15 March 2017: Raise to Rise

As feminists, we can get pretty angry at men. Men, who still dictate a great deal of what makes up our everyday world. Sometimes, I feel we focus too much on being angry at those who won’t change, and instead should focus on those who must bring about change. Girls. Our girls. The likes of Trump and Korwin-Mikke (the Polish politician who had an anti-women rant in the EU parliament recently) will not change, the system protects them too much. Of course it is important to stand up against them, but society will not outlaw their practices, no matter how many women’s marches there are. We...

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Knitting the Resistance: The Pussyhat Project and the Women’s March on Washington

If you watched the Women’s March on Washington D.C. on January 21st, you probably saw a sea of bright pink hats. They’re called ‘pussyhats’, and they’ve become a symbol of feminist resistance thanks to organizers Jayna Zweiman and Krista Suh. Immediately after the U.S. presidential election on November 9, feminists started to plan a march on Washington to protest the President-elect’s policies. Zweiman and Suh felt that marchers needed a physical symbol to unite them. They decided on a bright pink hat with cat ears (a reference to Trump’s infamous comment...

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15 January 2017: The Feminist’s Gift Guide 2017

Last Christmas was the first time ever I was involved in choosing presents for children. To be precise: presents for my partner’s godchildren, a one-year-old boy, and his four-year-old sister. The children’s mother had been asked for a guide of suitable gifts, which included instructions on a noisy, colourful truck for the boy, and ‘anything Barbie or glittery’ for the girl. While my significant other was happy to have the brain work off his hands and simply have the truck and ‘something Barbie or glittery’ delivered to our doorstep, my inner feminist stayed quiet for only twenty...

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Bono – Glamour Magazine’s Woman of the Year?

When I heard the Bono had been named a Glamour Magazine’s Woman of the Year, I was confused. Surely the award was for – well – women? I was reminded of the scene in (the always great) Parks and Recreation when Ron Swanson is given the Dorothy Everton Smythe Woman of the Year award. Bono is the first man to be named on the magazine’s Women of the Year list. He has been honoured for his work on the campaign Poverty Is Sexist, which highlights the gender inequality of poverty. They released a report to every head of state in the world on March 8th this year (International Women’s Day). Bono is...

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Girls Undercover: Violet Strange

Name: Violet Strange Occupation: Girl detective and debutante Location: New York City, 1899 As seen in: The Golden Slipper and Other Problems for Violet Strange, by Anna Katharine Green Violet Strange is a character, created by Anna Katharine Green for her mystery short stories, The Golden Slipper and other Problems for Violet Strange, published in 1914. Strange is an astute young woman – only 17 years old – and the daughter of a rich banker. She takes up solving crimes in secret. Though the stories she appears in are old-fashioned and a bit stilted, Violet Strange is credited with being the...

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Teen Screen Feminism, featuring Junior Girl Emily Chandler

Dr. Athena Bellas has a fantastic blog and podcast called Teen Screen Feminism which explores – in her words – the “non-academic discussion of all the ideas around feminism, screen cultures, and girlhood.” It’s amazing, and if you haven’t already checked it out, I strongly suggest you do. Try starting with two podcasts that feature Girl Museum’s own Junior Girl Emily Chandler! The first podcast featuring Emily is Queer Girls Onscreen: A Conversation with Emily Chandler, and the second is Halloween Special: Monstrous Girls on the Teen Screen. If you enjoy them,...

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Dora Thewlis: Teenage Suffragette

Dora Thewlis was born in 1890. She was one of seven children of a working-class family in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire. Her parents were proud of her curiosity and integrity. Her mother Eliza described her in glowing terms: “Ever since [Dora] was seven, she has been a diligent reader of newspapers and can hold her own in politics.” At age ten, Dora worked part-time at the local mill, spending the rest of her day at school. In her teens, Dora joined the Women’s Social and Political Union, an organisation campaigning for women’s right to vote. In 1907, Dora travelled to London to take part in...

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Pornography: The postives (3/3)

In my last post I looked at the ways in which pornography has the potential to negatively impact people on both a societal and sexual level. How it can influence our perception of sex, work to encourage sexual deviance and misogynistic attitudes, and how it is seen by some as having the capacity to enforce the idea of women as objects, adding to insecurities and expectations of female bodies and shaping what we consider ‘normal’ sexual encounters. The downsides may initially seem endless and even begs the question of whether there is anything remotely positive to be said about pornography....

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The Bathroom Bill Proves that Discrimination Affects More than its Intended Targets

Decades ago, Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. said: “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” This theory is coming back to bite legislators who signed the notorious bathroom bill in North Carolina in March. Since the bill was passed, women have reported harassment by both police officers and civilians in the restroom. These people, usually men, claimed that the women posed a threat to other women using the bathroom and often called them “he” or “sir.” Not long ago, Vox released an article that featured the stories of some of these women, and it got me thinking about the ways that...

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Girls of TEDTalks: Adora Svitak – What adults can learn from kids

Adora Svitak was only 12 years old when she did her TED talk and I have to confess I was pretty surprised when I saw her standing up on stage looking so young and yet so confident. As I’m sure many others did I wondered what it was a 12 year old could have to say that would be worth watching. What had she created? What had she achieved? Later research revealed she had come to national attention at the age of 7 when she was called a ‘tiny literary giant’ by Diane Sawyer on Good Morning America. She had been writing since the age of around 3 – short stories, poems, observations about the world...

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