%) are only slightly more likely than over-65s (27%) to say that they are feminists, but they are noticeably less likely to outright reject the label of feminist (44% to 62%).

When asked why they are not feminists, the most common response (40%) is that 'feminists are too extreme', followed by 'feminists are anti-men' (18%). 11% of non-feminists are not feminists because they believe men and women are not equal.

Full poll results can be found here and topline results and margin of error here.