All posts tagged: Activist

30 Badass Feminists to Follow on Twitter

I’ve discovered so many intelligent, humorous, bold, and inspiring feminists on Twitter. These women are writers, activists, lawyers, scholars, and artists who advocate for a number of issues essential to the feminist movement, including immigration, reproductive rights, safety and equality for the LGBT community, combating racism and police brutality, fair wages and the right to unionize, gun control and domestic violence, and the representation of race, gender, class, and sexuality in media – among numerous other issues. Being an outspoken woman online automatically results in a threat to their safety, and these women are berated daily for their unwillingness to be quiet or dilute their words. Be sure to follow them on social media and share and support their work. Like any online list, this post is seriously incomplete because there are thousands of woman who have not been included. Please be sure to share the names and handles of any badass feminists you follow online in the comment section below. Ijeoma Oluo → @IjeomaOluo Lauren Duca → @laurenduca Roxane Gay → @rgay Feminista Jones → @FeministaJones Caroline O.→ @RVAwonk …

Beyoncé & Kendrick Lamar: Politicizing Popular Art

American popular culture, specifically from the mid-60s to mid-70s, was highly politicized, critical, and urgent. Calls to action and societal critiques were common in forms of expression created and disseminated within mainstream youth culture. The sheer abundance and popularity of politicized art meant that both creators and consumers were interested in engaging with immediate problems. The imperative for change was palpable. But this sense of American political urgency seemed to diminish in the 1980s, with the election of President Reagan and the establishment of an overpowering neo-conservative ideology. From the 1980s – 2010s, political expression was still a part of mainstream American pop culture, and is exemplified in the work of N.W.A, Shepard Fairey, Michael Moore, and countless others. My intention is not to discount these works, but to say that I am hopeful that America’s youth will collectively become more political again, with the same urgency that characterized the 60s & 70s. Which brings me to Beyoncé and Kendrick Lamar. Already this year, we have experienced two particularly powerful political moments in music: Beyoncé’s release of her music video for “Formation,” and Kendrick Lamar’s Grammy’s performance. …

The Burden of Being Aware

As I become more knowledgable about a number of topics, I’ve found myself getting a little down. I believe that being open, aware, and working to expand upon one’s knowledge of our complicated world is of the utmost importance. But, as necessary as it is, it can also be extremely painful. As I continue to accept that our world is severely flawed, I’m growing into my awareness one step at a time. I can’t image the toll this takes on activists, who constantly burden themselves with the troubles they are working to alleviate. It reminds me that we all need to laugh, dance, and cry, and we must never take the fragility of our emotions for granted. In the words of Agent Dale Cooper from Twin Peaks, “every day, once a day, give yourself a present. Don’t plan it; don’t wait for it; just let it happen. It could be a new shirt in a men’s store, a catnap in your office chair, or two cups of good, hot, black, coffee.” No matter how difficult it may get, you should never stop learning …

Watch the Inspiring Trailer for ‘He Named Me Malala’

Emotional films often bring tears to my eyes, but only the most touching previews are capable of doing so. The trailer for He Named Me Malala is one of those rarities. Malala Yousafzai, a Pakistani activist fighting for education rights for girls and young women, is both a survivor of an assassination attempt and the and youngest ever Nobel Prize laureate. Like millions of people across the globe, I look up to her strength and courage immensely, and am in awe of all she has accomplished thus far. Please share the trailer for He Named Me Malala and be sure to see it when it hits theaters in October. And if you’re interested, visit the Malala Fund to find out how you can make a difference.

Suggested Reading: Janet Mock on Caitlyn Jenner

This past week Caitlyn Jenner’s stunning Vanity Fair cover was revealed and the internet exploded. Check out one of my favorite responses by journalist, author, and transgender activist Janet Mock, in Revealing Caitlyn Jenner: My Thoughts on Media, Privilege, Healthcare Access, and Glamour. The article celebrates the power of Caitlyn Jenner’s visibility while addressing the intersectionality of the transgender community and the fact that most individuals do not have access to the same opportunities as Jenner.

Audre Lorde On Fear, Strength, Living, & Learning From Our Differences

“When I dare to be powerful – to use my strength in the service of my vision, then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid.” “It is not our differences that divide us. It is our inability to recognize, accept, and celebrate those differences.” “Poetry is not only dream and vision; it is the skeleton architecture of our lives. It lays the foundations for a future of change, a bridge across our fears of what has never been before.” “When we speak we are afraid our words will not be heard or welcomed. But when we are silent, we are still afraid. So it is better to speak.” “Life is very short and what we have to do must be done in the now.” “I am deliberate and afraid of nothing.” “Each time you love, love as deeply as if it were forever.” “When I use my strength in the service of my vision it makes no difference whether or not I am afraid.” “Art is not living. It is the use …