Tuesday, 26 February 2019

Top 5 - Things You Can Do To Be A Feminist

To celebrate the publication of The Burning, I'm pleased to welcome the author, Laura Bates, as part of The Burning Blog Tour. Laura has written a cracking post for me about what we can do as feminists to help change the way things are. 
So here are Laura's five top tips. 

Speak Out 
It’s not easy to be the one who brings up uncomfortable topics, but one of the ways sexism is able to flourish so successfully is by flying under the radar. Every time we let a sexist joke go unchallenged, hear a girl being slut-shamed, or walk past someone being sexually harassed, we contribute to the idea that these things are normal and won’t ever change. Starting conversations about sexism can be scary, but it can also change the way people think: and that’s the only way to change the world.

Stand Up 
Using your power to make a difference can take lots of different forms: it might mean signing a petition to end period poverty or joining a campaign to support refugee women, or perhaps starting even starting your own movement for change. Asking your local rape crisis centre or women’s refuge if they need support with volunteering or fundraising can be a great first step to getting involved. 

Support Others  
Feminist solidarity has so many meanings. It’s partly about supporting other women and girls who might have experienced harassment or abuse: sometimes hearing that they’re not alone, and that you will support them if they want to seek help or make a report can be absolutely life-changing. But it’s also about supporting other feminists: making sure we’re aware of the intersections of feminism with other forms of prejudice and helping to share our own spotlight with those who are fighting different but interlinked battles.

Champion Women 
Across a range of different spheres, women tend to be under-appreciated, unrewarded and under-paid. Female writers are less likely to be reviewed in top journals or shortlisted for prizes, female artists are less likely to see their work hanging in galleries and female directors make up a tiny percentage of those nominated for Oscars. So put your money where your mouth is and spend a year seeking out shows by female artists, championing female-led films or reading women writers and see where your feminist journey takes you!

Believe in Yourself 
Backing other women also means backing yourself. We live in a world that teaches girls to be quiet and polite, to apologise for our own success and not to take up too much space. Living a feminist life sometimes means being bold and unapologetic about our own needs, making sure we are looking after ourselves and not being afraid to shout about our successes as well as those of other women!
Thank you Laura for such an inspiring post. You can catch up with all the other posts in the blog tour from the banner.  
Want to read more books by Laura Bates?
 Then look out for these other books she has written. 
You can follow Laura on:
 Twitter: @EverydaySexism 
 Instagram @laura_bates_

The Burning by Laura Bates is out now (Simon & Schuster, £7.99) 

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