Feminists for Gender Equality Club launch magazine
By Dylan Hackett, News Editor
Last week the Feminists for Gender Equality Club (GEC) launched the first issue of Wo-Man, a magazine hoping to bring awareness and attention to gender issues and ignite the campus in dialogue about discrimination issues. The premier Winter 2013 issue—brought into fruition through Editor-In-Chief, Arts Director, and club Co-President Sarah Khan’s Print Futures program magazine assignment—is made further accessible by the inclusion of a glossary. The glossary highlights many intimidating academic terms used in feminist dialogue and explains them in common language.
“We started out last October with me and Iloradanon Efimoff (co-president). We basically want to start a dialogue and eventually, go into advocacy. We started a Facebook group which got really popular,” said Khan. “In a month we had 60 members.”
“I think the most important thing is that we have men and women discussing [on the Facebook page], because it doesn’t really help if it’s just a whole bunch of women of the exact same mindset discussing the same thing,” said Lauren Ang, GEC member.
Last November the club focused its efforts beyond tabling events and inviting discussion to their Facebook and took to putting together Wo-Man.
“It started out with just an idea in my head.” explained Khan. “At the time I was in an editing class and we had to present an editorial concept, implement it, and create a plan for investors. It was just an exercise but it got me thinking because it’s a very cool idea.”
Soon, the GEC had established a production schedule and worked into the winter break to finish the magazine, all while getting feedback from Print Futures coordinator Maureen Nicholson. Production spilled into the early weeks of 2013, and Khan is proud of the paper’s 10-copy premier. To work around the limited print run and still receive exposure, she explained that the GEC is trying to make Wo-Man available for students in the library to browse and review.
Khan’s choice in titling the magazine with a hyphened bridge across the two gender terms came from the fact that the GEC aims not to just appeal to women, but emphasize the role men can play in gender equality. The only major dispute among members involved in production revolved around the use of pink in the creative design of the magazine. Khan was adamant that the use of forest green for the title page background was faithful to the goal of cross-gender appeal.
“[Feminism] should be more mainstream as opposed to being more exclusive as it can be in academia. We’re exposed to different things in our culture. Starting with the media, there are certain things that are inherently sexist. We become desensitized to it,” said Khan. ”Feminism needs to be much more practical. There is theory behind [feminism] but you need to apply it to the real world as well.”
The GEC are selling copies of the magazine for $10, a price that functions not as a marketplace valuation, but a means to fund the GEC’s future endeavors including feminist workshops. The money raised from sales of Wo-Man will go towards production of future issues and to fund the group’s future activities.