This past fall, the students in my Fierce and Fabulous: Feminist Women Writers, Artists, and Activists course at the Little Red School House & Elisabeth Irwin High School (LREI) took the work we do in this class to a whole new level. They not only launched their feminist class blog F to the Third Power but also launched their voices as young high school feminists into their communities and the media.
I am particularly proud of the myriad ways in which these students have leveraged their feminist blogging and their work as activists to make an impact on the issues they care about such as street harassment, sexual assault and rape, the sexualization of girls and women in the media, and what it means to be a male ally. From blog posts to speaking engagements, my students are definitely becoming the inspiring voices of today’s feminist movement.
Below is a round-up of their top 10 moments in the spotlight:
2. Within weeks, Courtney Martin at Feministing quickly discovered my students’ blog. Shortly afterwards, Gabriela Resto-Montero from DNAinfo.com also wrote about my students’ blogging and their commitment to activism.
3. Cameron Diggs, a student in the feminism class, writes a guest blog post for Feministe about her award-winning human trafficking video.
4. When Emily May, Executive Director of Hollaback, which uses mobile technology to fight street harassment, visited my class, she invited students to share their personal testimonies on the Hollaback website. By invitation from May, my feminism student Grace Tobin testified at the November New York City Council hearing on street harassment and was later interviewed by CBS and the New York Post. She wrote a blog post about her experience doing both at F to the Third Power.
5. Street harassment activist and scholar, Holly Kearl, features Grace Tobin’s testimony on her important Stop Street Harassment site as well as links Grace’s blog post from F to the Third Power. Ms. Magazine blog also quotes Grace in a post about her testimony.
6. Nancy Schwartzman from “The Line” campaign, screened her film and talked to my students about sexual assault. Later, she featured my students on “The Line” blog. My students also blogged about watching her film and their thoughts on sexual assault and rape.
8. To enormous acclaim, half of the students in the feminism course spoke at the TEDxYouth conference about finding their feminist voices.
9. At the end of the semester, students wrote about their interpretations of Ntozake Shange’s classic choreopoem for colored girls. One male student wrote about Tyler Perry’s version, and wasn’t too happy that the film did not live up to Shange’s feminist vision.
10. Boys can be feminists too: the boys in the course expressed strong and inspiring views about what it means to be a male feminist ally. As a result, their blog posts are featured on the SPARK Summit site.