Feminism | Posted by Allie J. on 05/20/2015

Why Sexist Dress Codes Have Got To Go

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Stop policing my body.

Shopping for school clothes was a nightmare in high school. Attending a private Christian school with a strict dress code, I had a lot of rules to follow: No jeans, sweat pants, yoga pants, or anything tight, revealing, or body forming. Basically nothing that was in style or readily available in stores.

Yet despite following the dress code to the best of my ability, I was still told that my pants were too tight, my shirt too low, or my skirt too short. I vividly remember being taken aside one day on the way to chapel to kneel down and have my skirt measured with a ruler. It was humiliating. I was told my favorite Old Navy skirt was a quarter of an inch too short, …

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Feminism | Posted by Erin C. on 05/18/2015

Breaking Down Gender Stereotypes About Mental Illness

The stereotypical image of depression

Close your eyes for a second and think about depression. What comes to mind? Chances are, it’s a girl (maybe with her head in her hands). Perhaps she appears as a dark silhouette, curled up in the fetal position? She probably looks sad.

That image hardly matched my experience. In my life that somebody was just an ordinary boy. He would make his friends roll on the floor with laughter every day. He never failed to put a smile on my face.

But one September, he went away to England to study abroad. Unable to find support and happiness there, he died by suicide. Until then, I had no idea one of my closest friends was clinically depressed.

Everyone occasionally gets “the blues,” but when …

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Feminism | Posted by Mackenzie H on 05/13/2015

The Problem With ‘Strong Is The New Skinny’

Via Flickr

Let’s stop idealizing bodies altogether

The “ideal figure” of a woman has changed a lot over the years. But beauty has undeniably always been determined in relation to patriarchal standards.

During the Italian Renaissance, fuller figures were determined to be a direct reflection of one’s husband’s social and economic status and therefore plump bodies were considered ideal. By the Victorian Era, the hourglass figure — made possible by corsets — was popular. In the 1920s, when women won the right to vote, a sort of curve-less, boyish figure was fashionable. Marilyn Monroe arguably popularized a curvy figure with a slim waist but then the 1960s saw the origins of the skinny, tall, supermodel look that has since dominated the image of the “ideal figure” of a woman in Western culture …

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Feminism | Posted by Julie Z on 05/11/2015

The Conversation All Rising College Freshwomen Need To Have

Financial literacy is crucial.

If you’re anything like me, words like “fiscal” and “economic” and “marketplace” have always been like a Muggle version of the Petrificus Totalus curse. Despite my disdain for the stereotype of women as financially illiterate, I couldn’t stop my eyes from glazing over whenever nitty-gritty conversations related to finance or money came up.

Then I started the college process and woke up to the truly horrific reality of soaring college tuition, seemingly inevitable debt and a crappy economy: the unholy financial trinity of attending college in this day and age.

It’s worth remembering that finance is a historically male-dominated industry, topic of conversation and concern: Until relatively recently, women had no access to their own money and remained completely financially dependent on men. Women’s financial autonomy …

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Feminism | Posted by Caroline V on 05/8/2015

Even If They Don’t Ask, Do Tell.

Ban silence.

I’ve always thought of myself as a very strong, independent, and at times, outspoken young woman. I was confident in my voice and in myself, certain that I would never find myself in a situation with anyone, boy or a girl, that I couldn’t handle. I was always taught that no one should have the power to make you feel uncomfortable in your own skin. But then, my freshman year of college, I experienced something that called this into question.

Hook-up culture in my college, like colleges everywhere, is prominent and over the years I have seen it effect our attitudes and expectations of sexual relationships. But in my experience, unseen, unspoken and especially nuanced forms of violence that are hidden within relationships are more prevalent than the …

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Feminism | Posted by Maddie J on 05/6/2015

The Truth About Being A Woman On The Internet

The ugly truth about the Internet.

The Internet is incredible. Our generation has seemingly limitless access to information and can connect with people anywhere in the world in an unprecedented way. It has given people the opportunity to have a voice with which to speak their minds to a potentially huge audience and has enabled people to find their purpose in life. The Internet creates opportunities for learning, discovering, meeting, and helping others: In fact, according to the inventor of the World Wide Web himself, Tim Berners-Lee the Internet was created for everyone — as a place for all, no matter their race, gender identity or sexual orientation.

But while the Internet is ideally a place of equality, it has in practice also enabled some to hurt, mislead, and exploit. …

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Feminism | Posted by Stephanie L on 05/4/2015

When Exactly Do You Become A Woman?

What is ‘womanhood’ anyway?

When exactly do you become a woman? I’ve received a few different answers to this question that I think are worth exploring.

My elementary school nurse told me in fifth grade I would become a woman when my period came. But I take issue with the idea that something akin to the goriest scene of Texas Chainsaw Massacre playing on loop in your pants while feeling like your insides have staged a mutiny once a month means being a woman. And what does that say about menopause — that one’s womanhood expires at a certain age? Sorry, ladies, your time being a woman is over, thanks for playing! I don’t think so. I like to think that womanhood isn’t something that expires or something that …

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Feminism | Posted by Ines R on 05/1/2015

Can Anyone Be The ‘Perfect’ Feminist?

None of us can be Rosie all the time

Do you ever feel like you owe something to second wave feminists? I do and often think of these women who changed the world before I act. I wonder if someone who lived through some of the most revolutionary moments of the 20th century would approve of my choices. Even when I give advice to friends, I may preface my suggestion with a phrase like, “I think the feminist thing to do is…”

But what if my natural instinct is not in line with a traditional, feminist response? If the whole idea of feminism is that women are equal to men, shouldn’t the “most feminist” action be whatever feels right to that individual woman? Isn’t that how men determine how they …

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