Pop-Culture | Posted by Caitlin L. on 06/23/2014

Why the Entertainment Industry Defining Beautiful Women as Young and White Has to Stop

Does the entertainment industry actually have that much power to teach girls what is beautiful? Certainly, words are impactful but how much do simple images really matter? Are girls really absorbing and comparing themselves to images of women in the media or are we selling girls’ intelligence short by assuming that they don’t understand that these images are not representative of reality?

Thinking about these questions led me to search for an as-yet unexplored historic root of the entertainment industry in actively defining beauty — one that especially validates the outcry against the lack of diversity of representation of women in the media. Examining the history of the display of women to ease social anxiety against whiteness in the late-nineteenth and early-twentieth centuries is useful for understanding the necessity of …

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Feminism | Posted by Maya Richard-Craven on 06/4/2014

“You’re Pretty, For A Black Girl”

“My dick really isn’t attracted to black girls.”

I tried to explain how his comment could come off as a tad bit racist.

“Well, it’s just that I don’t usually like girls like you.”

“You mean, you usually like girls with blonde hair and blue eyes?”

“Well, yeah.”

No, this conversation wasn’t with John Mayer. It was with a caucasian male in a fraternity, one of my peers at USC.

I cried that night on my two-mile walk home from “frat row.” I cried the next day. Ok, I cried for countless nights. Not because I was sad about some guy, or because he claimed he “wasn’t interested.” I cried because I was disappointed that American Eurocentric culture still produces people who fear challenging what they have been taught. …

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Feminism | Posted by Kate M on 02/28/2014

What Happens After You Lose Weight

seriously, just stop

seriously, just stop

I wouldn’t say that I was ever fat. I was always just overweight enough that girls would tell me I looked “fine” and guys wouldn’t tell me much of anything (because I guess my dazzling intellect and sense of humor wasn’t high on their priority list). As a feminist, I always tried to feel proud of my body. I really did want to accept it and love it for what it was. But that was easier said than done.

Last summer I lost about 15 pounds. When I came back to school in the Fall, I was showered with compliments. “How did you do it?” everybody asked. I told some that I hardly even noticed my weight loss and that I had no idea how …

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Feminism | Posted by aneuman on 02/3/2014

On Being Incorporated

The term incorporated is often used to describe an organization or business that has become legalized and made official. People can become incorporated as well, as in the cases of celebrities putting trademarks on their names, their public identities as part brand, part person. For better or worse (definitely worse), regular individuals are now incorporating themselves, young girls in particular. We are spending much if not all of our leisure time doing so, whether we realize it or not, and we lack the celebrity’s excuse of doing it for money.

Example: I am a girl going off to college. I meet some nice people in the first few weeks there, but nothing seems solid yet, there is no reaffirming stamp on my place in this foreign environment. I need to …

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Feminism, Pop-Culture | Posted by Sophie M on 12/30/2013

Helle Thorning-Schmidt vs. Mary Beard or Why Women Just Can’t Get It Right

You’ve been living under a rock if you’re not in the know about the Obama #selfie pic which circulated after the Nelson Mandela memorial service. If you have in fact been residing under said rock then here’s the low-down: Obama, President of the United States and Leader of the Free World teamed up with UK PM David Cameron to sandwich Danish Prime Minister, Helle Thorning-Schmidt for perhaps the most powerful selfie ever taken.

While I personally do find it a little inappropriate that these three world leaders deemed it the opportune moment to snap a pic for posterity, I don’t think it deserves the hysteria it’s amassed. Especially since the photographer who took the picture has admitted that their behavior was actually in tone with the jovial atmosphere of the …

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Pop-Culture | Posted by Julie Z on 08/31/2013

Saturday Vids: You’re Not Pretty Enough

A few weeks ago, I wrote about Jennifer Tress’ “You’re Not Pretty Enough” movement on The Huffington Post. I encourage everybody to read that post and visit the YNPE website, but basically the deal is that Tress is trying to start a video-based movement about body image and beauty standards in the vein of Dan Savage’s “It Gets Better.” Here’s Jennifer’s intro video and one of the user-submitted videos from the website.

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Feminism | Posted by Camille E on 06/17/2013

What If I AM Like The Feminist Stereotype?

Am I giving feminism a bad rap by not shaving my armpits? I worry that people will take one look at my pits, label me as “one of those feminists” (the only kind they think exists), and dismiss what I say and stand for. I don’t want people to further solidify the stereotype that all feminists are hairy mammoth, lesbian, man-hating bra-burners, except it’s more important to me that we get across that there isn’t anything wrong whatsoever with being a lesbian or a woman who doesn’t shave in the first place. I also firmly believe that not shaving is a feminist statement, albeit one I do not expect many to understand or apply to their own lives.

I love my armpit hair. At the moment, it’s my special little …

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Pop-Culture | Posted by Jasmine W on 04/12/2013

The Straight and the Narrow

Sometimes I look at the pieces of my chemically-straightened hair that are scattered around my bathroom floor, and I wonder what it would be like if things were different. What if relaxers were never invented? What if having afro-kinky hair was okay?

I’ve been getting my hair chemically straightened since I was around eight, and before then, I got my hair pressed with a straightening comb each week. I have no idea what my natural texture looks like besides from what I can guess from childhood pictures and the tiny bit of roots that grow out before I straighten them again. My hair is at my shoulders and will not grow past them because of breakage.

The answer to my dilemma may seem simple: just go natural! But here’s the …

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