Feminism | Posted by Malkie K on 02/4/2015

Feminists: It’s Time To Act

Over the past six months, we have certainly seen positive change when it comes to feminist progress. For example, in September of last year, the California State Senate unanimously voted to enact ‘Yes Means Yes’ legislation, which states that to engage in any sexual activity both parties must be making “an affirmative, unambiguous and conscious decision.” Though women predominantly lobbied for this decision, countless men undoubtedly got on board to make this a legal reality.

But, despite progress, there’s still evidence of ignorance. There are the Cee Lo Green‘s of the world who claim things like, “If she was unconscious, how could she say no?” It’s the same mentality that allows Urban Dictionary to add the word “Manism,” which is defined as “The unilateral law …

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Pop-Culture | Posted by Chloe H on 02/2/2015

The Real Reason Fifty Shades Of Grey Is Sexist

I first heard about Fifty Shades of Grey on NPR when I was 15.  It was the tail end of the story, and all that I could glean was the name, that it was an immensely popular work of fiction, and that it was particularly popular among the elderly in nursing homes.  Priding myself in being a well-informed and well-read individual, I decided I should be reading this seemingly topical and influential book.  I pranced into Barnes and Noble on my high horse, bragging to my friend about how I was buying a very popular book to enhance my personal literature collection.  When I told her what the book was, she blushed and said her Mom wouldn’t let her read it.

“Why?” I asked, thoroughly confused.

“Because it’s… porn!” She …

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Feminism | Posted by Emma M on 12/29/2014

What Bill Cosby Has Taught Us About Sexual Assault and Power

Bill Cosby, the Jello pudding man and one of America’s most beloved and successful comedians, may have raped and assaulted at least 20 women – women who have, starting in 2002, publicly come forward with their stories.

Their accounts are hauntingly similar: a young, maybe up-and-coming, model or actress meets Cosby, usually on the set of The Cosby Show or at an event, and he invites her to his home for a meal or a drink to discuss her career. He is connected, experienced, a celebrity; she is eager, hopeful, flattered. At some point during dinner, he drugs her and, once her defenses are low, he is forceful, abusive, and violent in his assault.

The women go home or back to their hotels, reminded that America’s favorite sweater-clad Dad holds

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Feminism | Posted by Marie B on 12/12/2014

Fraternities and Rape Culture

When my sister came home from college the first time, I had so many questions. How were the dorms? How were her friends? Had she met anybody special? She answered them all honestly and had mostly good things to say, but her college life thus far seemed to be most notably informed by rushing a sorority.

Rush week was torturous and stressful for her. She walked from house to house just to be incessantly judged at each one, which doesn’t exactly sound like my idea of fun. She received a bid from one of her top choices and became integrated into Greek life. She soon found that frat parties are a central aspect of this lifestyle. But what she found at these parties proved that behind the shiny exterior …

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Feminism | Posted by Trip E on 11/19/2014

Dear Dad: Let’s Try This Again

The author and her father

This article is a response to Pippa Biddle’s call to action in her piece “Dear Sisters,” published last week on Ryot.com.

To whom it may concern (hey, Dad):

The summer after my freshman year at Exeter, you slammed me into the fridge by my neck because I mouthed off to you about doing dishes. You may remember this as the day I climbed out of my bedroom window with a change of clothes and my laptop in a bookbag, and stopped living with you.

I remember it as the day Mom pulled me into better lighting in my aunt’s living room so she could take pictures of the finger-shaped bruises you’d left on my neck. They were strikingly similar to the ones …

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Feminism | Posted by Chloe H on 10/17/2014

Street Harassment: It’s Not A Compliment

It was a hot Los Angeles Saturday and I decided to walk my dog down my usually quiet residential street. I was sixteen at the time and wearing jeans and a T-shirt. Three men, probably in their late twenties, pulled up to the curb next to me in a black BMW sedan. The driver, who was wearing black Ray Ban sunglasses, opened his window. “Hey,” he said, raising his eyebrows at his friends. “We should check her for STDs before we f*ck her!”

He smirked and his friends laughed and hooted. I stood frozen. My mouth fell open slightly, in shock. The driver revved the engine and zoomed down the street. For a few minutes, I couldn’t move while my dog tugged anxiously at her leash. What just happened? …

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Feminism, Pop-Culture | Posted by Carolina G on 09/29/2014

YouTube Star Sam Pepper’s “Prank” Video Is Sexual Harassment

Sam Pepper

It’s undeniable that the YouTube community is becoming a powerful and influential force in the entertainment industry. Vloggers appear on magazine covers (such as Seventeen and Fast Company), red carpets, and even on TV in commercials and “Dancing with the Stars.” However, the growing community, which averages 1 billion unique visitors each month, has experienced some troubling issues along with its success. Back in June, I covered YouTube’s growing sexual assault problem, which was derived from the blurred lines of consent between content creators and their growing fan bases. Recently, another sexual assault scandal has shaken the community.

Sam Pepper, a former Big Brother contestant and popular YouTuber with over 2 million subscribers, released a video which sparked a large controversy within the …

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Feminism | Posted by Chloe H on 09/3/2014

In Support of Self Defense Classes

Campus sexual assault is a harrowing issue: approximately one in five college women will experience attempted or completed rape while at school. Lawmakers of the American House and Senate have recently announced two bipartisan bills that are meant to combat campus sexual assault by promoting increased transparency and response.  Increasing transparency about the prevalent reality of sexual assault is certainly important, as it could help to reduce societal taboos about discussing the issue and show victims that they are not alone.  However, despite this potential legal progress, I – a college-bound woman — am rationally wary of the current reality of campus sexual assault.

College is supposed to be a place where female and male students alike are able to learn and grow as people. Ideally, women should be able …

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