When I was in 12th grade, I asked my parents to buy me a subscription to TIME Magazine so I could learn more about current events before heading off to college. I still remember when the TIME 100 Most Influential came in the mail, and the glossy collage of famous faces on its cover. I read every single bio inside, thinking to myself how I wanted to know the stories of such important and inspiring people. Two years later, TIME 100 has tried more and more to capture the attention of young audiences through social media. TIME’s online poll allowed users to vote for their favorites and then share their votes on Facebook or Twitter. Friends of mine who weren’t regular TIME readers were still tweeting and posting about …
Feminism | Posted by Lauren M on 04/30/2014
It has been a pretty good month to be from Connecticut. March Madness came to a close on Monday, April 7th and Tuesday, April 8th, with the championship victories of the Men and Women’s National Basketball Tournament. The UCONN Huskies Men and Women’s basketball teams both won, making it the second time in the history of the NCAA Tournament where both championships were won by the same school. Who did it the first time? The Huskies, back in 2004. Having the men win the tournament seemed like a long shot; they were the 7th seed and they had to face some pretty good teams along the way. The women on the other hand were favorited, as they had been undefeated in the regular season. This sounds like great news right? …
With my grade’s school day countdown approaching the twenties, obligatory end-of-high-school events are becoming very real, very quickly. Prom season feels like it has been coming for a lifetime and for some girls, it actually has. For those girls, it’s an exciting time. Dresses! Hair! Lipstick! Other things I’ve never been concerned with! In my opinion, however, the whole event has cast a dusky, dis-empowering and somewhat misogynist cloud over the final chapters of senior year.
For those of you who are unaware (adults) of modern day prom etiquette — it’s extravagant. A promposal is a self-explanatory invitation to prom. But they are usually and increasingly grand, romantic and often public gestures wherein boys ask girls to be their dates. They typically involve the spelling of “P-R-O-M?” in creative ways, …
Pop-Culture | Posted by Darializa Avila-Chevalier on 04/24/2014
As an artist for my college’s newspaper, the Columbia Spectator, I sometimes have to illustrate pieces laced with unrecognized privilege. I’ve drawn for articles that fetishize poverty in Spanish Harlem and pieces that depict the “Columbia experience” as entirely universal to its student body. I’ve also illustrated for authors who have complained that “their privilege excludes them from conversation.” As a result, I, a low-income, Afro-Latina, first-generation American woman, feel alienated in my own community. This is not to say that Spec’s contributors aim to drown out the voices of the marginalized—I believe most have good intentions and hope to create a forum of expression safe for all identities. But intention is irrelevant when people of marginalized identities feel the ever-present divide reinforced.
I love illustrating for Spectator, …
Feminism | Posted by Julie Z on 04/22/2014
Discovering the world of feminist blogging was an experience of simultaneous relief and isolation: just as Second Wave feminists have described the way consciousness raising allowed them to realize that their frustration with and opposition to sexism wasn’t individual insanity but a collective imperative, feminist blogging allowed me – and certainly countless others – to find comfort in the collective of like-minded people thinking critically about and combating inequality. But at the same time that I found such reprieve online, my lived reality was mired in ideologies that existed in ambivalence and direct contradiction to those ideals.
It was this paradox that led me to start the FBomb. I wanted to bridge the gap between my peers who hadn’t been exposed to feminism and those searching for like-minded people who …
Feminism | Posted by Kylie V on 04/16/2014
I love Sara Bareilles’ Brave. Who doesn’t love a message about overcoming fear in order to express one’s opinions?
Say what you wanna say
And let the words fall out
Honestly I wanna see you be brave
With what you want to say
And let the words fall out
Honestly I wanna see you be brave
But why is simply expressing who we are and what we think interpreted as brave? Why is this so controversial that we have to be afraid of opposition? We live in a culture where backlash has become extremely harsh, especially when it means challenging the white middle class straight status quo. More than ever we need inspiration from brilliant thinkers like the late great Audre Lorde, who challenged us to push past the …
Feminism | Posted by Julia B on 04/14/2014
When girls are young, Cinderella tells them “dreams really do come true.” As we get older, that philosophy changes and we learn that life isn’t actually a fairytale. You have to work hard in order to achieve something great, and even then it doesn’t always happen. For me, ballet started as a fairytale and transformed into a whole lot of hard work. And I love it.
Like any professional-in-training, I spend about 20 hours per week training for what I dream of doing: becoming a professional ballet dancer. I don’t know if I’ll succeed (because the ballet world is extremely, extremely competitive), but either way I want to be able to say that I worked as hard as I possibly could.
People have said that I “have no life” outside …
Feminism | Posted by Beatrice M on 04/9/2014
Women have made great strides towards social, political and economic equality in the past decades, but where do we stand in terms of sexual equality? Humans are sexual creatures who all want to explore our sexuality, but society undeniably still influences many women and men to view sex differently.
While medical advancements, like the invention of the pill, have radically transformed women’s sexual autonomy, there are still a number of cultural forces that suppress women’s sexuality. Women are still sexually exploited in the media and there are still societal pressures that encourage us to think of men as overly sexual creatures and women as demure and untouchable. Rigid purity standards and sexual double standards continue to demonize women for having sex and women also still face greater repercussions for sexual …