Feminism | Posted by Caroline V on 05/8/2015

Even If They Don’t Ask, Do Tell.

Ban silence.

I’ve always thought of myself as a very strong, independent, and at times, outspoken young woman. I was confident in my voice and in myself, certain that I would never find myself in a situation with anyone, boy or a girl, that I couldn’t handle. I was always taught that no one should have the power to make you feel uncomfortable in your own skin. But then, my freshman year of college, I experienced something that called this into question.

Hook-up culture in my college, like colleges everywhere, is prominent and over the years I have seen it effect our attitudes and expectations of sexual relationships. But in my experience, unseen, unspoken and especially nuanced forms of violence that are hidden within relationships are more prevalent than the …

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Feminism | Posted by Maddie J on 05/6/2015

The Truth About Being A Woman On The Internet

The ugly truth about the Internet.

The Internet is incredible. Our generation has seemingly limitless access to information and can connect with people anywhere in the world in an unprecedented way. It has given people the opportunity to have a voice with which to speak their minds to a potentially huge audience and has enabled people to find their purpose in life. The Internet creates opportunities for learning, discovering, meeting, and helping others: In fact, according to the inventor of the World Wide Web himself, Tim Berners-Lee the Internet was created for everyone — as a place for all, no matter their race, gender identity or sexual orientation.

But while the Internet is ideally a place of equality, it has in practice also enabled some to hurt, mislead, and exploit. …

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Feminism | Posted by Stephanie L on 05/4/2015

When Exactly Do You Become A Woman?

What is ‘womanhood’ anyway?

When exactly do you become a woman? I’ve received a few different answers to this question that I think are worth exploring.

My elementary school nurse told me in fifth grade I would become a woman when my period came. But I take issue with the idea that something akin to the goriest scene of Texas Chainsaw Massacre playing on loop in your pants while feeling like your insides have staged a mutiny once a month means being a woman. And what does that say about menopause — that one’s womanhood expires at a certain age? Sorry, ladies, your time being a woman is over, thanks for playing! I don’t think so. I like to think that womanhood isn’t something that expires or something that …

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Feminism | Posted by Ines R on 05/1/2015

Can Anyone Be The ‘Perfect’ Feminist?

None of us can be Rosie all the time

Do you ever feel like you owe something to second wave feminists? I do and often think of these women who changed the world before I act. I wonder if someone who lived through some of the most revolutionary moments of the 20th century would approve of my choices. Even when I give advice to friends, I may preface my suggestion with a phrase like, “I think the feminist thing to do is…”

But what if my natural instinct is not in line with a traditional, feminist response? If the whole idea of feminism is that women are equal to men, shouldn’t the “most feminist” action be whatever feels right to that individual woman? Isn’t that how men determine how they …

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Pop-Culture | Posted by Bridget L on 04/29/2015

Where Are The Jewish and Queer Students at Hogwarts?

Hogwarts

I’m a huge fan of Harry Potter. I grew up reading the books, have seen each film countless times, and dressed up as Hermione for many Halloweens. But while I’ll always love the series, I also recognize that it’s not flawless.

Last December, JK Rowling revealed that there were Jewish students at Hogwarts, and even provided readers with an example: Anthony Goldstein. This revelation prompted others to question whether or not there were LGBT students at Hogwarts as well. In a Twitter chat, Rowling addressed this by stating “But of course,” there were LGBT youth at Hogwarts.

I find these revelations problematic for a couple reasons. First is the fact Anthony Goldstein was only a background character without any distinguishing character traits for the duration of the series. …

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Feminism | Posted by Marina Arcuschin de Oliveira on 04/27/2015

#SpreadFeminisim: Should Feminism Go Viral?

Feminism is going viral

Feminism is going viral

A friend of mine recently shared #SpreadFeminism, a challenge campaign encouraging fellow feminists to post a video, picture, poem, or anything else related to feminism on their Facebook page for five days and invite three friends to do the same. then continue the trend.

Initially, I was excited. What a simple, powerful idea. At the same time, I couldn’t shake my doubts. I love the idea of spreading feminism, but what notions of feminism will be spread? What if this campaign affirms the struggle but erases its underlying complexities? What if it does more harm than good?

Here’s why I’m worried:

Feminism is beautiful because it is complex. I love the idea that there are so many ways to understand and practice feminism and that it …

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Feminism | Posted by Sharmee S on 04/13/2015

Why I Bought Skin Lightening Cream At 11 Years Old

One brand of fairness cream

I was 11 years old when I succumbed to buying my first tube of “fairness” cream. It was right after a popular boy teased me by calling out “Weh blackie” to me.

Before he teased me, I internalized most of my negative feelings about my dark skin. As a second generation Indian, I felt the influence of the inhumane Indian caste system which idolizes those with fairer skin. Lighter skinned individuals are considered superior within this system and those with darker skin are regarded as dirty, useless and — especially in the case of darker women — less desirable. This boy’s remark, though, was the first time I felt so deeply humiliated. I felt hatred and disgust towards my skin.

Although I was lucky enough …

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Feminism | Posted by Anonymous on 04/8/2015

My Mixed Race Features Are Not Pieces of a Puzzle

I identify as mixed-race

What Are You?

I find myself being asked that question more often than I like to admit. It takes many forms, broken down and built back up again, that same old question rattling around in my head like a single penny in a tin can. It makes so much noise, demanding attention. It’s a person’s desperate attempt to make sense of my loose curls, almond shaped eyes and light complexion. That strong human instinct to organize and categorize, coming from the depths of a person’s consciousness, causing many people to squint and nod their head as they try to piece my features together like a puzzle.

I’m Mixed.

Telling people this makes most people smile as they are finally able to put me in a category. …

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