Do the disingenuous brand tweets about International Women's Day make you wish you were dead? Keep your chin up, and read about these great women who got through worse things.
At Broadly, we believe that every day is International Women's Day; however, in honor of today's observance, we have decided to highlight some of the most fascinating, determined, and genius women that we've featured on the site in the past few months.
Photo by Christopher Bethell.
Rokudenashiko and some of her work.
Megumi Igarashi—also known as Rokudenashiko, or "bastard child"—gained international notoriety in 2014 after Japanese authorities seized a vulva-shaped kayak she had 3D printed and arrested her on charges of distributing obscene materials. For over a year, she has been undergoing a slow-moving trial but refuses to back down; her goal, she says, is to normalize the vagina in Japanese society. We visited her gallery in Tokyo to learn more about her art and her activism.
Screencap via YouTube user Peralta Colleges
Photo courtesy of Nicole Eisenman.
Michele Wallace on the cover of Ms. magazine in 1979.
Michele Wallace is a prolific scholar, author, feminist, and champion for black women. She might be best known for her first book, Black Macho and the Myth of the Superwoman, which eviscerates the trope of the bold, sassy black woman—denied her own narrative—and crusades for something that we should all have: visibility. Her work is as salient today as it was 30 years ago, making Wallace as enduring as she is smart. Broadly spoke to her about how the black patriarchy has been ignoring black women since the civil rights movement, and why young black feminists give her hope.
Photo by Luke Gilford.
From Chicago, to Paris and Las Vegas, Mia Isabella transformed herself from fashion focused, straight-A student to the queen at the helm of a transgender porn empire. She splashed onto tabloids in 2015 when an anonymous source exposed an alleged sex scandal between she and Kylie Jenner's rapper boyfriend Tyga. In an interview with Broadly, Mia opened up about transphobia, survival, and how she took over the adult entertainment industry.
Virginie Despentes (left) and a friend. Photo courtesy of Virginie Despentes.
For those who have read her incisive memoir/manifesto King Kong Theory, the radical French writer and filmmaker Virginie Despentes—whose violent rape at the age of 17 forms the basis of much of her work—needs no introduction. For everyone else, we interviewed her.
Photo by Alfredo Pecastre courtesy of Coffee House Press.
The Mexican writer Valeria Luiselli has captivated both academics and layreaders with her erudite yet eminently funny brilliance. This month, the 32-year-old is the second Mexican author ever to be nominated for a National Book Critic's Circle award, for her acclaimed postmodern novel The Story of My Teeth. We got coffee with her to discuss grad school (bad), personal essays (usually bad), and her work (great).
Photo courtesy of Dawn Porter.
Dawn Porter is an award-winning documentary filmmaker. This year, her documentary TRAPPED—which focuses on abortion providers in the South and Midwest struggling to remain open due to onerous and medically unnecessary restrictions placed on them by conservative politicians—won the Special Jury Award for Social Impact Filmmaking at Sundance. She spoke to Broadly about the process of making the film, releasing a staunchly pro-choice documentary in an age of increasing extremism, and how things are really not fine.
Amanda Nguyen (right) with Sen. Jeanne Shaheen. Image via Twitter.
After Amanda Nguyen learned that her rape kit had an expiration date—in Massachusetts, where she was sexually assaulted, untested rape kits are only kept for six months, unless the survivor requests to extend the cutoff—she set out to fix the confusing and often ineffective way that US law enforcement deals with sexual violence. Her non-profit, Rise, now advocates for systematic legal protections for victims of sexual assault. We spoke to her about her advocacy and the broken criminal justice system.
Photo by Amy Lombard.
Theresa Rebeck created Smash, wrote the first scripts for Harriet the Spy and Catwoman, and has been nominated for a Pulitzer Prize. Hollywood insiders have called her "stubborn," which is film industry lingo for incredibly successful woman. We visited her at her home in Brooklyn.
"It's almost become as ubiquitous as Kleenex or Xerox. When you say 'Suicide Girl,' you know what type of girl you're talking about."Mar 26, 2017
Like the "explicitly gay moment" in "Beauty and the Beast," the gay Power Ranger follows a growing trend of masking marketing as progress.Mar 25, 2017
This afternoon, Paul Ryan rushed to the White House to tell President Trump that, despite his ultimatum, they did not have the votes to pass his bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act.Mar 24, 2017
A new study looks at who fears death and who is ready to shuffle off their mortal coil.Mar 24, 2017
Almost 13,000 new cases of invasive cervical cancer will be diagnosed this year. What happens to those patients who rely on Planned Parenthood if the organization is defunded?Mar 24, 2017
Roger Severino has long spoken out against the rights of LGBT Americans—but now he's tasked with ensuring those people receive appropriate medical care.Mar 24, 2017
Jenny Gage's documentary "All This Panic" follows a group of New York schoolgirls as they come of age in the city. We talk to Gage and one of its stars.Mar 24, 2017
A haulage driver explains why she can move a 90-ton crane with ease, but wouldn't want Donald Trump anyway near her vehicle.Mar 24, 2017
The decision comes a mere 16 months after the State Department, under Obama, stopped the construction of the pipeline.Mar 23, 2017
Invoking God, the Oklahoma House of Representatives just passed a bill outlawing abortion in cases of fetal abnormality—with no exception for rape or incest.Mar 23, 2017