Housewife, stripper, school girl, feminist, whatever
Right now, I am taking a break from writing a paper on youth at-risk for my counseling masters program. I think that all young females are “at-risk,” we are vaginally marginalized by society at birth, and when we hit adolescents we cease to be taken seriously as humans and many men only see us in terms of dick recepticles who should devote our lives to their ego and comfort. I think we as women buy into that – or are trained into falling for that. (Read Peggy Orensteins book School Girls, 1994. Gives good insight) I want it to be different for my daughter. I want her to be as feminine as she wants, to find value and power in that and to define what being a women means on her terms. I want that for all women. Bikini Kill has been a voice and a force for all women.
I remember at 18 when my best friend introduced me to Bikini Kill (he is one of those rare spectacularly attractive heterosexual men who truly likes women and appreciates them), he gave me the Bikini Kill- the first two albums cd and told me he knew I would love it. He was right. It was a revolution/revelation in a clear jewel case. I read the essay on the inside cover, over and over. It was a riot indeed. I think for the first time I felt how all of women were connected, and the way we seperated and bashed on each other was the problem. Housewife, stripper, school girl, feminist, whatever…we were all the same, living our lives out under the same rules we had no say in. “Don’t you talk out of line. Don’t go speaking out of your turn. Gotta listen to what the Man says…” no more! It felt so good to be double dared, to scream it out loud – we don’t need you! To have a choice, to have a voice, to belong to a sisterhood. It still feels good. The freedom to embrace all your girl awesomeness however you define that and be unapologetic about it feels so damn good. Last year some of my female students and I were talking about bands we like, and I told them how Bikini Kill changed my whole perspective when I was their age. Some of those girls went out and bought Bikini Kill cd’s and then told me how it blew their minds. Yeah, it does that! I still get in my car, put in a Bikini Kill cd – sing right out loud, and feel all that raw awesomeness of being a female that I felt at 18.
Thank you for the voice, and the music to this soundtrack of change, strength, and power.