Feminism

5 Things That Made Me a Happy Feminist This Week

With all the bad news popping up in my social media feeds every single day, it’s hard for a feminist to find many reasons to be happy these days. But here are five things that gave me a reason to celebrate this week.

Queen Bey has joined the cast of Disney’s live-action “The Lion King.”

image via Instagram

Beyoncé will be a part of Disney’s upcoming live-action version of its beloved animated film, “The Lion King,” the company announced on Wednesday. She will be playing the character of Nala, who, as I’m sure you remember, is the love interest of the film’s protagonist, Simba.

She’ll join an all-star cast announced in February that includes Donald Glover as Simba and James Earl Jones, who is reprising his role from the 1994 animated film as Mufasa. The film, which is directed by Jon Favreau, is set for release on July 19, 2019.

Your favorite phrase – Yas Queen Yas – now has its own product line

image via bust.com

Broad City’s Ilana Glazer and Two Dope Queens’ Phoebe Robinson have partnered with fashion brand Wildfang for the YAS QUEEN YAS product line. Prices range from $10-88, and the merchandise includes a notebook, hat, jacket, t-shirt, tote bag and more. The phrase “Yas, Queen, yas!” has become a catchphrase for Broad City and has made its way into almost everyone everyday conversation. But here’s something Phoebe Robinson wants you to know: “The phrase ‘yaaas queen’ has been around looooooong before I ever heard of it,” she told InStyle. “It started in queer drag culture,” she reminded readers. And we all know how often people of color being on the forefront of bringing something into culture only to be forgotten about when it goes mainstream. “The phrase just makes me excited and cheers me up. So fun,” Robinson says. “I just try to remember that if I’m going to engage in the fun parts of queer culture, I also have to participate in all aspects. Like giving back, raising awareness, being an ally.”

Frida Kahlo is recognized as style muse of 2017

Photograph: Hulton Archive/Getty Images via theguardian.com

 

Sixty years after her death, artist Frida Kahlo is still being hailed as an icon of both fashion and feminism and this article explains why. In the piece, Susana Martínez Vidal, the author of Frida Kahlo: Fashion as the Art of Being, states “She was one of the first women to use fashion to broadcast a feminist message of independence, work and equality,”

I was the Mother of Dragons for a day.

The highlight of my week was being queen for Halloween. More specifically I was Daenerys Stormborn of the House Targaryen, First of Her Name, the Unburnt, Queen of the Andals and the First Men, Khaleesi of the Great Grass Sea, Breaker of Chains, and Mother of Dragons!

Girlspring considers me a “shero”

OK, this didn’t just happen this week, but I’m still happy about it. Kristen Greenwood of GirlSpring interviewed me for GirlSpring’s Sheroctober, a series of videos featuring Birmingham area women considered “sheroes” of the city. Girlspring is a nonprofit organization and online publication based in Birmingham, Alabama, that focuses on the issues, activities, and concerns of girls and young women. The “sheroes” interviewed for this series included artists, educators, entrepreneurs, and other professionals in practically every field. And so many of these women are true trailblazers. It is an honor to be included. You can see my video here (and be sure to give me a thumbs up while you’re watching. The shero with the most thumbs up will win tickets to see Janet Jackson live in concert!)

What made you a happy feminist this week?

 

What Empowerment Means to Me

 

What does empowerment mean to you?

That’s the question that Kristen Greenwood of GirlSpring asked me when she interviewed me for GirlSpring’s Sheroctober, a series of videos featuring Birmingham area women considered “sheroes” of the city. Girlspring is a nonprofit organization and online publication based in Birmingham, Alabama, that focuses on the issues, activities, and concerns of girls and young women. The “sheroes” interviewed for this series included artists, educators, entrepreneurs, and other professionals in practically every field. And so many of these women are true trailblazers. It is an honor to be included. You can see my video here (and be sure to give me a thumbs up while you’re watching. The shero with the most thumbs up will win tickets to see Janet Jackson live in concert!)

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How to Get Confident for Your Photo Shoot

You know you need to schedule a photo shoot. On more than one occasion you’ve been asked for a headshot and you’ve had to send an embarrassing selfie instead of a professional portrait. The Welcome, About, and FAQ pages of your website all have stock photos or no images at all. And you don’t even have a picture of yourself in the sidebar of your blog!

You know you need to schedule a photo shoot, but you just can’t build the courage to do so. Trust me, I understand. (more…)

Hair Story

I recently had the honor of writing a feature story on natural hair for the February 2017 issue of Birmingham magazine. The women I interviewed for the article — Alexis Barton, Akirashanit Byrd, and Keisa Sharpe — each had a compelling hair story to share and I hope you’ll read.

With one interviewee, fashion blogger Alexis Barton, I discussed the debate on whether or not a woman can still call her hair “natural” even if she occasionally straightens it with a tool such as a flat iron. Barton says, “To each her own, but I consider my hair to be natural because it’s not chemically relaxed.” She stressed that we must remember that a black woman’s hair isn’t always a political statement and “For some people, it truly is just hair.”

Nonetheless, Barton does believe that going natural can be a journey toward self-acceptance. It certainly was for me and even thinking about if I should straighten my hair or not helped in this process.

Back in 2012 I wrote a guest post for CurlyNikki.com on how natural hair made me a better feminist, a realization I came to after contemplating this question about flat ironing my curly tresses straight. Let’s step back in time and take a look at the post…

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