Feminism | Posted by Julie Z on 09/14/2016

Anita Sarkeesian On Why She’s Spotlighting “Ordinary Women”

Credit: Anita Sarkeesian

Credit: Anita Sarkeesian

From her popular video series Tropes vs. Women in Video Games to her work regarding online harassment, Feminist Frequency founder Anita Sarkeesian has unfailingly committed to critiquing and analyzing sexism in popular culture. Now she’s continuing this impressive legacy with a new series: Ordinary Women: Daring to Defy History — the first episode of which is now live.
Each video in the five-episode series will feature original animation and focus on the life and work of a different woman in history who challenged the status quo and did incredible things, even if history wasn’t ready to acknowledge it: Murasaki Shikibu, the author of the first modern novel; Emma Goldman, a political revolutionary; Ching Shih, a pirate captain; Ada Lovelace, the creator of the …

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Pop-Culture | Posted by Angela Liu on 08/17/2016

Why Proper Representation Matters: The Invisible Minority in Pop Culture

Screen Shot 2016-08-16 at 3.58.52 PM

Maybe not so great.

I have never had a hero who looked quite like me. Growing up, my favorite shows on Disney Channel included Hannah Montana and Wizards of Waverly Place – shows with complex, interesting female characters, but which also had predominantly white casts. Like millions of other young girls, I rooted for Miley Cyrus and Selena Gomez: – I laughed at their jokes, celebrated their successes, and felt for them when they fell. Like millions of other young girls of color, however, I had no role models who looked like I did.

I was sitting down with my family at dinner recently when a CNN notification popped up on my phone, alerting me that Matt Damon had been cast in a new film called The Great Wall. …

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Feminism | Posted by Sophie Kreitzberg on 07/27/2016

SHE-E-O: THINX Founder & CEO Miki Agrawal On Feminism, Entrepreneurship, & The Future

Miki Agrawal

Miki Agrawal

You may have seen or heard about the subway ads for the period panties THINX, featuring a super-yonic-looking grapefruit — or maybe you just followed the ridiculous controversy about those ads. Perhaps you’ve been lucky enough to try the revolutionary underwear that keeps you leak-free and worry-free while you’re on your period. Either way, it’s clear the period revolution is here, and a woman is leading it. Her name is Miki Agrawal, and she’s the badass She-E-O and co-founder of the aforementioned company that’s disrupting the $15 billion feminine hygiene industry: THINX.

After Miki Agrawal graduated from Cornell, she went into the finance industry and worked for Deutsche Bank. On the morning of September 11, 2001, she slept through her alarm and didn’t make …

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Feminism | Posted by Chloe H on 07/15/2016

Serena Williams and Gabby Douglas Are Proving Black Girls Are Magic

Gabby Douglas.

There is absolutely no question that racism still persists in the United States today. While examples of this systemic reality abound — from racism in the criminal justice system to the disproportionate punishment of black girls in schools and beyond — one need look no further for evidence than this past week, which saw the tragic deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castille. In fact, the police have killed at least 136 black people in 2016 alone, according to the Guardian.

Perhaps now more than ever, therefore, it’s important for young, black Americans to have exposure to black people succeeding despite the many systemic barriers in their way. This seems especially important for women of color, who are so often erased even from discussions of liberation.

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Pop-Culture | Posted by Julie Z on 08/2/2013

6 Reasons “The To Do List” Is Great For Women

Aubrey Plaza and Rachel Bilson in "The To Do List"

As a movie lover, I’m used to being frustrated, insulted and bored with female characters. Truly, there are few things quite as annoying as being asked to ignore everything I know and believe to be true about women for two hours, as most movies ask me to do. Then a breath of fresh air in a sea of films featuring damsels in distress, and women who exist solely for the gratification of immature guys appeared on Friday night. It’s more formally being referred to as “The To Do List.”

This indie film centers around the story of Brandy Clark (played by Aubrey Plaza), a multidimensional female protagonist whose on-screen journey to sexual self-discovery revolves around her growth as …

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Feminism, Pop-Culture | Posted by Katie Mattie on 07/15/2013

Superhero Sexism

Ever since I was little I’ve loved superheroes and action adventure stories. Whether it was a story about fighting the world’s darkest wizard in Harry Potter, teaming with The Avengers to save New York City, or becoming a master Pokémon trainer like Ash, I wanted to be the main character with the power to save the day. While aspiring to be a hero from stories like Harry Potter, The Avengers and Pokémon is a great way to build heroic qualities, my issue is that I’ve always found myself wanting to be a guy. I wanted to be Iron Man in the suit, not Pepper Potts. Why would you want to be the over protective girlfriend when you could be a daring, charming, genius in a nearly indestructible flying suit?

My …

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Feminism | Posted by Mansi K on 02/13/2013

I’m Not Sorry I’m A Girl. I’m Sorry You Care.

How are you supposed to feel the first time you realize your grandparents wish you had been born a boy? I’m still not sure. I do know, however, that if my paternal grandparents had the option to transfer my identity into a body with a penis, they would gladly capitalize on the opportunity. I, the oldest child, should have been born a boy. When I came out penis-less, this hope was transferred to my younger sibling. Well, exactly 4.5 years later, my mother disappointed again. And that was it; my parents didn’t want more children.

I have never doubted the fact that my grandparents love me. But every time I remember that I am worth even a little bit less because I have breasts or because I will not carry …

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Pop-Culture | Posted by Mareike S on 05/7/2012

Why Does Exceptionally Smart = Crazy On TV?

Now, before launching into this, let me make one thing clear: I love the TV show Bones and have for a long time. I also kind of like Rizzoli & Isles, but there’s one thing that’s been irking me about these two series, even though they feature women in the leading roles and (especially in the case of Bones) have diverse casts. My problem is the fact that while both Temperance Brennan of Bones and Maura Isles of Rizzoli & Isles are portrayed as unusually smart and gifted females, they are also portrayed as socially awkward to a point that borders on a psychological disorder.

As anyone who has read The Yellow Wallpaper might know, there’s been a long standing tradition of portraying women as crazy and in need …

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