We think the internet is at its best when it inspires us.
It’s easy to forget that it has that power when you’re stuck in a mindless routine of scrolling. But whether it’s through a beautifully crafted piece of writing, a crowdfunder raising money and awareness for a cause, or even an Instagram account that convinces you to think about things in a different way, the online world has the undeniable power to educate and inform us.
One of the moments the internet can be found at its most inspiring and celebratory is surely around International Women’s Day, as the world finds ways to celebrate the achievements of women.
To mark #IWD2019 here at DD, we’re doing what we do best – sharing the voices of women. In the name of keeping the internet an inspiring place, here are a selection of inspired stories, and stories of inspirational women.
Tove Jansson might be best known as the creator of the Moomins – but she was also a brilliant painter, satirist and writer of novels and short stories. Elizabeth Lovatt recounts all that she has learned from the varied work of Jansson, who said:
‘Do not tire, never lose interest, never grow indifferent – lose your invaluable curiosity and you let yourself die. It’s as simple as that.’ Tove Jansson
Elizabeth is also the creator of Love Tove, a fanzine celebrating the work and life of Tove Jansson, publishing in spring.
We shared the beautiful video that accompanied the release of ‘sand plumb’ by Dead Gowns towards the end of 2018. Speaking to her about the project in collaboration with the art collective folk + kin, she told us how they turned traditional inspiration on its head.
‘The ancient Greek word nymphe meant ‘bride’, a body attached to a land or location. With Caro Xia as our Director of Photography, we rejected the objectivity of the nymph and celebrated our nymphs as intimate and nuanced.’ Dead Gowns
In A Room of One’s Own, Virginia Woolf described how, ‘Women have served all these centuries as looking glasses possessing the magic and delicious power of reflecting the figure of man at twice its natural size.’ Jen Burrows uses this as the starting point of her poem on seizing back the female reflection.
‘But there’s a disturbance
in the mirror with a mind
of her own. The heart you hold
is turning cold to the touch.
I’m not your oil-well, not your
blood-bank, not your fairground prize
and I will not beget your lies.’
Following the repeal of the 8th amendment in Ireland, we were proud to publish this powerful, heartfelt essay by Amy Clarkin, who captured the feeling and meaning of this historic change, and the power of ‘Obstreperous Young Women’.
‘In the midst of a choking atmosphere of fear there was hope in solidarity. When cruel, distressing images targeted hospitals and schools a multicoloured rainbow rose to shield them, a silent statement by its bearers: “You cannot do this.”’ Amy Clarkin
When Maria saw Lorde on stage at Alexandra Palace, she realised the singer was speaking directly to her teenage self – celebrating the fact that it’s okay to be different, and providing a role model for young women that Maria herself struggled to find when she was younger.
‘So with all of this in mind, there I am, watching Lorde, and I’m thinking how lucky all the teen girls, and the used-to-be teen girls, and really everyone who has ever felt a little bit different are to have her. I think of all the girls who are, like I was, awkward, lonely, weird, wonderful – and I think how incredible it is to be watching this awkward, weird, wonderful girl on stage.’ Maria Ilona Moore
Thank you for inspiring us, Damsels. Happy International Women’s Day.
Dear Damsels is your collective.
We want to create a space on our website where you can find out what your collective is doing for you. Whether it be upcoming events, publications, projects or podcast episodes, this blog will be where we communicate directly with you about what is going on in the world of DD.