Founded in 1974, the Women’s Center was established to:
Dismantle, from a feminist perspective, all forms of oppression, including but not limited to those based on ability, age, class, ethnicity, gender, race, and sexual orientation.
Advocate for an equitable environment free from violence and harassment based on gender, race, and sexual orientation.
Create an anti-racist, non-sexist, queer-affirmative space where all people can feel valued and safe.
Facilitate and strengthen connections among people across lines of difference through programming and educational campaigns.
Integrate an appreciation of Women's Gender and Multicultural Studies across the disciplines.

Friday, February 14, 2014

I'm Not Flattered

Although it seems far away because of the onslaught of the snowpocalypse, Spring and Summer are coming, and with those seasons come the onslaught of heightened insecurities from all people about what to wear. Spring and summer are often a time to show off one's physique in trendy warm-weather clothing! As exciting as that sounds, there is a certain pressure that comes with these seasons as well. Nothing is more intimidating than the increased focus on beauty standards and expectations of bodies during the warmer months. Year round it is a struggle to fully embrace one self, and love one self, and it just seems as though Summer and Spring just make it that much tougher.

There is no need to fear these months though, because conventional women's magazines have the solution! Flipping through any magazine geared towards female-identified people during these months, and you will find plenty of pages with eye catching key words in alluring pops of color. Figure Flattering! Slimming! How can anyone resist the temptation presented by the myriad of magazines that are consumed by young women?  The definition of flattering is to represent favorably, and who would not want to put their best foot forward and try to portray the best version of them self?

On a surface level, the articles in these magazines that promise to flatter any figure are great. Women are inspired to have confidence in their body and their appearance by wearing flattering clothing and or make up! Seems simple, right?   Not so much. The message of these different articles still play into the insecurities of women, and push products/brands in order to profit off of women's insecurities as well. Unhappy with how wide your hips are? Buy this skirt that will minimize your hips. Curvy booty? This swimsuit will flatten it right out. Instead of encouraging women to embrace these different parts of themselves that they clearly struggle with, these articles encourage women to minimize, cover, and hide these parts.

Even I have fallen into these traps. As a small busted woman, I have often turned to articles that show me cuts/silhouettes of garments that make my chest essentially look less flat. I have even bought skirts that make my hips look less wider, in a feeble attempt to have a less of a "boyish" figure, as they call it in magazines.

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