8 Steps That Explain Why Women Stay in Abusive Relationships

This article was first published by The Huffington Post The question that is always asked of victims of domestic abuse is “Why don’t/didn’t you just leave?” I know sometimes even victims don’t really understand why. I’ve heard that question over and over. While there are many different reasons we give for not leaving, there is […]

Bearing the Untold: Why We Need to Hear Stories of Sexual Assault

It’s a gray, rainy afternoon at the School of the Art Institute. A woman excitedly taps me on the shoulder, “Is it OK if I touch them?” She gestures to my books on display. “Please!” I say. “That’s what they’re there for.” For anyone else this interaction might seem odd, but I’ve gotten used to […]

Why #IBelieveHer

The Jian Ghomeshi trial and verdict in Canada have enraged and/or saddened an entire continent of women. Because every woman has a story from when she was a girl, or a teen, or from last week, with the same basic plot: he was believed, she wasn’t. This is mine. It so happens that my fate […]

Trauma in the Courtroom: Jian Ghomeshi, the Verdict and the Victims

Jian Ghomeshi, former host of the popular Canadian radio show “Q,” was acquitted Thursday on four counts of sexual assault and one count of overcoming resistance by choking. Ghomeshi was charged in 2014 after at least 10 alleged victims came forward—some to police, some to the press—with reports of abuse (the allegations of three women were […]

For Us

It was around 4 a.m. on a Sunday morning and I was sitting on a bench in my college’s police department waiting outside a closed door. My eyes were heavy and sore. I stared down at my boots, the leather toes milky and stained from sloshing through snow and salt on the February city streets. […]

“Make Rape Legal” Dude Plans Worldwide Straight-Guy Meetups, Cancels Them

It’s been widely reported that followers of Daryush Valizadeh, the anti-feminist, homophobic and misogynistic writer behind Return of Kings—who has also advocated for the legalization of rape on private property—would be gathering in secret locations around the globe for a series of meetups. On Wednesday, however, Valizadeh, also known as Roosh V or Roosh Vorek, announced on the Return of Kings […]

Rape: It’s Not About “Miscommunication”

*The author of this piece wishes to remain anonymous. “I was raped many years ago, by someone that at the time I considered a close friend,” I was surprised to hear myself say. I was talking to a group of friends when our conversation drifted to the latest sexual scandal; was it the Rabbi in […]

Domestic Violence Is a Human Rights Issue

I spent more than a decade of my life, nights and days, thinking and writing about violence against women. It all started in the late ‘70s in Lima, Peru. We, the inexperienced but resolute primeval feminists in the group Alimuper (acronym for Alliance for the Liberation of Peruvian Women), had been battling to stop, punish […]

Former Police Officer Found Guilty of Sexually Assaulting 13 Black Women

After 45 hours of deliberations, a jury found former Oklahoma City police officer Daniel Holtzclaw guilty on 18 charges, including rape and sexual battery, for assaulting 13 black women over the course of seven months while on duty. Holtzclaw was found guilty on five counts of first- and second-degree rape, six counts of sexual battery, […]

Hollywood, the Sexual Violence Factory

“The statement that the primary function of movies is entertainment is clearly not the end of the question. All entertainment is education in some way, many times more effective than schools because of the appeal to the emotions rather than to the intellect.” — Hortense Powdermaker, Hollywood, the Dream Factory As of this writing, more […]