Amidst all the “thinspiration” and “fitspiration” and links to tips on how to be a good wife to one’s husband, a burgeoning feminist community lurks in the depths of Pinterest”¦
Rejoice, for feminist pins are surging! Okay, maybe not surging, but they’re certainly more abundant than they were in the early days of Pinterest’s popularity. And these aren’t just run-of-the-mill, basic sentiments. Nope, there are radical, intersectional pins too! See why I’m excited?
I wrote some time ago about Pinterest’s problems with internalized misogyny and the sneaking suspicion I have that it’s a big, evil plot to turn us all into baking, cooking, crafting, perfect mothers and wives. While I still house these suspicions and Pinterest still houses some of the most sexist, patriarchal rubbish that I’ve ever seen, I’ve also (totally unscientifically) observed a rapidly expanding progressive subgroup within the community. My icy, black heart warms every time I see a feminist pin, double that if it’s a queer feminist pin.
Recently a Facebook group popped up for feminist pinners who wish that they could interact with the awesome people they see pinning awesome things. That’s the downside to Pinterest: it doesn’t allow for as much interaction as one might like and people don’t really seem keen to comment on pins, thereby impeding discussion. But even the feelings of support and sisterhood felt when someone likes or repins a feminist pin is enough to matter. I don’t care when a piece of home dÃ©cor or a cool Halloween decoration on my boards gets repinned, but a smile breaks out across my face when I get the notification that an Audre Lorde quote has gotten ten repins. The fact that there’s now a Facebook group where feminist pinners can gab and share articles helps build the community and strengthen our resolve.
It’s my hope that one day we can earn our space on the “Popular” board and open up the eyes and minds of those who don’t know or understand the awesomeness of feminism. Nothing will overtake the images of airbrushed, toned abs and blatant heterosexism that litters the front page, but we can put up a good fight. Let’s try to balance the scales and show mainstream media that no, Pinterest isn’t just for crafty housewives and impossibly accomplished mommy-bloggers. It’s for all of us, whether we’re childfree hetero couples, progressive stay-at-home-mothers, geeky queer feminists (me!), or even fundamentalist housewives. But the image needs to change, and so does the content. We need to make Pinterest a welcoming space for everyone.
I’m proud to say that this is one of the feminist issues I’m optimistic about. We can and we will make our presence known. So follow me to the well decorated, vaguely hipster trenches, Persephoneers! Let’s pin ALL the feminist things!
Oh, and be sure to check out Persephone Magazine’s Pinterest!