FEMINIST FRIDAY: This Sex-Positive Youtuber Breaks Taboos & Myths In Conservative Cambodian Culture

Image via ‘A Dose of Cath’ Facebook Page

Welcome to another edition of Feminist Friday! That time of the week where we share 3 of our fave videos we can’t get enough of, which are generally centered around a feminist theme.

This week we’re all about women who take up space, break taboos, and unapologetically create a culture of female empowerment at a time when it is needed more than ever.

First up, a Cambodian Youtuber by the name of Catherine Harry, aka ‘A Dose of Cath’ has been making international headlines with her uber popular brand of sex-positive and informative videos that are a welcome respite in a conservative culture.

The 25 year-old told Reuters she started the channel as an antidote to the country’s Chbap Srey legacy, an oppressive code of conduct for women that was only removed from primary school curricula in 2007. The code instructs women to walk slowly and laugh quietly. It extols obedience and submission and dictates that women “serve” husbands and never discuss family issues outside the home, according to Reuters.

Catherine says the code legitimized domestic violence and is so deeply ingrained into people’s minds in Cambodia. Which is why her channel is so important, especially for the younger generation who have the potential to fully shake off this dangerous legacy for women. Discussing everything from abortion, to consent and everything in between, Catherine is aware of what a lightning rod she is, but isn’t afraid to do the work she is because she is thinking of the long-term impact.

“People keep spilling out the word culture when they want to police someone’s body. But what do they really know about our culture? Culture is not static. Like technology, it changes all the time,” she said. Watch her video on consent below:

The second video this week comes from beauty brand Olay, who have a Super Bowl LIV commercial set to share some much-needed female empowerment into a sporting event that is dominated by testosterone.

Featuring the likes of Taraji P. Henson, Lily Singh, Busy Philips and Katie Couric, the commercial celebrated the strong badass women (Jessica Meir and Christina Koch) who recently made headlines with the all-female International Spacewalk. #MakeSpaceForWomen, is all about closing the gender gap when it comes to the low number of women in STEM (science, tech, engineering, and math) fields. The company will be donating money to the organization Girls Who Code.

The 15-second preview shows retired astronaut Nicole Stott taking Lilly Singh and Busy Phillips on a mission into space with the help of Taraji P. Henson and Katie Couric. After joking about not knowing who has the keys to the spaceship, the group gets ready to head out. To see the full video you will have to look out for it during the broadcast of the game.

Stott, who’s an engineer and a retired NASA astronaut, said the campaign spoke to her because of the current gender gap in the field.

“As a woman in STEM, I know what it’s like to be one of only a handful of women in a room — or on a space station,” she said. “It’s important for everyone to know that the spaceship doesn’t care if you’re a boy or girl.”

The final video this week is something that recently went viral and made many of us shout YASSS QWEEEEN at our laptops and phone screens. Massachusetts Democratic Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley revealed in a powerful video that she has alopecia – an autoimmune disorder which makes the body attack its own healthy hair follicles, “causing them to become much smaller and drastically slow down production to the point that hair growth may stop”, according to the National Alopecia Areata Foundation.

It is significant she spoke about this as the rising star in the Democratic party, and one of “The Squad” members, because she has become known for her hair styles. But now she is speaking out as she feels a responsibility to all the young women who look up to her.

“I think it’s important that I’m transparent about this new normal,” she told The Root.

She first discovered the hair loss in the Fall of 2019, and said the last parts of her hair finally fell out the night before the House of Representatives was voting on articles of Impeachment and the anniversary of her mother’s death. It had her thinking about loss and life.

“I was missing her. I was mourning my hair. I was mourning the state of our democracy,” she said.

After giving a speech on the House floor, she rushed into a bathroom to take a beat, and decided that when she was ready, she would share her story with the world. Today, she has been embraced by people who are thankful for the way she is not just taking up space, but as she says, “creating space” for women of power to own their power and their stories. Watch below:

One Comment

  1. Pingback: FEMINIST FRIDAY: Kim Kardashian West Tackles Mass Incarceration In New Documentary - GirlTalkHQ

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