Showing posts from November, 2019

Vulvas: A Labia of Love

Pornsites reinforce an ideal physique, breast size, shape, nipples, anticipated behaviours and, just as worryingly, vulvas. Generally speaking, porn is the first exposure many people have to the uncensored human body. Its power grabs at our concept of self, dictates how we perceive our sexuality and love our bodies.  Image Description:  Photo of a woman with pale skin, standing in white underpants, holding a red love heart over her pubic area. It seems people are more self-conscious than ever about attaining the ‘ideal vulva’. For those playing at home, the vulva is made up of several well designed and useful parts, starting with the labia minora and the labia majora. The labia majora are the outside lips, the ones seen straight away. The labia minora are the inside lips that are externally visible for some and not for others. The “ideal” vulva, most often portrayed in pornography, has a uniformly pink, small and symmetrical labia minora that does not protrude past the ma

Who Really Got Girl Power Going?

Ah, 1996, a time when the concept of Girl Power (!) on a mainstream front was still relatively novel. To a generation of young girls, the Spice Girls represented a fundamental embracing of everything it meant to be a girl growing up at the end of the 20th century: a celebration of femininity, sexiness, and sisterhood in five unique caricatures. For many, it was the start of accepting that it was okay to be an out-and-proud, female, sexual being, to demand respect, and to be unapologetically loud about it all. It felt, in short, revolutionary. Image Description: Photo of someone's calves and ankles from the back. They are wearing black pants, rolled up, and long white socks with "Girls Rule" written on them in black, block letters. The person is also wearing maroon heels.  Except that … It really wasn't. In fact, the term "Girl Power" was coined by US punk band Bikini Kill. According to lead singer Kathleen Hanna, it was inspired by the "

Elizabeth Magie: The Forgotten Woman Who Invented Monopoly

It’s the game we bring out for guests or late at night on holiday with family, the staple for board-game-day with friends: Monopoly. If you take a closer look at the label, it says this game was created in 1935 by Hasbro Games. But, in reality, Monopoly was created 32 years earlier by the long-forgotten and uncredited Elizabeth Magie. Elizabeth Magie was born in 1866 in Illinois. She was the daughter of a newspaper publisher and orator, James Magie, who travelled with Abraham Lincoln in the 1850s. She inherited her father’s passion and said she was “described as ‘a chip off the old block’”, which she took as a compliment.  She also disregarded gender stereotypes in that she did not try to find a husband until age 44, and instead chose to work as a stenographer by day and a comedian by night. She was reported to draw huge laughs from the crowd. Image description: a black and white portrait of Elizabeth Magie as an old woman.  Her father, James, ran for office soon