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Defiant, Self-Aware, Accessible Feminism: Why you should read Florence Given’s ‘Women Don’t Owe You Pretty’

Florence Given’s book Women Don’t Owe You Pretty (2020) has been The Sunday Times bestseller for ten weeks in a row now, and it’s no surprise why. Continue reading Defiant, Self-Aware, Accessible Feminism: Why you should read Florence Given’s ‘Women Don’t Owe You Pretty’

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Bodyform’s ‘Womb Stories’ Campaign and De-Stigmatising Menstruation

Since I was about sixteen, I’ve been passionate about de-stigmatizing periods. I used the Clue app religiously and showed it to all my friends at school, including the boys. I talked about periods loudly and graphically. I didn’t care if that made boys feel uncomfortable. I had confidence about my periods. They made me feel powerful and were an important part of my identity as a young woman. Because of my contraception, I don’t have periods anymore. My female friends are usually jealous of me when I tell them this, but I actually miss them; they’re a sign that everything’s ticking over and working properly. They’re completely healthy and natural, so why is there such a big stigma surrounding them? Continue reading Bodyform’s ‘Womb Stories’ Campaign and De-Stigmatising Menstruation

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Reading Corner: Wilt by Tom Sharpe

Wilt (1976) by Tom Sharpe is probably the funniest book I have ever read. And I’m talking laugh out loud funny. As an English student with months and months of lockdown stretching ahead of me, I probably should have made a list of every great Victorian novel and slowly made my way through them with a sense of dignified purpose and achievement. Obviously, this was not the case and, as my Netflix history will prove, I have spent very little of this holiday actually reading. However, once I picked up Wilt, I forgot all about a fourth binge of the entirety of Community (shocking, I know) and was hooked. Continue reading Reading Corner: Wilt by Tom Sharpe

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What makes you BRITish enough: Why Rina Sawayama called out the Music Industry

Imagine releasing a critically acclaimed album only to be told you aren’t eligible to be nominated for the prestigious Mercury Prize and BRIT awards, let alone win them; all because apparently you aren’t British enough. For Japanese-born British singer-songwriter Rina Sawayama, being told she couldn’t even qualify for consideration for an award so clearly deserved is obviously nothing less than heart breaking. After living in the UK for 25 years and holding indefinite leave to remain in the country, why do the BPI rules deny her this accolade for which she has so evidently been snubbed? Continue reading What makes you BRITish enough: Why Rina Sawayama called out the Music Industry

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Single Review: ‘Labyrinth’ by A Blaze of Feather

I wasn’t familiar with Cornish band A Blaze of Feather until my interview with band member Mickey Smith, but I’m glad I’ve made this discovery. It’s refreshing. The new album LABYRINTH is strong as a whole, but for me the highlight is the titular track ‘Labyrinth’. This single is likely to be popular with a lot of fans of indie music. Smith’s vocals are unique – calming but with a sense of power. The guitar is catchy and works especially well with the chorus. The instrumentation as a whole is extremely effective. Continue reading Single Review: ‘Labyrinth’ by A Blaze of Feather

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Why Princess Di is still at the Forefront of Fashion

When you think of 90s fashion, what first comes to mind? Cycling shorts, baggy sweatshirts and high-waisted jeans? Oversized blazers, scrunchies and tiny shoulder bags? If you’re thinking that sounds like a rundown of what you’d see walking into Urban Outfitters, you’d be correct. Over the last few years, we’ve seen a revival for all things vintage – and no-one exuded 90s cool better than Princess Diana. Continue reading Why Princess Di is still at the Forefront of Fashion

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Lauren Bacall: A Feminist’s Femme Fatale

With her iconic smoky voice and signature sultry “look”, Lauren Bacall is often remembered as Old Hollywood’s ultimate femme fatale. From the moment she first entered the big screen, and delivered the line ‘anybody got a match?’ (To Have and Have Not, 1944) Bacall established herself as the anti-ingenue; strong, intelligent and opposite to the naïve woman typically celebrated in 1940s film. Mysterious, seductive female characters have been repeatedly demonised throughout the history of storytelling. Threatening the traditional perception of the ideal, passive woman, with her awareness of her own sexuality, femme fatales are usually represented as dangerous. Often in Old Hollywood, the femme fatale, and female sexuality itself, existed to be punished. This, however, was not the case for Lauren Bacall. Turning the era’s censorship laws on their head, Bacall presented female audiences with someone they could identify with: a knows-what-she-wants girl who could express her sexuality without being labelled a villain. Continue reading Lauren Bacall: A Feminist’s Femme Fatale

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Navigating Conversations about White Privilege

Like many other white people amid the Black Lives Matter movement, I have been questioning how I can become a better ally. Where to begin? Acknowledging white privilege is the first step. Listen to what people of colour are saying, read up and question where white privilege can be seen in your own life and the world around you. It is as easy as looking … Continue reading Navigating Conversations about White Privilege

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Uncovering the Rainbow, Re-examining History from a Queer Perspective

It is well known that history is written by the victors. The individuals in power are sculptors, who mould events and entire periods to reflect beneficially upon themselves. Despite facts being concrete, sometimes textbooks and the literary canon shatter these, acting like rose tinted glasses, constructed to distort the reality of the past. The triumph of those in power is carved into time, while the stories of minorities are left to decay and swept under the carpet when their accounts are deemed unacceptable for future generations. This is so often the case for the LGBTQ+ community. Continue reading Uncovering the Rainbow, Re-examining History from a Queer Perspective