Pop-Culture | Posted by Samantha M on 09/12/2014

The Problem With “Likes”

So many of my peers have an unhealthy obsession with how many “likes” their pictures (especially selfies) receive on Instagram. Many of my friends seem to give a simple “like” so much more weight than it deserves and plenty even equate the number of likes on their pictures with how attractive they are or whether or not people like them. I know teens who go so far as to delete their photo if it doesn’t receive a certain amount of likes in a given time period.

Letting social media interactions like this have so much influence on one’s life might seem ridiculous at first, but it’s evidence of something more serious. There is a lot of pressure on teen girls to feel beautiful and perfect, and for those things to …

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Feminism | Posted by Emma M on 08/13/2014

Talk the Talk: On Being A Role Model

Always' "Like A Girl" Commercial

Lately, I have been swept up in the flurry of beautiful videos detailing why what we say to young girls matters – videos from companies like Always and Verizon. Videos that remind me why I am thankful every day to have attended an all-girls school that planted the seeds of early feminism.

I am, perhaps, more attuned to these videos right now. I spend my summer months on staff at a performing arts day camp at which I was a camper for most of my life. Our camp teaches its staff skills in child development and social work. Staff members recall their time as campers and recount how little things their counselors said – cheering them on in rehearsal, congratulating them after a performance, …

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Feminism | Posted by Julia B on 12/16/2013

The Art of Recreating Yourself

I’ve always made “New Years Resolutions” and “School Year Resolutions.” Sometimes, “Summer Vacation Resolutions.” The idea of change has always appealed to me, and that includes feeling the need to change myself. I always felt really guilty for feeling that way, probably from always hearing about how I was “fine just the way I am,” from my parents and teachers.

My resolutions were never about losing weight, getting a boyfriend, or being “cool.” They were always about things I wanted to be, things I wanted to do, and ways I wanted to act because I thought it would make me happy. Does that mean I have bad self esteem? Maybe somewhat. Or maybe it means that I’m a teenager, and most teenagers don’t really know what we’re doing or who …

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Feminism | Posted by Chelsea B on 05/25/2011

Fat Is Not A Personality Trait

It sickens me that one of the most common issues plaguing young females today is that of body image distortion.

I say this as a person who once hated her body so much she welcomed the idea of going to extremes to obtain perfection. Whether it was by starving, purging, or over-exercising, if it “guaranteed” perfection, I would do it. It never occurred to me that the perfection I had in mind would never be obtainable. Nor did I realize that recovery would be a life-long struggle to relearn what it felt like to be full.

A year ago, I decided it was time that self-loathing relinquished its firm grip on my life. I did not consult a psychologist because I thought of my recovery as a journey I would …

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Feminism | Posted by Katherine C on 01/18/2011

Thoughts on Victimization

a depiction of the Celtic goddess Macha

a depiction of the Celtic goddess Macha

In ancient Celtic myth, the goddess Macha was forced by Conor mac Nessa of Ulster and his men to race against his horses while trapped in human form, even though she was pregnant. It made her begin labor prematurely, and as she delivered her twins, she let out a scream that stole the strength from all the grown men in hearing. Then Macha cursed the Ulstermen, saying, “From this day forward, you will be afflicted by the weakness of a woman in childbirth for your cruel treatment of me. At the hour of your greatest need, you will become as powerless as I am now, and so will your sons and your son’s sons, for nine generations.”

Maybe this happened in a concrete, …

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Feminism | Posted by Julie Z on 10/6/2010

“Body Image Disorder”

Bodies are different for a reason. Embrace it.

Bodies are different for a reason. Embrace it.

At some point in recent history the stance of “I Hate My Body” became a public statement encompassing an entire gender rather than a private thought held by few on particularly bad days. Somewhere along the line, women have lost control of their bodies in the name of society’s glamorization and expectation of self-deprecation. But, as I have learned over the years, loving your body is possible, even for the most self-loathing of us all.

Freshman year was a difficult one for me (a unique story, I know). Though I had been aware of my body in middle school and had brief yet unfortunate love affairs with both my hair straightener and Abercrombie and Fitch in attempts to make my body look …

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Pop-Culture | Posted by A. on 09/2/2010

Hemp Necklaces Can Be Hot Too

A hempless Leighton Meester: Comfortable?

A hempless Leighton Meester: Comfortable?

I was perusing the September issue of Teen Vogue and came across an article about hair, featuring Leighton Meester, one of the stars of Gossip Girl. The piece seemed inoffensive…until the second sentence:

“But ask [Meester] about her own high school days, and she readily admits she wasn’t exactly an upper-East side sophisticate. ‘I had glasses, unplucked eyebrows, and I wore hemp necklaces!’ she confesses. ‘It’s only recently that I’ve gotten comfortable in my own skin.’”

Does this make anyone else a little bit mad?

What was the most aggravating to me was that the author implied strongly that Meester dressed like that BECAUSE she had no self-confidence. She wore glasses, hemp necklaces, and didn’t pluck her eyebrows because she wasn’t confident. Apparently, everyone who …

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Feminism, Pop-Culture | Posted by Julie Z on 08/16/2010

Teen Botox Epidemic? What That Really Means.

Charice Pempengco

Charice Pempengco

After reading reports that Charice Pempengco, an 18-year-old singer who recently landed a part on Glee, got Botox treatments for her TV debut, I proceeded to bang my head against a wall–ironically achieving the same goal of altering the shape of my face through frustrated self-inflicted violence that Charice accomplished with poisonous injections.

No, in reality I am a nonviolent, non-masochistic person, so instead of head-banging I started compiling a mental list of teens I know that have had cosmetic procedures. The classic “Happy-16th-Birthday-Honey-Here’s-A-New-Nose” bit is probably the one I hear of most frequently. While I am currently unaware of any who have had Botox (despite The New York Times claim that teen Botox is becoming an epidemic, with 12,000 injections performed on Americans teens last year), I …

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