Women have been speaking out against sexual harassment and inequality this week and we’re standing with them. These brave women are paving the way for a safer and kinder world for all of us so let’s support them today and going forward.
Julia Carpenter is an all-star writer for CNN’s Business section who reports on gender in the workplace. From sexual harassment and sexism at work to pay inequality, Carpenter is shining a light (a very bright light on a very prominent platform) on what professional women are up against at work.
This week, she tackled female presence in leadership roles, revealing surprising research about why there are so few female CEOs in the world. According to the research she presents, female employees generally receive less facetime with the boss than men do. In a way, it’s all about networking, but women are getting fewer opportunities to do that. Working your way up the corporate latter is just as much about hard work as it is about the recognition you get for it, and making sure that, when the time comes to select someone for a promotion, your superiors know you well enough for you to come to mind.
Beyond informing the world about the inequalities that exist in the workplace for women, Carpenter spends her time volunteering as a mentor at New York’s Girls Write Now nonprofit which mentors underserved girls in the area.
Lorena Bobbitt is redefining her name in history. For those of you who aren’t familiar with Bobbitt’s story, Bobbitt first came into the spotlight in 1993 at 24 years old. She was the focus of a televised trial where she was charged with malicious wounding after cutting off her husband’s penis and discarding it out her car window. She became the butt of America’s favorite joke. For years, and even to this day, when many hear the name Lorena Bobbitt, they laugh at the story of the crazy lady who literally cut her husband’s penis off with a knife. The saddest part of this story is that it’s not just men who make a joke of her, but many women, too.
Society as a whole decided not to focus on the part of the trial where Bobbitt tells of her husband kicking, hitting, choking and raping her regularly. No one thought to use Bobbitt’s nightmare of a marriage and highly publicized case as a cue to start a much-needed conversation about domestic violence and marital rape. But that’s changing tomorrow, 26 years later. Tomorrow, her life’s documentary will be released on Amazon, and Bobbitt is using it to redirect the conversation and bring attention to the stories of those suffering from domestic abuse.
Few supported Bobbitt when she was 24 and a victim of domestic violence. Let’s stand together and support her and the many women in similar situations now.
Read Bobbitt’s complete story and that of the women and men who have helped her regain her name.
Yazmín Morales, former Miss Costa Rica, came out after four years of silence to share her story of sexual assault by former Costa Rican president, Óscar Arias Sánchez. After another woman accused Mr. Arias of sexual assault, she decided to add her story. These two women were the catalyst that led to seven more accusations against Mr. Arias from women alleging sexual assault. Even more impressive, after Morales was turned down by all of the legal representatives she approached, she decided to go forward alone, filing a criminal complaint against the former president and Nobel Peace Prize winner. Morales is one of many women creating a #MeToo movement outside the U.S. where women have even less access to legal recourse.
Read more about Yazmín Morales and how this case is impacting the #MeToo movement in Latin America.
What Yazmín Morales is doing for Latin America, Shim Suk-Hee is doing for South Korea. The historically male-dominated world of elite athletics in South Korea has been hit hard be an avalanche of stories of sexual assault at the beginning of a #MeToo movement in Korea, and much of it is because of Shim’s decision to speak out. Shim, a two-time short-track speedskating Olympic champion, announced that her coach had sexually assaulted her for four years. The abuse began when she was 17. The coach, Cho Jae-beom, has been sentenced to 10 months in prison for assaulting athletes.
Shim’s lawyer has said that Shim hopes that her story and the story of many others will open up space for women to safely speak out against abuse and find legal recourse.
Read more of Shim Suk-hee’s story and join us in lifting her up.
Nadia Bolz-Weber, a feminist Lutheran pastor, presented Gloria Steinem,
one of the feminist movement’s most prominent leaders, with a sculpture of a vulva made of melted down purity rings last week. Purity rings are and have been a popular symbol of purity and abstinence in the Christian community. They have also been widely criticized for encouraging feelings of shame around a woman’s sexuality. Bolz-Weber is looking to flip the patriarchal tradition on its head. The sculpture was partly used to promote her new book, “Shameless,” about the historical relationship between sex and Christianity and how it needs to change. Bolz-Weber is also the founder of the House for All Sinners and Saints church in Denver, Colorado.
Read more about the sculpture and Bolz-Weber’s message.
If there’s a particular woman who’s doing amazing things during the week that you want to see on next week’s Fearless Femme Friday article, please send your suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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