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The false empowerment of naked dresses

In May 2015, I wrote a blog for About-Face about Taylor Swift’s recently-released video for “Bad Blood.” In the post, I argued that the scantily clad women in the video were “devalued from being strong warriors to being traditionally sexy females with bodies that exist to be objectified.” I posted it to my personal social media pages, and… Continue Reading →

The blank space Taylor Swift fills

What do you think of when you hear the name Taylor Swift? Perhaps the girl who writes a song about every breakup she goes through — or just the overly attached girlfriend who can never maintain a relationship long enough to be satisfied. Despite Taylor’s connection with developing females for over six years, people still… Continue Reading →

Living in an age of celebrity feminism

The Oscars are like prom for Hollywood: a time for glitz, glamour, and celebration of (debatably) the best films of the year. They’ve also steadily gained a reputation as a hub for sexism disguised as admiration, as women on the red carpet are inevitably asked, “Who are you wearing?” and consequently criticized or applauded all… Continue Reading →

“Era of the Big Booty”? No thanks.

I’m not a prude, and I don’t like to judge other women’s personal choices. But I do care an awful lot about how women are portrayed (and portray themselves!) in the media. We’re now averaging 13.6 hours of media consumption per person per day, which means the stories we see played out in the media… Continue Reading →

Pharrell vs. Beyoncé: Have feminists let men off the hook?

Are feminists forcing women to achieve a higher standard than men? Pharrell Williams, wearer of Arby’s-shaped hats and the artist behind one of the biggest hits of the moment, Happy, has recently declared himself a feminist and received a fairly warm welcome compared to his fellow feminist, Beyoncé Knowles. Celebrity feminists like Williams and Knowles have… Continue Reading →

Mixed signals: football and feminism

Many people think of football as the classic man’s sport. Certainly, the game appeals to some basic masculine desires like physical strength, competition, and bravado. But many women enjoy the sport as well; things like loyalty to a region or player, a sense of community, or even just love for the game are all reasons… Continue Reading →

Who run the (advertising) world? (Beyoncé)

A couple of weeks ago, Beyoncé debuted her new song from a forthcoming album, “Standing on the Sun” in a commercial for H&M. Earlier in the year she launched a new $50 million campaign with Pepsi, including commercials, visual ads, and limited-edition Beyoncé Pepsi cans. Of course, Beyoncé also sang at President Obama’s Inauguration and… Continue Reading →

Jay-Z’s not changing his tune or his lyrics… yet.

The birth of Jay-Z’s daughter has not inspired him to alter the degrading language frequently used in his music. Yet. I must admit, I don’t keep up with celebrity gossip. In fact, I was shocked to hear that Beyoncé had given birth, as it was only recently I heard she was pregnant. Then my co-worker… Continue Reading →

Dressing for whose shape, exactly?

A few days ago, I heard a young woman, about my age, express the sentiment, “Women should really dress for the body type they have, not the one they want.” She isn’t alone in her thinking. It seems finding flattering clothing is a universal concern for women. In department store dressing rooms, we search for… Continue Reading →