Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Feminism: A dirty word?

I feel I've been boring my peers a lot with my feminist rants lately, but the complete lack of enthusiasm by women to open their eyes to feminist issues is shocking.

It seems after we won the vote and campaigned for equal pay, most women believed the job of feminists had been done, and to carry on the fight in the 21st century was pointless and radical. After all, what is there left to fight for?

Feminists are still perceived as hairy legged man hating ranters, who are scary and odd, and not one to engage in conversation. I can see people cringe when I mention I'm a feminist, as they conjure up these images.

I do not have to compromise who I am to be a feminist, I'm a dedicated follower of fashion, I swoon over unsuitable guys and sometimes (shock horror) I show a bit of leg.

During a discussion with friends after a night out, I mentioned how a guy had grabbed my arse, and how I was appalled and would of punched him, had I not had my hands full with drinks as I navigated myself out of a bar queue.

I was told 'what did I expect' as I was dressed in shorts and knee high socks. I argued that I could dress provocatively if I wished, and not have to worry about getting goosed.

It seems young women who have benefited from the work of past generations of women, simply accept these new rights we have as the norm, and are quite willing to accept the social inequalities we still face today.

Women are still not paid equally in Britain, despite the equal pay act the feminists fought so hard for. Thankfully gagging orders about male colleague's salaries have recently been lifted, making it illegal for companies to hide what individuals are being paid. So while the fight is still far from over, we're getting closer.

My point is, among students, where opinions and political activism should be at their highest, many women are simply happy to sit back and accept the situation.

Is it fair that some men still think it is acceptable to view us as sex objects that they have unprecedented access to?

Is it right that there are women who will answer to their boyfriend's every word and caution?

Is it okay that some women will dress provocatively purely for the chance to please men?

Should we accept the undertone of most popular music, selling sex to sell female artists?

We have a lot to thank feminists for; without the suffragettes we wouldn't have votes, without first wave feminists we wouldn't have equal pay and equal job opportunities.

Next time you sneer at feminism, think about it.

Sunday, 25 July 2010

The summer where I didn't stop.

It really has been a mad few months, which sort of justifies my lack of blogging. Well, that's my story and I'm sticking to it...

First there was New York, which was truly amazing. I've also been working a lot to raise some holiday dosh, and then I had my work experience at the local paper. And now I have more work experience at my grandparent's local paper.

The best thing about the work experience I've had, is that it proved to me that this career path I've been following for ten years, is the right one for me. I felt so at home in the Newsroom, and it's important for me to land in a job, where I can get up for work everyday, excited to see what the day will bring.

Maybe that job satisfaction won't last forever, who knows? Yet at this moment in time, its new and exciting and I know that I want to be a journalist. Being able to write everyday and get paid for it, is my dream job. I really hope I achieve it, and maybe end up writing at a top women's magazine in New York....if somehow the world goes mad, and I get lucky.

Meanwhile, I will soon be jetting off to Florida to soak up the sun, and scream my head off. Oh and lots of shopping. Even after New York, I am yet to be bored of it. If there are pretty clothes, I'm there. Maybe I can make it as a stylist or personal shopper if journalism doesn't work out?

Saturday, 26 June 2010

I heart New York.

Here is a blog post I wrote a while ago, and never posted because my computer crashed. Its half finished, but worth a publish...

I am currently suffering the post New York trip blues. Last week I was exploring the wonderful city of New York, today I am in Essex, bored out of my brain.

I think I've found my spiritual home, it's like I'm meant to be there, as if it was designed for me. It's given me my ultimate life goal, get an excellent journalism job at a fantastic exciting magazine in New York. Hmm, sounds easy enough...

Its grid system, the endless shops, the beautiful scenery, the people and how at home it made me, all made it steal my heart. I'm determined to make it my home one day. I don't feel right at all now I'm back in Blighty. Normal everyday life just doesn't cut it.

I did so much shopping in New York, and lets not be mistaken, its not as if theres a shortage of them there. From Century 21 to American Eagle to Abercrombie and Fitch, I was in my element, and my wardrobe has seen some fantastic new editions. Lets just say I'm set for t-shirts and I have some gorgeous dresses I can dress up or down. Perfect.

A highlight to the shopping experience is stepping into Abercrombie and Fitch and coming face to face with a shirtless male model. I think every shopping experience should start like this. Getting to side up to a young gorgeous man and get a polaroid as a souviner lightens up any day. So much so, I collected three.

Another excellent highlight was my trip down Bleeker Street, that took me to Carrie's steps from Sex and the City. An important experience for all SATC fans, and a stark reminder how much I'd give for Carrie Bradshaw's life. Just minutes later, I found myself at Magnolia Bakery, another important SATC landmark and the best cupcakes ever. For a cupcake enthusiast, an important landmark. I invested in the red velvet with cream, a bright red cupcake with sweet creamy buttercream covering the top. If journalism doesn't work out, I will be starting my own cake shop, its my only other passion.

5th Avenue reminded me that I need to make a lot of money, so I can afford gorgeous designer garments. The affect the have on me is pure passion, and it breaks my heart that I can't afford them.

Monday, 3 May 2010

Girl Power.

Hello, yes I've been missing for ages. I'm very sorry, I'm a bad blogger. But now my uni assignments are over, and I have a summer of New York and Florida to look forward to, my blog should be a lot less boring. I promise.

Now, on to today's topic. Feminism has always been a passion of mine, from admiring the Spice Girls back in nineties to standing up for my beliefs today. I feel it is so important for women to stand up tall and fight for their rights.

We've been through a lot in the last 100 years, from fighting for the vote to fighting for equal pay, we will not stop fighting until we are treated equally. You may think women have nothing left to fight for; we're in high paid jobs, becoming millionaires and taking over politics. Yet women are still paid on average 80% less than men. In 2010, surely this can't be right or fair?

I have always aimed for the top, even as a child. I always wanted to be best in class, and end up in a successful job that was my dream. That dream turned into journalism, and I'm going to keep striving for it until I get it. I will ignore those that tell me I can't, but take on board the advice I am I given, we all learn somewhere.

In the words of Destiny's Child, I'm an independent woman. I have been single for longer than I care to remember, but I won't let it get me down. I don't need a man to make me feel complete. I hear so many girls saying they can't do things because they're worried what their boyfriend will think, or he will get jealous, or he doesn't like it. Since when do you let a man tell you what to do?
At the risk of scaring off any chance of getting a boyfriend ever, I could never imagine myself adhering to some man, and doing what he says. I know relationships need compromise, I understand that, but if I don't agree, it's not happening.

If you want to go out with the girls and get drunk, do it. You don't have to phone and text him, keeping him updated on every minute of your whereabouts. He does not own you, you are your own person.

Feminism is not about burning bras and hating men. You can be a girlie girl, you can care about your appearance and you can fancy bad boys. The main point is, your thinking for yourself. What you do, you do for you.

I'm proud to be a women, it's great. I love how far we've come. I love how amazing, pretty and great we all are. We've come a long way, but there is still a way to go. Girls, feminism is not a dirty word, stand up for your beliefs. Many women fought for that for us.