BDM Girls

  Before it became law in 1939, there were tens of thousands of girls signed up to the Hitler Youth organisations. The League of German Girls (Bund Deutscher Mädel [BDM]) was the female section of the Hitler Youth founded in 1930. The purpose of BDM was to indoctrinate girls into the beliefs and ideals of the Nazi regime. This was a clever government program to create generations of girls dedicated to Nazism, being dutiful housewives, whose primary purpose within society was to become a mother. The roles of girls and the women they would become was completely designed and proscribed by...

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No Time for Fear – Politicking Girls: Girls Speak Out Event for IDG 2017

This week’s column is slightly different, as I had the opportunity to attend an event in New York City at the United Nations last week. October 11, 2017 marked the 6th annual International Day of the Girl and the 5th annual Girls Speak Out event at the United Nations. I left the event feeling more inspired and motivated to fight for change than ever before. The U.N. theme for IDG this year was “Justice for Girls.” Several speakers repeatedly and rightly stated that justice for girls is vital for a just society. Justice for girls means equal access to a quality education, freedom from...

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Mythological Girls: Pachamama

Pachamama is an Incan fertility goddess who is still worshipped by several indigenous tribes in the Andes. She’s also known as ‘Mother Nature’, ‘Earth Mother’ and ‘Time Mother’ and is seen with a primordial feminine image. In Incan mythology, she was a dragon deity, who presided over the harvests. She lived in the mountains and personified the earth alongside her husband Inti, the sun god. Pachamama is still believed to be a present force by some, who can cause earthquakes if she is displeased. Originally her priests would have sacrificed llamas and guinea pigs to appease her, as well as...

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Belle: Why “Funny” Girls Go Far

I didn’t have many friends growing up. I went to a small school in Connecticut where if one person didn’t like you, the other 30 kids didn’t either: they either ignored my existence entirely or picked on me for being different than them. My classmates would rave about Green Day, and I’d geek out over books and movies. The girls were all skinny and shopped at Hollister, and I was heavy and wore nothing but dresses. I was weird, obsessive, and quiet. Belle showed me they were wrong. In Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, Belle was an outcast. With a passion for books and a wanderlust that pulled...

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Celebrate International Day of the Girl: Support Girl Museum

The earth is home to 1.1 billion girls. They form a generation of young women who will soon begin to take over and shape the future, acting as an integral force within their communities and the wider world. However, the importance of these girls is often overlooked, their value undermined, and they face unique and often daily challenges based purely on their sex. These challenges take form in the home, schools, and workplace – and they are challenges that threaten their mental, emotional, and often physical well being. It’s high time that girls are made a global priority, that their rights...

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Marina Ginestà on a Rooftop

  In July 1936, a young woman stood on the roof of the Placa de Catalunya hotel in Barcelona, Spain. She was just 17, yet the rifle she carried and the defiantly optimistic look on her face would ensure her name went down in history. The young woman was Marina Ginestà. She was born in Toulouse, France, to a working class family, and moved to Spain at the age of 11. Sometime in the next six years, she joined the Unified Socialist Party, a communist political party that wanted to defend the middle classes against land seizures. When civil war broke out in Spain, Marina served as a...

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