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The Female Experience

Alyssa Meadows | United States

The Female Experience

It’s evident that the world as men experience it is drastically different than that of women. Nothing made this as abundantly clear as the resurgence of the #MeToo movement, the droves of women coming forward to accuse Donald Trump & Harvey Weinstein, or cases like Brock Turner. It’s evident there are actually two worlds; one of unhindered privilege, ambition, opportunity, & freedom, consistently & happily inhabited by men; the other of fear, anxiety, perpetual threats, guardedness, & defensiveness, a horrible & natural existence for women. Yet, men still collectively fail to understand this experience - we live with inherent hindrances that our male counterparts never experience. Going out in public spaces during only certain hours (predominantly daylight), never taking eyes off our beverages when out at a bar. We as women constantly prevent & protect ourselves from a perpetual threat we never escape. Those of us who experience this constant will find this documentation of personal experience all too familiar; those who have never walked through the world with a female perspective are about to experience a whole new view. I invite you to The Female Experience.

We as a society exist in two different worlds*; the world of men, & the world of women. Nothing made this as abundantly clear as the resurgence of the #MeToo movement, the droves of women coming forward to accuse Bill Cosby (60 women), Donald Trump (25 women), & Harvey Weinstein (87 women), or cases like Brock Turner and Stuebenville, Ohio. It’s now evident there are in fact two worlds; one of unhindered privilege, ambition, opportunity, & freedom, consistently & happily inhabited by men; the other of fear, anxiety, perpetual threats, guardedness, & defensiveness, a horrible & natural existence for women. Yet, men still collectively fail to understand that of the female experience - the daily turmoil that’s built into every action, choice, & decision we as women make. We live with inherent hindrances that our male counterparts never experience; going out in public spaces during only certain hours (predominantly daylight), never taking eyes off our beverages when out at a bar, stress over moving the car for street cleaning late at night. We as women walk through the world constantly preventing & protecting ourselves from a perpetual threat we never escape. Just about each and every decision we as women make is informed & influenced by the reality that at any place, any time, with no warning or expectation, we may be subjected to heinous acts simply for being born with the glorious gift of femininity. Those of us who experience this constant will find this documentation of personal experience all too familiar; those who have never walked through the world with a female perspective are about to experience a whole new view.

We are constantly reminded of this all-too-real reality every day, in all myriad of ways: the majority of media we consume, the statistical 1 in 3 women who experience sexual assault in our own personal circles, the experiences we’ve already had or close calls we’ve managed to avoid. Our daily existence is driven by the need to ensure our own safety, to take precautionary measures - so for several months, I decided to take a photograph every time I experienced one of these moments, these protective thought processes. In a desire to dissolve the boundary between the world as women experience it, and men’s inability to personally experience it, I invite you to The Female Experience. We all must work together at creating a world of unhindered privilege, ambition, opportunity, freedom, that can consistently and happily be inhabited by both men and women.

*though our world is not as simple as the male/female binary, for the purpose of communicating clearly the idea behind this project, and while made in the first-person perspective of a white woman, could be recreated in the perspective of a black/disabled/hispanic/jewish etc. person

Alyssa Meadows

ameadowsphoto@gmail.com

484-788-5534

www.ameadowsphoto.com

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