“ Women are coerced into hair removal, indoctrinated by society to see it as a necessity. They are making decisions as to what type of razor they use, whether they use cream or wax, whether they get a professional to do it, but these are secondary decisions; the initial choice is whether to remove hair at all, and this decision was made by someone else, long ago, with little thought as to our best intentions. Along with the decisions about whether body hair is attractive, or hygienic. Of course, we all have personal preference, but when every channel in society tells you that body hair is repulsive, there is only one conclusion to come to. It is near-impossible to have a true preference. And until women are no longer chastised, mocked, and insulted for their body hair, we cannot say that we have that choice. ”
'…sin, young man, is when you treat people as things. Including yourself. That's what sin is.'
'It's a lot more complicated than that…'
'No. It ain't. When people say things are more complicated than that, they means they're getting worried that they won't like the truth. People as things, that's where it starts.'
'Oh, I'm sure there are worse crimes—'
'But they STARTS with thinking about people as things…'
“ My name is Sylvia Spears, and I am a feminist. No, I am not a crazy radical, although some might find that my ideas push the boundaries of their comfort. No, I don’t have a shaved head, although I did once sport a very short afro, which is the equivalent for women of color. No, I have never burned a bra, although I reject the ways in which society literally and figuratively shapes ideas about what women’s bodies should look like and what beauty means. And no, I don’t believe that men should be wiped off the face of earth, although I do challenge men to consider the power and privilege that comes from the unearned benefits of being born into a male body.
I am a feminist. I am a feminist because my beliefs stem from a set of core values that are grounded in equality, equity, fairness, and social justice. I believe…
• women should receive equal pay for equal work;
• women should have equal opportunities in the workplace;
• women should have equal access to education;
• women have the right to make decisions about their own bodies;
• women have the right to be free from harm including sexual
harassment, partner and dating violence, and sexual assault.
I am a feminist and I believe in gender equality. If you also believe in these things, you just might be a feminist too. ”
"Coming Out as Feminist", Sylvia Spears (Vice President of Diversity and Inclusion at Emerson College)
I am obsessed with this. You go Sylvia.
“ Ancient moon priestesses were called virgins. ‘Virgin’ meant not married, not belonging to a man - a woman who was ‘one-in-herself’. The very word derives from a Latin root meaning strength, force, skill; and was later applied to men: virile. Ishtar, Diana, Astarte, Isis were all called virgin, which did not refer to sexual chastity, but sexual independence. And all great culture heroes of the past, mythic or historic, were said to be born of virgin mothers: Marduk, Gilgamesh, Buddha, Osiris, Dionysus, Genghis Khan, Jesus - they were all affirmed as sons of the Great Mother, of the Original One, their worldly power deriving from her. When the Hebrews used the word, and in the original Aramaic, it meant ‘maiden’ or ‘young woman’, with no connotations to sexual chastity. But later Christian translators could not conceive of the ‘Virgin Mary’ as a woman of independent sexuality, needless to say; they distorted the meaning into sexually pure, chaste, never touched. ”
—Monica Sjoo, The Great Cosmic Mother: Rediscovering the Religion of the Earth (via anya-eye
I read several dozen stories a year from miserable, lonely guys who insist that women won’t come near them despite the fact that they are just the nicest guys in the world.
..I’m asking what do you offer? Are you smart? Funny? Interesting? Talented? Ambitious? Creative? OK, now what do you do to demonstrate those attributes to the world? Don’t say that you’re a nice guy — that’s the bare minimum.
“Well, I’m not sexist or racist or greedy or shallow or abusive! Not like those other douchebags!”
I’m sorry, I know that this is hard to hear, but if all you can do is list a bunch of faults you don’t have, then back the fuck away..
..Don’t complain about how girls fall for jerks; they fall for those jerks because those jerks have other things they can offer. “But I’m a great listener!” Are you? Because you’re willing to sit quietly in exchange for the chance to be in the proximity of a pretty girl (and spend every second imagining how soft her skin must be)? Well guess what, there’s another guy in her life who also knows how to do that, and he can play the guitar. Saying that you’re a nice guy is like a restaurant whose only selling point is that the food doesn’t make you sick. You’re like a new movie whose title is This Movie Is in English, and its tagline is “The actors are clearly visible”.
“ when she was 7, a boy pushed her on the playground
she fell headfirst into the dirt and came up with a mouthful of gravel and lines of blood chasing each other down her legs
when she told her teacher what happened, she laughed and said ‘boys will be boys honey don’t let it bother you
he probably just thinks you’re cute’
but the thing is,
when you tell a little girl who has rocks in her teeth and scabs on her knees that hurt and attention are the same
you teach her that boys show their affection through aggression
and she grows into a young woman who constantly mistakes the two
because no one ever taught her the difference
‘boys will be boys’
‘that’s how he shows his love’
and bruises start to feel like the imprint of lips
she goes to school with a busted mouth in high school and says she was hit with a basketball instead of his fist
the one adult she tells scolds her
‘you know he loses his temper easily
why the hell did you have to provoke him?’
so she shrinks
folds into herself, flinches every time a man raises his voice
by the time she’s 16 she’s learned her job well
be quiet, be soft, be easy
don’t give him a reason
but for all her efforts, he still finds one
‘boys will be boys’ rings in her head
‘boys will be boys
he doesn’t mean it
he can’t help it’
she’s 7 years old on the playground again
with a mouth full of rocks and blood that tastes like copper love
because boys will be boys baby don’t you know
that’s just how he shows he cares
she’s 18 now and they’re drunk
in the split second it takes for her words to enter his ears they’re ruined
like a glass heirloom being dropped between the hands of generations
she meant them to open his arms but they curl his fists and suddenly his hands are on her and her head hits the wall and all of the goddamn words in the world couldn’t save them in this moment
she touches the bruise the next day
boys will be boys
aggression, affection, violence, love
how does she separate them when she learned so early that they’re inextricably bound, tangled in a constant tug-of-war
she draws tally marks on her walls ratios of kisses to bruises
one entire side of her bedroom turns purple, one entire side of her body
boys will be boys will be boys will be boys
when she’s 20, a boy touches her hips and she jumps
he asks her who the hell taught her to be scared like that and she wants to laugh
doesn’t he know that boys will be boys?
it took her 13 years to unlearn that lesson from the playground
so I guess what I’m trying to say is
i will talk until my voice is hoarse so that my little sister understands that aggression and affection are two entirely separate things
baby they exist in difference universes
my niece can’t even speak yet but I think I’ll start with her now
don’t ever accept the excuse that boys will be boys
don’t ever let him put his hands on you like that
if you see hate blazing in his eyes don’t you ever confuse it with love
baby love won’t hurt when it comes
you won’t have to hide it under long sleeves during the summer
the only reason he should ever reach out his hand
is to hold yours ”
Fortesa Latifi - Boys Will Be Boys
(And Why That Is The Stupidest Thing You Could Ever Say To A Little Girl)
History is not a long series of centuries in which men did all the interesting/important things and women stayed home and twiddled their thumbs in between pushing out babies, making soup and dying in childbirth.
History is actually a long series of centuries of men writing down what they thought was important and interesting, and FORGETTING TO WRITE ABOUT WOMEN. It’s also a long series of centuries of women’s work and women’s writing being actively denigrated by men. Writings were destroyed, contributions were downplayed, and women were actively oppressed against, absolutely.
But the forgetting part is vitally important. Most historians and other writers of what we now consider “primary sources” simply didn’t think about women and their contribution to society. They took it for granted, except when that contribution or its lack directly affected men.
This does not in any way mean that the female contribution to society was in fact less interesting or important, or complicated, simply that history—the process of writing down and preserving of the facts, not the facts/events themselves—was looking the other way.