2015 was a great year. It was a great year for feminism. As we come towards the end of the first month of the new year, Ultravenus has been reflecting on some of our favourite female-fronted moments of 2015.
15. “Miley, whats good?”
Nicki called Miley out live on stage at the VMAs back in August, and then followed up with an interview with the New York Times in which she addressed Miley’s appropriation:‘The fact that you feel upset about me speaking on something that affects black women makes me feel like you have some big balls. You’re in videos with black men, and you’re bringing out black women on your stages, but you don’t want to know how black women feel about something that’s so important? Come on, you can’t want the good without the bad. If you want to enjoy our culture and our lifestyle, bond with us, dance with us, have fun with us, twerk with us, rap with us, then you should also want to know what affects us, what is bothering us, what we feel is unfair to us. You shouldn’t not want to know that.’’
14. Same sex marriage was legalised in all 50 states in America!
13. Twitter’s #sayhername campaign addressed black womens’ stories of police brutality and forced the wider world to pay attention.
12. The UK made noise about the tampon tax- not abolished yet, but 2015 saw widespread pressure on the government to remove VAT on sanitary products.
11. Misty Copeland made ballet history as the first ever black female lead dancer
10. Between Caitlyn Jenner and LaVerne Cox et al, trans visibility skyrocketed and brought itself into the mainstream. Rightly so.
9. Rupi Kaur stood up to Instagram when they deleted her self portrait which featured menstrual blood. After repeatedly deleting her image, Rupi finally won the battle. Of it, she said: “I will not apologise for not feeding the ego and pride of misogynist society that will have my body in an underwear but not be ok with a small leak when your pages are filled with countless photos/accounts where women (so many who are underage) are objectified, pornified, and treated less than human.”
8. Viola Davis became the first black woman to win an Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series for “How To Get Away With Murder”
7. Caitlyn Jenner introduced her authentic self to the world on the cover of Vanity Fair.
6. Another great magazine cover- Adele destroyed the male gaze with her Rolling Stone cover back in November. Of the cover, Vice magazine said: “Adele’s expression wears none of the self-consciousnesses that comes with being watched. She’s defiant, if a little perturbed. It’s as though we’re door-to-door-marketers who’ve caught her just as she was about to recline with her morning coffee and paper, her one moment of solitude before she starts her busy, important day. There’s nothing lustful in the way she stares out of the image at us. She’s not asking for anything, either. With one look, she’s telling us more about herself, and her expectations of us, than a woman on the cover of a magazine usually does.”
5. Another day, another great Twitter campaign: feminist activists actioned #shoutyourabortion to challenge the taboo’s around abortion and reproductive health.
4. Amber Rose led a slut walk to challenge slut shaming. Between this, her “Walk of No Shame” video and her VMAs outfit- on which was printed slurs she has endured in the past, she certainly made noise in 2015 and we fucking love her for it.
3. Kiran Gandhi
i, friend and bandmate of one of our all time fave’s MIA, ran the London Marathon whilst free bleeding on her period. She slammed those who criticised her, saying they proved her point that society is uncomfortable with the natural process, and dedicated her run to “sisters who don’t have tampons”.
2. We have more female MPs than ever: The 2015 election saw more female MPs elected than ever before.
1. Feminist Action Movies: from Star Wars: The Force Awakens to Mad Max: Fury Road, we are finally seeing strong female leads in action films. And we fucking love it.