Monday, May 18, 2015

It wasn’t until my Junior year of college, when I took my first women’s studies course, that I realized I had received absolutely no education on women’s history. I had read women’s literature prior (The Bell Jar, Girl, Interrupted) but I always viewed these as fictionalized pieces of work. These were also works that I sought out and read in my personal time, and not as part of any curriculum. Therefore, they were not to be taken as seriously as the academic texts I read in school.
After I took that first women’s studies course, everything changed because I had finally found an area of study that I wanted to dedicate my life to and become an advocate for. I loved seeing the wheels in the heads of sorority sisters turn when they considered why they really wore makeup. And most of all, I loved that fiction became a conductor for social change.
When college ended and I moved back to Omaha, I felt incredibly lucky to meet and become friends with so many amazing women who had similar views and experiences as I did. I learned so much from these women, and now I’m going to try to put that knowledge and awareness of the political, economic and social inequalities that face women today, out into the world in hopes of enacting change.
So my questions are these. How in 2015 do we not have:
- Primary or secondary curriculum focusing on the efforts, movements and successes of women throughout history
- Affordable and convenient child care options for mothers
- Legitimate research and testing on female contraception(s), affordable and available abortions, pregnancy counseling, and accessible post-partum resources for ALL women
- A culture that teaches boys and men to respect girls and women. A culture that stops blaming women for experiencing sexual, physical and verbal harassment. A culture that also is inclusive of the experiences of women of color and transgendered individuals.
I’m angry that we live in a world where women are still treated like second class citizens. Where we are not in charge of our own bodies. And guess what? IT’S OK FOR WOMEN TO BE ANGRY.

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