Subverting the “Girlie” Calendar: February


Ms. February Make me the heart of February, please, her sweet and frilly be-mine valentine, shot through and through with love incarnadine and holy scented essence of heart’s ease. A “girlie calendar” makes one think of men’s lockers, walls of auto repair shops or a military barracks: They’re typically collections of nude or scantily dressed […]

White, Male

Oscar Crop

The 2015 Oscar nominations, announced this morning, loudly echo Martha Lauzen’s most recent report on the “celluloid ceiling” for women in Hollywood. What Lauzen said about her findings can equally be said of today’s nominees: [They] drive home the point that men continue to construct the vast majority of the visual and aural worlds featured […]

Breaking Through Hollywood’s Celluloid Ceiling

Ava DuVernay

Amidst the pomp and circumstance of the 72nd Annual Golden Globe Awards Sunday night, it’s easy to get swept up in the opulence that is Hollywood and not look behind the shiny veneer of the television and film industry. While there was deserved hoopla over the feminist moments of the evening, with wins for up-and-comer […]

Selma Shows Why We Need More Black Women Filmmakers


Last year was a stellar one for black women filmmakers. First, there was Amma Asante’s exquisitely filmed Belle (starring an impressive Gugu Mbatha-Raw), followed later by Gina Prince-Bythewood’s emotionally layered Beyond the Lights (also starring Mbatha-Raw). The year finally closed out with Ava DuVernay’s critically acclaimed historical drama, Selma. However, while Belle was summarily dismissed by movie critics as a “black Jane […]

The Many Truths of “Selma”


Instead of getting lost in the “fact” checking about whose depiction of President Lyndon B. Johnson is correct, let us get clear about the important lessons that the film Selma can teach us all—especially white people. White racism was and is ugly and murderous. Black civil rights activists were courageous and willing to die for […]

Nicki Minaj and the Inevitable Politicization of Celebrity Abortions


Reprinted with permission from RH Reality Check.  Read the original here. If you ever want to see a perfect example of how the mainstream media perpetuates abortion stigma, look no further than the reactions to Nicki Minaj’s recent Rolling Stone interview, in which she discussed an abortion she had as a teenager. In a world where most […]

Subverting the “Girlie” Calendar: January


Ms. January All January wanted was a home, and not these crows, and not these frozen trees, limbful of snow. It was a home, with these: a door to close, a chest of drawers, a comb.   A “girlie calendar” makes one think of men’s lockers, walls of auto repair shops or a military barracks: […]

Barbara Nessim: Five Feminist Decades of Art


Of  the crop of stellar illustrators America produced during the culture-rocking early 1960s, few have been more notable, enduring and, I would say, magnificent than Barbara Nessim, whose work–though often commissioned for magazines, posters and ads–can as easily be considered art with a capital A. But Nessim,  a woman from the Bronx whose talent burst […]

Crank These Feminist Tunes on New Year’s Eve


As we bring 2014 to a close, we celebrate a year of feminism—a year in which the movement rose to national spotlight (quite literally), sparking conversations and empowerment on a grand scale. For those partaking in New Year’s Eve celebrations (and for those camped out with a good book), we’ve compiled some feminist gems to […]

The Year of the Fighter: The Top 10 Feminist Films of 2014


Hollywood has long been a boy’s club, but this year, women made a dent in the door. From bow-wielding revolutionaries to outspoken intellectuals to ordinary women with the will to change the world, women warriors, both onscreen and off, challenged audiences to reimagine women as masters of their own destinies. Though the battle is far […]