By Georgie Day
Out of all contraceptive methods, the pill is one of the most popular types of female contraception, with an almost 99% effectiveness rate when used correctly. It cannot be disputed that the introduction of the pill has changed society forever. It gave women control over their reproductive organs and sex life, made casual sexual relationships less of a risk and taboo, and impacted greatly on women’s lives, both in a good light and not. In the US it is estimated that one third of women use the pill as contraception, however more than 50 years after becoming an established form of birth control, new research has changed the guidelines from the Faculty of Sexual & Reproductive Healthcare (FSRH). These updated guidelines now show that the common seven-day break while using most combined pills had no health benefits, and that there is nothing to be gained from stopping the contraceptive to have a monthly period. This understandably has caused a lot of questions to be asked – why was it ever a guideline? Why, more than half a decade on, are we just finding out that the pill could have been taken continuously?
By Peter Marshall
“Anarchism, then, really stands for the liberation of the human mind from the domination of religion; the liberation of the human body from the domination of property; liberation from the shackles and restraint of government. Anarchism stands for a social order based on the free grouping of individuals for the purpose of producing real social wealth; an order that will guarantee to every life, according to individual desires, tastes, and inclination” (p. 35)
Content Warning: Minor reference to sexual abuse and harassment
“My goodness,” I am sure you thought to yourself, “I did enjoy that article about Robert Owen but I wonder if there will be anymore?” How kind of you to ask, let us celebrate because there is another one! For those reading who do not know, I hope to introduce you to political thinkers who you are most likely not going to come across on your syllabus, and hopefully broaden your thought. I openly encourage others to do the same. This time I shall be exploring the 19th/20th century anarchist thinker Emma Goldman. I shall do this by briefly summarising her life before splitting her work into three sections. The first is anarchism, the second gender, and finally prison. I trust my reader’s ability to critique the work for themselves.
Throughout this short and insightful book there is one powerful and potent message: Gender does matter, no matter the sex you are born with, the money you have, or where you come from.
The main purpose of this book is to act as a rallying cry, a point of call to use when confronted by someone who is yet to accept that gender is still a major issue in societies across the globe. Whilst addressing the issues that women, particularly those in countries that are too often neglected by other feminist writers, Adichie focuses on an issue which owing to the rise of ‘white European feminism’ is negated: that because of the roles forced onto children from birth, men to are also disadvantaged, because their “humanity is stifled”. Many feminists may take issue with this, arguing that a focus on men’s issues distracts away from the central issues of gender, that is: the inexcusably high percentages of sexual harassment that women face compared to men, the lack of opportunities we are offered because we are taught from birth that we can have ambition, “but not too much”; we “can aim to be successful but not too successful otherwise” we “will threaten the men” and the roles we are expected to take.
By Vladimir Ivlev
“I want to look at politics with an eye unclouded by philosophy.”
Hannah Arendt, “Zur Person”
It is way too easy for people swept in the typhoon of cultural change to keep themselves occupied by the surface level contradictions found within said paradigm shifts. Those who consider themselves to be in the trenches of the culture war often amass previously heard arguments into their political arsenal to avert themselves from experiencing the excruciating stigmata of self-doubt that losing an online argument often leads to. Either that or succumb to a self-destructive ideological leap of faith. But rarely do you find someone trying to embrace political ideologies that directly scare them or break their trance of idle conformity, for the sake of greater knowledge and self-actualization. I am however not putting myself on a pedestal by proclaiming that I fully comprehend the far-reaches of modern feminism, as it is just as ridden with sectarianism and surreal escapism as left-wing authoritarian philosophies (which is why more often than not they go hand in hand). But, by engaging with its advocates, I have pinpointed a certain underlying trend that not only justifies but necessitates their tactics of antagonism. This is not a conversion moment, I have not become a born-again intersectional feminist. In no way am I defending their tactics. But understanding the necessity of them provides insight into dealing with modern political discourse.
By Sophie Minter
Nearly 17 decades have passed since the women’s rights movement started in Seneca Falls, New York. Over those decades it is evolved into the intersectional feminist movement many people are familiar with now, championing issues that women and minorities face globally.
By Gavin Davies
Humanitarian efforts have saved countless lives, but have been accused of making bad situations worse. The impact of this duality has grown after the end of the Cold War, when the USSR and the US removed support from their respective spheres of influence and left a power vacuum. With no interest or support coming from other states, individuals organized means for assistance much like that which they had done for local charities. The internationalization of charity work spread, and now there are nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and civil society organizations (CSOs) for every need and occasion for relief and development all over the globe (Michael, 2002, p. 4). But as NGOs proliferate, what effects does this have on the world?
By Lola Scurlock
According to the UN, International Women’s Day is a global event to acknowledge progress made in women’s rights, to advocate for change and to proclaim the role of common women in altering the history of their nations and communities through acts of courage and determination. On the 8th of March, we will celebrate International Women’s Day and one of the top ongoing topics that will be discussed is the role of Syrian women in the Syrian Civil War.