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I'd call you a cunt, but you lack the warmth and depth.
That quote’s been stuck in my brain for years. There’s some loose attribution to David Sedaris or Amy Sedaris, but mostly it floats around the web in memes.
And, obviously, it’s at the heart of Cuntism Magazine. It was an epiphany. I was walking around, rolling the concept of Cuntism through my brain, when it struck me: A celebration of warmth and depth.
It was a beautiful moment, one of clarity. A vision of bringing women together through profiles, narratives, stories, art—women from around the globe. We're not there yet, but it's the ultimate vision for this magazine.
So... with title and tagline in hand, I set out to find contributors.
I'll say this: Cunt is a polarizing word.
In my journey to making this magazine a reality, it was clear what power the word cunt still holds for many women. Potential contributors would express the deepest excitement to join my efforts... until I mentioned the name.
Some vanished. Some balked or told me that I needed to bash men. I was told I should choose another name.
But on the flip side, there are those whose work you’ll see here. They didn’t bat an eye when hearing cunt, were thrilled at the prospect of wearing a cunt t-shirt. More inspiring, they felt empowered to share a piece of themselves. They've given me an opportunity to support women in a way I never imagined before, and they gave that support right back.
And here's a little context for the curious...
In 2004 I made my first cunt t-shirt using iron-on letters purchased at Hobby Lobby (take that, Hobby Lobby).
Wearing it made me feel incredible, powerful. It was a means to flaunt and enjoy my own strengths, to fly in the face of the unexpected. It was quite the conversation starter.
Call me a cunt; I’ll say thanks. In short, I love the word. I'm not offended by it, and I think it's just a tad ridiculous that it's still so taboo for so many.
Reclamation? Fuck yes.
After the events of 2016, we saw women taking action in truly inspirational ways: the women’s march on Washington that spread around the globe; reclaiming pussy and bitch; defying and redefining the perceived bounds of feminism.
I started thinking about what I could bring to the table. I've been a freelance writer and editor for almost five years now. After my last regular gig with an online financial publisher (which was one of the most wretched, poorly executed, soul-sucking ventures I've had the displeasure of being a part of), I decided I had to put something out there.
Do I want it to make money? Of course. That means that I can in turn support my contributors. More money for women—of course.
If we can activate and support each other, across the board, we are a force. This is simply one more contribution to the conversation, sparked by one strong word.
This magazine is a labor of love. It’s about women and by women, but let’s be clear: Many men contribute behind the scenes and help power this magazine in many ways. It’s that kind of support that we all need and deserve.
I encourage everyone to find inspiration here. And while it’s tempting, I won’t publish raging rants about our current political climate... without a means to continue the conversation. No, we shouldn’t stop fighting for human rights. But I do believe we need a place where we can share, nourish and feed our souls. I'm damn tired of hearing bitching for the sake of bitching.
Part of the conversation of how to move forward—as women, as a country, as a planet—needs to be what drives us, what turns us on, what our sisters have done and do right. There are millions of stories out there. It's time to start sharing more of them, so we can learn and grow.
And since female is the future, we have to find the way to support and foster women of all races and ages. I'm well aware that at the time of launch, we're not quite there. That's exactly why I welcome contributors; we need to share our stories to find middle ground.
Cuntism is not about makeup or the perfect workout to keep your vag tight. I don't care if you shave; I don't give a fuck if you wear lipstick or sport Spanx. It’s about the fabric of your being, the threads woven into your psyche.
It’s a celebration of warmth and depth, supporting all of our sisters: emotionally, financially, spiritually, politically, in every way possible.
Cuntism Magazine is my contribution to empowering the incredible women I see around me on this planet. It’s building a community. We have the power to find positive, powerful action together and change the perception of one powerful word.
Cunt already means something beautiful and powerful; the usage is the problem.
publisher, editor in chief