... the other Black experience

Gender Bent's Blog (161)

#Hairties video series empowers Black girls to think positively about their hair

A new video series is empowering Black girls to redefine what is beautiful, and shaping how the next generation feels about their hair. #Hairties uses testimonials from Black women and girls to acknowledge the fraught history of Black hair, while looking toward the future to where we might go. Created by Antonia Opiah, the seven-part video series features the stories of six women across three generations, the individuals that influenced their hairstyles over the years, and…


Added by Gender Bent on June 20, 2017 at 5:00pm — No Comments

Celebrate Pride by being trans-inclusive

This Pride month, express your solidarity for and support of gay and queer folx by being more trans-inclusive! Seems pretty obvious, right? But even (maybe especially) within the LGBTQIA community and spaces, so-called allies of gay rights continue to otherize and marginalize queer and trans folks, unintentionally or otherwise. While it’s a struggle, for some, to unpack the problematic ways in which we view gender and to actively diverge from what we’ve been programmed to…


Added by Gender Bent on June 14, 2017 at 5:53pm — No Comments

I will always love and admire Black men, here’s why

Black men have been getting a bad rap since forever. They’re, “aggressive, violent, cheaters, liars, thieves…” or at least that’s the picture that’s painted of them. While this may be true for some, it is not the truth for all. I believe there are some decent, faithful, friendly, caring, loving black men out there. I know this because I’ve met some of them.


….an amazing guy who was all about his daughters. Probably one of the…


Added by Gender Bent on June 1, 2017 at 3:00pm — No Comments

Supporting sex workers is as feminist an issue as any

There is a lot of misguided squeamishness around sex work in feminist circles. A common source of reluctance is the fear or confusion that sex work is the exploitation of women’s bodies and/or sexuality. But that’s a misnomer and the people who say such things tend not to point out that football players, day laborers, businesspersons with exceptionally stressful jobs, firefighters, and so on, are also exploiters of their bodies. In reality, using your body in to make money,…


Added by Gender Bent on May 30, 2017 at 4:30pm — No Comments

This single father created a workshop for dads to learn to do their daughters' hair!

Being a single parent is difficult already, but being a single dad is its own trial in a society that is still catching up to the idea of men doing domestic tasks, and thus doesn't prepare them for it. Hunstville, Alabama-based Darious Bland, who has been a single father for seven years, is well aware of the steep learning curve fathers face having been forced to learn many things he never thought he would have to do, like how to do his daughter's hair.

"When I…


Added by Gender Bent on May 26, 2017 at 12:01pm — No Comments

Howard University Sued For Failing To Help Rape Victims

Howard University is one of the latest higher education institutions being sued for its handling of sexual assault reports from university students.

The lawsuit’s five female plaintiffs accused the private university of “discriminatory and retaliatory response to multiple complaints of sexual assault and harassment,” between 2014 and 2016. Earlier this week, …


Added by Gender Bent on May 12, 2017 at 4:30pm — No Comments

F*ck like a fat girl: radical self-love for goddess sex

For fat girls/women, in my fat woman experience, being sexually active was/is somewhat dubious. As a life-long femme fattie, the only time I heard about fat girls having sex was as the butt of a joke or as the description of a fetish. Never being shown a normalized image of fat sex and fat women being desired, without a dehumanizing stigma attached to it and us.

For many years, this perpetuated anxious thoughts, like wondering if a potential partner knew…


Added by Gender Bent on May 10, 2017 at 5:30pm — No Comments

Stop saying Black Feminism destroyed the Black family

When I first heard of feminism it was through the mouths of hoteps and fake pro-blacks. I was told that feminism was a CIA program led by Gloria Steinem to persuade black women away from black men. As a reward (according to hoteps) black women would receive government assistance and office jobs.

There is more anti-black feminism on YouTube and Facebook than pro-black feminism videos. When I was a sophomore in college, I enrolled in Intro to Women’s Studies…

Added by Gender Bent on May 8, 2017 at 10:30am — No Comments

How to unlearn toxic masculinity - Steps to better understanding gender

Context is key. “The medium is the message”. When we talk about social constructs like gender and race, recognizing context is fundamental to understanding why and how these identifiers exist and what they signify in the only two context’s in which they matters—social perception and the subsequent personal experiences that result because of those perceptions.

Women have different experiences, but they are not different beings.

Ultimately, working…


Added by Gender Bent on April 28, 2017 at 4:30pm — No Comments

An ode to sisterhood - my best friend was key to my recovery from depression

"He's cheating again," I whispered into the phone, fighting through the brain fog that my newly prescribed depression meds gave me. "He's trying to leave me for another girl after I lost our baby."

It had only been 4 and half months since I'd lost my son, and as I sat staring at pictures of my man smiling and kissing another woman, the reason why he'd become so mean and distant, I began to tremble. In a calm voice, my best friend Keisha said "I'm so sorry,…


Added by Gender Bent on April 28, 2017 at 12:20pm — No Comments

The hair politics of Black boyhood: how I came to refuse white standards of respectability

I know everyone has a bone to pick with Shea Moisture’s erasure of black womanhood. And I was anxious to dig deep into it until I recognized the company also sells hair products for black men and even a black man was featured briefly in the controversial commercial.

It had me scratching my head, why was the black man’s experience with hair being swept under the rug? The great lie that ‘Everybody gets love’ is a laughable and tearful campaign slogan. The…


Added by Gender Bent on April 28, 2017 at 10:30am — 1 Comment

Toxic masculinity enables violent events like Cleveland & San Bernardino more often than you know

There was little about the homicide committed by Steve Stephens (dumb name) that surprised me. Not the streaming of it and definitely not the alleged reasoning behind it. Stephens, in a series of Facebook posts cited a break-up with a former girlfriend as the event that kicked off his “need” to kill folks. A looney tune excuse that needlessly attempts to scapegoat an innocent, unseen woman for the actions of man. It’s not the man’s failure—naturally, it’s somebody…


Added by Gender Bent on April 19, 2017 at 6:30pm — 1 Comment

Stream the new Prince song from the late star's EP of unreleased music dropping this Friday!

On Friday (4/21/17), an EP of previously unheard Prince material recorded between 2006 and 2008 will be released. The late pop star co-wrote and co-produced the songs with Ian Boxill, an engineer who worked with Prince on his records 3121 and Planet Earth during that time period, and who completed the production for the new EP Deliverance, The Unheard Spiritual Voice of Prince Rogers Nelson after the singer's death. The EP is being released by…


Added by Gender Bent on April 19, 2017 at 10:00am — No Comments

Putting Ourselves First As Black Women/Femmes Is Like Returning to Our First Loves

Self-care is a fluid concept. It is vital and it looks different from person to person. Essentially, self-care means doing something kind for yourself, for your mental well-being, for your physical well-being. Self-care is revolutionary for women of color and, as Audre Lorde said, “Caring for myself is not self-indulgence, it is self-preservation, and that is an act of political warfare.”

I hold that sentence so close to my heart. When black women, especially…


Added by Gender Bent on April 18, 2017 at 5:27pm — No Comments

Stop blaming single mothers for the toxic actions of men

After learning of the horrible crimes of the Cleveland shooter, Steve Stephens, I was eager to learn what men had to say via YouTube and Facebook, yet small vloggers and small podcasters proved too much of a disappoint as they do not talk about the elephant in the room—the fact that many men need mental health evaluations and that that's nothing to be ashamed of. Especially given the fact that male problems often end up being unfairly blamed on black women.



Added by Gender Bent on April 18, 2017 at 11:00am — No Comments

#FemmeInPublic project disrupts Cape Town’s heteronormative gaze with live fashion protest

#FemmeInPublic is a glorious visual project and conversation piece about femme solidarity in places where we’re most vulnerable—in public. Cape Town-based creative director and stylist, Gavin Mikey Collins, and US performance artist, activist, and poet, Alok Vaid-Menon, teamed up with queer and gender non-conforming artists for a “live fashion protest”. A space-taking, look-serving march through the streets of Cape Town “disrupt[ing] the heteronormative and colonial…


Added by Gender Bent on April 5, 2017 at 2:30pm — No Comments

If feminism makes you feel emasculated, your manhood wasn't that strong to begin with

It’s pretty telling when someone takes positive measures to stand up for themselves, and it makes another people downplay, nay-say, and try to delegitimize their efforts. Especially when these people stand to benefit from oppressive systems that the first person is standing up against in the first place. And it's not a good look.

When I first started talking about feminism, like with race, I constantly found myself having to explain to men, and likewise white…


Added by Gender Bent on April 3, 2017 at 12:00pm — No Comments

Is Dave Chappelle making fun of fragile masculinity, or enforcing it?

Unless you've been living under a rock, you've heard about Dave Chappelle's two new comedy specials released on Netflix last Tuesday, marking the long-awaited return to stand up from the mastermind behind the game-changing Chappelle’s Show.

But not everyone is laughing. Controversy has erupted over how the specials –“The Age of Spin: Live at the Hollywood Palladium” and “Deep in the Heart of Texas: Live at Austin City Limits” – seem over-reliant on…


Added by Gender Bent on March 28, 2017 at 12:30pm — No Comments

Intersex people are proof that nature is not as obsessed as we are with putting people in boxes

Intersex activist Hida Viloria, Image Credit: Hachette Book Group

Gender is a fascinatingly all-encompassing construct. From the moment we are born, most of society reads one of two onto us and insists on treating us accordingly–often violently. These two genders, male and female, inform almost everything; from the colors we are supposed to like, the people we are supposed to be attracted to, the music we are supposed to be drawn to, to the way we are supposed…


Added by Gender Bent on March 24, 2017 at 2:47pm — No Comments

Old white men have no business making rules about women's health

Old white men are great at a lot of things. Buying stocks. Subsequently destroying the stock market and the economy. Not going to jail for it. Not going to jail for anything. Electing racists and sexists. Colonizing lands. Genocide. Creating little future old white men who do all of those things even better.

One thing they are not…


Added by Gender Bent on March 24, 2017 at 1:00pm — No Comments

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