Feminism | Posted by Kate S on 04/13/2012

You Don’t Have To Walk In High Heels To Protect Me From Sexual Violence

Recently, there was a heated discussion over the International Women’s Rights Collective (IWRC) email thread. It started when a member posted an article from the Huffington Post about 50 members of a fraternity in Western Kentucky University raising awareness about violence against women by walking around the campus in five-inch red heels. And yesterday, there were great articles from the New York Times and the New Yorker about the inefficacy and fallacy of social media as a form of activism. So I’ve been thinking…

I have always been critical of “conscious-raising efforts,” partly from my own experience in high school. Immature attempts to send provocative emails with graphic pictures—the so-called fetishization of otherness, of victimhood—have taught me that these implications do matter. The point of organizing a hunger banquet, for …

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Feminism | Posted by Julie Z on 11/19/2011

Saturday Vids: Women, War and Peace

Starting on October 11th, PBS launched a fascinating 5-part mini-series entitled “Women, War and Peace.” As they describe it: “Women, War & Peace challenges the conventional wisdom that war and peace are men’s domain. The five-part series reveals that women have become primary targets in today’s armed conflicts and are suffering unprecedented casualties; yet, they are simultaneously emerging as necessary partners in brokering lasting peace and as leaders in forging new international laws governing conflict.”

Check out the trailer (embedded below). The full versions of the five episodes can be found here.

Watch Women, War & Peace Trailer on PBS. See more from WOMEN WAR AND PEACE.

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Feminism | Posted by Alli B on 04/5/2011

Racism and Sexism: Are Both Still Problems?

I recently heard some of  my classmates talking about how sexism really isn’t as big a problem today as racism is. They said that racism is on a different level and that all the feminists need to shut their mouths and just get over it. On Women’s Day,  one student stated that the day shouldn’t be a big deal because women’s struggles are not the same, or as serious, as racial ones. I didn’t say anything, but I was upset by what he said. I do not agree with this, and it hurts me that people feel that way.

I feel that sexism and racism are both equally horrible in their own right, and to separate or rank them doesn’t do anybody any good.  I really do believe that we …

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Feminism | Posted by Marie B on 02/28/2011

Martial Arts: Not Just Defense

This weekend I will be testing for my black belt after eight years of Taekwondo classes. During those eight years, I’ve grown into the person I am today. Not only have I learned how to kick, punch, and block, but I have learned compassion, respect, and confidence. Each Saturday, I spend hours practicing self defense, meditating, sparring or even teaching entire classes. It is one of the most rewarding activities I have ever participated in (and prevents the extracurricular section of my college apps from remaining blank). Unfortunately, the only aspect of taekwondo, or martial arts of any kind, that people pick up on for women, is self defense.

For example, one day this past year, I participated in a jujitsu class:
Kick her Brian! She’s a black bel

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Pop-Culture | Posted by Talia on 01/25/2011

Boycott “Monster”

When I first read this article on Experimentations of a Teenage Feminist, the first thing I said to myself was “good God.” It wasn’t a good “good God.” It was a BAD “good God.” A REALLY, REALLY, REALLY, HORRIFICALLY BAD “good God.”

Apparently, parts of Kanye West’s upcoming music video for the single “Monster” were leaked online. (I would like to point out that the album’s title is My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy.) In the video, half-naked women are drugged or dead, hanging from chains, as West, Jay-Z, Rick Ross, and Bon Iver make sexual advances towards them. Nicki Minaj also makes an appearance in the video.

The lyrics of the song are pretty bad, too. Bon Iver asks, “Are you willing to sacrifice your life?” Rick Ross then …

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Feminism | Posted by Talia on 11/9/2010

Why Couldn’t I Say “Rape”

One of my extremely good friends is finishing out her high school career abroad, and I spent the weekend at her apartment with some other friends as a send-off party before she left. When we were discussing how she would get around, since she can’t drive yet, she said that she wouldn’t go into a taxi alone. I agreed.

“Yeah, that’s not a good idea, you don’t wanna get…hurt,” I said.

The word I had in mind was raped, but I felt uncomfortable saying it. She didn’t, though.

“Yeah, since I definitely do not want to get raped or molested or something by a cab driver,” she said.

Why did I have such a problem saying the word rape? Seriously, what was wrong with me? Rape is a crime, just …

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Awareness | Posted by Julie Z on 10/21/2010

The Democratic Republic of Congo: Understanding the Conflict

This year in school, I’m taking a really amazing English elective called Gender, Culture, Power (SURPRISE! It’s taught by the same awesome teacher who handed me Jessica Valenti’s Full Frontal Feminism). Basically, some of the coolest, smartest, classiest girls (and one brave guy) get together almost every day to discuss gender…culture…and power. It’s bliss. And while we’ve had our fun dissecting everything from KFC advertisements to the Handmaid’s Tale thus far, we just embarked on a far more serious, yet completely enthralling, topic: the conflict in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

My class researched the conflict, and here’s a rundown of what we found:

History: In 1960, the DRC became independent of Belgium, which had colonized the African country in 1877. Soon after, violence broke out between different factions …

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Feminism | Posted by Anna M on 09/21/2010

An Unabashed Imitation of An Article by Peggy McIntosh

In 1990, Wellesley College professor Peggy McIntosh wrote an essay called “White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack”. McIntosh observes that whites in the U.S. are “taught to see racism only in individual acts of meanness, not in invisible systems conferring dominance on my group.” To illustrate these invisible systems, McIntosh wrote a list of 26 invisible privileges whites benefit from.

As McIntosh points out, men also tend to be unaware of their own privileges as men. In the spirit of McIntosh’s essay, I thought I’d compile a list similar to McIntosh’s, focusing on the invisible privileges benefiting men.

Due to my own limitations, this list is unavoidably U.S. centric. I hope that writers from other cultures will create new lists, or modify this one, to reflect their own …

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