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 …
Feminism | Posted by Roberta Nin Feliz on 07/30/2015
Black Women and Violence in America: #SayHerName
#SayHerName protest in Union Square, New York City.
In recent years, the media has arguably made the racial violence African Americans continue to experience in the post-Civil Rights era — especially at the hands of law enforcement — more visible than ever before. But while this increased coverage is commendable, it often overlooks the violence African American women specifically face, including their experience of double marginalization as the subordinate gender of an already belittled race.
Some cases of female victims of police brutality have notably, and rightfully, garnered media attention, including Natasha McKenna, a 37 year old woman who was restrained and violently tasered by 6 police officers until she died; Renisha McBride, who was shot by a white man after she crashed her car on a street in …
Feminism | Posted by Ines R on 07/29/2015
Why The Most Important Part of College for Women May Happen Outside the Classroom
Entering the working world for the summer.
We’re often taught that college is training for “real” life. The time we spend on campus and in class is supposed to prepare us for the rest of our lives. But I feel that my summer breaks have actually provided some of the most life-altering realizations of my college experience.
Summer break is a precious opportunity to explore meaningful personal and professional opportunities that are impossible to pursue in the midst of classes, tests, and typical collegiate socializing. Students can sample potential careers through internships and put the knowledge they’ve gained to practical use, all while feeling like true members of the working world, walking into huge offices and swiping badges at security.
But while such experiences can certainly be exciting, challenging and …
Pop-Culture | Posted by Natalie H on 07/9/2015
‘Miss USA’ Switched Networks, But Should It Be Retired Altogether?
Miss America 2014.
NBC recently dropped the Miss USA Pageant, but the pageant quickly found a new home with cable network REELZ. However, it seems like this could have been a good time to stop televising the pageant altogether — and probably should have been.
Although the pageant often highlights the fact that it provides scholarships to its contestants and is thus an academic opportunity, this argument is undeniably incompatible with the contest’s emphasis on beauty. If the pageant is truly a contest of academic achievement, appearance should not factor into whether or not participants receive a scholarship or have any chance to enter the so-called ‘academic’ competition in the first place. How does the way one’s body looks in a bikini relate to their academic capability?
What’s more, the …
Pop-Culture | Posted by Aph Ko on 06/29/2015
“Hot Girls Wanted”: White Respectability and the Erasure of Men
Hot Girls Wanted — a new documentary produced by actress Rashida Jones — follows five amateur porn actresses between the ages of 18 to 25 and details their experiences filming porn and living together. While the documentary’s subjects spoke freely, it seems like the filmmakers still crafted the work based on their preconceived notions about porn: Namely, they chose to portray the young actresses as innocent, exploited victims. The film fails to present the possibility that these women have any agency, erases the experiences of women of color in the industry, and arguably most problematically of all allows the men that drive the demand for this industry to remain invisible.
The character whose narrative anchors the film, Tressa, exemplifies this victimized narrative. Tressa is coded as white (although …
Feminism | Posted by Sarah Landrum on 06/24/2015
5 Ways to Shut Down Sexist Comments at School and Work
Sexism in schools has got to end.
Although we have made a lot of progress towards achieving gender equality, there is still much work to be done. One still-pervasive form of sexism women face is being subjected to sexist comments while doing everyday activities. 87 percent of female respondents to one survey, for example, reported having received a sexist comment, and 45 percent said they have received these comments in public at least 25 times over the course of their lifetimes. And, unfortunately, few environments are free from these remarks — women hear them everywhere, including educational environments and/or workplaces.
Ultimately, we need to create a society in which individuals know better than to make sexist comments in the first place. But, as we work towards that goal, here are …
Feminism | Posted by Saskia G on 06/23/2015
Does That T-shirt Match Her Headscarf?
In 2008, 17-year-old Samantha Elauf was denied a job at a Tulsa, Oklahoma Abercrombie Kids store. Why? The retailer believed her hijab did not comply with their “look policy.” Her headscarf was apparently an immediate indicator that she did not align with the “East Coast collegiate image” Abercrombie cultivates in its branding, the New York Times reported. Elauf was effectively informed that her Muslim identity was un-American.
Elauf fought this notion. She brought her story to the Council on American Islamic Relations, which then brought it to the attention of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. The EEOC sued Abercrombie & Fitch on Elauf’s behalf and the case eventually made it to the Supreme Court. In appellate court, Abercrombie’s defense argued that Elauf had not explicitly stated in …
Pop-Culture | Posted by Holly L on 06/12/2015
Sexism At Music Festivals Needs To End
Where are the women on stage?
Music festival season is just beginning, and with it comes yet another reminder that women still have a long way to go before we achieve equality. Although there are plenty of female acts to choose from, and they clearly deliver when included — some even argued the female acts stole the show at SXSW, for example — one need only look at lineup posters to see the persistent imbalance of men to women at these festivals.
This is not a new phenomenon: Men have long outnumbered women when it comes to festival lineups and headline performers are almost always male. Among the most popular British music festivals last summer, for example, all but one festival completely excluded female acts — and that single female …