Feminism | Posted by Julie Z on 09/3/2015
The Truth About Gamergate and Online Harassment
“GTFO” directed by Shannon Sun-Higginson
Despite composing the majority of video game players, women are frequently attacked within the gaming community. Though it has persisted for years, this horrifying treatment entered the public consciousness in a largely unprecedented way a year ago with the rise of Gamergate.
“Gamergate,” is “ostensibly concerned with ethics in game journalism and with protecting the ‘gamer’ identity” but in actuality “isn’t much more than a tone-deaf rabble of angry obsessives with a misguided understanding of journalistic ethics,” according to Gawker. Specifically, public female figures in the gaming community — like Zoe Quinn, Anita Sarkeesian and Brianna Wu among others — received rape and death threats and some were even driven from their homes. And the harassment has hardly abated in the intervening months.
Feminism | Posted by Maram E on 09/2/2015
Why the Conversation About Domestic Violence Needs to Change
Domestic violence awareness is crucial.
“Why does she stay?”
It’s a question outsiders continue to ask about those in abusive relationships. The situation may seem black and white to many: If someone is assaulting you, then you should leave them. In reality, however, domestic violence is not this simple. Rather than ask “why does she stay,” we need to re-frame the conversation by asking “why does someone abuse a woman they claim to love?”
1 out of 4 women will experience domestic violence during their lifetime — a number that’s likely even higher considering that as many as 70 percent of domestic violence cases go unreported — and women between the ages of 20 and 24 are at the greatest risk. Many are aware of the physical consequences of this …
Feminism | Posted by Amber c on 08/31/2015
The Broken Concept of Virginity
Virginity is a destructive, heteronormative concept.
Society obsesses over the concept of virginity. Young girls are taught that they must meet standards of “purity” and “cleanliness” — standards that are determined by whether or not we have had sex yet. But placing so much importance on a social construct essentially designed to perpetuate a culture of slut-shaming and rape culture is dangerous to young girls’ health and well-being.
The truth is there is no medical or biological definition of virginity. The dictionary defines virginity as “the state of never having had sexual intercourse,” but this definition is largely meaningless. While the dominant understanding of “sexual intercourse” is penetrative sex, this ignores all of the people who have plenty of sex that isn’t penetrative. Can they not lose their virginity? How …
Feminism | Posted by Jenna N on 08/27/2015
On Male-Dominated Spaces and Internalized Sexism
The subtle sexism of being a woman in male-dominated college classes.
The spring semester of my freshmen year of college, I took a class called “Intro to Political Theory.” I was obsessed with the syllabus (Kant and Marx make my head hurt in all the right ways) and more than ready to start studying the topics I was most passionate about after a painful semester of Bio 101 (I will never touch another microscope as long as I live). But on the first day, as I walked in bright-eyed, bushy-tailed and equipped with a fresh notebook, I noticed something: the majority of the class, including the professor, was male.
I thought I was prepared for this; it’s no secret that politics is an incredibly male-dominated field. But as a student …
Feminism | Posted by Saskia G on 08/26/2015
On Women’s Equality Day, Let’s Talk About White Feminism
Huffington Post’s ‘White Feminism’ Video
I used to be a White Feminist. As a white woman, I thought it was my only option. But, as a video produced by the Huffington Post and a thoughtful post by the young star Rowan Blanchard both explain, this doesn’t have to be the case.
White Feminism is activism that focuses on white women gaining the same rights as white men. It is, essentially, feminism that attempts to function without intersectionality and effectively ignores and disrespects the ways women of color and gender-nonconforming people experience oppression. It’s a type of feminism which is rapidly, and necessarily, becoming irrelevant.
I didn’t know all this, however, until I was fortunate enough to learn about it in high school. I was taught little about feminism in middle …
Pop-Culture | Posted by Aph Ko on 08/11/2015
It’s 2015. Why Is Male Nudity Still Funny?
“There’s a big problem in Hollywood today,” Kevin Bacon says at the start of a recently released video. “In so many films and TV shows we see gratuitous female nudity, and that’s not okay.”
While raising this excellent point (albeit one feminists have made before) seems like a promising start, it quickly becomes clear that this is not an earnest message, but a satirical PSA.
“It’s not fair to actresses and it’s not fair to actors,” Bacon continues, “because we want to be naked, too. Gentlemen, it’s time to free the bacon.”
This video thus joins a legacy of efforts to capitalize on the pervasive double standard in the entertainment industry in which men’s naked bodies are funny while naked women are sexual objects to be exploited. While …
Feminism | Posted by Beatrice M on 08/4/2015
It’s Time To Stop Publicly Judging Women’s Bodies
Every form of public harassment has got to go
One evening last week, I stopped at home after work to change my clothes before dance class. It was a hot day and I wanted to shed my workplace-appropriate pants in favor of more comfortable attire before heading downtown. Wearing shorts, a t-shirt, and sandals, I boarded the subway.
Although there were plenty of open seats on the train, a man quickly sat down right next to me. Even though I was clearly listening to music, he decided to ask me a question. He asked how to transfer to a different train — was a typical one for tourists or people new to the city. I gave him a brief explanation and inserted my headphones back into my ears, thinking nothing …
Feminism | Posted by Christine L on 08/3/2015
Why I Stayed In an Abusive Relationship — and How I Finally Left
“Why doesn’t she just leave her abusive partner?”
It seems like a simple question and it’s one that’s often posed when people learn others are experiencing abuse. Leaving seems like the most obvious solution to outsiders. But as somebody who has experienced domestic violence, let me tell you: it’s not.
Before I met my abusive partner, I told my friends I’d never let a man hit me. I said I’d never stay in an abusive relationship. Nobody plans to be in an abusive relationship, but things happen. Abuse might first occur well after two people meet or fall in love. Abuse isn’t always so clear cut and can take many different forms.
Women especially are taught to pursue relationships and depend on our partners. I personally …