Feminism | Posted by Alexis T on 06/25/2015
10 Lessons For Young Feminists
This is what I’ve learned.
I was a teen in the ’90s, and heavily influenced by Riot Grrrl feminism. Everything was DIY, dress how you want, and live with a militant independence. My feminism was raw, precocious, and wild. Now that I’m over 30, married, and have a son, I have a gift: I can look back at everything I experienced and see how it has made me the person I am today. I know a few more things now than I did when I was in high school or college student and, as a slightly older feminist, I wanted to share with you ten lessons I’ve learned about being a powerful woman.
10. You need to trust others — even though it’s often the people closest to you …
Feminism | Posted by Sarah Landrum on 06/24/2015
5 Ways to Shut Down Sexist Comments at School and Work
Sexism in schools has got to end.
Although we have made a lot of progress towards achieving gender equality, there is still much work to be done. One still-pervasive form of sexism women face is being subjected to sexist comments while doing everyday activities. 87 percent of female respondents to one survey, for example, reported having received a sexist comment, and 45 percent said they have received these comments in public at least 25 times over the course of their lifetimes. And, unfortunately, few environments are free from these remarks — women hear them everywhere, including educational environments and/or workplaces.
Ultimately, we need to create a society in which individuals know better than to make sexist comments in the first place. But, as we work towards that goal, here are …
Feminism | Posted by Saskia G on 06/23/2015
Does That T-shirt Match Her Headscarf?
In 2008, 17-year-old Samantha Elauf was denied a job at a Tulsa, Oklahoma Abercrombie Kids store. Why? The retailer believed her hijab did not comply with their “look policy.” Her headscarf was apparently an immediate indicator that she did not align with the “East Coast collegiate image” Abercrombie cultivates in its branding, the New York Times reported. Elauf was effectively informed that her Muslim identity was un-American.
Elauf fought this notion. She brought her story to the Council on American Islamic Relations, which then brought it to the attention of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. The EEOC sued Abercrombie & Fitch on Elauf’s behalf and the case eventually made it to the Supreme Court. In appellate court, Abercrombie’s defense argued that Elauf had not explicitly stated in …
Feminism | Posted by Sabrina N on 06/22/2015
Get #Cliterate: Overcoming Socially Constructed Ignorance
Think you know the clitoris? Brooklyn-based artist Sophia Wallace wants you to think again. In fact, she’s showing the world just how much they don’t know about this powerful organ through her multimedia project, Cliteracy, which combats the lies and myths surrounding the dominant social conception of female sexuality while encouraging people to educate and empower themselves.
The project is as diverse in method and medium as it is expansive. It includes an anatomically correct golden clitoris statute, an interactive clit rodeo, street art, billboards and a mural exploring sexual violence. There’s even an installation piece of “100 Natural Laws” of the clitoris, which range from “the world isn’t flat and women don’t orgasm from their vaginas” to “society idealizes male genitals while teaching girls that their …
Feminism | Posted by Meg H on 06/17/2015
The Truth About Women and Mental Illness: Are We Medicating the Condition or the Gender?
What exactly are we medicating?
As the end of my senior year of high school drew to a close, my life began to change — not because I was starting a new chapter in my life, but because I was beginning a two-year struggle with what I would later find out was undiagnosed depression. During those two years, I suffered daily, endlessly questioning what had changed. Why was I no longer the upbeat, bright, and conscientious child that I had been for most of my life? Concerned for my well-being, my family alternated between the fear that they were losing their oldest daughter and frustration at my obstinate lack of energy and ambition. My relationships with friends and other people I loved suffered.
During my sophomore year of college, my …
Feminism | Posted by Claire B on 06/16/2015
Are Nigeria’s Steps Towards Eliminating FGM Enough?
In her 2014 TED Talk, Khadija Gbla expresses the cultural friction she felt between two very different definitions of what it means to be “empowered.” Gbla recounts her experience growing up in Sierra Leone, a country where, like in Nigeria, female genital mutilation is a deeply valued cultural practice. Her mother, she recalls, insisted that she undergo the procedure in order to curb promiscuity, increase her marriageability, and more fully realize her womanhood.
Female Genital Mutilation is defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) as all procedures that involve partial or total removal of the external female genitalia. The data on physical and psychological consequences is horrifying. An inter-agency statement issued by the WHO and UNICEF, among others, states that when “seen from a human rights perspective, …
Feminism | Posted by Kinder L on 06/15/2015
“Welcome to Being A Woman In America.”
As a film student and aspiring screenwriter, I understand that it is a comedian’s job to joke about current issues and events. But I believe there is a fine line between “art” and belittlement and that nobody’s dignity should be sacrificed for a performance.
Gender identity, for example, is an important issue that should not be mocked or belittled. And yet a number of comedians recently made transphobic jokes about Caitlyn Jenner’s transition. Actor and singer Jamie Foxx, for example, claimed at the iHeart Radio Music Awards that of the many “ground breaking performances here tonight,” Jenner would “be doing a his-and-her duet all by himself.” The next day at the Justin Beiber roast, Kevin Hart also made a disparaging remark about Jenner — in the presence of …
Feminism | Posted by Eloise Bouton on 06/10/2015
It’s Hard to be a Topless Feminist in France
Many people probably think France is a feminist-friendly country. My experience as an activist with the international feminist organization Femen has taught me that this is not the case. I’ve found that fighting for equality is costly and protesting topless for women’s rights — as I have done — is not only unfairly considered exhibitionism, but has had a damaging effect on my life.
I joined Femen — a feminist organization whose members protest topless — in April, 2012. This organization was born in Ukraine but established a presence in Paris in September, 2012. The Paris branch has been led by Inna Shevchenko, but I helped build the group.
On December 2013, I posed topless at the Catholic Madeleine Church in Paris to support abortion rights. At the time, …