Students have a blast at Fbomb lecture

Julie Zeilinger, a self-proclaimed feminist and blog writer, was invited to speak to South Dakota State University students about feminism in her lecture, The “F” Bomb: Why Feminism isn’t a Dirty Word, by the SDSU Women’s Coalition Tuesday evening for the Coalition’s annual Week to End Violence.

Zeilinger addressed gender inequality issues and stereotypes about feminists and feminism that she feels must be addressed based on her own experiences.

Zeilinger, originally from Pepper Pike, Ohio, embraced the idea of feminism at a young age. She described in her lecture her first experience with gender inequality where she was shown an article from her mother in Glamour magazine about women in India killing their baby girls because they were “unsatisfied with their gender.” She used the topic in an eighth grade speech where she intended to “use those precious minutes.”

“I eventually realized that feminism is a term for everything I researched and believed in,” Zeilinger said. “… Feminism just means equality.”

Not only is Zeilinger a successful blogger with her blog, FBomb, but Zeilinger also published two books, A Little F’d Up and College 101: A Girl’s Guide to Freshman Year.

In Zeilinger’s lecture, she noted the importance of online activism and her personal experience with it.

“Online activism … is where voices normally unheard … offers feminists a vast community to share beliefs with,” Zeilinger said. “Online activism can bolster on-the-ground activism.” She believes that allowing everyone’s voices to be heard through online activism will help “so we can reach solutions.”

Josh Sapinoso, a sophomore advertising major, enjoyed Zeilinger’s lecture.

“It was nice,” Sapinoso said. “I thought the Q&A was interesting, the speaker was eloquent and spoke well – she was a lot more interesting than my professors here.”

Diane Narem, director of violence protection and education for the SDSU Campus Women’s Coalition was an advocate for bringing Zeilinger to speak this week for the Coalition’s Week to End Violence.

“Julie’s background and her story of embracing feminism was important to see its struggles and its rewards,” Narem said.

The Coalition will host a Take Back the Night event March 5 at 7 p.m. at Jack’s Place in the Union.

“The event is to raise awareness of sexual and domestic abuse and to support survivors,” Narem said. “It’s an open mic style where people can sing, read poems and things like that to tell their personal stories. … It’s a safe spot for survivors to share their experience if they choose to.”

Zeilinger’s book, A Little F’d Up, will be sold in the SDSU Bookstore through next week.