Julie Zeilinger, 16, of Pepper Pike, Ohio is the founder of the fbomb, a site that takes a look at feminism from a teenage viewpoint. We sat down with JZ because she f-ing rocks. See why:
I Heart Daily: What inspired you to start the fbomb? Julie Zeilinger: I wanted there to be a place where teenage feminists could post whatever they're thinking about and create a community. I also wanted teenage feminists to realize that their voices are valuable.
IHD: Here's your own poll question back atcha: What was the first purposefully feminist thing you ever did? JZ: I gave a speech to my entire middle school about female feticide and infanticide (a practice most commonly in south asian countries where parents kill their babies for the sole reason that they are female). Researching that topic and then trying to educate my peers about such a clearly misogynistic practice really launched my feminist identity.
IHD: What has the reaction been to the site? JZ: I think teenage feminists who read the fbomb are really happy that this type of platform exists, and that their opinions are being represented. Also, peers who haven't identified as feminist are starting to think about it more after reading the fbomb. It shows what feminism is really all about -- how it's not scary, it's not these ugly stereotypes -- and people are able to relate to it more after reading it.
IHD: Has there been any negative feedback? JZ: Of course I've gotten some angrier comments, from men and women, but they're definitely not the majority. Considering what I've heard other feminist sites have to deal with in negative comments, I think I've been pretty lucky so far.
IHD: What are you hearting, right now, in the feminist realm? JZ: I'm really looking forward to the movie Whip It!, directed by Drew Barrymore and starring Ellen Page -- it looks awesome! I'm also reading The Girls Guide to Rocking by Jessica Hopper and The Purity Myth by Jessica Valenti. Also, GirlDrive -- a blog that is soon going to be a book (November 2009) about two women who drove around the country, talking to women about what feminism means to them.
IHD: What are your goals for the site? What's next? JZ: Right now, I'm just trying to spread the word about the fbomb. I not only want more readers, but I really want more contributors. That's how I want the fbomb to be different. It's not my blog. I may have started it, but I really want it to be open to all teenage feminists, give them a chance to say whatever they want. I take submissions from anybody who wants to post.
Told you she's f-ing cool. Interested in contributing to the fbomb? Go here.