It’s been a big year for all of us here at Feministing. We brought on some amazing new contributors, said farewell to our dear former Executive Editor Samhita, got a trio of new Executive Directors, and launched a big Kickstarter fundraising campaign, which–thanks to your support–was super successful. And through it all, we did some pretty great blogging if we do say so ourselves.
2014 promises to be even more exciting, and we can’t wait to get back to regular posting after the New Year. But first, we’ll be running a series of end-of-year roundups of our favorite feminist writing of 2013–both on our corner of the interwebs and beyond. First up, today and tomorrow, we’re highlighting the top ten most popular posts on Feministing this year. Though pageviews aren’t our main priority, these are the posts that seemed to most resonate with our readers this year. (Check back tomorrow for the top 5).
What would you do if you found yourself sharing a train car with 55 Catholic high school students from Louisiana and their chaperones heading home from the 2013 “March for Life”? Feminist activist Michelle Kinsey Bruns decided to take the opportunity to tell them that she had an abortion at age 18, and that it saved her life. As she wrote in this emotional and dramatic account of the incident for us, Michelle hoped ”to let them hear, for perhaps the first time in their lives, a positive, no-regrets, post-abortion narrative.”
How about “imagine this person as a human being, just like you?” There’s something to be said for making an abstract political idea more real for people, more relatable, but, Maya asked in this post, why do we give men a pass on being unable to imagine women they aren’t intimately involved with as real human beings, with feelings and needs and RIGHTS? It’s the difference between thinking of a person as existing all on their own, and thinking of them as existing only in relation to you.
Maya highlighted the tragic irony of our collective fixation on Manti Te’o's fictional dead girlfriend while Lizzy Seeberg, a student raped by a Notre Dame football player who later killed herself, has been ignored. She wrote, “The contrasts are truly stark. The athletic director literally cried for Te’o in a 40-minute press conference, while the coach cracked a joke in response to questions about Seeberg.” We wish we could be a little more surprised that a university prioritized male athletic victory over female life.
Rehtaeh Parsons was gang-raped by four boys in her friend’s house when she was 15. A year and half later, after months of being bullied and slut-shamed, she committed suicide. In this post, Alexandra tried to offer more than “just another essay pointing out how terrible rape is.” Instead of wallowing in the injustice of this latest all-too-familiar tragedy, she offered ideas–from consent education to bystander intervention to survivor support–for what to do about it. Because there’s no time to waste: “Rape culture kills. Rehtaeh Parsons is dead and we are in a state of emergency.”
Zerlina broke down all the ways the GOP’s resistance to VAWA was bullshit — and why it struck close to home for her. After she was raped, Zerlina went to a VAWA-funded rape crisis center, which the GOP’s devotion to an “invented conservative orthodoxy and ideologies that don’t align with any pragmatic form of governance” would see shut down.