What’s Onward Woman?
Onward Woman is a space for women to share their stories.
The world needs to hear the voices of women. As women have come forward to share their stories of bravery and resilience, a consistent theme coming through is the damage done by microaggressions.
Small cultural beliefs that shape our inner dialogues to believe: “it’s not so bad” or “it could be worse” invalidate and separate us from the damaging effects of extreme and subtle forms of racial and gender-based discrimination.
As celebrated author and poet Dr. Maya Angelou said: “When you know better, do better.” By knowing women’s stories, we can all do better. This blog exists to help us hear women, believe women, and move forward together. Onward.
Our Definition of Woman
Onward Woman defines a woman as any person whose gender identity is female which includes:
- cisgender women
- queer women
- transgender women
Intersectional Feminism Spoken Here
What’s feminism? Author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie defines feminism in her TED Talk (which is also sampled in Beyoncé’s Flawless song) as: “Feminist: a person who believes in the social, political and economic equality of the sexes.”
So what’s intersectional feminism? Intersectional feminism acknowledges that gender equity must include advocacy for racial, political, and economic equity.
The empowerment of all cannot happen if other historically and statistically oppressed groups are not included.
An example of non-intersectional feminism was the Suffrage movement of the 19th and early 20th centuries. White women earned the right to vote in 1920, but the movement left behind the civil rights of women of color who were not legally allowed to vote until more than a half a century later in 1965.
Onward Woman and its contributors acknowledge that we can’t move forward unless we move together. You can expect to read feature stories on this blog from a diverse range of women from a balanced variety of racial, cultural, ethnic, and religious backgrounds as well as a full spectrum of female-inclusive gender identities.
The Power of Women’s Voices
When women share their stories, three powerful effects happen:
- The Individual effect: their story is heard
- The Sisterhood effect: other women know they aren’t alone
- The Global effect: the world becomes more aware of gender equity
Want to Share Your Story?
The #MeToo and #TimesUp movements have shown us that women have been hiding their stories at the expense of their safety and sanity. Women choose not to share their stories for fear that they won’t be believed or that they’ll be retaliated against for sharing their truth.
Shame and vulnerability researcher and author Dr. Brené Brown has two things to say on sharing stories:
- When we deny the story, it defines us. When we own the story, we can write a brave new ending.
- We should always ask ourselves before we share: “Who has earned the right to hear my story?”
This blog welcomes stories from women who are ready to share them for the benefit of others. Story submissions may include the author’s name or be anonymous.
If you’re ready to be heard and be a part of the world-wide conversations on women’s empowerment, click here to share your story.
Onward. An imperative, a declaration, and an invitation.
“Onward” is also how Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat Pray Love and one of the bravest and inclusive female storytellers of our time, signs off her inspiring pieces on social media.
Want to be the first to know when new Onward Woman posts are up? Subscribe to Onward Woman and be the first to get new blog posts in your inbox.
If you’re ready to share, I look forward to sharing your story here on OnwardWoman.com
Let’s do this!