What Every Young Feminist Can Take Away From Rowan Blanchard and Amandla Stenberg

What Every Young Feminist Can Take Away From Rowan Blanchard and Amandla Stenberg

In case you missed it, Ms. Foundation for Women recently named Rowan Blanchard and Amandla Stenberg the 2015 Feminist Celebrities of the Year. At 14 and 17 years old, the respective stars of Girl Meets World and The Hunger Games have utilized their teen star platforms and amplified their voices for equality issues.

The media exploded with this news from outlets including, Huffington Post, Cosmopolitan, Elle.com, Levo League, Bustle to name a few, cheering these teens on and calling Blanchard and Stenberg the ‘future of feminism.’ But they’re also the present feminism and important voices in the current conversations our nation, and our globe, are having on topics pertaining to women and women’s rights.

These teen gals understand inclusivity and intersectionality, involving themselves in the Black Lives Matter movement by discussing cultural appropriation is and tackling the topic of White Feminism and how problematic it is to our understanding of feminism. Blanchard and Stenberg are smart, eloquent, and exceptionally open and honest when it comes to these topics. There are so many reasons to applaud both of these girls for their social awareness and intellectual depth. Yet there’s no reason to be shocked that girls “so young” could be so mature and well-versed in these important social and political topics of today.

And they’re certainly not the only ones. Progressing forward in advocacy, education, and awareness for equality starts at the beginning. It is harder to unlearn something once it’s so deeply embedded into our daily lives, the nature of habit, so it’s important that more young boys and girls recognize their vital part and voice in these conversations. It’s why the topic of gendered toys is always a hot debate along with how we treat children in school.

While many young girls might not have the same amplified platform as Blanchard and Stenberg, that’s not to say that they aren’t adding speaking up for their right to equality. Organizations such as Girls on the Run, Girls Be Heard, and Girls Write Now are working in different capacities to inspire and empower young women – to remind them that their voices and bodies are important. To encourage girls to explore and express themselves before societal norms kick in and make them feel inferior to all the world has to offer them.

It is enriching to see Blanchard and Stenberg receive this recognition. It is the hope of many feminists that their words will inspire more and more young girls to speak up, engage and shift the conversation into one that treats everyone equal.

Cover image courtesy of Cosmopolitan.