In Somali culture hyper-masculinity is the most desired attribute in men. Femininity signifies softness, a lightness of touch: qualities that are aggressively pressed onto young girls and women. When a woman does not possess feminine traits, it is considered an act of mild social resistance. This applies equally to men who are not overtly masculine but the stakes are considerably amplified. If a Somali man is considered feminine he is deemed weak, helpless, pitiful: The underlying message being that femininity is inherently inferior to masculinity.

Variants of this thinking extend across most cultures, belief systems, races and sexualities: Western gay culture is as obsessed with exaggerated masculine traits as the patriarchs of Somali clans. Femininity is predominantly perceived as an unappealing quality, a canceling-out of hyper-valorised masculine traits, with effemiphobia reaching its natural end-point on the online gay dating circuit with the infamous “No fems” or “be straight-acting” tags that pop up on most profiles.

In the case of gay men one could argue that decades if not centuries of stigmatization have created a culture of conformity fueled by internalized homophobia: The accusation — and it is framed as an accusation — that same-sex-attracted men fail to be authentically masculine has left an enduring mark. But where does that leave everyone else who doesn’t fit the “straight-acting” tag? After all weren’t the Stonewall riots, the birth of the gay civil rights movement, kick-started by the transgender community, drag queens and effeminate young men — the most outcast members of the gay community? Shouldn’t they be our heroes?


Femininity in Men is a Form of Power | Diriye Osman for the Huffington Post Gay Voices (via gaywrites)

Because girls are told to cover up instead of boys being told not to touch the master pieces.

Because women should be treated like people, not like objects created simply for the sake of a man’s pleasure.

Because I am allowed to feel offended when a guy looks at my breasts instead of looking at my face when we are having a conversation.

Because lesbian porn for the pleasure of men is seen as acceptable, but being lesbian is not.

Because being a girl shouldn’t be an insult.

Because the chances of getting raped as a woman are 1 in 6.

Because 1 in 10 rape victims are men.

Because women are told they aren’t woman enough and because men are told they aren’t man enough.

Because men should be able to display emotions freely without being called a pussy by their peers.

Because girls are always praised on their looks instead of their mental abilities and talents.

Because women with the same education as men don’t get the same positions on the work floor.

Because women should be treated with respect instead of being degraded.

Because sexist jokes aren’t funny.

Because men and boys get raped too but are more often than not told to keep quiet and are hardly ever taken seriously.

Because rape shouldn’t be blamed on the victim but on the jackass who thought it was okay to force himself on someone.

Because women should have the rights to their own bodies, everywhere in the world.

Because marriages are still arranged between girls and men three or four times their age.

Because young girls feel pressure to have sex with their boyfriends.

Because women feel they have to be sexy.

Because talented female authors get less praise for their books than males.

Because girls are called prude when they decide not to have sex, but are sluts when they do.

Because I shouldn’t need a man’s consent.

Because girls with large breasts are slut shamed.

Because girls with small breasts are told no man will ever want them if they don’t grow a bigger pair.

Because women are taught not to provoke men, but men aren’t taught to behave themselves.

Because telling a man you’re not interested won’t make him back off, but telling him you have a boyfriend will because no man would touch another man’s property.

Because women are seen as figurines men possess in the first place.

Because the choice of my clothes should not affect the respect I am treated with.

Because I chose to wear a bikini, but you had no right to invade my personal space to see me in my underwear.

Because boys will be boys is not a valid excuse.

Because hormones don’t turn men into dicks, they do.

Because girls have dress codes at school because boys won’t control themselves.

Because men who stand up for women’s rights are called girls and pussies and aren’t treated with respect, even though they are using their brains.

Because there is too much pressure on men to be masculine.

Because no matter what we do, we women are always at fault.

Because me refusing to have sex with you does not make me a slut or a whore.

Because being friendzoned is a term invented to make girls feel bad about turning a boy down.

Because middle aged men shouldn’t make sexual advances towards me.

Because being nice to me doesn’t automatically mean I should open my legs for you. Being nice to someone is respectful. Not a method for you to get girls into bed, asshole.

Because a can of pepper spray shouldn’t equal safety.

Because men get mad when we treat them as predators, but we have no right to object when we are treated as prey.

Because the boy who grabbed my ass in the hallway at school should have been punished and I shouldn’t have been told off for wearing a skirt.

Because slut walks shouldn’t be necessary and all rapists should be convicted.

Because women shouldn’t be seen as the weaker sex. Do we need to remind you that women gave birth to your sorry asses?

Because if I ever have a daughter I want her to grow up in a world without so many prejudices against women. I want her to be surprised and enraged when I tell her that women weren’t always treated equally to men. I want her to be able to achieve whatever she wants in life and I want her to grow up loving herself instead of being shamed into thinking that if she doesn’t meet certain standards set by men, she isn’t worth it.
But most importantly, I not only want this for my future daughter, I want this for every girl around the globe because we are all worth it. You are all worth it. And you deserve to be treated that way.


colleenclarkart:

Look at this terrifying self portrait I did for my portrait drawing class last semester and never uploaded!!! It’s called “Good Morning” and it is about how makeup is difficult and scary.

colleenclarkart:

Look at this terrifying self portrait I did for my portrait drawing class last semester and never uploaded!!! It’s called “Good Morning” and it is about how makeup is difficult and scary.

http://shamelesslyunladylike.tumblr.com/post/88753785978/gender-non-conforming-women-are-not-ugly-lazy-or


shamelesslyunladylike:

Gender non-conforming women are not ugly, lazy or ungroomed.

Gender non-conforming women are not masculine.

Gender non-conforming girls are not “actually boys”.

Gender-non conforming women are calling bullshit on the idea that being a woman is directly related to a certain kind of posturing and…

america-wakiewakie:

Arizona Professor Offers Extra Credit To Female Students Who Stop Shaving Their Armpits | Think Progress
Putting down your razor can lift your G.P.A. at Arizona State University.
Professor Breanne Fahs offers female students extra-credit if they “stop shaving their legs and underarms for ten weeks during the semester while keeping a journal to document their experiences.” For Fahs, who teaches women and gender studies, the purpose is to get students thinking critically about societal norms and gender roles.
A similar opportunity is available to men in Fahs’ classes who recieve extra credit for shaving all of their hair from the neck down.
One student, Stephanie Robinson, described it as a “life-changing experience“:

Many of my friends didn’t want to work out next to me or hear about the assignment, and my mother was distraught at the idea that I would be getting married in a white dress with armpit hair. I also noticed the looks on faces of strangers and people around campus who seemed utterly disgusted by my body hair. It definitely made me realize that if you’re not strictly adhering to socially prescribed gender roles, your body becomes a site for contestation and public opinion.

Men seemed to have an easier time with it since some degree of “manscaping” has become accepted, or even expected.
The norm of women shaving body hair dates back to an effort by Gillette to expand their market for razors. Starting around 1915, Gillette started a campaign “denouncing the (previously inoffensive) female underarm hair as ‘unsightly’, ‘masculine’ and ‘unclean’.” In the 1920s, they expanded their efforts to leg hair, glamorizing “a smooth, silky leg.”
Still, “[b]efore the first world war, virtually no American woman shaved her legs. By 1964, 98% of women under the age of 44 did so.”
In 2010, Mo’Nique created a minor stir by appearing at the Golden Globes with unshaven legs. This year some celebrities, including Cameron Diaz, have been speaking out for more tolerance for women’s choices.

Fahs received an award from the American Psychological Association in recognition of her program and has been contacted by “faculty members at other universities are considering using the exercise in their classes.”
(Photo Credit: Ben Hopper)

The bits of history mentioned here are fascinating.

america-wakiewakie:

Arizona Professor Offers Extra Credit To Female Students Who Stop Shaving Their Armpits | Think Progress

Putting down your razor can lift your G.P.A. at Arizona State University.

Professor Breanne Fahs offers female students extra-credit if they “stop shaving their legs and underarms for ten weeks during the semester while keeping a journal to document their experiences.” For Fahs, who teaches women and gender studies, the purpose is to get students thinking critically about societal norms and gender roles.

A similar opportunity is available to men in Fahs’ classes who recieve extra credit for shaving all of their hair from the neck down.

One student, Stephanie Robinson, described it as a “life-changing experience“:

Many of my friends didn’t want to work out next to me or hear about the assignment, and my mother was distraught at the idea that I would be getting married in a white dress with armpit hair. I also noticed the looks on faces of strangers and people around campus who seemed utterly disgusted by my body hair. It definitely made me realize that if you’re not strictly adhering to socially prescribed gender roles, your body becomes a site for contestation and public opinion.

Men seemed to have an easier time with it since some degree of “manscaping” has become accepted, or even expected.

The norm of women shaving body hair dates back to an effort by Gillette to expand their market for razors. Starting around 1915, Gillette started a campaign “denouncing the (previously inoffensive) female underarm hair as ‘unsightly’, ‘masculine’ and ‘unclean’.” In the 1920s, they expanded their efforts to leg hair, glamorizing “a smooth, silky leg.”

Still, “[b]efore the first world war, virtually no American woman shaved her legs. By 1964, 98% of women under the age of 44 did so.”

In 2010, Mo’Nique created a minor stir by appearing at the Golden Globes with unshaven legs. This year some celebrities, including Cameron Diaz, have been speaking out for more tolerance for women’s choices.

Fahs received an award from the American Psychological Association in recognition of her program and has been contacted by “faculty members at other universities are considering using the exercise in their classes.”

(Photo Credit: Ben Hopper)

The bits of history mentioned here are fascinating.

acacia-ramone:

"Wearing a dress shows I can be as feminine as I want. I’m a heterosexual… big deal. But if I was a homosexual, it wouldn’t matter either."

- Kurt Cobain

femininitythefword:

Actor and feminist, Terry Crews, sheds light on the whole “man up” ideology that young boys are taught in early stages of life. Boys should not play with certain toys that aren’t Tonka Trucks or G.I. Joe’s. Boys should never cry because that is what girls do. Boys should not… blah, blah, blah. 

When boys are taught to “man up,” society compares weakness with femininity, and sometimes just being a female is considered weakness, How many times have you heard “Don’t be a pussy” come out the mouths of teenage boys and grown men? Society associates having a “pussy” with weakness. Women are emotional and fragile creatures in a male dominant society and in order for this dominance to remain, men must act like a “man.” A “man” within societal standards is strong, emotionless, intelligent, and aggressive (not necessarily violent, but aggressive in terms of determination and work ethic). To be a “man” society forces men and young boys to suppress what makes them human: emotions, feelings, compassion.

As Terry Crews points out in this interview with Larry King, within the African American community, men are pressured to act a certain way by society. There is a stigma that surrounds African American men, the media portrays them as aggressive, violent, and generally what society expects from a “man.” Men are told to “not be so sensitive” and “don’t be such a girl” when it comes to issues that involve their emotions and feelings. If someone is offended they have every damn right to be upset, sensitivity is not solely for women, sensitivity and feeling are what make you human. Being “feminine,” “sensitive,” or a “girl” does not make you weak. It makes you human.

wgsn:

Hair set blowing in the wind in Petrina Hicks newest collection named ‘Satirical Universe’ exploring contemporary femininity with fantastic thought provoking images.

wgsn:

Hair set blowing in the wind in Petrina Hicks newest collection named ‘Satirical Universe’ exploring contemporary femininity with fantastic thought provoking images.

saltlakecomiccon:

Would watch. (Get the t-shirt from 80sTees.com)

saltlakecomiccon:

Would watch. (Get the t-shirt from 80sTees.com)

(Source: facebook.com)

periodicult:

Leigh Bowery and Trojan photographed by Steve Pike for i-D magazine, October 1984.

periodicult:

Leigh Bowery and Trojan photographed by Steve Pike for i-D magazine, October 1984.