A Letter to My Family: I Hope One Day You'll Be Softer

by Anonymous
This piece follows Aurelia’s publication of I Am An Ex-Muslim. I Fell In Love With a White Man.
I have spent so long hating every single one of you. I've hated you because of your willingness to let me go because I'm different, because I want to live my life with someone you d…

Netflix Taught Me More Sex Education Than High School Ever Did

by Jessica Miles
I went to an all-girls school. Sex education classes seldom went beyond female reproduction and awkward demonstrations of how to put a condom on a plastic object which, with extensive use of the imagination, resembled a penis. Terms like consent, vaginismus, asexuality and female ma…

Unlearning Toxic Behaviours in Our Favourite Stories

by Raven Knight
Warning: contains spoilers for You, currently available on Netflix. 
The internet-wide explosion of social media discourse regarding the ten-part thriller, You, got me thinking: how have I romanticised toxic fictional men in the past? You, adapted from the novelwritten by Caroline …

Defining and Recognising My Anxiety

by Blanca Reyes
Originally, my mother thought I was depressed. It was the summer, and all I wanted to do was stay home and be transported into the fictional worlds of the books I was reading. I didn’t (and a lot of the time, still don’t) particularly feel like going out. She thought that my behavi…

Is Instagram Poetry a Literary Revolution or Just Poetic Window Shopping?

by Louise Evans
The rising ubiquity of social media in today’s ‘always-on’ (or always-online) lifestyle has seen an unprecedented rise in contemporary poets publishing their work online. Through social media apps Instagram and Twitter, I find that a large number of posts present me with small, bit…

Having an Identity Without Answers

by Nicole García Merida
I didn’t start placing weight on my identity until I left my country at seventeen. In Guatemala, I was la morena, la negra, like brown sugar my mama would say. My skin was an everlasting brown, ashy when I was at the beach for too long. I would get called aborigen at home b…

Womanhood in Yorgos Lanthimos’ The Favourite

by Lilly-Mae Murphy
I knew Yorgos Lanthimos’ 18th Century period drama, The Favourite, was going to be good. But I didn’t think it was going to be that good. A film that combines humour, sensitivity, hyper-sexuality, and bloody fantastic costumes; I left the cinema feeling refreshed and wholehearte…

Finding Relief from the Pains of Growing: Young Female Artists are Guiding Girls Through Adolescence

by Molly Sharples 
I was caught off guard when I heard the raw voice of Alessia Cara. The lamentation of her ‘pains of growing’ - also the title of her latest album, released in November 2018 - completely threw me. I found myself frantically grabbing my phone, eager to find the name of the song, t…

Poetry: Break-Up Call

by Kya Buller
Is this a mistake, my calling you? / Do you remember too? Our serious love.  / The love that couldn’t wait. / Do you remember it? I remember how we became, / two bodies, always joined. One bed, / a mess of arms holding, some tangled legs, 
Our names joined in people’s mouths, / secon…

On Bodies and Jameela Jamil's I-Weigh

by Steph Hebdon
‘Body positivity’. Two words, ingrained deep in our collective consciousness, and which seem wholly and irrevocably linked to Instagrammable quotes and influencers eating donuts. It is a movement that crept up on us, becoming one of the largest and most recognisable forms of social …