sexual assault

The Latest

By Bee Quammie

As I walked into the grocery store, I caught the tail end of a man saying he’d “be a gentleman” and pass carts to the “lovely ladies” waiting. It was a busy Saturday morning, so I filed in line behind the women ahead of me and waited my turn.

by Krislyn Domingue

They tried to bury us, but they didn’t know that we were seeds. —Mexican Proverb

Michael, they’ve buried you, but they did not know you were a seed. And my brother you have sprouted. You were planted when life was taken from you; and the tears of your mother, your father, the tears of your sisters, your brothers, my tears have nurtured and cultivated them. Yes, my brother, you have sprouted.

by Carolyn Strong

We all knew Lifetime’s recent biopic of the late singer, Aaliyah, would be awful. The family did not authorize the film, nor did it allow Lifetime to use Aaliyah’s original recordings. There were also a number of casting missteps. So yes, the Wendy Williams produced “Aaliyah: Princess of R&B” was doomed from the start. When those on social media jumped in with both feet to rip apart the movie (as well as everyone associated with it), it was no surprise. However, what did surprise me was (a) the way the film depicted the “relationship” between 15-year-old Aaliyah and 27-year-old R. Kelly; and (b) the fact that the film didn’t receive more backlash for this irresponsible portrayal of their very inappropriate relationship.

by Susan Snyder for the Philadelphia Inquirer

Lincoln University President Robert R. Jennings, under fire since making statements about sexual assault at an all women's convocation on campus in September, resigned Monday morning, the university announced.

by Anne Shindler for First Coast News

Facing a possible 60 years in prison for firing a gun at her estranged husband and his two sons, Marissa Alexander agreed Monday to a plea deal that effectively ends the four-year old criminal case against her.

by Brittany Dawson

Two years ago, my twin sister was diagnosed with multiple mental illnesses, including bipolar disorder, schizoaffective disorder, depression, multiple personality disorder, and others—all of which induce anxiety, paranoia, and psychosis. It was only when I saw my sister’s suffering during my sophomore year of college that I realized the taboo surrounding mental illness, the inherent shame that accompanies it, and how we continue to fail the mentally ill.

by Saaraa Bailey

Way before the world was “keeping up” with her and her family, Kim Kardashian was just another the young, wealthy girl living in Southern California. As the former girlfriend of Michael Jackson’s nephew and the goddaughter of O.J. Simpson, Kim was able to enjoy the fruits of white privilege amidst the company of high profile black men, way before her days as an A-lister. And her high profile relationships with a number of black athletes and celebrities would also help her transition from Beverly Hills beauty to international superstar.

by Kinsey Clarke

Last week, TIME Magazine asked which popularly used words in 2014 should be banned in 2015. The list contained many words that originated in African American Vernacular English and are often used by black women. TIME’s list was offensive, as For Harriet explained in another article here.

by Julia Craven

I was raised by my great-grandmother—a self-proclaimed strong Black women who ain’t need no man. Winnie was independent. She may have enjoyed my great-grandfather’s attention, but she never coveted it. Her self-esteem was not based in what others, or society at-large, thought of her.

by Samone Hamilton

I recently read an article on The Root by Diana Ozemebhoya Eromosele titled, “Michael Brown’s Death Reopened My Eyes to My Privileges as a Black Woman.”

by Diana Veiga

Life is hard. It can be extra hard for a Black girl who will one day become a Black woman. What do you tell her about this thing called life and how to navigate the twists and turns? What pearls, what gems, what lessons will help her along the way? Here are 10 powerful quotes by powerful Black women whose lives and accomplishments have been able to light a path for the rest of us. Teach Black girls about these Black women (and others of course), teach them these quotes, and the lessons within them.

by Anna Gibson

Everyone could hear her long before they could see her. It was 2:00am at a liquor store on the corner of Grand River and Woodward. It was dark outside, but when she stepped into the store I could see her in the fullness of the light. She had on a long trench coat, and her loose skirt hung below her knees, fraying at the edges.

by Malaika Jabali

Bye, Felicia! Bae. Fleek. Basic.

The list of words black people have re-imagined, created anew, and/or made to be our own is extensive, especially in the last three years. However, like many of the things we have produced or created, it’s as if we just can’t have nice things—or things that we keep for ourselves. When TIME magazine released a survey about words that should be banned in 2015, they included several terms that originated in black culture. And Piers Morgan recently told black that we should stop using the "N"-word. It seems like everyone has an opinion on how black people should use our language… and most of these people are not black.

by Kesiena Boom

Yaz’Min Shancez (pictured above), nicknamed ‘Miss T’ by her loved ones, was 31 years old when she was brutally killed in Fort Myers, Florida. Her body was then set alight and dumped behind a garbage bin where it was discovered on the 19th of June. Her family described her as a woman who was ‘full of life’ and ‘didn’t deserve to go out like that.’

by Michelle Denise Jackson

Trigger warning: sexual violence, victim blaming, rape culture, misogyny

When I woke up yesterday morning, my News Feed had erupted with status updates and headlines in response to this video, which features Don Lemon more or less suggesting to Joan Tarshis how she could have avoided being raped by Bill Cosby in 1969. According to good ol’ Don, women can avoid being forced to have oral sex by “biting” their attacker’s penis. He gave Tarshis this “advice” on his show.

by Ayana Crichlow

Although I currently live in the U.S., I grew up in Trinidad in the 80s and 90s as a black girl. To be black in a country that idealizes a mixed ethnicity aesthetic, was rough to say the least. Although I shared the same parental genes as my sister, she was considered mixed, whereas I have dark skin. I also had kinky hair, whereas my sister and all my cousins had curly hair, or “good hair” according to Trinis. It didn't matter that my heritage also included French, Scottish, East Indian and African; I was black to everyone who saw me. This wouldn’t have bothered me, if I hadn’t been treated as less than my sister for most of our childhood because if it.

by Qubilah Huddleston

Recently, I was tweeting about how I wish black men would stop valuing big butts and fuller thighs (read: typically features of black women) on every type of woman but black woman. I followed that tweet with: "Reasons why we need black feminism. [Because] these dudes ain't loyal, respectful, informed, or grateful for women [with] an abundance of melanin."

by Amber Dorsey

Last weekend, BuzzFeed published one of their more poignant lists: The Ultimate Guide to Being a Woman. Instead of their usual entertainment fodder, the list was a sharp, tongue-in-cheek cultural critique on the way women's magazines, websites, and society at large places often places very restricting, contradictory boundaries on what it means to be a woman.