A Little F'd Up: Why Feminism Is Not A Dirty Word by Julie Zeilinger now available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble

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Feminism | Posted by Paris A on 07/14/2014

Why We Need Women’s Studies Classes in High School

My high school feminism class holding their “Who Needs Feminism” signs (photo credit: Noel Diggs).

For years I, like most of my peers, always struggled to answer the question “why do we still need feminism?” But ever since I took a class about feminism my Junior year of high school, I can’t and won’t go back to my previous ignorance about the movement. Now, because of that class, I can readily give a general but accurate answer: I need feminism because I cannot live without it.

This feminism class led me to reflect a lot on what it means to be a teenage girl in this world. Ever since I was practically shoved chest-first into puberty, I have felt the effects of the way women and girls are sexualized and …

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Pop-Culture | Posted by Jackson B on 07/11/2014

Why I Wish “How I Met Your Mother” Would Have Ended Differently

The Big Bang Theory” is one of my all-time favorite television shows. The show’s protagonist, Sheldon Cooper, is basically my role model, and I’m obsessed with Raj, Howard, and Leonard as well. But I also have a big problem with the show. Penny, Bernadette, and Amy — the female characters — serve almost no purpose to the show outside of their relationships with the main male characters.

When I started watching “How I Met Your Mother“, I immediately recognized that this show was different. Sure…the main male characters — Ted, Marshall, and Barney — drove the show, but they couldn’t have done it without Robin and Lily. Robin and Lily were certainly love interests for the show’s male characters, but unlike many other television shows, these women …

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Feminism | Posted by Ines R on 07/9/2014

Sexism and Soccer Balls

The other day my friend asked me if I thought a true feminist can support the World Cup. Until this year, I probably would have immediately answered yes: I just associated the World Cup with a somewhat rarefied joy and excitement. Over the years, I have loved witnessing the passion other countries have for their nation’s team and choosing a team to root for with my family (we usually just hop onto the bandwagon of the favored champions since our country, Peru, has not been in the World Cup since 1982). But this year — maybe because I’m older, maybe because it seems more obvious than ever before — I’ve noticed various sexist dynamics surrounding the World Cup.

The World Cup has had a significant impact on women’s lives all …

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Feminism | Posted by Maya Richard-Craven on 07/7/2014

What’s Your ‘Weapon Of Choice?’

American photographer Richard Johnson brings attention to the invisible effects of verbal abuse in his series, "Weapon of Choice." (Weapon of Choice - Hurtwords.com / Facebook)

It was not your typical walk of shame, like the kind you see in high school movies after someone loses their virginity. Instead, it was me, an athletic-looking African-American girl, sobbing my way downtown, just on the border of USC and gang territory.

A fellow Trojan, who I had been talking to for a year, had originally said I could stay over at his place.

“I don’t care what I said. I lied.”

“It’s 4 am and we are in South Central LA, you are just going to kick me out… Can’t I just sleep on your floor?”

“What are you still doing …

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Awareness, Feminism | Posted by Julie Z on 07/4/2014

What Young Feminists Need To Know About The Hobby Lobby Ruling

As a rising college senior, I’ve already been inundated with cautionary tales of being female while working in corporate America. Now, thanks to the recent Hobby Lobby ruling, my generation of women can add potentially working for companies whose rights are valued above our own and the blatant undermining of our health and reproductive freedom to the list of our future professional rewards.

Monday’s Hobby Lobby ruling solidifies the reality of the war on women in this country, indisputably highlighting the way in which sexism is still rampant in American society in several ways.

First and foremost, the decision reveals that persistent, blatant ignorance about women’s bodies has infiltrated the law of the land. The Hobby Lobby suit incorrectly conflates birth control with pregnancy termination by objecting to insurance …

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Pop-Culture | Posted by Sabrina N on 07/2/2014

On Preachers Daughters and Purity Culture

I recently marathoned Preachers Daughters, a new Lifetime reality show. Season One follows the lives of three different girls — Taylor, Olivia and Kolby — who all have at least one parent who is a preacher. While all girls are subject to purity culture based on their family’s beliefs, each reacts to this culture differently. Taylor feels restricted and chooses to rebel; Olivia, who has a baby,  is now “on the right path”; Kolby attempts to live up to purity standards and even breaks up with a boyfriend in order to avoid future “temptation”. But while each girl follows a different path, they all show how purity culture can manifest destructively.

Although I was never involved with purity culture to the same extent as these girls, watching Taylor, Olivia …

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Feminism | Posted by Alice W on 06/30/2014

Why Colleges Need To Fund Sexual Health Counseling

UNC

Like many (if not most) teens across the country, my high school health textbook had almost no practical sex ed information. It had a abstinence contract, pages and pages on why we should wait and one little box on the failure rates of birth control. At the end of my senior year I realized few of my friends knew the correct way to put on a condom and had to hold a covert workshop during school.

The health education policies in North Carolina, where I’m from, make it impossible for us to learn about sex in an honest, healthy way in high school. For many, college is the first time they get real sex education. And yet, come next year, the University of North Carolina’s sexual health counseling may …

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Feminism | Posted by Angela B on 06/27/2014

How I Lost My Voice

My single-sex elementary school class

I went to a weird elementary school. It was a hybrid between co-educational and single sex classrooms. The idea was that as children grow older, the differences between the ways boys and girls learned beomce more distinct: kindergartners and first graders had co-ed classes, but from second grade to 8th grade, the classes were split into single sex classrooms. At seven and eight this never seemed strange to me, and I assumed all schools followed this model, until at soccer practice a girl on my team was telling a story about how a boy in her class was trying to convince everyone that Spiderman was the best superhero. I asked her what a boy was doing in her classroom, earning laughter from my teammates …

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