Woman Crush Wednesday: Jessica Valenti

Okay, this is going to be my first go at a “theme” post. I’ve chosen to go with the popular Instagram theme “Woman Crush Wednesday”, but don’t be fooled – this it not like on Instagram. These Wednesday posts are going to be about different women who I look up to, idolize, and am inspired by. Now, the feminist voice is analysing it … Why is it ‘woman crush’ Wednesday? Is it necessary to label it as a “woman” crush instead of a normal “crush”? Okay, I know. Maybe I could use a different term. But let’s be honest, I like the sound of it. And it’s a known trend on social media. So let’s just role with it, and see how it goes.

Today’s Woman Crush:

Jessica Valenti

Quite Simply, she is one of the reasons I was able to define myself as a feminist. I came from a small town, where it was difficult to have a voice. To speak out against “othering” and even misogynistic comments. To be different in a small town basically equalled a difficult life. Especially in a small town high school. When I moved to the city to attend university, I came across Jessica Valenti’s book, He’s a Stud, She’s a Slut, and 49 other Double Standards Every Woman Should Know About.

Now, come on. That’s a catchy title. So I bought it. And quickly, I was relating to everything. I was hooked. So I went out and bought another one of her books, Full Frontal Feminism: A Young Woman’s Guide to Why Feminism Matters. Chapter one of this book, “You’re a Hardcore Feminist. I Swear.” had me worked up within the first page.

       What’s the worst thing you can call a woman? Don’t hold back, now. You’re probably thinking of words like slut, whore, bitch, cunt (I told you not to hold back!), skank.

Okay, now what are the worst things you can call a guy? Fag, girl, bitch, pussy. I’ve even heard the term “mangina.” Notice anything? The worst thing you can call a girl is a girl. The worst thing you can call a guy is a girl. Being a woman is the ultimate insult. Now tell me that’s not royally fucked up.

Woah. It was during that pivotal moment when it really hit me. This was a major issue and it was OKAY for me to be worked up over it. I was allowed to be pissed off. Outraged. And it was alright for me to raise my voice and be heard.

Jessica Valenti is a talented woman. Her writing is real. It’s powerful. She’s honest. She’s not afraid. She doesn’t back down.

She is one of those people I would love to meet one day. Just to say hi. And thank her for helping me find feminism. And for helping me to find my voice.

 

 

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