Tag Archives: Jessica Valenti

Book Worm: The Feminist List of Must Read Literature

What I’m reading this month. Here’s a few books that you may not have read yet.  These books might change your life.

Gail Collins –  When Everything Changed: The Amazing Journey of American Women from 1960 to the Present
Eve Ensler -Insecure at Last: A Political Memoir 
Necessary Targets: A Story of Women and War
 I Am an Emotional Creature: The Secret Life of Girls Around the World
and of course The Vagina Monologues
Jessica Valenti – Full Frontal Feminism: A Young Woman’s Guide to Why Feminism Matters

  What books helped shape the way you view the world?

Ken makers great buttons



Filed under Books, feminism

MARCH: Overview

Rabbit, Rabbit!

Happy Women’s History Month

[I highly suggest bookmarking this page 
as frequent updates will follow]
last update:3/02 @8:32am

I have had a very exciting February, perhaps the best to date.  I was lucky enough to meet Jerin Alam of the National NOW Young Feminist Task Force and Jessi Arrington of WORKSHOP as well as Liz Abzug of the The Bella Abzug Leadership Institute. Also the entire cast of the CUNY Hunter 2010 Vagina Monologues. Great month filled with beautiful and powerful women.

Last night was the Recession Art’s Artist Announcement Party founded by sisters who are dear friends of mine Ani and Emma Katz. Together they continue to host a space where young talented artists can find recognition and patrons can seek affordable art. I commend them both for their amazing work.

So a quick briefing of what’s in store for me come this Women’s History Month. This post will likely subject to frequent update as the weeks pass to April.

Please share any and all events that you are taking part in!

MARCH 6th: Center for Women’s Global Leadership 20th Anniversary Symposium

Hunter College Assembly Hall East 68th St. and Lexington Ave. All Day Event

There is a long list of speakers that will be in attendance. There focus of three key panels will be on Body, Economy and the Movement as well as a recognition to the Voices Haitian Women’s. This is my first time in attendance and I am thrilled.

Hosted by the Roosevelt House Public Policy Institute and the Women and Gender Studies Program, Hunter College, CUNY

nccMARCH 8th: Global Issues & the Law

Free  at  NCC One Education Drive, Garden City, New York 11:00am-12:30pm  CCB 252-253

Students will be participating in panel on how the law affects the status of women world-wide.  I will be speaking on issues in Burma and Aung San Suu Kyi. Come out and support me and the women of Burma! If you cannot attend please check out US Campaign for Burma.

MARCH 8th: Until The Violence Stops V-DAY FILM SERIES

FREE at The New School Wollman Hall, 65 West 11th Street, fifth floor, Greenwich Village. 7:00 pm

Not unlike the event posted in my last blog. Until the Violence Stops features playwright and activist Eve Ensler in a powerful film that documents how The Vagina Monologues grew into an international grassroots movement called V-Day to stop violence against women and girls. Until the Violence Stops features playwright and activist Eve Ensler in a powerful film that documents how The Vagina Monologues grew into an international grassroots movement called V-Day to stop violence against women and girls. In emotionally charged interviews and performances, everyday women and celebrities like Rosie Perez, Salma Hayek, Tantoo Cardinal, Jane Fonda, and LisaGay Hamilton embrace their bodies, reconcile their past, and bond together to break the silence that surrounds abuse.

Jess ValentiMARCH 11th: Full Frontal Feminism: A Young Woman’s Guide to What Matters

Free  at  NCC One Education Drive, Garden City, New York 1:00pm-2:30pm   CCB 252-253

NCC is proud to presents “Full Frontal Feminism: A Young Woman’s Guide to What Matters” featuring Jessica Valenti, who you may recall from first blog.  Founder and editor of Feministing.com, a news, comment and calls to arms blog that has half-a-million readers a month. She is the author of three books: Full Frontal Feminism: A Young Woman’s Guide to Why Feminism Matters; He’s a Stud, She’s a Slut…and 49 Other Double Standards Every Woman Should Know; and The Purity Myth: How America’s Obsession with Virginity is Hurting Young Women.

March 15th: Sapphire Speaks on PreciousSapphire

Free  at  NCC One Education Drive, Garden City, New York

Poet, writer and author of the renowned book Push discusses the process of how her work became a critically acclaimed movie.

There are a number of other great events taking place at NCC this month for more information on what is taking place at NCC click here and here.

March 22nd: Very Young Girls Screening & Talk

FREE at The New School Room 510, 66 West 12th Street 7:00 pm

If you have yet to see this film please, please do. Very Young Girls is an expose of human trafficking that follows thirteen and fourteen year old American girls as they are seduced, abused, and sold on New York’s streets by pimps, and treated as adult criminals by police. The majority of the film takes place in Manhattan and the surrounding area.

The film identifies hope for these girls in the organization GEMS (Girls Education and Mentoring Services). Founder Rachel Lloyd and her staff are heroic and relentless in their mission to help girls sent by the court or found on the street […] Very Young Girls’ unprecedented access to girls and pimps will change the way law enforcement, the media, and society as a whole look at sexual exploitation, street prostitution and human trafficking that is happening right in our own backyard.

Screening followed by a Q&A with GEMS campaign coordinator Jenny Park!!!

March 20th  & 21st: National Young Feminist Leadership Conference

March 22nd:Congressional Day of Action

It’s not too late to register!

University of the District of Columbia All day Events scheduled!

The conference will be held on March 20-21, 2010 at the University of the District of Columbia in Washington, DC.

There is an additional Congressional Day of Action on Monday, March 22 on Capitol Hill. Sponsored by the Feminist Majority Foundation, with focus on the impact young women have when it comes to domestic and global issues

March 29th: The Glass House Screening

FREE at The New School Room 510, 66 West 12th Street 7:00 pm

The fringes of Iranian society can be a lonely place, especially if you are a teenage girl with few resources to fall back on. The Glass House follows four girls striving to pull themselves out of the margins by attending a one-of-kind rehabilitation center in uptown Tehran […] the girls of The Glass House take us on a never-before-seen tour of the underclass of Iran with their brave and defiant stories.

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Filed under Events, feminism, gender, V-day

MYTH: The Big Scary Ugly Feminist

Recently someone posted a response to a status update on my Facebook asking if it were necessary to stop shaving my armpits in order to attend The Young Feminist Leadership Conference in Washington DC.

The comment.

The comment that got me thinking.

This statement says a lot. First and most obviously it says that all feminist are ‘hairy armed’. Second it implies that to be allowed admission into a feminist event one cannot fit into the current aesthetic of feminine beauty. Now, it perpetuates the concept of the “ugly feminist”. Okay I know what you’re going to say. “Just because I want to have the same equal human rights as the next fella, to be paid the same, to not have an unpaid ‘second shift’ after work, to feel my job safe if I chose to have children, to know my culture status is not at risk if I do not [etc.] Doesn’t mean I’m ugly!” And you are right. You are beautiful. Most of the men and women involved in feminism are. So, let us examine the myth of the ugly feminist and set the facts straight. Since this is my first post I’d like to start with me. I am 21 years old. I love reading, tea, coffee, art , especially printmaking. I wear dresses. I like pretty things. I wear make-up with some frequency. I like to painting my nails and I shave my pits…There’s more to me but what am I forgetting? Oh right and I AM A FEMINIST! [pardon the caps locks].

Arielle Cohen
Me. I am a feminist.

Now that’s out-of-the-way. You ask ‘What is a feminist any way?’


Pronunciation: \ˈfe-mə-ˌni-zəm\

Function: noun

1 : the theory of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes
Basically, it’s this funny idea that ladies are equal to gentlemen. We have some work to do to make sure that this idea is reflected in the law, economy and society. So, women (and men) have joined forces throughout time and have made huge strides to make everything more equal. Let’s face it- men and women are different. That’s a good thing. As time goes on and society evolves, things change. Gender roles are always in flux. There are inequalities that face us all and things that just don’t work no matter what our race, class, or gender. These issues hurt us all. It’s complex. However, we all deserve respect and we all deserve the same human rights. Feminism is a way of talking openly about these issues instead of ignoring them. Plus when we get together better things happen.

But do we still need feminism? Isn’t that, like, a 60’s thing?

So, a little background. There are three ‘waves’ of feminism: The first wave happened way before the 1960’s. These women got us the right to vote in the US. They also focused on property rights for women and they fought against “chattel marriage,” which legally allowed a man to own his wife [and children] Their main goals focused on overturning legal obstacles that stood in the way of equality.  The second wave is what you’re thinking of. They did a lot of work. They had a lot of great ideas and basically shaped the way we live today. They didn’t actually burn their bras. The movement starts with Simone de Beauvoir and ends when Sandra Day O’Connor becomes the first woman nominated to the Supreme Court with a unanimous vote by the senate. Read Gail Collins’s book for the fullest historic overview that I know of, it’s also a fantastic and easy read.
Now the third wave. That’s where I fit in. The third wave had the realization that women come in all shades and sizes and are everywhere. We come in many colors, and from all nationalities, religions and cultural backgrounds. We “embrace contradictions and conflict, and accommodate diversity and change. There is, in this wave, no all-encompassing single feminist idea.” [1] Which is great! And it means we all have different ideas about sexuality, the law, policy, everything—including beauty.
Some women see pin-up queen Betty Page as an iconic, beautiful, liberated women. She is to some a feminist icon. Others may disagree and say Betty Ford reigns queen over their feminist world view. Libbers may recall that Betty Friedan is the penultimate feminist ruler. These three Betty’s are totally different and give a very small sample of the varied images of women and feminists alike.

So what does a feminist look like?

Well a feminist looks just like me.  They look like you, and my boyfriend, and your boyfriend and your girlfriend and your mom and her mom … Oh yeah and my Dad too.

I’d like to thank the girl who posted the comment, because it was what sparked the need more me to blog this.

More examples:

Please share feminists that you find beautiful.


Gloria Steinem often deemed too beautiful.

Gloria Steinem, often deemed too beautiful.


Erykah Badu, stunning black feminist.


Performance Artist, Musician, Writer, Actress, Film Director, Feminist

Miranda July, Performance Artist, Musician, Writer, Actress, Film Director, Feminist


Yoko Ono and John Lennon

Yoko Ono & John Lennon. Both feminists!

Aung San Suu Kyi Nobel Peace Prize Winner

Aung San Suu Kyi, Nobel Peace Prize Winner, Feminist


Lauryn Hill

Lauryn Hill, Queen of hip hop, feminist.

Joan Jett sexy rocker feminist.

Joan Jett, sexy rocker feminist.


Zora Neale Hurston

Zora Neale Hurston, groundbreaking and beautiful.

Liz Phair Indie Queen

Liz Phair, Indie Queen


Tori Amos redheaded siren of Feminism.

Tori Amos, redheaded siren of Feminism.

Jessica Valenti in her wedding dress looking lovely.

Founder of Feministing, Jessica Valenti in her wedding dress looking lovely. OMG Feminists get married!


Filed under feminism