Welcome to All in Her Head
Feminist commentary & community. Because you’re not imagining it.
|Jessica Valenti||Feb 1||41||12|
When I started blogging in 2004, all I wanted was to be heard. I was working a low-paying job at a women’s rights nonprofit where the leaders kept wondering how to reach young women while ignoring those of us making photocopies and getting coffee. Any article I read about the movement quoted the same three women every time, and the few feminist publications that existed felt like an impenetrable girls club.
So when I started Feministing, I said it was for fun—but really I did it with the unspoken hope that people would hear me, and other young feminists on the site, when we said actually we are here and have more to say than you probably are ready for.
And they did hear us. The women who wrote for Feministing went on to write books, run magazines, host podcasts, lead organizations and more. Even better, we got to talk with other feminists from around the world who were thinking about the same issues we were. We got to know them in comments, at other feminist blogs, and sometimes even in real life. It felt like—it was—a community.
A lot has changed since those early blogging days: in media, in politics, in my own career.
But I still miss that community, and I miss what it feels like to make a (sort of scary) bet on yourself and the idea that people want something different from feminist media.
All in Her Head is me coming full circle. I’m excited to be writing online for myself again, and I’m double excited to talk with the people who inspired me in the first place—you. (It also feels really good to be joining an existing community of amazing women on Substack: Hello, Nisha, Delia, Lyz, Roxane, Heather, Mona, Anne Helen, & more!)
The name of the newsletter is a nod to two things: The way that sexism & sexists try to gaslight women into believing that we’re imagining the misogyny all around us, and the idea that the newsletter gets you all up in my head (for better and worse!).
There are lots of details on what you can expect from AiHH and why I hope you’ll subscribe on the about page, but the short version is that it will be a mix of commentary and community. You’ll get my columns and other posts, open threads and ‘office hours’ where I’ll hang out live in comments.
You’ll also get to talk with other subscribers in a place free from the kind of harassment and derailing we’re so used to on social media. Don’t you miss online conversations free from misogynist assholes? I know I do!
There will be shit-talking, risk taking and commiseration. You can expect the kind of content you’ve read in my columns with the kind of attitude you know from my Twitter. (Maybe even some of the food you’ve seen on my Instagram!)
Right now, everything at AiHH is free. In a few weeks, I’ll shift to having subscriber-only content and your free subscription will only give you access to one weekly column. I’m hopeful that you’ll enjoy AiHH so much that you won’t have any reservations about becoming a paid subscriber.
You don’t have to wait to become a subscriber, though—you can support my work and its new home now!
That said, I want AiHH to embody the values that I write about. That’s why 10 percent of whatever I make from subscriptions will go to a different organization every month. (Even better, I’ll host an open thread where folks can nominate orgs they think are doing great work and I’ll choose one—because I know that the places doing the most crucial activism often fly under the radar.)
And while I believe women should be paid for their labor, I don’t want money to be a barrier for entry here. So if, for whatever reason, you cannot afford the five dollars a month, let me know and we’ll figure it out. I trust you all and know that those of you who can swing it, will.
If you’re in a position to afford an additional subscription, though, you can even donate one to someone who couldn’t otherwise afford it, or gift a subscription to a feminist in your life.
I hope you love what you read in the coming weeks, and that you have some fun with the community. I’m super excited to get started, and to get back to the basics of what I love so much about feminism and writing online.
Thanks for coming along with me!