At the top of a hill on the south side of Florence, Piazza Michelangelo is covered in cigarette butts and empty wine bottles rolled into corners. No matter its cracked pavement or endless uphill climb, tourists gather here, lean over the cement railing like they could almost touch the big, wide beauty of this orange-roofed city. Continue reading “On Beauty”→
Would you ever be willing to let strangers cut or shave your hair to support the message that beauty is more than a person’s external appearance? I’m not sure if I could. In this video from The Liberators International, co-founder Jae West does just that.
This video was particularly powerful to me simply because I realized that I, like many women, have a strong attachment to my hair. Most of my confidence comes from feeling beautiful and feminine and my hair is a huge part of that. I spend time washing, cutting, dying, straightening, drying, and curling my hair to make it look just right. As much as I hate to say it, if I didn’t have my hair, I don’t know how I would carry myself with the same confidence I have today. As much as I hate that my confidence comes from my external appearance, it should be acknowledged that for many women, hair is a form of expression.
Last week I talked about consent in the context of sex. This week I want to take a closer look at consent and see the environments where consent operates, outside of sex. One of those environments is for individuals that are intersex. According to the Intersex Society of North America (ISNA), “‘Intersex’ is a general term used for a variety of conditions in which a person is born with a reproductive or sexual anatomy that doesn’t seem to fit the typical definitions of female or male.” As ISNA expands their definition, they emphasize that the term “Intersex” is a “socially-constructed” category that comes from our society’s ideas about gender and sex and what it means to be normal. Continue reading “A Child’s Right to Choose: Intersex Dilemmas and Consent”→
I am constantly listening to music whether it is in the car, working out, or just at my apartment. One thing I’ve noticed is I never listen to certain music around my family, specifically hip hop. There was this time my mom and I were in the car and I found myself jamming out to, “Ain’t No Fun (If the Homies Can’t Have None) feat. Snoop Dogg. This song is so inappropriate and talks about gangbang and referring to women as sexual objects in a very derogatory context. I immediately unplugged the aux cord as soon as I realized what I was singing along to. I never play any hip hop around my mom because of the derogatory content concerning women.
Hip Hop has been around since the 70’s. Clive Campbell also known as DJ Kool Herc is the founding father of hip hop. Herc’s 1973 block party in the Bronx effectively birthed hip-hop as we know it today. Hip hop consists of Continue reading “Misogyny in Music”→
The apartment my friends live in that summer is hot and thick, the air lazy, even the cars driving in from the empty nearby country roads seem slow. They don’t own a vacuum, but we lay on the carpet anyway, sit up with crumbs sticking to the backs of our arms. There are better and worse things ahead and behind us, so summer stretches on easily. It isn’t a space we need to fill, so we allow whole days to pass without acknowledging them. Continue reading “The Smallest Summer”→
You’ve probably heard of PMS, but may not be aware of another severe type of premenstrual condition known as PMDD, or premenstrual dysphoric disorder. Approximately 3%- 10% of menstruating girls and women are affected by this condition, which can lead to severe mood swings, deep depression, feelings of anxiety, a sense of hopelessness—all of which can immensely affect one’s ability to perform their normal daily routine and feel like themselves. I know these feelings well because I have experienced this firsthand and it wreaked havoc on my life. Continue reading “The Power of PMDD”→
Sex crimes are unique because they are extremely private yet prevalent. Every sexual assault is unique to the victim; yet so many women, and sometimes men, have had similar experiences. Falling victim to a sex crime is an experience that makes the victim feel ashamed of something that happened to their own body.