Public crusaders for women's self-esteem - I hereby set you free!

Publicado 24 de junio de 2013 Avatar SpeakOutNOw

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You're walking down the street minding your business when a man calls out to you. Perhaps he tells you to smile (because you look prettier that way); or he comments on your physical appearance (on a sliding scale from publicly acceptable language to downright sexists slurs); or he invites you to go for coffee/dinner/drink with him. You ignore him and keep walking, pretending that you didn't hear him. And that's when you start to hear the kinds of verbal abuse that I cannot...


Taking a peaceful stand through music and song

Publicado 7 de junio de 2013 Avatar SpeakOutNOw

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For centuries song, music and dance has played a crucial role in the lives of human beings. When we are happy and we're celebrating. When we are sad and we're mourning. When we have had enough and we're taking a stand. Some of the most iconic and popular songs of the last 5 decades (think Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, The Special AKA) have been protest songs, taking a stand against racism, political oppression, materialism, and wars. Do you have any favorite protest s...


Is your face all over the web?

Publicado 4 de junio de 2013 Avatar SpeakOutNOw

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I love taking photos: it is a hobby I have been doing for many years and I enjoy it equally with my DSLR camera as well as my iPhone. I like to take photos documenting my travels; photos of interesting street scenes; but most of all I like to take photos of people. Perhaps you do too? But how much thought have you ever given much thought as to whether you should? The proliferation of camera phones and the popularity of photo-sharing social media platforms such as Instagram or...


Questions and Answers about an Infamous City

Publicado 14 de mayo de 2013 Avatar SpeakOutNOw

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“Isn’t it really dangerous?” they ask And I purse my lips in response “It is hard to explain to someone who has not lived there” “Isn’t there always so much traffic?” they ask And I shrug my shoulders in response “I suppose there is, but much less than say, Nairobi” “We’ve heard there isn’t much to do,” they say And I shake my head in response “I think you’ve been talking to the wrong people” “We’ve heard it’s a pretty ugly place,” they say And...


Do internships = exploitation?

Publicado 1 de mayo de 2013 Avatar SpeakOutNOw

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In the last couple of months I have had several conversations with a number of recent graduates about their planned career paths, and one thing has struck me from these discussions – the sheer frustration with internships. I consider myself one of the lucky ones – and I use the word ‘lucky’ without diminishing the hard work, long nights, and extra hours that helped me transform that luck into where I am today. During my first (and only) internship I had an amazing mentor who pushed me...


Do you think you're beautiful?

Publicado 16 de abril de 2013 Avatar SpeakOutNOw

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I came across this ad campaign today and probably for the first time in my life an advert made me feel emotional and (dare I say it) a little emotional. I feel that so often we are taught to concentrate on what we think is wrong with our bodies and our faces - especially, though not exclusively, girls and women. I think this advert clearly drives home the point about recognizing what makes each and every single one of us beautiful.


Is this the time of the disappearing mother tongue?

Publicado 20 de febrero de 2013 Avatar SpeakOutNOw

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Two weeks after my eighth birthday I boarded a plane for the first time in my life with my mom and my sister and left the country of my birth – Poland. We were bound for South Africa, which we were going to call home for a few years. Those few years passed the ‘19’ marker in January 2013, and although I technically don’t live in South Africa at the moment, it is home – spiritually, if not physically. In the beginning I recall my mom giving my sister and me Polish language lessons at h...


What's the cost of your convenience?

Publicado 14 de febrero de 2013 Avatar SpeakOutNOw

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This morning I caught sight of some headlines on a television about a proposed move by the Mayor of New York City to ban Styrofoam take-away containers in the city because they are impossible to recycle. I do not want to dwell too much on this particular story as it is still developing; and the point I want to make is more about the ‘cost’ of convenience in our lives. Now, this is a very complex topic and there is much to be said about consumerist culture; the global economy and the actua...


What will all the marches against rape achieve?

Publicado 8 de febrero de 2013 Avatar SpeakOutNOw

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You may have come across a shocking story in the news about the brutal rape of a 17 year old girl in South Africa this week. You probably also recall the global outrage following the rape and death of a young woman from India just a few weeks ago. Both of these atrocities have been accompanied by calls for marches and protests; indeed in India, a number of these took place. I have been outraged and driven to despair hearing about what happened to these two young women (and many others before th...


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