2014's Feminist Highlights

While 2014 saw many feminist tragedies (like the suicide of Leelah Alcorn, the kidnapping of 200 girls by Boko Haram, and generally sexist and racist dialogue concerning black female popstars like Nicki Minaj), there have been some pretty incredible feminist highlights. Here are my top 6!

#1 Mo’Ne Davis

In 2014 Mo’Ne Davis redefined what it means to “Throw like a girl.” A 13 year old

baseball pitcher from Pennsylvania became the sensation of the Little League World

Series. With her 70 mile-per-hour fast ball, flawless control, and consistent strike outs,

she has been the star of the 2014 little league baseball world. She was on the cover of

Sport’s Illustrated, been on nearly every major TV network, and was the sole reason that

the final game of the Little League World Series was the most watched Little League

game in ESPN history. Although her team did not win, Mo’Ne set new standards for

female and male athletes of all ages.

 

#2 Yes means Yes and reopening the wider discussion of Sexual Assault on Campus

With sexual assault on college campuses finally being addressed, California passed the

Yes means Yes law. The law sought to change the way that colleges investigate sexual

assault accusations by using yes means yes to “an affirmative, unambiguous and

conscious decision” by both parties to engage in sexual activity. Along with this law

came the countless brave young people to come forward with their stories of sexual

assault and how their school and society failed to protect them. Such as Columbia

Student Emma Sulkowicz who walked around campus to each of her classes carrying the

mattress she had been raped on to send a message to the administration who failed to

protect her that she, and other victims of assault were no longer going to allow

universities to cover up their cases and to protect their attackers.

 

#3 Malala wins the Nobel Peace Prize

On Friday October 10, 2014 Malala Yousafzai was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for her

battle against the suppression of children’s right’s to education. This award was not only

earned but such a win for girl’s rights. This award sends the message that suppression

only brings strength and as Malala said in her acceptance speech, “They thought that

the bullets would silence us. But they failed, … And then, out of that silence came

thousands of voices. … Weakness, fear and hopelessness died. Strength, power, and

courage was born.”

 

#4 Laverne Cox and the Trans* Rights Movement

This year has also brought about an open discussion of trans* Rights. With famous

actresses such as Laverne Cox and Erika Ervin in Orange is the new Black and American

Horror Story being brought into the public eye, so has the conversation about trans*

rights. Laverne Cox was the first ever trans* woman to be nominated for an emmy and

has been celebrated by all of Hollywood for her role in Orange is the New Black. With

this platform she has been able to make huge leaps in the battle trans* rights and talk

about the problem that is violence against trans* women and men.

 

#5 Celebrated men coming to Feminism through Aziz Ansari

In October, Aziz Ansari went on David Letterman to talk about why he is a feminist. He

talked about how everyone should be a feminist because if you look up feminism in the

dictionary, it is someone who believes men and women have equal rights. And if you

don’t believe that, maybe there is something else wrong with you. He talked about how

the word feminism has become synonymous with man-hating and angry women and

that we need to take back the word and redefine it by ALL identifying ourselves as

feminists.

 

#6 Beyonce

I don’t think you could talk about feminism in 2014 without bringing up Beyonce. She

made waves by publically identifying herself as a feminist during her VMA performance,

and released ***Flawless, a pro-girl anthem in which she used reflections from

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. She wrote an unbelievable essay for the Shriver Report in

which she discussed the real problems with gender inequality and what needs to

happen in order for boys and girls to be equal. She made feminism mainstream while

bringing real issues to the forefront of international media.

 

This 2015, I hope to continue to see the growth and progression of girls. Here's to 2015!


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  • published this page in Blog 2015-09-13 20:54:18 -0400
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