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Spark Blogs

SPARK Blog: “Boys can be anything,” Or how Barbie limits girls’ career dreams

BY JENN CHMIELEWSKI
Okay, I admit it. As much as I would love to say that I was a little feminist socialist as a child, impervious to the sexualized gendered marketing scheme that is Barbie, I cannot. I was one of the 99% of girls that played with that skinny, large-breasted, blond haired plastic toy and I thought she was the perfection of beauty (I didn’t realize at the time that a life-sized Barbie with her body proportions is physically impossible).

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SPARK Blog: 6-pack abs and thigh gaps: Objectification, eating disorders and why we all need to take our sexy back

BY JENN CHMIELEWSKI
I didn’t know what the ‘thigh gap’ was until very recently (you’re supposed to have space between your thighs?!). But I can honestly say that I have always been aware of the fact that my thighs don’t fit the standards of perfection according to the media or whatever idiot came up with this thigh gap thing.

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SPARK Blog: What it’s like to be a Hooters Girl

BY CHRISTIN BOWMAN
Women get sexually objectified all over the place. As recent installments of this blog have made clear, music videos and advertisements are prime examples of the sexualization of women in the media. This constant sexualization of girls and women makes me super-skeptical when I hear people arguing that women and girls have achieved equality – as if!

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SPARK Blog: I Wanna Belly Dance with Somebody: Belly Dancing and Body Image

BY CHRISTIN BOWMAN
When I was a kid, gymnastics was my life. I spent hours and hours at the gym, and I was closer to my teammates than I was to my schoolmates. At school, I wrote all of my book reports and biography assignments about gymnasts, and I spent every recess balancing, swinging, flipping, and dancing. I felt the most free and comfortable when I was doing gymnastics.

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SPARK Blog: What’s the link between reading Cosmo and girls going wild?

BY JENN CHMIELEWSKI
Getting guys’ attention can be tough. I’m smart, friendly, and can bring down the house with my rendition of Lady Gaga – yes, I’m a little monster. But if you take a look at magazines and TV these days, you’d think that the only thing guys are after is super-sexy-looking gals who act in super-sexualized ways. No substance required.

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SPARK Blog: It’s Written All Over Your Facebook

BY CHRISTIN BOWMAN
Confession: Facebook is a big part of my life. I was actually one of the first people to sign up for an account in 2004, and I haven’t looked back since. For a long time, Facebook felt like a warm, cozy living room where my friends and family could meet and stay connected. I would eagerly upload pictures from my latest trip or adventure, caption them with something clever, and tag my loved ones.

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SPARK Blog: Judgments of self-sexualization on Facebook, or, too sexy to be smart

BY JENN CHMIELEWSKI
It’s that time of year when I start seeing photo after photo on Facebook of people vacationing in awesome (warm) locations. While I am still cold in New York City, I see them lounging on beautiful beaches in bikinis or partying like rock stars in crop tops at Coachella. I will admit, as I sift through Facebook in my pajamas, I start to get a little jealous – and a little judgmental. Some of those bikini shots on the beach seem pretty sexualized.

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SPARK Blog: Chivalry is alive and holding your boxes – this is a problem

BY KIM BELMONTE
When I told my mom that I was going to be blogging for a feminist website, she rummaged around her attic and found a box full of 1972 Ms. Magazines – the entire first year of publication. Excited, I browsed through the stack, hoping to find that the articles in the magazine would be outdated, that many of the concerns of 1972 would have been addressed. Well, not quite.

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SPARK Blog: Trying to Run Your Butt Off? How Exercise Motivations Shape Self-Objectification

BY STEPH ANDERSON
I am not a runner – or at least I wasn’t. I grew up hating running for all of the obvious reasons: panting, chafing, blisters, short shorts. Frankly, I would have rather spent an hour at the dentist than run 2 miles. So when I completed the New York City Half Marathon this past spring, I was elated and honestly amazed that my body even had the capacity to run that far.

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SPARK Blog: Black Girl Matters

BY MARISA RAGONESE
What a year for talk about racism in the US. No criminal charges for Darren Wilson, the police officer in Furguson, MO who shot unarmed Black teenager Mike Brown last August. Or Daniel Panteleo, the cop in NYC caught on video putting Eric Garner, Black father of six, in a fatal chokehold on a July afternoon while arresting him for selling loose cigarettes on Staten Island.

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