Body Positive Activism, Education, Featured

Selfies as a Feminist Statement?

If you’ve never taken a selfie, you’re one of the very few. Some people think of them as a sign of the times – a reflection of society’s increasingly unapologetic narcissism. Others consider them a form of expression – a medium through which they can tell the world “hey this is me, and this is what makes my life meaningful”.

One woman, though, considers her selfies to be a feminist statement, and has created an entire photography project around them on Tumblr, juxtaposing them with some of the cruel comments submitted by anonymous internet trolls to highlight the “girl-on-girl hate” currently prevalent in the online sphere.

Lindsay Bottos is a photography major and gender studies minor at the Maryland Institute College of Art in the USA. She has been posting via the popular micro-blogging platform Tumblr since 2010, and over the years has received hundreds of cruel anonymous messages. These messages promoted her to create Anonymous early this year – a work in progress post that has since gone viral.

On her blog, Lindsay says:

I get tons of anonymous messages like this every day and while this isn’t unique to women, the content of the messages and the frequency in which I get them are definitely related to my gender. I almost exclusively get them after I post selfies. The authority people feel they have to share their opinion on my appearance is something myself and many other girls online deal with daily.

Though the anonymous messages affected her, she began to take screenshot them, and put them back into the medium from whence they came. She says that while some people consider selfies to be a cry for attention, wanting attention isn’t bad. She says:

The act of women taking selfies is inherently feminist, especially in a society that tries so hard to tell women that our bodies are projects to be worked on and a society that profits off of the insecurities that it perpetuates. Selfies are like a ‘fuck you’ to all of that, they declare that ‘hey I look awesome today and I want to share that with everyone’ and that’s pretty revolutionary.

It’s an interesting concept, and I happen to think Lindsay’s philosophy on the selfie is pretty badass. What do you reckon?

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