The Marilyn Monroe Effect

““The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don’t have any.” -Alice Walker

“The Marilyn Monroe Effect” was created with the intent to put a different perspective on what people believe to be beautiful, sexual and power. I wanted to use the idea of chaos to display my message while also trying to make it as relevant as to today as I possibly could. Technology is still advancing and it is continuing to become more and more chaotic. For this reason, I used five different songs and remixed them together to show just how much more anxious the use of media has become. Instead of Jazz music, I used House music because that is the music that is most commonly played at parties and clubs today. I also used the song “Fashonista” by Jimmy James to start the video and then I used to weather warning signal and vhs disturbance to finish the video. I wanted to create a clear line of how the ideas of beauty can still be pulled back to Marilyn Monroe and the warning of how her life was irrevocably destroyed by the media. The main video clip I used was of Kendall Jenner’s Love campaign in which she models while doing voice-over of Marilyn’s voice and music to indicate the level of fiction that stems behind this obsession with icons. I also overlapped different advertisements and digital art to re-emphasize how these types of messages influence society. There is a subtle loop in the video where I repeated one of the Marilyn lines Kendall says to portray how these messages are fed to us over and over again, as well as a couple images of clocks to create the timeless feel to this ongoing problem. All of the images used to overlap the videos are pulled from social media sites such as Pinterest and different magazine advertisements. My overall intention of my work is to use the same form of media that is constantly put in front of us, but with a different filter to attempt to pull out an awareness that is very much needed now.

There is no way that can we change the pressure of gender stereotypes, advertisements and women’s objectification when it comes to sexuality over night. Just like anything else in life if you believe something to be real, then it becomes real in your mind. Create your own awareness and remember that society ideals are not exterior forces out of our control. We are society.

For the full corresponding paper you can click on the link below to read it in more detail on my blog.

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        By definition, an icon varies depending if it is depicted from a person or a thing. However, they are very similar in nature. According to the Cambridge dictionary, an icon is “a small picture or symbol on a computer screen that you point to and click on with a mouse to give the computer an instruction.” An icon has also become socially known as a famous person who is believed to represent an idealistic way of life or values. Norma Geane, born June 1, 1926 is the most well known icon of beauty that the world has ever known. Through the work of the media and societal pressures of gender stereotypes, Marilyn Monroe’s beauty became the standard that is still unparalleled years later. The image of Marilyn Monroe surpassed her own life and death. Her image is still plastered all over advertising and merchandise. One thing seldom discussed is that Marilyn Monroe was a creation by the media. Her name, her body, and her voice were ficticous elements molded to continue the age-old problem of gender stereotypes. Today, when people present themselves as progressive, it is interesting that the majority of advertising is still based on gender stereotypes and the idea of what beauty is and the weight of power it continues to hold. Stereotypical media images of women are part of our daily landscape. Are these images a reflection of our societal values or are they misinterpreted distortions constantly thrown at us?

            My project serves as an argument that it is both the consumer and the advertiser who are at fault for the continuous cycle of gender stereotypes. Through a clear feedback loop of women sold to society as icons and in return people taking these images as reflections of power and spitting it back out, one can see the endless cycle of an idea of what beauty is. In my project I use an icon of today, Kendall Jenner who recently did a voice over of Marilyn Monroe to portray how a media icon lives beyond a person and how the immortality impacts society in a negative and destructive way.

In 1876 Charles Reade, a famous English novelist, wrote about a woman that was seen from a far in his story “Art: A Dramatic Tale”. There is a part specifically in which the character Alexander falls in love with the theatre, but then his affection becomes specified to a woman.

So now Alexander Oldworthy lived for the stage; and as the pearl is a disease of the oyster, so this siren became Alexander’s disease. The enthusiast lost his hold of real life. Real life became to him an interlude, and soon that followed which was to be expected the poor novice who had begun by adoring the artists, ended by loving the woman, and he loved her like a novice and a poet; he looked into his own heart confounded it with her hers, and clothed her with every heroic quality. He believed her as great in mind, and as good in heart, as she was lovely in person, and we would have given poem to be permitted to kiss her dress, or lay his neck for a moment under her foot. Burning to attract her attention, yet to humble and timid to make an open attempt, he had at last recourse to his own art. Every day he wrote verses upon her, and sent them to her house. Every night after the play he watched at the stage door for a glimpse of her as she came of theatre to her carriage… (Reade120)

Charles Reade describes an issue that has become timeless. He believed her to be real so she became real. When looking at beauty icons such as Marilyn Monroe who came almost one hundred years later the similarities are still striking. There are public videos that show men literally falling at Marilyn’s feet and worshiping her for being so beautiful. However, there are a few important details that are rarely discussed. Marilyn Monroe is a factious creation produced and sold by the media. Marilyn Monroe was born as Norma Jeane Mortenson on June 1, 1926. In 1946 the actress became to be known as Marilyn, but she didn’t legally change her name until 1956. There is said to be several different claims on who named Marilyn, but the most common and (most likely true) according to various biographies of the actress, her name was changed by Fox Talent scout Ben Lyon, who got Marilyn her first movie gig.

Marilyn Monroe was also one of the first actresses in Hollywood to openly go under the knife for plastic surgery becoming the blonde bombshell that society has come to know. There is a lot that wasn’t said when It came to Marilyn’s transformation, but it has become stated over time that her male representatives wanted her to change her nose, her chin, and hair so that she could fit the image of beauty that they were trying to portray. Marilyn herself was often speculated to have been very shy, self conscious, and continuously dealt with depression. However, on camera she became known for her beauty, her sexuality, and her zest for life. Similarly to Rede’s character Alexander, society believed Marilyn to be real, so she became real. Marilyn’s career was fairly short lived. Marilyn was often cast in the role of the “dumb blonde” based off her physical attributes. Marilyn Monroe died when she was 36 years old. Despite the obvious tragedy surrounding losing a woman at such a young age her sexuality is still branded, sold, and packaged as an ideal of beauty today.

The Documentary Film Miss Representation, filmed in 2011, discusses some of the main issues of having such a pressurized idea of female sexuality and how it deeply affects women of all ages in society. “The media is shaping our society. They are shaping our politics, natural discourse and child’s brains and emotions.” With all of the technological advancements over the last decade there is really no point in trying to say that the media is bad or distorted. The distortions created through advertisement are relatively obvious. Women have been objectified throughout history. The problem did not begin with the creation of media. The important thing is to just have a deep understanding and an education of what specific advertisements are aiming to do. It might be believed that society’s power is based solely off of looks and not power, but it’s statements like that, that disallow room for change. People constantly say “society” like it’s this exterior thing that we have no control over, but we are society. This is where the feedback loop comes into play. This is how the problems of gender stereotyping and sexuality become timeless issues. “American Teenagers spend 31 hours a week watching TV, 17 hours listening to music, 3 hours watching movies, 4 hours reading magazines, 10 hours online. That’s 10 hours and 45 minutes of media consumption a day.” (MissRepresentation)

In the film Miss Representation the documentary begins with a quote from Alice Walker. It says, “the most common way people give up their power, is by thinking that they don’t have any.” With all of the outlets of the media now there is no way to control the speed and the type of information thrown at us. There are thousands upon thousands advertisements shown to us in one day telling the way to behave and the way to look. Advertisements cost a lot of money. They continue to recycle when people go out and buy what they are selling. Advertisements set out to make people feel insecure. There is a consistent pressure for both men and women to fit the roles of predetermined gender stereotypes. “The average facelift costs $11,429.” When this film was created in 2011 that was enough to pay 5 years at a community college, 2 years at a state university and 1 year at the university of California. Tuition prices have gone up since the creation of the Miss Representation documentary. During the time of Marilyn Monroe, pictures were airbrushed to smooth out obvious imperfections. Today, computers are used to make models look inhumanly perfect. These images are then sent out into the world and sold as attainable with the purchase of certain products or ideas.

In order for me to try to really understand how advertisement is able to shape the identities of young girls all the way into adulthood, I first began my research at a magazine stand. I grabbed ‘Vogue’ a women’s magazine, ‘Seventeen’ a teenage magazine, and “Girl’s Life” a magazine for girls. As objective as possible, I read each magazine cover to cover and wrote down observations in verbatim in which they were written. I would say 85% of the Vogue magazine was a picture of advertisements with very few words to describe them. Most, if not all, of these advertisements were primarily focused on the sexuality of a woman and not of a product. The magazine Seventeen had less pictures, but I would say every three pictures there was some sort of sexual objectification to sell a product. Most of the magazine consisted of clothes, beauty tips and how to decipher young men. The Girl’s Life magazine had the clearest direction of the three magazines. On the cover in bold letters there are phrases written like, “Shy girl to boss babe”, “Things EVERY Confident Girl Knows and you should too!” and “Make Over Your Life” slapped across the cover. Every article in the magazine is directed with some sort of command whether it be “must try”, “you should”, or “rules you truly need.” The editor of the magazine is in her thirties, but begins this month’s note to the reader by saying, “Hi, my name is Karen, and I am a control freak.” The last page of the magazine is a quiz to find out if you are a control freak and how you can change. The ages demographic for this magazine are ages 8-15. I think the biggest concern here is for the young girls who are in search of their own identities and are being told how to have one. This is just one media outlet. There are many through multiple technological devices that are set to do the same thing.

In this last month the media has been cycling through what is being called the “Kendall Jenner Effect”. Kendall Jenner is a part of the Kardashian clan who are very similar to Marilyn Monroe in the way that they sell a specific idea of beauty and sexuality to the media to be famous. The Kendall Jenner effect is the exploration of how social media is beginning to define the modeling world. According to the latest issue of vogue magazine, several models are no longer being booked for high profile gigs if their follower account on instagram dips lower than 10,000 people. Kendall Jenner is now the face of the global ambassador for, cosmetics pioneer, Estee Lauder. Estee Lauder brand president, Jane Hertzmark, was quoted saying “[Kendall] is the ultimate Instagirl, and we are excited to leverage her image, voice, energy, and extraordinary social media power to introduce Estée Lauder to millions of young women around the world.” By putting such a heavy emphasis on social media icons, we are once again being shaped not only by their clothes and their faces, but also by their lifestyles. Similarly to Marilyn Monroe, the ideas of these lives are not real or attainable, but they are continued to be branded and packaged as if they were.

Throughout time, within many aspects, women were thought to be different from men. Feminist theory states that women have wrongly been objectified, discriminated against and thought of to be softer and more emotional than men. Women often found themselves living within a patriarchal society, which privileged men to inherently assume power, generally leaving women to assume marital and motherhood roles. Part of feminist conception disputes that women should not inherent marital and motherhood roles on the sole reason of being female, but rather women should be free and equal to assimilate to any role assumed by the male gender. According to Linda Alcoff, professor of philosophy at Hunter College, “for many contemporary feminist theorists, the concept of women is a problem.” Oxford Dictionaries defines feminism as the advocacy of women’s rights on the grounds of political, social, and economic equality to men. During a time when the media begins to shift even more to an idea of beauty rather than a reality, the Digital Media can be continued to be used a platform to create awareness on what is happening. For example, Mary Shelly’s Patchwork girl uses hypertext in order to accurately display how a woman’s body is split into pieces and not seen as a whole. There is an acute measurement of Marilyn Monroe’s entire body shown for the public eye. It is only one example of a patchwork girl, but it is a good foundation to understanding how women are depicted apart. In Patchwork Girl, Shelly Jackson uses hypertext to converse the issues of feminism allowing the readers to come to their own conclusions in a nonlinear way. It is interesting to present a discussion this way because the Internet combats ideas of beauty in a very similar way.

The two generations of E-Lit Separate works like Patchwork Girl with works like Dakota by Oung-hae Chang Heavy Industries, flashing fiction. The first generation uses hypertext and the second-generation uses multimedia and flash images. Both project similar overall messages, but just use different platforms to get across to the reader. Patchwork Girl, although the navigation of it can be frustrating, is not meant to stimulate as much anxiety as work like Dakota that uses flashing to stimulate an idea or an action. Dakota still uses words to reflect an image, but the words flash quickly across the screen with a disarmament of loud music to create distractions and make it harder to read. It has been stated that Dakota is meant to reference a poem by Ezra Pound, but I don’t think that similarities of how the media has become chaotic over the last two decades and the chaos of this work of art can be ignored as simple coincidence. The music used in Dakota itself, jazz, is known for being chaotic and Avant-garde, to have no reason whom rhythm behind it. Trying to read text on top of it can symbolize the way that people have sort through the media on a day-to-day basis in order to understand what is really being said.

Dakota heavily inspired my own project, “The Marilyn Monroe Effect”. Dakota was created in 2002, so I did want to use the idea of chaos to display my message while also trying to make it as relevant as to today as I possibly could. Technology is still advancing and it is continuing to become more and more chaotic. For this reason, I used five different songs and remixed them together to show just how much more anxious the use of media has become. Instead of Jazz music, I used House music because that is the music that is most commonly played at parties and clubs today. I also used the song “Fashonista” by Jimmy James to start the video and then I used to weather warning signal and vhs disturbance to finish the video. I wanted to create a clear line of how the ideas of beauty can still be pulled back to Marilyn Monroe and the warning of how her life was irrevocably destroyed by the media. The main video clip I used was of Kendall Jenner’s Love campaign in which she models while doing voice-over of Marilyn’s voice and music to indicate the level of fiction that stems behind this obsession with icons. I also overlapped different advertisements and digital art to re-emphasize how these types of messages influence society. There is a subtle loop in the video where I repeated one of the Marilyn lines Kendall says to portray how these messages are fed to us over and over again, as well as a couple images of clocks to create the timeless feel to this ongoing problem. All of the images used to overlap the videos are pulled from social media sites such as Pinterest and different magazine advertisements. My overall intention of my work is to use the same form of media that is constantly put in front of us, but with a different filter to attempt to pull out an awareness that is very much needed now.

Works Cited

DAKOTA. Oung-hae Chang Heavy Industries, 2011. Web. 07 May 2017.

Jackson, Shelley. Patchwork Girl. Watertown, Ma.: Eastgate Systems, 2001. Print.

“Miss Representation.” The Representation Project. N.p., n.d. Web. 07 May 2017.

Morgan, Michelle. Marilyn Monroe: Private and Confidential. New York: Skyhorse Pub., 2012. Print.

Muller, Marissa G. “The Kendall Jenner Effect: How Social Media Is Changing Modeling.” MTV News. N.p., 11 May 2015. Web. 07 May 2017.

Reade, Charles. The Complete Works of Charles Reade. New York: Kelmscott Society, n.d. Print.

Spoto, Donald. Marilyn Monroe: The Biography. New York: Cooper Square, 2001. Print.

A penny for my thoughts.

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In times when life touches us with chaos and things that are completely out of our control, I find that gratitude is the best weapon against this natural force from consuming our emotions and our mind.

If you have something to be grateful for it can stand against the weight of any misfortune or circumstance.

I am grateful for my family. I am grateful for my siblings. I am grateful for my nephews. I am grateful for my parents. I am grateful for my family to be. I am grateful for my fiancé; my compass, my love, my best friend and my hero. I am grateful for our two cats, who bring life and joy into the apartment. I am grateful for my true friends who have stood by me for better or for worse and the friends who were temporary, but who made me smile while they were still present in my life. I am grateful to all of the professors and teachers who have supported me inside the classroom and outside. I am grateful for the gifts of talent I have been given; my singing voice, my writing skills and my imagination. I am grateful for my own appreciation and for my love of the things that I am good at. I am grateful for the education I have had and for the ability to have an intelligent mind that will allow me to continue in the future if I permit it. I am grateful for the strength and understanding God has bestowed upon me to help me get through things that I do not understand. I am grateful to live in a country where my health is taken care of. I am grateful that as a woman and as a disabled I do, at least in comparison to other places, have it pretty well and have opportunities that others may not have. I am grateful to be able to write and voice whatever I please without fear of consequence to my safety. I am grateful for the past I have lived and the mistakes and misfortunes I have grown from. I am grateful for my present, for the enormous support from a great list of different people (they know who they are). I am grateful for the future that I may still have, without expectations because I realize that there are things out of my control, just acceptance…and of course gratitude, for the ability to have gone through so much and to be able to handle it with acceptance and grace for that of which I have no control over.

I believe full heartedly that when handled with a list of things we are grateful for we can rise up stronger for the beautiful chaos in the thing that we call life.

Gratitude

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One  thing I’ve come to realize is that life is not fair, and it’s stressful and it’s hard. This is why it is so important to have gratitude. Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. I read that “it turns what we have into enough and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos into clarity, problems into gifts, failures into success, the unexpected into perfect timing and mistakes into important events. Gratitude makes sense of our past…brings peace for today and creates vision for tomorrow.”

The start of my day, meaning at one in the morning, didn’t start how I would’ve wanted it to, but I still find things to be grateful for and I do believe that it is a very important practice not just for those who have suffered, but for everyone because everyone suffers a little at some point. I like the statement so, i’ll repeat it again, gratitude unlocks the fullness of life.

What are you thankful for today?

The Endless Captivity of an Anxious Mind

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It’s 1am right now and my mind is busy fighting a dragon of anxieties and demons with a broken sword to let me get any sleep. So I, as per usual, attempt to vent it out through writing.

The anxiety is the worst at night. I wonder if that is how it is for all people who are hold under its endless captivity.

An anxiety disorder is the most common mental illness, but is often taken less seriously than any other clinical illness. Coming from someone who is actually dealing with this sickness I wish it was taken more seriously.

It’s not exactly curable. When seeking out help you will get a couple dozen of pills thrown at you for a trial and error period and a few coping skills before they throw you back in the real world.

I can’t speak for others, but I don’t find that helpful. The medicine helps me function, but at night I can feel my thoughts racing through my head so quickly that i’m unable to focus on any one in particular. As you might imagine, it’s hard to sleep when your brain is having a marathon.

I think the worst part is never knowing when or why I get anxious. When it’s chronic it can really be triggered by anything, even happiness.

The medication that is prescribed to “treat” it is meant to sedate you and your emotions. I’m personally not a fan of being apart of the walking dead, but the anxiety interrupts my daily functions like driving, going to school, getting out of bed. So, I swallow down the numbing pills and I step through life, occasionally feeling the fleeting emotion of selfness and freedom.

I know true physical illness. I know loss and I know suffering and yet I do not hold those above my mental health.

I think anxiety disorders are hard for people to understand because logically there is supposed to be a cause of the stress and when the conflict is resolved the stress is meant to go away.

I think the most frustrating question I get is, “why are you so anxious” because rarely does my maze like mind allow me to fathom one.

These might be questions that I will never have answers too, but perhaps if I continue to use writing as an outlet I could one day aim for a pulitzer.

My sword might be broken, but I have nothing, but respect for those who share my struggles because even broken we still find ways to keep fighting. Reborn every time with chains around our necks. We may not be the lucky ones, but we are the strong, the brave, the understanding and the survivors in this world.

Words Are Power- Night John

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Let me just say there were scenes in both the movie and the story that were hard to stomach, but it gave me so much more appreciation for the English Field I’m studying.

Words are power in this movie. Words bring education, it brings courage and insight. Words in this movie are forbidden because they could potentially unravel the order of slavery, but that doesn’t stop a few characters from learning them anyways.

It reminds you how powerful words still are today. I believe with education a man or a woman has the ability to change the world. It reminds you not to be scared and to have voice when people don’t allow you to have one.

It is a truly inspirational and moving movie and also an incredible book. It is said that the characters had no hope until they met Night John who taught them to be smarter.

*slight spoilers with sypnosis*

The movie is placed in the middle of the slave era on a southern plantation. The heroine is a curious little girl named Sarmy who’s mother was sold when she was a baby for talking back to the owner for his anger of not having a boy. There is a serious lack of empathy throughout this movie and the reason why I said it is hard to watch because it is an acute portrayal of what slaves went through. They are whipped, humiliated and not observed as humans and have no problem from their owners for having conversations in front of them like they are pieces of furniture, but I digress so I can get to the point of why this movie affected me.

Not all the white characters in this story are strictly evil, some have sympathy when the master does we called “Like training a dog…if you punish her later she wont even remember what for”However, there is only one

The Call and Response music in this movie was magical to see. For those who are familiar with musical history, Call and response singing is a traditional way of communication between the slaves. Often overlooked and a safe way for them to pass messages in the field. They can sing to each other if the master is coming or if they need to communicate.

The character Night John is brought into the story and the little girl is fascinated with his intelligence and demands to learn how to read and write. The other slaves who look out for her beg her not to because education is forbidden for them.

The take away is that education a gift that if known can’t be taken away. Priceless.

Night John does warn her that “Each time you make a letter you have to erase it.” White folks don’t want them to be educated. Knowledge is power. Huge way for slaves to show resistance.

I would say the girl in the story is a little reckless. She steals a bible in her growing urge to practice her letters and the youngest sons letter blocks.However, the more educated she becomes the easier it is for her to manipulate her owners.

In the movie it is shown that someone gets a thumb chopped off for being able to read, which just reiterates the fear of knowledge. Night John explains to Sarmy, “that learning to read is freedom because slavery is bounded by laws and deeds which the slaves cannot read.”

There is a scene when Night John takes the blame for the stolen bible and after he gets a finger cut off the master asks him if he has learned his lesson. He replies that he has and then begins to write the alphabet in the dirt. The letter he spells out is his name. He then tells Sarmy, “when one hand gets cut off, the other grows  back stronger.”

Sarmy is sold in the end, but because of John she has the ability to read and write. As the girl is joined to a line of other slaves, she asks if any of them have tobacco to trade. What has she to give in return? they want to know. And Sarny draws an A in the dirt. She sort fulfills the role in the end of teaching slaves how to read and write. Like Night John said “They have to read and write. We all have to read and write so we can write about this.”

 

P.S. if you have not yet seen the movie or read the book please do so. I do think this is a story that would benefit everyone. It’s packed full of lessons and history that shouldn’t be forgotten or ignored.

 

Caged Bird Sings

 

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There is a natural order to things. A natural flow, i’d say. Life has a way of pushing you in a direction, down a road and making pieces of a puzzle fit perfectly together so when it comes down to it you look at this thing that makes perfect sense and you think, “okay not bad, this could be good. Why should I do anything different”. This life could fit inside a frame and look amazing, but if you really look at these stills…what happens in between them? When it’s not the image of perfection what is it? It looks perfect on the outside and you feel like you’re saying all of the things like the universe handed you a script, highlighted words and said speak here and everything will be okay.

How long have I told myself “this is going to be good?” How long have a waited for a future that I somehow believe to know that is coming, but I am still unable to feel. Is it me? Am I supposed to continue to listen to the voice that tells me that I’m building something that will be worth it. That i’m going to be happy?

People call me brave, but the truth is I’ve never been a risk taker. I don’t jump for the feeling of love because love doesn’t come with security. I don’t really make the effort to study abroad because I’m scared to be alone. I let myself be taken care of because it’s easy, because it’s nice, because it’s secure.

However, I can’t say this is the person I want to be. Are the people we want to be different from the people we are?

For my the first part of this life, I have felt like a caged bird and now I want to break free, but I feel trapped in the hands of a life that I chose years ago.

 

 

The “F” Word

 

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The role of a feminist is often misconstrued by the public and reduced down to some pretty degrading stereotypes. Some of the questions that were debunked were at a seminar I attended such as; feminists hate me, feminists don’t believe in marriage, feminists are angry; feminists aren’t feminine etc. All were proved to be false. Three presenters further explicated the role of feminists after the demonstration.

The first speaker was a man; which in my opinion spoke in waves simply because one of the common beliefs about feminists is that they are solely women. Which clearly is not the case. He started his speech with a bit of fire stating that although he had a class during this time he did not find it a good enough reason to not be there. He explained that life acts as a way to present us with a series of sometimes completely logical excuses to not put in the effort to create equality for women. However as long as women are not treated equally there can be no excuse for a person to not act. It impacts us all. He explained that he teaches philosophy, but tries to put in as many female writers into the curriculum as possible. Although he has often been ridiculed for it by his colleagues he finds that women need to recognized as great philosophers in history as well.

The Second speaker spoke primarily on white feminism. She made the audience understand on a more personal level of what white feminism was by using current pop culture events like Miley Cyrus and Taylor Swift. Both of which have a lot of voice right now in the media and are considered to be feminist. The problem is that they focus solely on their own problems and forget to branch out to other races and sexual orientations. White feminism is not usually something purposefully done. It is easy to forget about the things that don’t include yourself and since white women are typically privileged in the ideas of an ignorant society; their problems are what are heard

The third speaker was an African American woman who was a previous Aztec and now is working for the LAPD. She spent her presentation talking mostly about police and how they are constantly misunderstood because of the media and how it is on both parts of the civilian and the officer to coexist. Regrettably, I didn’t see how this correlated much with feminists since she didn’t really mention any women, but I suppose that’s just a reminder to me that I still have a lot to learn and feminism is a broad concept.

All three presentations were very different, with three very different people, but that just shows that feminism cannot be branded as any specific topic. There is a lot that goes into being a feminist and working for equal rights goes beyond equal pay and sex. It is up to everyone to act towards a common goal and o stop making excuses to put it off.

There’s Still Hope

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The speech is annotated, borrowed from a motivational speaker, but I had to post, not only for myself and to say thank you for my own amazing support system; Alberto, my mother, my father, my siblings, my friends, but this is also for the people like me who hit the bottom and are trying to find a way back up. ❤

 

“I want you to close your eyes please. I want to ask you how are you? What heaviness are you carrying? What tears do you hold back? What pain, what fears, are kept inside?

The fear that we have is that we are going to be alone, because if they don’t like you then who will? If they don’t accept you then who will? And I started believing that I was not good enough. I started believing that I was a failure. That I would never be someone that people would like; that people would respect.

I want to ask you who are you going to believe in yourself? Are you going to believe every one else’s judgement of you? Are you going to believe when people say you’re a failure.

You don’t have to hold on to these fears. You just take one step at a time. not to say that these fears will completely disappear, but, can you forgive those who hurt you because that’s where healing starts. Every time someone puts you down, will you make the decision to bring someone else up?

Picture yourself in an open area where there are no bodies and no shelter and there is a storm above you. The storm represents the situations in your life. you don’t tell anybody what you’re going through because first of all they wouldn’t understand and second of all they can’t even help you anyways. You’re in this storm and you’re down on your knees, cold and you’re weak and you feel like this is the end.

What kind of purpose do we have to live? Are you just here to live to die? I mean is there not a purpose for me? Is there not a purpose in life?

Are you not still here?

There are some things in life that are out of your control, that you can’t change and you’ve got to live with. The choice that we have though is to either give up or keep on going.

And it’s not the end until you’ve given up.

You are still here. And just the fact that you’re here should persuade you that you have another chance to get back up.

You don’t have to do this alone. Hold on to that person who you think might help you. And imagine them right now saying that they can’t stop the storm right now, but they will hold you and keep you warm until the storm passes. Because when they hold you the storm is still there, but it’s okay because there with you all the way.

Don’t give up. There’s still hope.”

 

Smash The Patriarchy

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fem·i·nism; the advocacy of women’s rights on the grounds of political, social, and economic equality to men.

Feminism teaches that women who have a lot of sex are not dirty, unworthy of respect or worthless. Feminism teaches that a woman’s body is her own damn business.

Feminism is a good reminder that a woman does not have to be like a man to be equal. The fight for equality is so that we can shake hands and there are no double standards.

Feminism is for everyone; men, women, both…. A huge part of being a feminist is giving other woman the ability to make choices that you wouldn’t necessarily make yourself.

I think Emma Watson, the UN women goodwill ambassador, said it best, “If not me, who? If not now, when?” I started my school’s Women’s Outreach Association as an intern and then later became an office for one  semester and now I have felt a personal responsibility for helping spread feminism. I want to put my hands in planning events so that the issues with white feminism, gender double standards, domestic violence etc can continue to be subjects that are heard on campus and so that we can create a pathway towards change.