Feminism | Posted by Kinder L on 06/10/2016

#Fitspo: Inspirational or Harmful?

#Fitspiration

Whether you’re a Tumblr fanatic, an avid Twitter user, or Instagram-obsessed like I am, it’s probably safe to assume you’ve seen posts captioned with the hashtag “#fitspiration” come across your News Feed at some point. #Fitspiration, or “#fitspo,” began to emerge on social media over the past few years, supposedly to inspire others (specifically women) to achieve fitness regimes. On the surface, #fitspo may seem like the ideal hashtag to empower women and encourage them to embrace a healthy, active lifestyle. But, for many, it actually comes at a cost.

As someone who has suffered from an eating disorder in the past, I can definitely attest to feeling terrible as I scroll past these “motivational” pictures. The images themselves — of ripped abs, toned legs and slim physiques

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Feminism | Posted by Samantha B on 06/9/2016

The Truth About Gender Bias On The Internet

Are search engines biased?

Siri does not know how to respond to the question “I have been sexually assaulted.” When searching for abortion clinics on Apple Maps, one is instead shown adoption clinics. Finding a clinic or pharmacy that has Viagra is apparently easier than finding one with birth control.

Many view the Internet as an unbiased, objective, tool. But in actuality, the Internet is influenced by gender bias. This is especially true when it comes to search engines — our guides to exploring the vast Internet, which shape what we see and act as gatekeepers to often vital information. Many see search engines as reflective of an “objective” reality of facts (if there even is such a reality), but they are actually composed of structures and codes that …

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Feminism | Posted by David G on 06/7/2016

The Stanford Rape Case Exemplifies The Privilege At The Heart of Rape Culture

Stanford University

Brock Turner, a top swimmer at Stanford who raped an unconscious woman behind a dumpster after a party, was sentenced to six months in county jail on Thursday. The presiding judge felt that a full sentence “would have a severe impact” on Turner, discounting the severe impact his victim described at his sentencing. This ruling sparked national outrage, which only grew after a letter Turner’s father had written diminishing his son’s crime and demanding probation was published.

Tl;dr, there is so, so much wrong with the Stanford rape case. While the backlash against Turner and his father has been swift and vicious, both the sentence Turner received, as well as his father’s response to it, exemplify the privilege that perpetuates rape culture.

Let’s be honest …

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Feminism | Posted by Reilly W on 06/3/2016

What The Sexual Assault Survivors’ Rights Act Means For Survivors

The bill unanimously passed in the Senate.

There has perhaps never been more visibility about the experiences of sexual assault survivors than in the past few years. From the work of organizations like End Rape on Campus and Know Your IX, to the release of the documentary the Hunting Ground, to hashtag campaigns and beyond, this increasing awareness feels like a promising sign that this violent epidemic may be comprehensively addressed once and for all — and recently passed legislation only bolsters this hope.

On May 23rd, the Senate unanimously passed the Sexual Assault Survivors’ Rights Act, which attempts to put more power into the hands of survivors following their assaults and reduce the continued injustices they frequently face following the ultimate injustice of assault. One of …

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Feminism | Posted by Gabby C on 06/2/2016

Oklahoma’s Attempt To Criminalize Abortion Reminded Me To Be Vocally Pro-Choice

Shout it.

On May 20th, the Oklahoma Legislature passed a bill that would criminalize abortion by revoking abortion doctors’ medical licenses. Oklahoma State Senator Nathan Dahm, who authorized the bill, defended his decision by stating, “Those rights begin at conception.”

This position is in direct violation of Roe v. Wade and therefore unconstitutional according to many — including Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallon who vetoed the bill. While the bill is technically no longer in action, many people are outraged that it even made it the Governor’s desk and are further concerned that the fight still may not be over: Dahm is reportedly considering overriding the veto and hopes to challenge Roe v Wade.

This situation is hardly an anomaly. Dahm is just one of far too many legislators …

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Feminism | Posted by Minnah Stein on 05/30/2016

The Question All Prospective Students Should Ask Colleges

Don’t be afraid to ask.

Not too long ago, my parents dragged me to a lecture about the college admissions process. As a sophomore, I wasn’t all that interested in this information yet, but as soon as the lights dimmed and the presentation began, I found myself transfixed — and even surprised.

It turns out the admissions process is not just difficult in terms of getting in, but also in terms of even finding the college you want to get into in the first place. The college counselor presented slide after slide of questions students should ask their prospective colleges (and themselves) as they consider which school could be the best fit, including questions about median SAT scores required, the school’s geographical location and cost of traveling home, campus weather …

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Feminism | Posted by Gina S on 05/27/2016

Is It Possible To Help Friends Through Their Body Image Issues?

She didn’t want to go swimming for health, but to lose weight.

We all have body image demons, but some of us host demons that are louder than others. Some are lucky enough that their demons only appear on universally hellish occasions — like when standing in front of a 360-degree mirror, trying on swimwear. But my friends demons accompany her to everything she does, all day, every day.

My friend tells me she feels guilty and “fat” every time she orders dessert at a restaurant. She refuses to go into clothing shops because she dreads the crushing feeling of her “failure” to lose weight. When she does deign to go shopping, she leaves feeling upset and even worse than she did before. She asks me if she “looks fat,” …

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Feminism | Posted by Lily A on 05/25/2016

Both Hands: Reflecting On A Manipulative Relationship

What I learned from an unhealthy relationship

I started dating a guy about a week into my freshman year of college. He was, and still is, brilliantly creative and blisteringly intelligent. He thought I was unbearably pretty and we had our first sort of date in the rain under the awning of a bank. I was living away from home, in the middle of nowhere. I was starstruck.

We loved each other deeply and were happy for the first few months. We wrote poetry side by side in the library and, when I asked him about his intentions for us, he kissed my knee and said, “long term.

Our happiness, however, was delicate. He had a strict no PDA policy, which even seemed to include looking at me when we …

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