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A Feminist Manifesto: In Parts

Disclaimer: this manifesto aims to highlight the oppressions, fears, and commonalities of the female experience. it is, at best, a generalization of common events. while it should be taken seriously, it is not a summation of the actions of all people, nor should it be read as gender-exclusive.

 

            the missing anatomy

when he asks,

“what are you into?”

he does not mean

“what can i do to please you?”

rather, he means,

“what are you willing to let me do to you?”

means,

“if i don’t like it, we aren’t doing it.”

means,

“female pleasure doesn’t even exist.”

how lucky are we

to know what a clitoris is.

 

            street cred

there are important things to remember

when earning your street cred:

keep a tight fist;

stick a key blade between

your ring and middle finger,

let it see the bare night;

wear long pants,

the scent of leg

attracts predators;

walk in groups

because this

is a pack mentality

and protection

is necessary for survival

in a hunting ground.

 

            consent

my virginity is not yours

to take,

nor mine to give;

it is the space between the letters

in the word consent.

 

            rape

definition: a back-alley procedure.

for the price of no consent,

you can get a whole lifetime

of ptsd:

constantly refreshing images,

a scream,

a painting,

a dissociation of body

and mind.

even scathing showers will

not clean this from you.

 

            getting a job

make sure you come prepared

with a smile

and some cleavage,

just enough to tease,

but not enough to suggest.

this

will make the manager like you.

 

            working a job

when the manager corners you in the back,

puts his hand on your shoulder,

whispers in your personal space,

do not cry.

deciding to be okay

with the way the manager touches you

is how you get places.

 

            crying

do not falter,

ever.

crying is a sign of weakness,

and they can smell it.

they will prey on you,

and you

become a liability.

 

            womanhood

live in constant anger.

be angry at the fact that we

are a summation of our parts;

be angry that we

have little say in what is done to us,

be angry that speaking up

means being labeled as a man-hater.

be so angry

that people begin to fear you,

because they will not understand you.

 

            the manifesto

this is not a manifesto.

it is a survival guide,

a list of words with no

cultural significance.

how can i write a manifesto

for a world

so hellbent on

not changing?

 

 

Ellen Robinson

Kutztown '21

the most notable thing about me is my leslie knope level waffle obsession, but like i have a book too ig. Kutztown University, Class of 2021
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