Feminism | Posted by Aph Ko on 12/14/2015

Why Afrofuturism Is a Black Feminist Praxis

Janelle Monae frequently uses Aphrofuturism in her work.

The most suffocating thing about being a black girl in a white supremacist, patriarchal world is the constant reminder that I’m not allowed to define myself. The media constantly reinforces this by failing to imagine black people as anything other than historical slave bodies in the white imagination. I’ve always wanted to imagine and create new social worlds where I could be my own agent, where every second of my life wasn’t a quest to fight white supremacist representations of my body. It turns out I’m not the only one: An entire movement is devoted to this very concept, and it’s called “Afrofuturism.”

Coined in a 1993 essay titled “Black to the Future” by Mark Derry, Afrofuturism centers on the black experience …

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Feminism | Posted by Kinder L on 12/7/2015

Why We Still Need To Talk About Periods, Period.

Rupi Kaur: http://www.rupikaur.com/post/114451663155/period-a-photo-series-shot-by-sisters-rupi-and

Rupi Kaur: http://www.rupikaur.com/post/114451663155/period-a-photo-series-shot-by-sisters-rupi-and

I recently attended a feminist art show that included an abstract painting on a stretched canvas made entirely of the artist’s period blood. The show featured many works condemning body shaming and promoting self-love — including nude photographs, painted portraits and performance pieces — but this one clearly stood out. Thanks to many headlines promoted on social media in recent months, I had heard of other artists who incorporated menstruation into their work (like the infamous vaginal knitter) but seeing such a work in person was a completely different experience and one that inspired me to reflect on how the perception of periods have changed over time. Or, more accurately, I realized they haven’t: We still have a long way to go break down period stigma …

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Feminism | Posted by Danika K on 12/2/2015

How Rehabilitating Female Prisoners Can Help Improve the Criminal Justice System

The U.S. has the highest rate of incarceration in the industrialized world.

In 1971, President Nixon infamously declared a “War on Drugs.” This catalyzed an aggressive spike in incarceration rates, which increased the U.S. prison population by over 500% in just a few decades. The United States now has a staggering prison population that is six times larger than most other Western countries, making it the nation the highest rate of incarceration in the industrialized world. Not all American communities experience the effects of mass incarceration equally, however, and the unique way women experience mass-incarceration is particularly under-discussed.

Many studies of post-Nixon era mass incarceration have particularly focused on the ways men of color are effected by mass incarceration. In fact, an entire book, The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration

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Feminism | Posted by Elizabeth B on 11/25/2015

Violence Against Women Isn’t “Culture”: My Experience Studying Abroad

Studying abroad.

During the first week of study abroad, my program offered an informational session about street harassment to the 35 students enrolled (29 of whom are women). The area of the city in which we were studying is renowned for its conservativism. Few street lights illuminate the endless maze of narrow alleys that lead to our homes and there’s virtually no police presence, so the session seemed warranted.

I could talk about the content of this orientation, but I feel it is most important to acknowledge my disappointment with the program’s choice to label what women in Morocco experience as “street harassment.” In actually, this experience is a form of violence against women and should be acknowledged as such. Walking down the street and being unwontedly touched is a …

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Feminism | Posted by Aph Ko on 11/23/2015

The Real Reason the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show is Sexist and Outdated

Screen Shot 2015-11-21 at 10.26.58 AM

Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

As if they didn’t have enough opportunities to do so already, heterosexual men will get yet another chance to ogle half-naked white women on their television screens when the Victoria’s Secret fashion shows airs in December. The show, and brand itself, is frequently criticized for its sexist objectification of women’s half-naked bodies but the real problem runs much deeper. Images of women’s bodies aren’t inherently sexist, but the inequitable power dynamic such images bolster, and the way this dynamic affects both women and men, certainly is.

The Victoria’s Secret fashion show is not just normalized, but even celebrated as an anticipated event: over 9 million people watched the show last year. That this brand and its sexist marketing (including this show) clearly has such a strong …

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Feminism | Posted by Anonymous on 11/20/2015

What Every Young Woman Needs To Know About What It’s Like To Be Roofied

Being roofied is serious.

Being roofied is serious.

It was Friday, October 9th. My best friends and I were out celebrating another friend’s birthday. I knew the majority of people at the party (most were friends or at least acquaintances) and I felt safe and comfortable. But after just two drinks, I began to lose the ability to move. Ten minutes later, my motor skills followed. Although I was coherent and understood what was happening around me, my attempts to speak came out as aggressive gibberish.

I was scared. I tried to alert my friends and explain what was happening, but they simply seemed to think I had too much to drink. I sat next to my friends, terrified and angry, as they debated who would have to take me home and …

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Feminism | Posted by Julie Z on 11/18/2015

Cecile Richards Explains What Planned Parenthood Actually Does

Cecile Richards Sets the Record Straight About What Planned Parenthood Actually Does

Cecile Richards, Planned Parenthood President

In 1973, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled that banning abortion is unconstitutional. Yet despite being legalized, a woman’s right to choose has possibly never been more threatened in this nation. Or at least this is what President of Planned Parenthood Cecile Richards has found, especially in the light of various attacks on and misconceptions spread about the organization this year, she told Katie Couric in a Yahoo! News interview published last Tuesday.

Planned Parenthood has been attacked for years, but recently faced a particularly invective series of sting videos claiming the organization sold and profited from the tissue of aborted fetuses. Conservative politicians subsequently threatened to de-fund the organization, which in turn forced Richards to testify before a (particularly demeaning) House Oversight …

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Feminism | Posted by Alice V on 11/13/2015

Overlooked, Underutilized and Unappreciated: Women in Tech

Women in tech routinely face discrimination and it has to stop.

Jane, a woman who specializes in modeling and texturing of props and assets for video games and film, was hired as an intern while still in school to do 3D environment for a VR (virtual reality) project. She started work the same day as another male intern and they worked on the same project. He focused on characters and she worked on environments. Jane had more experience than her male colleague and put in the same amount of work, yet he was promoted twice in one week whereas she received no recognition.

After her colleague received his third promotion and she was left to languish, Jane realized that she was being unfairly overlooked and underutilized. Soon after, the studio …

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