A Closer Look at The UnSlut Project

The UnSlut Project was founded by Emily Lindin in April 2013. Emily founded this project to create a safe platform for sharing stories and promoting awareness about sexual bullying,”slut” shaming, and other related issues. She has shared her own stories from her diary entries from when she was ages 11-14 in order to provide some perspective and hope for those feeling ashamed and trapped. The UnSlut Project promotes gender equality, sex positivity, and comprehensive, age-appropriate sex education for all ages.

In August 2013, the documentary about the UnSlut Project was crowdfunded. This documentary focuses on the seriousness of the impact that slut-shaming and sexual bullying has on people, mainly women. The documentary covers the stories of several “slut” shamed women and the family of one particular woman who committed suicide after she was so heavily bullied. Samantha Gailey Geimer, the minor involved in the 1977 Roman Polanski case, also makes an appearance in the film. The documentary also interviews experts who give insight on how to stop “slut” shaming and create a safe place for sexually abused and shamed people. It plunges in a exploration of the meaning of “slut” in our society, the harmful effects that “slut” labeling has, and how no one is immune to sexual bullying.

Slut-shaming only exists for females because only girls and women are called out for their sexuality. Boys and men are congratulated for the exact same behavior. This creates the sexual double standard: Boys will be boys, and girls will be sluts. Should a man sleep around, he is praised for it. If he is not praised, he is labeled a “man-slut.” The fact that society must put the word “man” in front of “slut” in that case alone indicates how the word “slut” is belonging to females only. This slut shaming is not actually about women’s sexuality, because it is grounded in the belief that men get to assert themselves and women do not.

Women are sexualized beings: just take a look at a Hardee’s commercial or some auto shop ads. Girls and young women across are encouraged to present themselves as sexually knowing and sophisticated growing up, because that is a part of the heterosexual femininity. Yet with one move, a female can go from being “sexy” to a “slut.” If she hides herself, she is a prude. No matter what a female does with her body, there lies a risk of being labeled.

This is why the UnSlut Project is around. It is working to end slut shaming and promote awareness for the harm that is causes. You can read more about the project here.