On being young and gay in Europe: “It’s not yet ok as long as you don’t dare to be who you want to be”

by Catarina Vila Nova During the Summer months, Esther and Carmen will be riding their motorcycles across 15 European countries in search of what it means to be young and gay in Europe. They will be connecting with partners in film festivals and organizations that advocate for LGBTI+ rights to create a movie platform targeted to professors to get the conversation going in the classroom.

Sexually liberated or slutty? The harm of slut-shaming

By Hanna Eisen Are you a prude, a good girl, or a slut? It seems like these are the only categories women can fall into regarding their sexuality. While women learn from a young age that they have to act according to societal standards, none of the possible decisions seem to be good enough. One should be flirty, but not too sexy; being a virgin is something to be embarrassed about, but enjoying casual sex is shameful. It seems impossible to walk the fine line of being a “good girl”, especially if that does not fit with the (secret) desires one has.

Women, violence, and war: “It’s the unexpected”

by Catarina Vila Nova Western societies aspire to ideals of equality but it’s in moments of crisis that the reality of where we still are comes to the fore. When it comes to war, gender norms are almost as rooted as they’ve always been. Even with catchy stories of female soldiers in the early days of the Russian invasion of Ukraine flooding our timelines, traditional gender roles still take hold.

“Kartini” Princess of Java: A Film Review

by Reya Suwarsono Film director, Hanung Bramantyo, unfolds the story of Raden Adjeng Kartini (played by Dian Sastrowardoyo), a daughter born into a Javanese family of nobles in 1879. Her father’s position as a Javanese aristocrat working for the Dutch government provided her with the opportunity to attend a Dutch school – a privilege that few Indonesians had. Her exposure to Western ideals and education played a crucial role in her growth as an activist in her later years.