Betsy DeVos’s appointment as the United States Secretary of Education is monumentally problematic. DeVos has no background in education: in fact, her appointment will be her first job held in the field of education. DeVos did not attend public school, yet will have the authority to make decisions that affect 100,000 public schools and 90% of school-aged children in the country. Even her alma mater, Calvin College, went to lengths to pen an open letter explaining why DeVos was unfit for her position.
Betsy DeVos doesn’t strike fear into the hearts of education advocates and sexual assault activists because she has committed to radical measures of reform, however. Rather, she is feared because she has been totally incapable of putting forward anything more substantive than an irritatingly murky …
It was on a crisp fall day. I was walking to class. A man passed by me. It was casual, almost off-hand, like a bigoted stutter. It wasn’t the first time I had heard the word, but it was the first time it felt pointed, chiseled into the heart of my being. It was two days after the 2016 election.
Before that day, I had never felt that sense of otherness – the feeling that I was somehow alien to my homeland. Because though I am a queer woman of color, I had never before felt that my identities could fuel such casual enmity.
Donald Trump announced the launch of his presidential campaign two years ago. At the time, many Americans laughed at the idea that a reality TV star and multi-billionaire businessman with no political experience was running for the highest position of political leadership in the country.
On January 20, 2017, no one will be laughing. We will swallow the large pill of Donald Trump’s presidency as he is sworn into office. We will watch him place his hand on the Bible and promise to honor a Constitution it’s doubtful that he has even read let alone one which plans to interpret with fair and honorable intentions.
The night of the election, my family sat in front of the television trying to hide our shared nervousness from each other. Our …
Feminism | Posted by Kayleigh Bolingbroke on 10/10/2016
Overcoming Internalized Misogyny
“Wow, they’re beautiful,” I thought to myself at nine years old as I watched yet another music video by yet another girl group for the hundredth time. I admired these women, in all their scantily clad glory. I aspired to emulate their confidence, physical beauty, and the senses of entitlement and pride they seemed to feel about their own bodies. These pop sensations were my idols.
But at the age of thirteen, watching the same videos conjured words like “slut” and “tease” instead. I watched the women featured in Sugababes’ “Push the Button” gyrate their bodies over men like strippers, and deemed their movements vulgar. I pondered why these men, who were presented as so strong and influential, lusted after girls who made themselves so available, …
I remember sitting in a circle of girls on the playground. One girl, I’ll call her Sarah, showed us that she could fold her tongue. I didn’t know how to fold my tongue, but I lied and told my other grade school peers that I could. Sarah declared that she didn’t believe me. I could “talk the talk”, she taunted, but I couldn’t “walk the walk.” I insisted that I could and I just didn’t want to show them. But, Sarah’s logic was sound. Even if I could fold my tongue, saying I did and not showing them was just as good as not knowing how.
It’s important to write about feminism, about equality among genders. I’ve done so many times and I’ve really relished in the recent outpour …
Free To Be…You And Me: My First Feminist Theory Class
I took my first class in feminist theory from a car seat in the back of my parents’ blue station wagon. As we pulled out of the driveway and embarked on adventures to the grocery store, school, or ski mountain, my sister and I would clamor for entertainment. An adult arm would reach into the glove compartment and pull out a tape. Many tapes rotated through our car during that time, but the one that seemed to captivate us most during those long rides was the Ms. Foundation for Women’s 1972 masterpiece “Free to Be… You and Me.”
I didn’t know that the program, which is composed of a series of poems, songs, and sketches, was a record album and book before it was a tape. I also had …
"Using video and still imagery, the I’m Feminist Enough… project seeks to visualize the fresh face of feminism and demonstrate to our young sisters (and brothers) the value of feminist thought in our daily lives in a manner that is simple, sexy, modern and easy. Featuring: Lyani Powers, Hillary Crosley, Leilani Montes, Venus Okeke, Clover Hope and Shantrelle Lewis. Shot in New York City, 2011."
I'm Feminist Enough, vol. 1 from Shannon Washington on Vimeo.
Feminism | Posted by Harriet S. Hughes on 10/12/2011
London Calling: Feminism Across The Pond
The political terrain of Britain is shifting beneath our feet. Children of the ‘80s and ‘90s will have no memory of anything comparable to the dramatic, fundamental transformation of our nation that’s currently taking place. In an atmosphere of such instability, where the media’s frantically trying to keep pace, women’s issues – sidelined at the best of times – are slipping further and further down the agenda. That’s where we come in: YouFem is a London-based feminist organisation, aiming to harness the political power of young people and draw women’s issues back into the light…and to have fun doing it.
The elections of 2010 landed us with a Conservative-Liberal Democrat Coalition. Since then, Britain has been made to swallow a manifesto that no-one voted for; we’re facing a tsunami of …