Feminism | Posted by Tasha S on 05/30/2014

Anorexia: A Disease, Not A Diet

“She was like, totally, anorexic,” my coworker stated, gesturing towards my other coworker. The formerly “anorexic” coworker in question nodded her head enthusiastically, as if being referred to as having suffered from a disease was one of her greatest accomplishments. I stared at her, wide eyed. I couldn’t tell if she was being serious or if they, like so many other people I came across, were throwing the term around loosely. “I dieted constantly and I was so skinny. I fit into the best jeans. Now I’ve gotten all flabby. I need to get anorexic again,” she commented. Oh. It dawned on me that anorexia, in her mind, was just a code word for restrictive dieting. It was painful to hear these things, having, by literal definiton, recovered from anorexia.…

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Feminism | Posted by Sabrina N on 05/12/2014

On Overcoming Body Hatred

The first time I felt bad about my body was at my best friend’s swimming pool birthday party, when I was just 11 years old. My friend, who has a very different body shape than I do, was much smaller than me at the time and I felt too conspicuous. It made the party I had been so looking forward to into a miserable experience. I felt like I was taking up too much space– a hard thing to conceptualize at any age, let alone 11.

As I got older, my dislike towards my body became less vague and more intense. I started hating my calves; I began to loathe my thighs. I constantly compared myself to others, and I thought about my weight way more than anyone should. It …

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Pop-Culture | Posted by Julie Z on 03/1/2014

Saturday Vids: Lily Myers “Shrinking Woman”

You may have already seen the viral video of Lily Myers’ beautiful spoken poem “Shrinking Woman,” but in honor of National Eating Disorder Awareness Week, it’s definitely worth experiencing again. All I can say is PREACH, Lily.

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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, Pop-Culture | Posted by Amanda C on 02/26/2014

Vogue vs Dunham vs Jezebel

Lena Dunham's Vogue cover

Recently, I have been caught up in thinking about Lena Dunham’s photo-shoot for Vogue Magazine.  I am an avid Girls watcher and a Lena Dunham fan: she’s quirky, funny, sharp, and not afraid to say what she believes.  So, of course, I was thrilled to see her on the cover of Vogue, a media source that would be far more likely to photograph the Giseles of the world than the Lenas.  But a controversy began to surround the photo – a controversy not instigated by those who wanted to take a quirky intellectual like Lena off the cover, but by Jezebel, a website which considers themselves to have a feminist aim.

Jezebel quickly responded to the photos of Dunham with skepticism about the images, offered to …

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Feminism, Pop-Culture | Posted by Paulina P on 02/24/2014

Body Positivity Looks Different For Each Person

I clearly did not wake up like this. There is liquid eyeliner on my eyes to create this cat eye, there is bronzer on my cheekbones to create the illusion that I have been in the sunlight, and there is fire-engine red lipstick on my lips to make me feel like Marilyn Monroe. But let me tell you, I feel fierce. I feel sexy. I feel unstoppable.

My friend and I recently held a Body Positive photo shoot campaign as a publicity event for the Eating Disorders Awareness and Body Positive Week we are organizing at Columbia University. Since the week is Feb. 24 to 27, we wanted to get people excited and involved before our week of events. We asked students to come in their most confident form and …

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Pop-Culture | Posted by Julie Z on 02/17/2014

Why #Unapologetic Barbie Might Just Help The Body Positive Cause

As a feminist blogger who consistently deconstructs the way things like Barbie and digitally altered images of models objectify women and hold them to unachievable standards of beauty, I completely understand the growing rage over the frame of Barbie’s newest job as an #unapologetic Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition model. What exactly is Barbie refusing to apologize for, one is left wondering? Her anatomically impossible proportions that have, in fact, been proven to make young girls feel badly about their bodies? Or for sending the message that not even digitally altered models (most of whom meet the criteria for anorexia) are suitable for idealized objectification? But critiques that frame this campaign as the peak of such sexist objectification (though certainly valid — it’s hard to think of a more …

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Feminism | Posted by Natalia R. on 10/31/2013

Young, Feminist and Hungry: An Insider’s Perspective On Body Image

As a teenage girl, I’m constantly haunted by social and cultural standards that dictate harmful and confusing messages, like that a low weight is correlated with beauty, that you need to be thin to be desirable, and that young women not only individually need to be thin but should attack those who don’t live up to these standards.

I started to experience issues related to weight and beauty at around the age of 9-10. Most people point to the media as the culprit for these messages and while it certainly plays a part, I actually don’t remember watching shows that portrayed only (or, at least, mainly) thin actresses the way they seem to now. In fact, I remember these shows featuring actresses who would be considered “normal” (which would now …

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