The Lead’s mission is to provide and encourage an engaged, thoughtful feminist response to mainstream media and popular culture.
Published daily on the web, The Lead is ambitious, distinctive journalism about the people, ideas, and institutions that matter most from a feminist perspective—and beyond. Featuring hard-hitting original reporting as well as smart analysis, provocative argument, and first-person perspectives from top outside contributors.
We promise to be opinionated but never partisan, and hope to bring perspective, not more punditry. The Lead aspires to provoke and inspire, and never to bore or lecture. We hope you will soon come to rely on The Lead as a place to find the best writers and thinkers of feminist content—engaged with the day's most important stories, and those that should be.
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The Lead strives to be a fresh, revitalising voice in contemporary feminism, one that welcomes complex arguments and refuses to ignore the contradictory and often uncomfortable realities of life in an unequivocally gendered world. We have a diverse audience, which keeps the dialogue we produce dynamic and strong. We are distinctively situated to draw in young readers who are at a critical moment in their lives—a moment when they are discovering feminism and activism, finding answers to who they are, and questioning the definitions of gender, sexuality, power and agency prescribed by the mainstream media. The Lead not only plays a role in exploring these topics, it also provides a platform for engaging in analysis that promotes activism and impels social change.
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The Lead looks at the media and its products through a lens that takes into account the historical and cultural representation of gender globally and in pop culture. Movies, television, news magazines, fashion magazines, blogs, comics, advertising, music, computer games — all are media that have traditionally reflected a narrow vision of what women and girls are and can be. The Lead seeks to examine female culture globally through an analytical-yet-witty, sharp-yet-sympathetic lens, as well as to celebrate the feminist culture-makers who are transforming the media and the world with their unique contributions.
The Lead aims to put a lucid, balanced face on feminism for everyone, including people who are not aware that feminism refers to more than just women who do not want to fit within the ascribed roles of what being a woman is within their communities. We encourage all people to consider feminism as a necessary part of the broader social justice movement.