Feminism | Posted by Maya Richard-Craven on 07/7/2014

What’s Your ‘Weapon Of Choice?’

It was not your typical walk of shame, like the kind you see in high school movies after someone loses their virginity. Instead, it was me, an athletic-looking African-American girl, sobbing my way downtown, just on the border of USC and gang territory.

A fellow Trojan, who I had been talking to for a year, had originally said I could stay over at his place.

“I don’t care what I said. I lied.”

“It’s 4 am and we are in South Central LA, you are just going to kick me out… Can’t I just sleep on your floor?”

“What are you still doing here… Get the f— out!”

And so I left.

It took me about forty-five minutes to find a friend’s place to stay near Figueroa, the long …

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Awareness, Feminism | Posted by Julie Z on 07/4/2014

What Young Feminists Need To Know About The Hobby Lobby Ruling

As a rising college senior, I’ve already been inundated with cautionary tales of being female while working in corporate America. Now, thanks to the recent Hobby Lobby ruling, my generation of women can add potentially working for companies whose rights are valued above our own and the blatant undermining of our health and reproductive freedom to the list of our future professional rewards.

Monday’s Hobby Lobby ruling solidifies the reality of the war on women in this country, indisputably highlighting the way in which sexism is still rampant in American society in several ways.

First and foremost, the decision reveals that persistent, blatant ignorance about women’s bodies has infiltrated the law of the land. The Hobby Lobby suit incorrectly conflates birth control with pregnancy termination by objecting to insurance …

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Pop-Culture | Posted by Sabrina N on 07/2/2014

On Preachers Daughters and Purity Culture

I recently marathoned Preachers Daughters, a new Lifetime reality show. Season One follows the lives of three different girls — Taylor, Olivia and Kolby — who all have at least one parent who is a preacher. While all girls are subject to purity culture based on their family’s beliefs, each reacts to this culture differently. Taylor feels restricted and chooses to rebel; Olivia, who has a baby,  is now “on the right path”; Kolby attempts to live up to purity standards and even breaks up with a boyfriend in order to avoid future “temptation”. But while each girl follows a different path, they all show how purity culture can manifest destructively.

Although I was never involved with purity culture to the same extent as these girls, watching Taylor, Olivia …

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Pop-Culture | Posted by Carolina G on 06/9/2014

On YouTube Celebrities and Blurred Consent

Once considered niche performers, YouTube vloggers are increasingly jumping off our computer screens and becoming celebrities in the real-world sense. They play concerts around the world, have clothing lines and makeup collections, have meet ups that are attended by thousands, and make millions of dollars (case in point: Justin Bieber). YouTube as a company, instead of solely providing a platform for this unique celebrity formation, has recently decided to more actively participate in perpetuating this new celebrity culture: they are currently featuring some of their stars, such as Michelle Phan, Rosanna Pansino, and Bethany Mota, in nation-wide advertisements.

This new type of celebrity is predicated on the idea of accessibility. Unlike the movie stars we only access via orchestrated interviews, YouTube stars seem far more accessible. The entry-barrier to …

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Feminism | Posted by Fiona L on 06/6/2014

Erasing the Gray Area: Why Enthusiastic Consent Is Essential To Eradicating Sexual Assault

One Friday evening this spring, I stood in the courtyard outside my dorm with a friend. The sun was setting and students were performing their pre-party rituals around us. It was the first temperate day of the semester and a surge of giddiness seemed to have engulfed the campus. Yet I’d spent the last hour and a half consoling my friend, who was grappling with the process of filing a complaint of sexual misconduct against a fellow Yale student.

It wasn’t the first time I’d found myself in this situation. In my time at college, I’ve heard many stories, generally from heterosexual women, ranging from hazy one-night-stands that went further than intended, to dance-floor-make-outs that felt pressured, to sexual encounters in which the victim was inebriated past the point of …

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Feminism | Posted by Paulina P on 05/23/2014

Don’t Blame Girls for Their Own Sexualization

I was over the moon when I was able to attend to the Women in the World Summit this year, thanks to my best friend generously giving me her ticket. It was was awe-inspiring and powerful day. I felt like I was watching history being made while sitting in Lincoln Center with so many women who had and are making history. The entire day was constructed in a way that highlighted so many accomplishments, and I felt like I could achieve anything; I was ready to leave that conference and change the world. But this all came to a screeching halt when the discussion turned to the sexualization of women in the media.

Here are a couple quotes from the panel that sent my head spinning:

“I don’t understand why …

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Feminism | Posted by Beatrice M on 04/9/2014

Are We Sexually Equal?

Women have made great strides towards social, political and economic equality in the past decades, but where do we stand in terms of sexual equality? Humans are sexual creatures who all want to explore our sexuality, but society undeniably still influences many women and men to view sex differently.

While medical advancements, like the invention of the pill, have radically transformed women’s sexual autonomy, there are still a number of cultural forces that suppress women’s sexuality. Women are still sexually exploited in the media and there are still societal pressures that encourage us to think of men as overly sexual creatures and women as demure and untouchable. Rigid purity standards and sexual double standards continue to demonize women for having sex and women also still face greater repercussions for sexual …

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Feminism | Posted by Max F on 11/13/2013

Why Teaching Teen Boys About Consent Should Be A Mandatory Part of Sex Ed

It started with a Facebook post. Last summer, a Facebook friend posed the question: “If you would teach your daughter about protection, then why wouldn’t you teach your son about respect?”After I read that, I realized that my high school’s sexual education class only taught us (and especially girls) what not to do. We were taught not to “put your drink down” and to “not drink something if it wasn’t made in front of you.” This information is valid, yet it begs the question: why are young adults only taught how to avoid other people’s behavior? For example, someone has to be the person tampering with somebody else’s drink in order to attempt assault, yet that person’s behavior isn’t directly addressed — we’re not explicitly taught not to lace somebody …

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