Skip to Content, Navigation, or Footer.

New campus magazine explores feminism through writing, art

What is feminism? "Bluestockings Magazine," a new campus publication, hopes to shed light on this question - and explore its many answers - through community discussion, writing and art.
"It was really important to us to have this conversation. We were talking about it with our friends, but we didn't necessarily have a voice on campus," said Amy LaCount '13, one of the organization's founding members.
Founders LaCount, Analise Roland '13 and Ana Alvarez '13, a former Herald senior staff writer, all came to the idea of a feminist publication from different paths. LaCount said her education and the University community as a whole influenced her. "I think Brown instills it in you," she said.
Alvarez said she has been interested in the concept of feminism since freshman year, adding that her involvement in the Female Sexuality Workshop gave her a new perspective on female sexuality and made her want to bring more awareness to Brown's campus.
Roland gravitated to the project from both working on publications and a lifelong belief in feminist ideologies, she said.
"I am a feminist. This is how I've always been and how I always will be," she said.
A serendipitous encounter brought the three together. LaCount and Alvarez were "talking at Blue State, and Analise by pure and happy coincidence happened to be sitting right next to us," LaCount said. "She had a lot of experience (in publications), so the three of us decided to found 'Bluestockings.'"
A term from the mid-18th century, "bluestockings" was originally used to describe an educated, intellectual woman, but took on a derogative connotation during the women's suffrage movement. By using the term in a positive and creative endeavor, the founders said they hope to reclaim it as their own.
Alvarez, LaCount and Roland soon realized they wanted to start not only a discussion about feminism, but also a change in the way the University looks at the movement in general.
"A lot of people get stuck on that word 'feminism' in the sense of we don't shave our legs and we're out there yelling that men are horrible," Roland said. "But that's not at all what it is. It's about the idea behind feminist theory, which is all about equality and letting people speak their own opinion and giving everyone a fair shot."
"The definition of feminism is always evolving and always changing," she added. "It's not so much a label as a way of perceiving the world."
For Roland, a publication open to all forms of written and visual work was the obvious choice. "Not everyone expresses themselves through academic writing. You can explore these topics (of feminism) through a poem, through an abstract art piece, through a comical column or a recipe. It doesn't have to be a set structure of a newspaper."
They encourage all types of submissions, from all voices - including different sexual identities, gender identifications and racial backgrounds. "It doesn't necessarily have to be a female nude or a poem about women. Anything you're excited about, anything that you are thinking about that you want to share," LaCount said.
But "Bluestockings" aims to be more than just a publication - it's a community, Roland said. "It's not just someone emailing in a piece. We want to know the faces, to have a dialogue among the pages. It's very much learning and growing together."
A voice for gender equality is especially relevant this year, LaCount said. "With the 2012 election, women's reproductive rights are front and center. This is an incredibly important discussion," she said.
Funded by Feminists at Brown, the organization will publish a monthly issue and work to foster discussion about feminism at Brown. Their first publication will include an interview with Gloria Steinem, one of the leaders of the women's liberation movement in the late 1960s and 1970s.


Powered by SNworks Solutions by The State News
All Content © 2024 The Brown Daily Herald, Inc.