What NOT to Say to a Teen Girl on Thanksgiving


As the mother of two teenage daughters, I’ve struggled through a few holiday dinners that began as fun and festive and quickly turned awkward and painful. I’ve watched older family members start off with what they thought was good-natured teasing and seen one teenager or another grow more sullen and unresponsive as the meal went […]

Your Guide to Feminist Holiday Gift-Giving: Girls Edition


Reprinted with permission from the American Association of University Women With the holiday season fast approaching, shopping for the girls in your life might seem as easy as heading to the pink aisles of stores. But with several major retailers, including Target and Amazon, doing away with gender-based toy labeling, toy aisles are finally starting […]

A Year Later, the World’s Girls are Still Waiting


Seven hundred million women alive today were married as children. Robbed of their childhood, marital vows for girls typically mean an end to education, early childbearing that puts their still-developing bodies at risk, a life of servitude, increased exposure to violence and abuse and limited opportunities to make choices about their own future. Child marriage […]

What Scandal’s Civil Rights-Era Critique Says About Contemporary Black Women and Girls


“…Do the impossible, raise an African American girl who felt as fully entitled to own the world as much as any white man,” I recalled that line, uttered in a recent episode of Scandal, when I saw the viral video of a white South Carolina school police officer violently ripping a Black teenage girl from […]

This Girl Genius Will Blow Your Mind, Make You Wish She Was Your BFF

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What did you do when you were 13 years old? If you’re like me, you raced bikes with the neighborhood kids, tore your way through the entire Baby-Sitters Club canon (even the Super Specials) and choreographed elaborate dance routines with your BFFs to the pulsing, booty-wiggling beats of C+ C Music Factory. But if you’re […]

7,000 L.A. Schoolgirls Get Inspired by He Named Me Malala

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“Malala really wanted to be here today…but she’s in school.” This opening remark from Davis Guggenheim, the Oscar-winning director of new documentary He Named Me Malala, was answered with deafening cheers and claps from an audience of 7,000 schoolgirls in downtown Los Angeles’ Microsoft Theater. The girls had packed the venue for the West Coast screening premiere of […]

I’m a Feminist, and a Sorority Girl


People often ask me, as if I’m somehow lying to them, How can you love your sorority and be a feminist? To me, that question misses the point entirely: I feel no conflict, because to me, sororities are feminist. I watched the University of Alabama Alpha Phi recruitment video, released last week, with horror and […]

6 Celebrity Teens Who Have Spoken Up for Gender Equality


Recently, 16-year old actor Amandla Stenberg drew both praise and criticism when she called out reality TV star Kylie Jenner for posting a photo of herself to Instagram wearing cornrows. Even though Stenberg was criticized by adults and attacked by many of Jenner’s 29.5 million social media followers, she didn’t back down from her point: If Jenner […]

Why Kylie Jenner Gets to Be “Just a Kid,” But Amandla Stenberg Doesn’t

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Another day, another incident of unapologetic cultural appropriation. Recently, reality TV star Kylie Jenner posted a selfie to her Instagram where she was sporting cornrows and mean-mugging the camera. The photo quickly drew criticism from her 29.5 million followers, some of which came from Hunger Games actor Amandla Stenberg. In a comment on Jenner’s Instagram that has […]

A Girl Scout Group Returned a $100,000 Gift for a Great Reason


The Girl Scouts may be more often associated with Tagalongs than transgender activism, but that could soon change. The Girl Scouts of Western Washington recently received a check for $100,000—nearly a quarter of the council’s annual financial assistance funding for girls who need scholarships. But the gift—from a donor who has not been publicly identified—came with a condition: Please […]