Feminism | Posted by Samantha B on 06/9/2016

The Truth About Gender Bias On The Internet

Are search engines biased?

Siri does not know how to respond to the question “I have been sexually assaulted.” When searching for abortion clinics on Apple Maps, one is instead shown adoption clinics. Finding a clinic or pharmacy that has Viagra is apparently easier than finding one with birth control.

Many view the Internet as an unbiased, objective, tool. But in actuality, the Internet is influenced by gender bias. This is especially true when it comes to search engines — our guides to exploring the vast Internet, which shape what we see and act as gatekeepers to often vital information. Many see search engines as reflective of an “objective” reality of facts (if there even is such a reality), but they are actually composed of structures and codes that …

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Feminism | Posted by David G on 06/7/2016

The Stanford Rape Case Exemplifies The Privilege At The Heart of Rape Culture

Stanford University

Brock Turner, a top swimmer at Stanford who raped an unconscious woman behind a dumpster after a party, was sentenced to six months in county jail on Thursday. The presiding judge felt that a full sentence “would have a severe impact” on Turner, discounting the severe impact his victim described at his sentencing. This ruling sparked national outrage, which only grew after a letter Turner’s father had written diminishing his son’s crime and demanding probation was published.

Tl;dr, there is so, so much wrong with the Stanford rape case. While the backlash against Turner and his father has been swift and vicious, both the sentence Turner received, as well as his father’s response to it, exemplify the privilege that perpetuates rape culture.

Let’s be honest …

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Feminism | Posted by Rachael H on 05/23/2016

Is A Digital Tool The Key To Addressing Campus Sexual Assault?

We need to address campus sexual assault.

The stark reality of the high rate of sexual assault on college campuses is nothing new, and neither is college administrations’ resistance to addressing it. Far too many students continue to seek support from their respective universities after they are assaulted on campus, but still fail to achieve any sense of justice. Survivors’ accounts of their assaults are scrutinized to the point of re-victimization and perpetrators still face inadequate consequences.

I’ve seen this firsthand. I know many female students at my own Canadian university who felt no sense of justice after reporting their sexual assaults to campus administrators. For example, concerns about seeing their perpetrator on campus were neither heard nor addressed. Multiple students instead received rather dismissive feedback along the lines of: …

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Feminism | Posted by Danika K on 04/29/2016

Why The Gender Gap In STEM Fields Still Exists

We need more women in STEM.

Women make up roughly 50 percent of the U.S. workforce, yet comprise only about 25 percent of American STEM workers — numbers that have even stagnated in recent years. Although some might claim this under-representation is due to a lack of academic accomplishment, women actually earn 41 percent of all STEM PhD degrees. So where’s the disconnect?

The real problem seems to be what happens after graduation: Women don’t always choose to go into, or stay in, STEM careers. Women are statistically more likely than men to leave a career in science, technology, engineering, or math within one year of employment — nearly half of all women leave their STEM careers within months of starting, according to one study. As a result, …

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Feminism | Posted by Mai D on 04/27/2016

The Truth About Having “Bad” Hair

One brand of hair relaxer.

I am a young Senegalese woman with “kinky” hair — specifically, type 4A/4B according to Andre Walker’s hair chart  — and I have heard every comment in the book about it. Since preschool I have been told I have “bad hair” by everyone from Dominican hair stylists to my African family members who have constantly begged me to relax it in order to look “proper” and “decent.” No matter the specific critique, my hair has always been deemed wrong by others.

My older, female cousins were the first to influence my hair. I grew up with three older brothers and my mother usually kept my hair braided so neither of us had to think too much about it. At the ripe age of eight, however, …

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Feminism | Posted by Chloe H on 03/30/2016

What Volunteering In The South Taught Me About My Own Prejudice

Not all Southerners perpetuate a legacy of racism.

This year I decided to participate in a spring break program called the Collegiate Challenge, which offered students the opportunity to partner with our university’s chapter of Habitat for Humanity and spend a week building houses for low income families. This year’s build site was Lake Sumpter, Florida — a small town in central Florida, about two hours outside of Orlando. Although I had been to Miami once before, this was my first experience in a more rural, southern environment and, to be honest, I went into the trip with a lot of assumptions and prejudices.

Before I traveled to the state, I knew that Donald Trump had won the Florida primaries and that the governor of Florida had endorsed him. …

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Pop-Culture | Posted by Gabby C on 03/25/2016

We Need To Address The Music Industry’s Gender Gap

Female musicians rock.

“I’m tired of men who aren’t professional or even accomplished musicians continually offering to ‘help me out’ (without being asked), as if I did this by accident and I’m gonna flounder without them,” the Canadian singer Grimes wrote in a now-infamous tumblr post about sexism she has experienced. “I have the best job in the world but I’m done with being passive about any kind of status quo that allows anyone to suffer or to be disrespected.”

Though Grimes wrote this in 2013, it seems little has changed. Although Lana Del Rey made the cover of the issue featuring the list, of the 127 artists featured on last year’s Billboard Power 100 List, only 15 were female. Less than 5% of established producers in the world are …

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Pop-Culture | Posted by Kinder L on 03/21/2016

Bust Ghosts, Not Women: Sexist Responses To The ‘Ghostbusters’ Trailer Have Got To Go

The new Ghostbusters cast.

The new Ghostbusters cast.

From Fantastic Four, to Zoolander 2, to Disney’s live-action remake of The Jungle Book, it seems that 2016 might be the year of cinematic reboots, remakes and sequels. Perhaps one of the most anticipated reboots of the year, however, is the all-female Ghostbusters. Yet the response to the recently released trailer was more critical than were previous, celebratory headlines about the film — for reasons both valid and upsetting.

Plenty of people feel a unique sort of discomfort about sequels or reboots of beloved movies. It’s easy to feel unsure how the new film will be unique without losing the essence of the original on which it’s based. Nobody wants a new addition to ruin or taint their memory of the original.

As …

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