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Even Tough Girls Wear Tutus

Even Tough Girls Wear Tutus by Deborah Juang Stein is a must read memoir by a woman who was born in prison and spent the first year of her life behind bars. “Can you please alter Deborah’s birth certificate,” my mother asks in the letter to the family attorney, “from the Federal Women’s Prison in […]

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Why Feminists and LGBT Activists Should Care About the UFC

In November 2011 I joined the fight to get the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) to enact a code of conduct, following a rape joke tweet by fighter Forrest Griffin. But since then, there’s been a spate of offensive tweets and public comments joking about rape and the sexual abuse scandal at Penn State. Meanwhile, they […]

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We Will Carry Their Stories

I arrived in Mexico City on Saturday already worn out from a migraine and travel. As I rode in the car to the hotel I took in the sights while pondering why I was even there. I’m an academic and a blogger – why me? That night at dinner I started to understand.

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What To Do When a Paramedic Sexually Assaults You on the Way to the Hospital

The most important thing to note about this story is that the perpetrator has never done anything like this before.  That’s the important part, and it’s important that you remember this important part.  He had never done anything like this before. I don’t know whether his saying such a thing, to him, mitigates what he […]

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Sick of Being Sick of It

I must sound like a broken record. I know people must get sick of hearing it, because I get sick of saying it, but we live in a rape culture. To preface what I’m about to say, I would like to give a brief description of what that means, as defined in Transforming a Rape […]

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The Handmaid’s Tale: A Feminist’s Must Read

Women have only certain roles: wife, breeder, or servant.  These are the options, and the choice is not up to you to make.  The government will make the choice for you. Last weekend I finally finished The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood.  I didn’t have a good understanding of what I was getting into and […]

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Jerry Sandusky and Victim Blaming

In the reactions to the revelations that coach Jerry Sandusky raped and abused at least eight boys and young teens, one thing has been absent: victim-blaming. No one has asked:  What did the boy do to ask for it?  What was he wearing?  Why did he go into the showers with Sandusky if he wasn’t […]

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#Men Call Me Things – Online Gendered Abuse

“You come to expect the vitriol, the insults, the death threats,” writes Laurie Penny of The Independent. What has Penny done to deserve the barrage of attack and abuse?  Oh, well, she’s a woman writer. Over the past weeks, women bloggers and writers including Penny have taken to Twitter (#mencallmethings) to share their stories of […]

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The Terrible Trio of Women’s Sexuality: Shame, Blame, and Fear

Warning: Jaclyn Friedman expects a lot from you.  I’ll tell you now before you even open the pages of her new book What You Really, Really Want: The Smart Girl’s Shame-Free Guide to Sex and Safety.  When she says “guide,” what she really means is “workbook.”  Why?  Because as she points out numerous times, the […]

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The Bystander’s Intervention

Pretty much everyone is horrified at the Apple store employees who ignored the sounds of someone being murdered at Lululemon next door. And no one can understand how you can know that kids are being abused—even raped—and do nothing, or just report it to your boss and wash your hands of it. So how can […]

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