Feminism | Posted by Caroline A on 10/17/2013

What My Mom Doesn’t Get About Being Transgender

Some time ago my mum and I had an argument. It all started when I was wasting time on Facebook, checking my cousin’s profile. My cousin is a few years older than me and is someone I’ve always admired. She’s smart and witty: basically our family’s answer to Juno MacGuff. I idolized her in a way, wishing that I had her confidence and coolness.

At some point during my teenage years she came out as a lesbian. Overall my family is well-educated and liberal but, as traditional Irish Catholic immigrants in North London, my grandparents took it the worst. The rest of us (smart, well brought up kids) rushed to accept her, albeit with some curiosity.

At some point, this cousin, who was always a tomboy, started to appear …

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Feminism | Posted by Erin F on 08/20/2012

The Confines of Masculinity

Gender is a complex social construction that has been developed for centuries. Yet many people still do not understand the differences between sex and gender, or that gender is not as simple as whether you have a penis or a vagina. With the onset of industrialization and capitalism, this problem has gotten even worse, as objects are gendered as well as people.

The way this process works is ideas, clothing, traits, and even personal preferences are characterized as masculine or feminine. These labels themselves are constructed through social norms and societal expectations. This assignment is vital, as it then isolates said idea to its category, where it’s status is then determined. More often than not, masculine traits are valued and feminine traits are devalued. It is through this framework that …

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Feminism | Posted by Danielle P on 08/15/2012

I Am More Than Just A Girl. I Am Human.

I was lucky enough to have been raised by open minded women. Never once did the idea that girls are only supposed to be a certain way come up. Early on I learned that girls and boys are equals. I was treated as such up until middle school when all of a sudden it seemed like people had to define their gender. Sexist jokes all of a sudden became funny and I was supposed to laugh at a joke that degraded me. I was required to like make up and dress like the girls in hip-hop videos. I was no longer a person, but rather A Girl and I had to follow a whole new set of rules. Suddenly, I was defined by my gender and I had to wonder …

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Feminism | Posted by Aimee B on 04/11/2012

Growing Up A Tomboy

I never thought much of gender construction as a child. I just knew what I wanted to wear, how my hair should be cut, and what interested me. Did I want to proudly wear my new matching dragon shirt and short set? Yes. Did I want to play the more physical and male dominated games? Yes. Breaking through the conventions of the female stereotype was never problematic for me until I was around eight years old and moved to a new town.

It was nerve racking. I was suddenly over-aware of my “boyish” appearance, worried about how and if my peers would accept me. My mother accompanied my sister and me to our new classrooms, mine being the first. The teacher met us outside of the classroom, hugged my sister, …

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Pop-Culture | Posted by Julie Z on 06/4/2011

Saturday Vids: Storm, The Genderless Baby

Over the past few weeks, the story of a Canadian couple who is keeping the gender of their baby, named Storm, a secret, has made headlines. Their reasoning seems to be that they want to allow their child to choose his/her own gender. They want to help him/her avoid feeling trapped by gender and to give him/her more freedom to express himself/herself. Of course, controversy ensued, even resulting in a segment on the Today show.

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Feminism | Posted by Oliver L on 04/4/2011

I’m A Boy

My interest in feminism could have started when my mom told me that people “aren’t weird, they’re just different.” It could have started when I was teased in elementary school for having braces or in high school for having overbite. It could have been those journalism classes or seeing how Native people in my high school were treated by my peers. Maybe it was because I had to come out as queer and then again, as a transgender man.

Hell, for all I know it started because I watched the Beatles animated film “The Yellow Submarine” every day with my brother when I was nine. All of those happy people dancing, becoming frozen because some Blue Meanie didn’t like music. Unjust, I tell you! I grew up listening to the …

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Feminism | Posted by Alec A on 03/9/2011

From the Paris of the Middle East to Bacha Posh

Afghanistan has had a rough time in recent history. The sudden transformation from fashionable escape for the West to war-torn warlord-ruled landscape to complete Taliban control (and now it seems that the whole place is more or less up for grabs as the current government’s complicity with the Taliban has been revealed) has been something shocking to look at independently of any time period before or after a given moment, or in a historical panorama of the past century.

Kabul was once named the “Paris of the Middle East.” The high society women were very well integrated into European society and many took on French as a second language in an aristocratic gesture to their high-brow city’s namesake.

But the times have changed considerably since then. Anyone who kept up …

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Pop-Culture | Posted by Alec A on 10/13/2010

Being A Gay Teen at Homecoming

I was at homecoming this past weekend and, given my miraculously heightened sense of male gender roles, I made a few interesting observations that I would like to share with the wild internet west. Alright, I have taken a sip of coffee, so here we go.

There is no such thing as a male dance move. I noticed this as I was trying to dance to various rap and pop songs. I would sort of try and get into it and then I would grudgingly realize that I really had no dance repertoire to draw on for that selection. I had two options: either dance like a heterosexual douchebag or dance like a flaming homosexual.

Let us look at the dance routine of the douchebag. Put yourself in the scene. …

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