Have you ever felt like you were being window-shopped? Like you were being full out inspected by eyes that wanted to try you on?
Have you ever changed your outfit five times for fear that someone was going to say something inappropriate to you the moment you walked outside?
“You should smile with that pretty face.” Excuse you? Who are you to tell me what I should do with my face?
It’s happened to me far too many times (ummm, every day…) and while most just accept it as par for the course of being a woman, particularly one living in an urban area, I’m not one to just accept it and move along. Absolutely not. I’m the one who HAS to say something.
I needed to say something, and by say, I also mean create something, dance something. I needed a way to not only figure out how to manage and combat street harassment in my every day life, but also to hear from other women. I want to know their stories so we can support one another in the daily fight to get from point A to point B with out being spoken to, looked at, and at its worse, touched inappropriately. That’s how The Window Sex Project was born. No woman is a display that exists simply for men to harass.
Through community workshops and choreographed performance, The Window Sex Project gives voice to these concerns and restores agency to women by equipping them to manage street harassment, celebrating their bodies and creating a public artwork, specifically a dance performance which takes place in an art gallery. I mean what better tool to respond to this issue than our bodies? – the very object of the harassment.
I am calling EVERY ONE in New York City, but particularly those in my neighborhood of Harlem, to be a part of this work. Here’s how you can get involved:
- REGISTER for a FREE community fitness and dance workshop, complete with catered lunch and discussion with the ladies from Hollaback! on how to combat street harassment on a daily basis. The movement and stories of those women who participate in the workshop will be integral to the creation of a fully produced dance work.
- HELP LAUNCH the fully produced performance by giving $$$ to our crowd funding campaign over at Rockethub in exchange for some fantastic rewards.
- Join the conversation on Facebook (check out discussions), the Blog (submit a guest post), and Twitter.
- SHARE YOUR STORY here on Hollaback’s website, especially if you live in Harlem. Let’s show legislators that street harassment is an issue to deal with in our neighborhood.
- Engage the men around you in this conversation. Let’s talk to men so we can understand where they are coming from, and they can understand where we are coming from. Can we educate our young men that street harassment is not OK?
- Tell a friend! and ask them to join you in participating in The Window Sex Project community.
I look forward to what the months ahead will bring as this project comes to fruition, and many women come together to say something.