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Only 18 percent of Americans consider themselves feminists

Beyoncé performs onstage during the 2014 MTV Video Music Awards.
Beyoncé performs onstage during the 2014 MTV Video Music Awards.
Michael Buckner/Getty Images

Plenty of people say they believe in equal rights for women, but when you ask those same people if they're feminists, most of them will say no.

That's what we found in a new Vox poll, which explores the public's view on feminism, abortion, and the Affordable Care Act.

The poll, conducted by research and communications firm PerryUndem, shows that a strong majority of Americans agree on gender equality. Eighty-five percent, for example, say they believe in "equality for women."

But many fewer want to put the feminist label on their beliefs. Eighteen percent of poll respondents said they consider themselves feminist. Fifty-two percent said they were not feminist, 26 percent were not sure, and 4 percent refused to answer the question.

The findings suggest a divide in how Americans see their worldview, with many more supporting the idea of equality between genders than those who would describe that as a "feminist" viewpoint.

The Vox poll also explored Americans' nuanced attitudes on abortion and how, five years after Obamacare began, opinions remain surprisingly stuck.

PerryUndem Research/Communication conducted the survey among n = 1,067 adults 18 and older nationwide, March 4 through 12, 2015. The survey was administered among a nationally representative sample of adults, using GfK's Knowledge Panel. The margin of error is +/- 4.1 percentage points. Some results do not add to 100 percentage points as a result of rounding. Topline results are available here.

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