Stand Strong Girls

About

Welcome everyone to my blog, Stand Strong Girls.

Historically, women and girls have been confined to rigid, narrow lives consisting of home life, marriage and childcare. Thankfully things are now changing. Women in most parts of the world are now far more free to live their lives according to their own desires and not according to out of date opinions and rules. Women have jobs, qualifications and opinions. In many countries women have the vote and the right to run for parliament.

Unfortunately, there are still many women and girls in the world who are not experiencing these rights. This is often due to the culture or religion of the country and the way in which it is run. Many determined and enterprising women in these countries are members of women’s rights activist organisations. Their work is brave and difficult considering the obstacles other women have faced when campaigning for the same things. For example, the famous work of the British suffragettes under Emmeline Pankhurst. Although it is doubtful whether her work advanced or slowed the progress of her cause, the work of the suffragettes is remembered as valiant efforts in support of a truly worthwhile cause.

The aim of this blog is to alert you, the reader, to the effects and causes of various sexist issues and to get you thinking about ways to tackle them and cope with them. Although the traditions regarding women’s place in the world have shifted considerably, especially in Western societies, now there are new kinds of restrictions on women’s appearane and behaviour. I speak of the media’s strong influence on women and girls’  diet, shopping, choice of activities and colour preferences. It is obvious that there is a marked difference between the contents of ‘women’s’ magazines and ‘men’s’ magazines.

For it affects men and boys too, if women must be one way then men must be another, or so we are told. Think of the ranges of toys available in toy shops today. Many of them are intended to be gender specific and make unreasonable and ridiculous assumptions as to the preference of children in colour and toy type.

Anyway, I hope that you will enjoy reading my blog and use your knowledge to form your own opinion about women’s rights, both then and now. Feel free to add your comments.

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13 thoughts on “About

  1. askateenageaspie on said:

    I think you would find this song interesting; “Before the Eyes of Storytelling Girls” by Anaïs Mitchell. It conveys a really strong feminist (and anti-war) message. It talks about corrupt and biased media, as well women in the Middle East. You can listen to it here http://youtu.be/EAMtuTGICgw
    You can read the lyrics and more about the meaning here:
    http://songmeanings.com/songs/view/3530822107858646053/

    • Thanks for the suggestion Tadhg! I’ve put it up on my new song page, you can see it on the bar across the top of the blog. It’s definitely got a very powerful message.

      • askateenageaspie on said:

        You’re welcome. You should take a listen to Ani DiFranco, she writes a lot about feminism, also, Tracey Chapman is great. There’s a song written in 1911 by Joe Hill called “The Rebel Girl.” It may be a bit dated and it may be more of a Trade Union song than a Feminist song. It is an interesting historical document though. I heard he wrote it for Elizabeth Gurley Flynn, who was a trade union leader, orator and proponent of women’s rights. She had a pretty interesting life too that would be worth looking into. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hR7fBCENkN0

  2. Katherine Salvador on said:

    Very well done for getting into the finals!! You are definitely a “Stand strong girl!” whose voice is being heard (or read), you are already a winner!! Thumbs up!

  3. This is a great blog! congrats on making it to the finalist stage, good luck

    Jennos Health.

  4. A worthy finalist in the 2014 Irish Blog Awards. Political commitment amongst young people is rare and ought to be supported.

  5. limondd on said:

    Your success in going onto the shortlist for the blog awards is clearly deserved, it’s rare to see a blog with obvious political, one might even say moral, content from a young person. You are dealing seriously with serious issues. We can’t any of us change the world all at once, but we can each change our little bit for the better, and you’re doing that.

  6. Katherine Salvador on said:

    Very interesting thoughts. I agree that men need to be liberated of those sexist ideas, too. I would invite you to revise the work of Harriet Taylor, wife and for some authors the writer or inspiration of most of his husband’s work, John Stuart Mill. I really found interesing his description of Harriet and would like one day to feel comfortably identified with it: (it is quite long but wouldn’t like to ommit any of the descriptors of this legendary woman, not many men describe their wife that long I guess)

    Although it was years after my introduction to Mrs. Taylor before my acquaintance with her became at all intimate or confidential, I very soon felt her to be the most admirable person I had ever known. It is not to be supposed that she was, or that any one, at the age at which I first saw her, could be, all that she afterwards became. Least of all could this be true of her, with whom self-improvement, progress in the highest and in all senses, was a law of her nature; a necessity equally from the ardour with which she sought it, and from the spontaneous tendency of faculties which could not receive an impression or an experience without making it the source or the occasion of an accession of wisdom. Up to the time when I first saw her, her rich and powerful nature had chiefly unfolded itself according to the received type of feminine genius. To her outer circle she was a beauty and a wit, with an air of natural distinction, felt by all who approached her: to the inner, a woman of deep and strong feeling, of penetrating and intuitive intelligence, and of an eminently meditative and poetic nature. Married at a very early age, to a most upright, brave, and honourable man, of liberal opinions and good education, but without the intellectual or artistic tastes which would have made him a companion for her, though a steady and affectionate friend, for whom she had true esteem and the strongest affection through life, and whom she most deeply lamented when dead; shut out by the social disabilities of women from any adequate exercise of her highest faculties in action on the world without; her life was one of inward meditation, varied by familiar intercourse with a small circle of friends, of whom one only (long since deceased) was a person of genius,[2] or of capacities of feeling or intellect kindred with her own, but all had more or less of alliance with her in sentiments and opinions. Into this circle I had the good fortune to be admitted, and I soon perceived that she possessed in combination, the qualities which in all other persons whom I had known I had been only too happy to find singly. In her, complete emancipation from every kind of superstition (including that which attributes a pretended perfection to the order of nature and the universe), and an earnest protest against many things which are still part of the established constitution of society, resulted not from the hard intellect, but from strength of noble and elevated feeling, and co-existed with a highly reverential nature. In general spiritual characteristics, as well as in temperament and organisation, I have often compared her, as she was at this time, to Shelley: but in thought and intellect, Shelley, so far as his powers were developed in his short life, was but a child compared with what she ultimately became. Alike in the highest regions of speculation and in the smaller practical concerns of daily life, her mind was the same perfect instrument, piercing to the very heart and marrow of the matter; always seizing the essential idea or principle. The same exactness and rapidity of operation, pervading as it did her sensitive as well as her mental faculties, would, with her gifts of feeling and imagination, have fitted her to be a consummate artist, as her fiery and tender soul and her vigorous eloquence would certainly have made her a great orator, and her profound knowledge of human nature and discernment and sagacity in practical life, would, in the times when such a carrière was open to women, have made her eminent among the rulers of mankind. Her intellectual gifts did but minister to a moral character at once the noblest and the best balanced which I have ever met with in life. Her unselfishness was not that of a taught system of duties, but of a heart which thoroughly identified itself with the feelings of others, and often went to excess in consideration for them by imaginatively investing their feelings with the intensity of its own. The passion of justice might have been thought to be her strongest feeling, but for her boundless generosity, and a lovingness ever ready to pour itself forth upon any or all human beings who were capable of giving the smallest feeling in return. The rest of her moral characteristics were such as naturally accompany these qualities of mind and heart: the most genuine modesty combined with the loftiest pride; a simplicity and sincerity which were absolute, towards all who were fit to receive them; the utmost scorn of whatever was mean and cowardly, and a burning indignation at everything brutal or tyrannical, faithless or dishonourable in conduct and character, while making the broadest distinction between mala in se and mere mala prohibita—between acts giving evidence of intrinsic badness in feeling and character, and those which are only violations of conventions either good or bad, violations which whether in themselves right or wrong, are capable of being committed by persons in every other respect lovable or admirable. (J. S. Mill 1981, 193–7) retrieved from: http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/harriet-mill/#PraJohStuMil

  7. limondd on said:

    [I]f I were some great princess, I would build
    Far off from men a college like a man’s,
    And I would teach them all that men are taught;
    We are twice as quick!

    – Alfred Tennyson, 1809-1892 (The Princess, 1847).

  8. limondd on said:

    ‘[I]n whatever light I view the subject, reason and experience convince me that the only method of leading women to fulfil their peculiar duties is to free them from all restraint… Make them free, and they will quickly become wise and virtuous, as men become more so, for the improvement must be mutual’.

    – Mary Wollstonecraft [1759-1797], A Vindication of the Rights of Woman, 1792.

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