If you spend as much time on the Internet as I do, you’ve run across Tumblr. (The name might sound familiar because this particular social networking site has been in the news lately because it was just purchased by Yahoo.) You can find anything you want on Tumblr. Anything that interests you, I’m willing to bet there is a Tumblr blog in some corner of the Internet for you. If you’re of the more feminist-y persuasion (like me) then, boy howdy, are you in for a treat. Here are some of my favorites, but it’s just a small sampling of the awesome. I’ve divided them into categories for your convenience. You’re welcome.
A word of warning: some of these websites, even the humor ones, will discuss sexual assault and rape at some point and could be triggering. You should be careful when clicking the links.
Feminist Frequency has really been killing it lately. This is the official Tumblr of the web series hosted by Anita Sarkeesian that critiqued popular culture from a feminist perspective. Sarkeesian has done videos on Legos and The Hunger Games, and analyzed different roles women are pigeonholed into. Lately, she’s been fulfilling her end of a wildly successful (and, in some circles, viciously maligned) Kickstarter campaign to critique the way women are portrayed in video games.
2. Escher Girls
Escher Girls is another enlightening culture blog that, according to the site, archives and showcases
the prevalence of certain ways women are depicted in illustrated pop media, specifically how women are posed, drawn, distorted, and sexualized out of context, often in ridiculous, impossible, or disturbing ways that sacrifice storytelling.
Since finding this Tumblr, I can’t look at a book cover or comic book art without noticing the weird ways in which women are drawn. Rubber spine is a popular drawing style, it seems.
WTF, Plus Size Clothing Manufacturers is basically what it sounds like. If you’re over a size…I don’t know…12?…you might have had trouble finding anything cute in your size. WTF Plus compiles all those horrible plus size clothes that are available so we can collectively roll our eyes at it. The photos have explanations of exactly what is wrong with the garment. The editor, Roxy, at times even links to plus size clothing websites that she thinks do a good job.
Make Me a Sandwich doesn’t sound like a humor blog, but once you get there you realize how hilariously funny it is. If you present to the world as a woman, you’ve probably heard some sort of variant on the “shut up and get me a sandwich” joke, for lack of a better term. Make Me a Sandwhich explores the type of people who make those kinds of statements, and the findings are delightful. There’s the guy who will never let his mom cut his hair again. Then there’s the guy who doesn’t like to read. And, my favorite, there’s the poor guy who lost all his techno music. Many things have started to make sense for me because of this Tumblr.
Laci Green is the host of Sex+, a web video series about sexuality, gender, relationships and body image. Her Tumblr is in some ways an extension of her show. It can sometimes get silly — like this guy with a condom on his head — but it all serves the greater good of getting everybody more comfortable with their bodies and sexuality.
Planned Parenthood has the greatest Tumblr if you want accurate reproductive health information. They encourage you to ask specific questions and generally provide amazing information about sex, pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases and other issues relating to sexual health.
7. Brute Reason
Brute Reason is the Tumblr that is attached to the blog of the same name. It’s kept by Miri, a “professional fun-ruiner.” (Full disclosure: we run in the same circles but don’t know each other personally. Yet.) Her Tumblr tackles many social justice issues, like LGBT rights, mental health, and, of course, feminism.
Duh. How could anyone discuss Internet feminists without talking about Jessica Valenti? Valenti is the author of five books, including The Purity Myth and Full Frontal Feminism, and her Tumblr is full of wonderful photos, articles and statistics that will both enrage you and give you hope. She’s definitely a must-follow for anyone who cares about feminism.
This is a more general Tumblr that deals with power and privilege in many contexts, not just sex and gender. Microaggressions are those little things, those common indignities that most people don’t notice. But if you’re in a targeted group, days, weeks and years full of little microaggressions add up to a really big deal. This Tumblr seeks to expose those. Since everyone has a privilege over somebody, there is always a lot to learn.
Who Needs Feminism answers the question it poses right off the bat. It’s a simple idea. It’s just page after page of hand-written signs expressing individual reasons why we still need feminism. Most are reactions to actual personal experiences and serve as evidence that, even in the 21st century, we have a long way to go.
This Tumblr deserves a trigger warning for discussion of sexual assault. Project Unbreakable was created by a photographer called Grace Brown. She works with survivors of sexual assault by taking pictures of them holding a sign with a quote from their attacker. She has photographed more than 400 people and received over a thousand of submissions. The photos are heartbreaking and powerful depictions of women and men who refuse to be silenced or defeated by their assault.
Image credit: Flickr