Pop-Culture | Posted by Carolina G on 06/9/2014
On YouTube Celebrities and Blurred Consent
Once considered niche performers, YouTube vloggers are increasingly jumping off our computer screens and becoming celebrities in the real-world sense. They play concerts around the world, have clothing lines and makeup collections, have meet ups that are attended by thousands, and make millions of dollars (case in point: Justin Bieber). YouTube as a company, instead of solely providing a platform for this unique celebrity formation, has recently decided to more actively participate in perpetuating this new celebrity culture: they are currently featuring some of their stars, such as Michelle Phan, Rosanna Pansino, and Bethany Mota, in nation-wide advertisements.
This new type of celebrity is predicated on the idea of accessibility. Unlike the movie stars we only access via orchestrated interviews, YouTube stars seem far more accessible. The entry-barrier to …
Feminism | Posted by Fiona L on 06/6/2014
Erasing the Gray Area: Why Enthusiastic Consent Is Essential To Eradicating Sexual Assault
One Friday evening this spring, I stood in the courtyard outside my dorm with a friend. The sun was setting and students were performing their pre-party rituals around us. It was the first temperate day of the semester and a surge of giddiness seemed to have engulfed the campus. Yet I’d spent the last hour and a half consoling my friend, who was grappling with the process of filing a complaint of sexual misconduct against a fellow Yale student.
It wasn’t the first time I’d found myself in this situation. In my time at college, I’ve heard many stories, generally from heterosexual women, ranging from hazy one-night-stands that went further than intended, to dance-floor-make-outs that felt pressured, to sexual encounters in which the victim was inebriated past the point of …
Feminism | Posted by Erik C on 03/11/2014
What Many Men Don’t Understand About Sexual Assault
Warning: This piece contains material about sexual assault that may be upsetting to some readers.
Sexual assault wasn’t a problem on my radar until it happened to me. But two and a half years ago, I was assaulted over the course of two nights, in a foreign country, while involuntarily intoxicated. This led to chronic clinical insomnia, job loss, a suicide attempt, 16 months of severe clinical depression, and a year off from school with short stints of homelessness and alcoholism.
So, since then, I haven’t really had a choice but to think a tremendous amount about sexual assault and its consequences. I can’t, by any means, know what sexual assault is like from a woman’s perspective, but I’ve talked to dozens, if not hundreds, of female survivors/victims (different people …
Feminism | Posted by Max F on 11/13/2013
Why Teaching Teen Boys About Consent Should Be A Mandatory Part of Sex Ed
It started with a Facebook post. Last summer, a Facebook friend posed the question: “If you would teach your daughter about protection, then why wouldn’t you teach your son about respect?”After I read that, I realized that my high school’s sexual education class only taught us (and especially girls) what not to do. We were taught not to “put your drink down” and to “not drink something if it wasn’t made in front of you.” This information is valid, yet it begs the question: why are young adults only taught how to avoid other people’s behavior? For example, someone has to be the person tampering with somebody else’s drink in order to attempt assault, yet that person’s behavior isn’t directly addressed — we’re not explicitly taught not to lace somebody …
Pop-Culture | Posted by Julie Z on 02/9/2013
Saturday Vids: Karen B. K. Chan Wins Sex Education
This video is the kind of honest talk about sex that should be taught in high school. Karen and The Sex Ed Project win.
Feminism | Posted by Bre K on 04/27/2012
One In Five Women
There you are at three in the morning, sprawled out on someone else’s bed in a foreign room that smells like sex. Your body doesn’t even feel like yours — it feels like you’re standing over yourself, watching something happen to you. You’re not quite able to explain what’s going on. Confused. Dissembled. Disgusted. Shocked. So many feelings you can’t quite put together to equate to that word. And yet there it is: Rape. It finally pops up into your head three weeks later after you come back from Thanksgiving break — your first break during your first term in college.
No this wasn’t me. This was an 18-year-old freshmen living a couple doors down from me. Let’s say her name is Barbara.
The worst part is Barbara and I …
Feminism | Posted by Becka W on 03/17/2011
How Do We Solve A Problem Like Kappa Sigma?
This week, USC’s chapter of Kappa Sigma sent around an e-mail describing how to be an effective “cocksman,” calling a woman’s vagina her “pie” and her mouth/throat a “gullet.” The writer of the e-mail tells his fellow brothers to send him all of their hook-ups in “Tucker Max format” (Tucker Max is a douchebag who notoriously glamorizes his womanizing and drunken antics as epic adventures) and females are “targets” who “aren’t actual people like us men. Consequently, giving them a certain name or distinction is pointless.”
That isn’t even the worst of it. The e-mail classifies women’s “pies” by race, and says “non-consent and rape are two different things,” and includes a rating system to evaluate each woman’s looks. (Read the whole e-mail here on Jezebel). The chapter …
Feminism | Posted by Laura H on 04/2/2010
The War Against Teen Moms
I’ve always thought us young women are pretty lucky in the UK. As oppressive, patriarchal societies go, I’d say the one we enjoy is relatively mild. Legal abortions (though only up to 24 weeks and if two doctors agree), access to contraception, comprehensive sex education. Compared to a lot of places I could name, we’re got it quite good.
But yet, of course, there’s always the threat that all this could come crashing down around us. And when that’s in danger of happening we have to strike back. Fast. Because heaven knows we recognise how fragile what we have is.
Recently, the Daily Mail broke the story that Tory MP Tim Loughton, Shadow Children’s Minister, who has spoken out about his desire to prosecute underage teens who are sexually active. …