Reflections of a Novice Blogger

It’s December 3rd, which means that this is the final week for the blog before winter hiatus (make sure to keep checking for quick hits and content though). As I write the final feature post of the semester, I thought I’d take time to think about how writing for the blog has changed my relationship to feminism.

Although I frequent different blogs, I’ve never actually written for one before. Over the semester I’ve found that two of the most difficult aspects of blogging are finding your voice and deciding what you want to accomplish with your writing.

When it comes to finding your voice, I believe that the process is ongoing. Writing for a blog is very different then the academic writing that most students are used to. The idea of dropping some of the technical pretenses and communicating with readers in a more down to earth and conversational way is harder to do than I would have thought. But, I think (and hope) that practice makes bloggers better.

The most important issue facing bloggers is the question of what they want to accomplish with their writing. I’ve been a reader of Shout Out! for some time now. During this time, I would often think about what kind of posts I would want to write. My idea going into this semester was to write about the everyday instances of women’s and gender issues that I observed and believed were worth bringing to larger audiences. Though my topics were diverse, I hope that I achieved this.

But what about my larger purpose? I’ve always maintained that one of the issues with feminism is that it has been made too inaccessible. Much of this comes from negative stereotypes of feminists. At the same time, I feel that feminism is such a divided topic that it can be tough to broach for some people. We live in a society in which we are expected (for the most part) to be able to explain what we believe in. When challenged as to why, will potential feminists feel comfortable defending their advocacy? Do feminists put pressure on our own to have a laundry list of prominent names, terms, and readings at our disposal? Is feminism made harder than it needs to be?

My answer was and is yes. I don’t think that the norm should be to challenge why people are feminists. I believe that the real norm should be to ask why people aren’t feminists. I’d wager that most reasonable people believe in equality, regardless of issues of sex and gender. So why don’t these same people identify as feminist? Despite differences within the larger sphere of feminism, the overarching goal is the same: equality.

Which brings me full circle to my purpose. The reason that I chose to write about issues like James Bond movies, ESPN W, the Boy Scouts, and the Game of Thrones novels is because I want to direct a feminist lens toward everyday topics. Though people interested in feminism might not always want to sit down and discuss differences between the second and third waves, most people will talk about the impact and implications of pop culture on gender inequality. These issues can also be a great way to get others to understand what feminism actually entails– asking questions. While the answers might not always be easy, I think that they are work talking about (and I’d wager that most people will agree).

Overall, I’ve enjoyed writing for the blog this semester. I think that by actually putting some of my ideas into writing, I have grown in my beliefs and understanding of feminism. I look forward to writing for the blog next semester, and really appreciate those who took the time to read my posts (and hopefully enjoyed them). With that said, I hope that everyone has a great break and holiday season!

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