Feminism | Posted by Shirley Kailas on 12/23/2011

The Plan B Decision: Sacrificing “Change We Can Believe In” for Expediency?

Like every other rational individual in our country, I was in a state of utter shock when I heard the news that, for the first time in history, the secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) had overruled a fact-based decision by the FDA. While this type of nonsensical anti-choice maneuver is something pro-choicers have had to deal with in the past, the fact that it was carried out by a Democratic administration was nothing less than devastating. The administration ignored sound evidence (and women’s basic rights) and did what they are quickly becoming best known for, sacrificing “change we can believe in” for “never mind what’s right, I will shirk away from anything that could possibly be considered controversial and cost me a vote in my …

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Feminism | Posted by Melanie Butler on 12/7/2011

Are We Bonobos or Chimpanzees? Evolution and Occupy Wall Street

The Divine Feminine at Occupy Wall Street

The Divine Feminine at Occupy Wall Street

Bonobos and chimpanzees, our closest animal relatives, are almost exactly the same type of monkey. They are so similar, in fact, they only became distinguished as separate species in 1929. But chimpanzee and bonobo societies are dramatically different. In chimpanzee culture, males dominate, sex is strictly for reproduction and violence and infanticide are common. Bonobo society, on the other hand, is remarkably peaceful and is characterized by an abundance of recreational sex and strong female bonding. This marked difference is inextricably linked to the relative levels of female interaction in each society. In chimpanzee habitats, where food is difficult to obtain, females spend their time isolated from one another, gathering food and caring for their offspring. Their seclusion leaves them susceptible to violence …

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Feminism | Posted by Fiona L on 11/30/2011

Gaddafi: An Unexpected Advocate for Libyan Women?

When I first heard about the death of Libyan Dictator, Moammar Gaddafi (who seems to be America’s favorite frenemy) my thoughts went to the women of Libya: what would it mean for them? I quickly realized I had no idea. I searched my mind, trying to remember what I’d heard about Libyan women in the news in the past months.

The fact is, I hadn’t heard much at all about Libyan women, because Libyan women are complicated. Okay, all women are complicated (I feel like this could be the title of a book), but the women’s rights situation in Libya is especially complex, because it turns out, Gaddafi was in many ways a supporter of women’s rights—and yes I cringe a little when I say something as general as …

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Pop-Culture | Posted by Rosamund C on 11/14/2011

A Right Royal Feminist

If you recently married a prince, and are pregnant or thinking about having a baby, I have no doubt that the most pressing issue on your mind is the question of who will inherit your estate and title when you die. Some days it’s all I think about.

Or, you’re a normal person, living on a normal planet, and find it incredible that in the twenty-first century such dilemmas even exist. The Queen has been praised recently for encouraging the introduction of a law to give girls the right to inheritance if they’re first born – even if they have male siblings. That means that if the recently married Kate and Wills have a baby girl first, she’ll become queen, before a potential younger male brother, or even Prince Harry. …

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Feminism | Posted by Liz P on 10/26/2011

Stand Up, Fight Back: Radical College Women Rock

college: where I learned to lead

college: where I learned to lead

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 …

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Feminism | Posted by Brenna McCaffrey on 10/24/2011

Five Reasons To Keep An Eye On Senator Gillibrand

Senator Gillibrand

Senator Gillibrand

Senator Kirsten Gillibrand was appointed to the US Senate by Governor David Paterson in 2009 to fill the vacancy left by Hillary Clinton when she was selected by President Obama to serve as Secretary of State. Previously, Gillibrand spent two terms representing New York’s 20th Congressional District in the House of Representatives. Many were surprised by Paterson’s appointment of a relatively unknown Democrat from the mostly rural district that represents the Catskill, Adirondack, and Hudson Valley areas of upstate New York. New Yorkers outside of her district may not have been familiar with Senator Gillibrand before her Senate appointment, but for the past two years she has been turning the heads of those who might be looking for an alternative to Hillary for next woman President.

Senator Gillibrand …

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Feminism | Posted by Harriet S. Hughes on 10/12/2011

London Calling: Feminism Across The Pond

The political terrain of Britain is shifting beneath our feet. Children of the ‘80s and ‘90s will have no memory of anything comparable to the dramatic, fundamental transformation of our nation that’s currently taking place. In an atmosphere of such instability, where the media’s frantically trying to keep pace, women’s issues – sidelined at the best of times – are slipping further and further down the agenda. That’s where we come in: YouFem is a London-based feminist organisation, aiming to harness the political power of young people and draw women’s issues back into the light…and to have fun doing it.

The elections of 2010 landed us with a Conservative-Liberal Democrat Coalition. Since then, Britain has been made to swallow a manifesto that no-one voted for; we’re facing a tsunami of …

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Feminism | Posted by Fiona L on 10/3/2011

Is Suffrage for Saudi Women Justice, or Just Words?

In a society where women can’t leave the house without their faces covered and aren’t allowed to drive, how much does the right to vote really mean?

Global pressures aided in getting women the right to vote and run for office in Saudi Arabia last week. Unfortunately, “the right to vote” is used very loosely when it comes to Saudi Arabian politics. With an intact monarchy, a tight set of laws based on religious texts, and a society which allows for few freedoms for women, Saudi Arabian King Abdullah’s promise that women will be able to further participate in politics rings a little bit empty to me.

First of all, what does it mean for women to “get the right to vote” or “run for office” in a country …

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