“It’s important for people to know what teenage girls think. Nobody is really asking us.”
A group of dedicated “Grrrls” in Arizona are working to change that.
The Grrrls Literary Activism Project, based in Tucson, Arizona, developed as a partnership with Every Voice in Action, Kore Press, and City High School. High school-aged girls (14-18) are invited to use literature to share their voices on social issues relevant to their lives.
The “Grrrls” write and learn the basics of book publication and printing. Kore Press, a feminist-literary-arts-press, sponsors limited-edition printings and public readings to help the project participants share their work.
The nature of literary activism, according to the “Grrrls”‘ website, is “to affect the individual who experiences the publication (i.e. public expression in any form) of an author’s perspective. Whether the individual is a decision-maker or an average citizen, the goal is to open the recipient’s eyes to another point of view.”
For the “Grrrls,” activism may mean printing poems on t-shirts or writing thought-provoking statements on dollar bills. At its core, the program is about allowing teenage girls’ to have their voices heard on issues that are important to them.
As programs like the Grrrls Literary Activism Project enter the mainstream and acquire a broader audience, new questions will arise and require answers. What will your voices say? How will you use your influence responsibly? And what kind of legacy will you leave behind?
Although these are serious questions with still-to-be defined answers, the potential for positive change is enormous as more voices enter the conversation and take an active role in shaping society, using the power of the pen to do so.