Author: Rachel Otis (Rachel Otis)

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Thousands Join Hands Around Oakland’s Lake Merritt in Post-Election Demonstration

Last weekend, more than 8,500 people came together in Oakland, California, for a demonstration called Hands Around Lake Merritt. It was dreamed up by Alison White, a somatic psychotherapist with a vision to connect community during the post-election. Lake Merritt, in the heart of Oakland, is roughly 3.4 miles around. White happens to be part of my somatic...

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Watch these Brave Women Call Out the Fatphobic Comments They’ve Faced

The #FightFatPhobia video originated from the depths of my own darkest holdings around the hatred I’ve experienced. I brought that hatred into the spotlight so it could be released, and so I could connect cathartically to the experiences of other fat-bodied womyn. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yEbUoYswwAg Since I began combining my personal experiences of fatphobia from childhood with my current graduate school studies...

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4 Reasons We Need The Queering Yoga Film

When I first heard about the Queering Yoga documentary, I wanted to jump on my mat and get into happy baby pose. Not only is there an entire project dedicated to the expression of truth from a community I belong to — and which is so often left on the margins — but we all...

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American Women Facing Kuwait Prison Sentence Get Chance to Appeal

Two American women facing a lengthy prison sentence in Kuwait on drug charges will be given the chance to appeal their sentence March 7, family members said. Monique Coverson and her partner, Larissa Joseph, were sentenced in January to 20 to 25 years for drug possession — a trumped-up and falsified charge, according to their supporters....

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Nine Girls Who Are Killing It Globally!

Fifth grader Egypt Ufele, who goes by “Ify,” has been making major waves since she debuted her clothing line, Chubiiline, at New York Fashion Week. Ify was one of the youngest designers there,  and one of the only designers to include plus sizes in their collections. She says her inspiration was the bullying she had experienced...

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4 Reasons Why Instagram’s The Naked Diaries is Intrinsically Feminist

I recently discovered a rapidly flourishing Instagram account, @thenakeddiaries. Taken at face value, I suppose the name could mean any number of things. Upon further exploration, I discovered that it did, in fact, mean a number of different things to a number of different people: 72.9K (mostly female-identified) people, to be exact. Clearly, creator Taylor Giavasis,...

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21 Bold Babes Prove #FatshionFebruary Is Still Going Strong!

It’s finally #FatshionFebruary again, and no matter what other meaning this month holds for you, I have no doubt that if you are a fatshion-forward babe like myself, it is one of the most inspiring times of the year, celebrating the clothing and confidence of fat, bold babes. After covering this herstorical social media sensation...

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Why We Aren’t Celebrating The New “Curvy” Barbie Dolls

By now the news has gone more than viral. Barbie is back in what is supposed to be a new and perhaps improved way. When I first heard the news juxtaposed with the images of Barbies, they certainly appeared far less radical than I had first expected based upon the outpouring of excitement and support...

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No, David Cameron. Muslim Women Aren’t ‘Traditionally Submissive’

Recently, British Prime Minister David Cameron became the direct eye of a Twitter storm, which ended up being more of a full-blown hurricane. The reason for the uproar was the response to a comment Cameron made regarding the “traditional submissiveness” of Muslim women. The comment was attributed to Cameron by a government source concerning an English language test the...