Feminism, Pop-Culture | Posted by Sophie M on 12/30/2013

Helle Thorning-Schmidt vs. Mary Beard or Why Women Just Can’t Get It Right

You’ve been living under a rock if you’re not in the know about the Obama #selfie pic which circulated after the Nelson Mandela memorial service. If you have in fact been residing under said rock then here’s the low-down: Obama, President of the United States and Leader of the Free World teamed up with UK PM David Cameron to sandwich Danish Prime Minister, Helle Thorning-Schmidt for perhaps the most powerful selfie ever taken.

While I personally do find it a little inappropriate that these three world leaders deemed it the opportune moment to snap a pic for posterity, I don’t think it deserves the hysteria it’s amassed. Especially since the photographer who took the picture has admitted that their behavior was actually in tone with the jovial atmosphere of the …

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Feminism | Posted by Chloe H on 12/9/2013

The Problem With Mean Girls

The vast majority of us are familiar with the movie Mean Girls (written by the amazing Tina Fey). Although the film has the quintessential embellishments of most chick flicks, it also sheds light on the difficulty teenage girls face not just with their parents or boys, but with each other, even with their “best” friends. But you hardly need to watch Mean Girls to witness or experience female aggression. According to a recent New York Times Article, “The existence of female competition may seem obvious to anyone who has been in a high-school cafeteria or a singles bar, but analyzing it has been difficult because it tends be more subtle and indirect (and a lot less violent) than the male variety.” We all know that this sinister ambiance is …

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Pop-Culture | Posted by Julie Z on 11/9/2013

Saturday Vids: Ur Allure

I think we can all agree that, generally, when it comes to the portrayal of women in the media — in terms of everything from gender roles, to beauty standards to depictions of female sexuality and beyond — there are few sources of positive and empowering messaging. Well there’s a company out there that want’s to change that: Ur Allure, a website that “creates media content for you, the young women of today’s generation” using the formula of  “MEDIA + ENTERTAINMENT + SELF-WORTH MESSAGE.” I for one can’t wait to see what they do.

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Pop-Culture | Posted by Sam H on 10/28/2013

The Black Girl Conundrum

I will never forget the noise that my mother made when she first saw it. We were navigating the streets of New York on a busy Saturday in 2011, running late for a hair appointment. She was walking so briskly that I struggled to keep up. But then she stopped dead in her tracks and made a sound of absolute disgust. I looked around, trying to figure what would make my mother risk being late for an appointment. Then I saw the massive billboard with a black child and the words “The Most Dangerous Place for an African American is in the Womb.” At the time I didn’t understand the message: I could think of hundreds of places that I felt unsafe as a black child. To me, volcanoes, tigers, …

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Pop-Culture | Posted by Hannah D on 09/16/2013

How Fashion IS A Feminist Issue

Fashion is so much more than just clothing and trends: it’s a feminist issue. The industry makes £20.9 billion for the British economy each year, and creates 816,000 jobs in the UK alone: however, the majority of women in the fashion industry are employed in the industry’s lowest paying jobs. And yet despite the fact that so many women are involved in fashion, it’s impossible to overlook the fact that the majority of the most successful people in fashion are male. For example, most of the top womenswear designers are male (Karl Lagerfeld, Tom Ford, Marc Jacobs, Ralph Lauren and Giorgio Armani, for example) as well as many of the best known fashion photographers (including Terry Richardson, Steven Meisel, Peter Lindbergh, Jeurgen Teller and Nick Knight). But beyond the composition …

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Pop-Culture | Posted by Julie Z on 08/31/2013

Saturday Vids: You’re Not Pretty Enough

A few weeks ago, I wrote about Jennifer Tress’ “You’re Not Pretty Enough” movement on The Huffington Post. I encourage everybody to read that post and visit the YNPE website, but basically the deal is that Tress is trying to start a video-based movement about body image and beauty standards in the vein of Dan Savage’s “It Gets Better.” Here’s Jennifer’s intro video and one of the user-submitted videos from the website.

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Feminism, Pop-Culture | Posted by Talia on 08/23/2013

How Stock Photos Reflect The Way We View Women

Just one white, thin, sexualized photo stock woman.

Last year, I was working on a graphic art submission to the National Organization for Women (NOW)’s Love Your Body Poster Contest. To execute my concept, I needed to find a lot of stock photos of women.

Since I wanted to celebrate multiculturalism and include women of different races, I needed stock images of white, African-American, Hispanic, and Asian-American women. I never expected how difficult it would be to find suitable stock photos. Searching for stock imagery of white women wasn’t a walk in the park, since a large percentage of the photos I found were sexualized (even on websites that were mostly clean and reliable). Stock images of women of color were so scarce that I almost gave up trying …

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Feminism | Posted by Erin M on 08/14/2013

Body Positivity: A Primer

Let’s face it: our society is full of messed up messages about our bodies. We are told that we are too fat, too old, too short, too hairy, toosaggy…and the list never ends. Our culture doesn’t embrace diversity in bodies, instead glorifying a certain type– a type that less than 5% of us have and can never achieve. If you don’t fit that type, you are shamed, made fun of, and discriminated against.

The world is telling us that we are not good enough, that we must be actively taking drastic measures to change this—measures like plastic surgery, Botox injections, hair treatments and extreme dieting. If we aren’t taking these steps, then we’re “lazy” and are treated as if we don’t care about our bodies or our lives. …

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