Feminism | Posted by Isaiah Strong on 02/15/2017
I Am Not A ‘Phase’
I’m not a “phase.”
I was standing on the top floor of a fraternity house in the early days of my sophomore year of college. Across the room, I saw an upperclasswoman I had heard about through the grapevine. She was well into a drunken tirade critiquing or complimenting each of my friends’ respective physical appearances and clothing when I approached. Then this young white woman turned to me.
“So Isaiah, you’ve got this whole mixed thing going on for you,” she said. “You should use that to your advantage.”
She clearly didn’t see this drunken comment as problematic, but I was taken aback, confused, and painfully uncomfortable. To her, the idea was that for me — the son of a black father and a white mother — this “whole …
Feminism | Posted by Chloe H on 11/17/2016
Embracing Female Pleasure
Let’s talk about sex.
I love talking about sex with my girlfriends. Describing the intimate, raw, and sometimes awkward moments of our experiences with sex strengthens our bonds as women and as human beings. We talk about the lead up, the foreplay, the one-night stands, the sex-on-Saturday arrangement, the positions. We giggle, console each other, or just marvel at the differences in our experiences.
My best friend, who is 19 like me, and many of my other friends have not had sex. Their experience is a completely normal one. According to Her Campus’s Ultimate College Girl Survey 2012, which surveyed over 2,500 college women across the country, 43 percent of girls were still virgins at the time that they responded to the survey. Twenty-two percent lost their virginities between …
Feminism | Posted by Gabby C on 07/5/2016
Understanding The ‘B-Word': Embracing The Bisexual Identity
There are millions of women standing in the closet — a closet that’s threatening to burst open.
I was 17 when I first developed “feelings” for another woman, but it took me two more years to feel comfortable using the word “bisexual.” When I finally confessed this secret to my friends and family, they called my feelings a “phase” and said it would pass over time, which made me feel even more uncertain about my identity and uncomfortable with the idea of bisexuality.
In my college-level Human Sexuality course, my professor asked the class to describe the LGBTQA community and address each of the six commonly used sexual preferences. Only one student in the class of 30 raised their hand. The same ignorance and confusion that caused my …
Feminism | Posted by Roberta Nin Feliz on 05/11/2016
It’s 2016. Let’s Talk To Teen Girls About Sex.
Credit: Sex, Etc.
It’s 2016 and talking about girls’ sexuality is still taboo. Despite the tremendous strides the feminist movement has made, the idea that sex is an important part of a teenage girl’s life and development is still considered radical, and female sexuality remains rooted in outdated gender roles. This contributes to a detrimental cultural reality in which young girls are unfamiliar with the many ways they can express their sexual agency, consent and displeasure and in which teenage girls who do exert their sexual agency or take control of their own sexual desires are stigmatized.
Refusing to embrace teenage girls’ sexuality is likely part of society’s larger tendency to strictly delineate and control teenage girls’ identities. Young women are still expected to acquiesce their sexual desires in order …
Feminism | Posted by Rice University Students on 05/2/2016
Teen Girls Need Access To Their Reproductive Rights And Health, Too
Teen girls need birth control access, too
The current feminist discourse surrounding women’s reproductive rights is crucial, especially considering that our access to these rights is dwindling and under constant attack. But it seems this conversation often fails to represent an important group: teen girls. While some lip service is paid to issues like mandatory parental consent for minors accessing birth control, it seems this demographic is often overlooked when it comes to their specific concerns about their reproductive rights. Activists can’t forget, however, that making birth control attainable for minors is an important part of this fight.
Many young women don’t realize how recently birth control-related rights were won in this nation. Birth control has been a constitutional right since Griswold v. Connecticut in 1965, but this landmark …
Feminism | Posted by Aya on 04/1/2016
This Is What Happens When We Don’t Teach Teens Comprehensive Sex Education
We need better sex ed.
In February, President Obama took an important stand for sexual health in the United States: He eradicated funding for abstinence-only sex education in his 2017 budget proposal — a decision backed by countless studies, expert opinions and anecdotal accounts of just how ineffective this type of “education” is. But even on the (unfortunately) off chance that our Republican-dominated Congress passes this program — which has cost almost $2 billion in federal spending — the damage of abstinence-only sex education on my generation is already evident.
As a college freshman, I have witnessed and experienced many examples of such damaging effects firsthand. This can manifest in unfair and frustrating ways, like the “pleasure” or “orgasm” gap that results in women not getting off as …
Feminism | Posted by Aya on 03/9/2016
Here’s The Truth About Hooking Up In College While Feminist
The scene of the crime.
Prior to college, I had absolutely no experience with casual hookups. I had heard about them all throughout high school, but all of my sexual experience occurred in a single serious high school relationship. Though that relationship was both sexually and emotionally fulfilling, it ended as soon as college began.
Between dealing with this break up and trying to form new relationships in a new environment, I started the first semester of my freshman year sexually frustrated and emotionally out of control. Casually hooking up with someone seemed like the perfect solution at the time.
I didn’t know how much I would regret that my first casual hookup ended up being with a boy we’ll call “Derek,” nor could I have known how much he …
Feminism | Posted by Roberta Nin Feliz on 02/1/2016
Why We Need To Teach Students About Rape Culture
We need to educate students about rape culture.
Being an outspoken feminist in my high school has been a challenging experience. While many of my peers are aware of major social justice news and violations, like that surrounding Black Lives Matters and ISIS, far too many are still ignorant about the feminist movement or women’s rights more generally. This became particularly clear to me in a recent English class, as we discussed Toni Morrison’s The Bluest Eye and rape culture’s effect on the main character.
Rape culture is “a complex set of beliefs that encourages male sexual aggression and supports violence against women,” Emilie Buchwald writes in her book Transforming a Rape Culture. “It is a society where violence is seen as sexy and sexuality as violent,” she continues. “In …