Feminism | Posted by Julie Z on 02/24/2012
A Feminist Rushes A Sorority
When I thought about what my college experience would be like as a high schooler, I never for a second even slightly entertained the faintest thought of joining a sorority. As a self-identified feminist, as someone who thought chapstick was a full face of makeup, and as someone who had about as much interest in enduring mosh-pits of grinding frat boys as she did in microbial taxonomy (read: none) I just had zero interest in what I, frankly, saw as an antiquated, possibly even anti-feminist and insulting tradition. Which is why when I pressed “send” on my sorority recruitment application last December, nobody was more surprised than I was.
Though I hadn’t entered college with a clear goal of finding my long, lost non-genetic “sisters,” my interest in joining a …
Feminism | Posted by LodB on 02/22/2012
Doctors, Nurses And One Terrific Professor
[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="145" caption="language matters"]
Recently, I was taking a course on linguistics, and we were discussing syntax. My professor asked the class– a room of roughly a hundred English students, mostly female– what pronoun to use when replacing the noun ‘boss’. It wasn’t a very serious question, but the response made him stop in his tracks. Over half the class had casually, but eagerly, called out ‘he’. It wasn’t until my astonished professor eyed us that everyone realised what they had said: that they had confirmed something we all thought to have been a thing of the past. There were nervous giggles and some shocked faces, including my own, because what’s so horrific is that I hadn’t realized it either.
Feminism | Posted by Julie Z on 02/15/2012
Labeling Myself As A Feminist (Literally)
Right after we graduated high school, I gave one of my best friends a bumper sticker that read “This Is What A Feminist Looks Like.” It was partially a joke – something to remember her über-feminist friend by – but it was also a little hint. This friend didn’t take shit from anybody and aligned herself with almost every single feminist issue, yet I had never heard her refer to herself as a feminist. I didn’t think much of it after I gave it to her, figuring she’d probably see it, smile, and stash it away.
However, to my surprise, this friend recently texted me about that bumper sticker. She told me she had actually put my little gift on her laptop and that she got more comments about it …
Feminism | Posted by Julie Z on 01/6/2012
Finals and the Curse of the Perfect Girl
The number one question my high school friends always ask me whenever we chat now is, “So are you sick of being around all those girls yet?” Despite the fact that I have attempted to explain my decision to attend a women’s college a seemingly infinite amount of times, I always answer no – that being around women has been a really supportive experience, a nice change of pace and a really beneficial academic experience so far. Or at least that was my answer up until finals.
The thing is, I go to an extremely competitive, academically rigorous school. I don’t really care what the official rankings are, all I know is that I am surrounded by the most hyper-motivated, incredibly intelligent people I have ever encountered. This was something …
Feminism | Posted by Gina B on 01/2/2012
Here’s to 2012: My Year As A Feminist
I’ve never really been one for New Year’s resolutions. All the promises I’ve made to myself have either been forgotten two or three days into January or are things that I’ve rationalized not doing. For example one year’s resolution was to stop eating so much chocolate (I don’t know why I even thought about attempting that one – like it was even the slightest bit plausible). Another was to walk to/from the train station on the way to/from school or uni more instead of catching the bus (“but my bag’s always too heavy!”; “my lecture’s at 9 so I’d have to wake up really early!”). But there are one or two things that have been bothering me this year that I want to act on in 2012 – a resolution …
Feminism | Posted by Anna D on 10/31/2011
We Love the Female Orgasm! Do You?
Starting college is pretty exciting; everyone’s meeting new friends, getting the hang of their classes, and, if they’re lucky, learning about female orgasm. A few weeks ago, my college’s Sexual Health Educators brought the program “I Love the Female Orgasm” to our student body. After seeing the attention-grabbing posters around campus, my roommate and I went to the event, not quite sure what to expect. What we ended up seeing was an in-depth presentation on female sexuality and its relation to society. The presenters, Rachel Dart and Marshall Miller (co-author of I Love the Female Orgasm: An Extraordinary Orgasm Guide with Dorian Solot), explored a variety of subjects and asked the audience about our opinions. It was exciting that such an under-discussed, even taboo, subject was being discussed openly; students …
Feminism | Posted by Lizzie M on 10/28/2011
My Sexuality Is None Of Your Business, Thanks
Probably the most common thing I hear regarding my collegiate matriculation selection is one of a pejorative why I would ever, in-the-name-of-sanity, select to attend an all-female institution. Unsurprisingly, I have a lengthy and rather complicated reply that first must unpack the question (like a true Mount Holyoke Woman, assuredly). This answer, as you have no doubt gleaned, is one I am indirectly (but also directly) answering in these five posts illustrating facets to life here that I love.
However. This is, as the Buddhists would say, a question wrongly asked.
To begin: Mount Holyoke may exclusively admit women only, but not all of its students identify according to the gender binary, and some are in the midst of a sex change whilst at MHC. I am not going to …
Feminism | Posted by Liz P on 10/26/2011
Stand Up, Fight Back: Radical College Women Rock
One of the coolest things I’ve been able to do since entering college is become involved in radical politics. I think many people, and women especially, feel a few barriers to the realm of radical politics.
The word “radical” sounds polarizing. Actually, I didn’t identify as a radical until relatively recently. One of my professors explained that radical feminism, as opposed to liberal feminism, is interested in actually breaking down the power systems (patriarchy, racism, etc.) that form the fundamental barriers to equality. And it just clicked. Duh, I’m radical. There’s a stigma to the word, though, that I think presents a problem for a lot of people.
Radical politics are often dominated by that old chestnut of a demographic: white men. But for people of color, or for women …