Source: GirlTalkHQ
By GirlTalkHQ


If you aren’t familiar with Laura Bates, it’s about time. She is a British activist who started the Everyday Sexism projectin 2012, an online platform where women share their stories of being sexually harassed in public spaces. Laura started the project after a string of her own personal experiences, recognizing there was something wrong with the feelings of shame and blame she took upon herself for being a target.

To date the site has received over 100,000 entries and has spawned a number of international versions, including an American site. Laura has been a sought-after speaker, given a powerful TED Talk about street harassment, writes for the Guardian about feminist issues, and has also released an ‘Everyday Sexism’ book. Not bad for a woman who was sick of being objectified by socialized gender norms and decided to speak up about it.

Her project has turned into an important cultural movement, part of the current digital feminist wave we are seeing, but with any movement like this, the underlying mission is to create change, especially at a legislative level. Recognition of the problem, people finding the courage to speak up and share similar experiences of victimization is just the beginning.

In a recent conversation with the London School of Economics’ British Politics and Policy blog, Laura shares a few key ways she sees policy becoming a key player in aiding a campaign like Everyday Sexism, as well as changing the status quo for women. The first aspect she talks about is having more women in leadership positions, not just as mere symbolism, but to enact meaningful change.

“I think that being able to see women in prominent political positions always brings a certain benefit with it, because of the role modelling potential of girls being able to see those people in those positions. But I don’t think that we can necessarily assume that meaningful feminist change comes just as a result of having women in…

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