Jessica Valenti

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Jessica Valenti
Jessica Valenti
Jessica Valenti in March 2014
Born (1978-11-01) November 1, 1978 (age 35)
New York City, New York, United States
Residence Boston, Massachusetts [1]
Education Master's in Women's and Gender Studies
Alma mater Rutgers University
Occupation Writer
Known for Founder of Feministing
Spouse(s) Andrew Golis (m. 2009)
Children 1

Jessica Valenti (born November 1, 1978) is an American blogger and feminist writer, known for founding the Feministing blog in 2004. She is the author or co-author of four books on women's issues, including Full Frontal Feminism (2007), He's a Stud, She's a Slut (2008), and The Purity Myth (2009).

Her work has appeared in Ms.,[2] The Guardian,[3] The Nation,[4] The Washington Post,[5][6] TPMCafe,[7] and Alternet.[8] Valenti was named in March 2011 as one of The Guardian's top 100 women, for what the newspaper described as her pioneering work in bringing the feminist movement online and into the 21st century.[9]


Jessica Valenti in 2007

Valenti was raised in Long Island City, Queens in an Italian-American family. Her father was a Buddhist. With her mother, she was first involved in a pro-choice march when she was 13.[10] Valenti graduated from Stuyvesant High School.[11] She received her master's degree in Women's and Gender Studies from Rutgers University.[10] On October 3, 2009, she married Andrew Golis, the deputy publisher of Talking Points Memo.[12] They have one daughter, born in 2010.

Writing and blogging[edit]

Valenti founded Feministing as a source for feminist news and ideas by and for young feminists.[13] It was created while she was working at the National Organization for Women's legal defense fund (now Legal Momentum), in response to what she described as "dismissal from older feminists."[14] Homa Khaleeli writes in The Guardian that the site shifted the feminist movement online, triggering the creation of blogs and discussion groups, creating a heyday for feminism just as its death was being announced, as Khaleeli puts it. She writes that Valenti "felt the full force of being a pioneer," her involvement with the site attracting online abuse, even threats of rape and death.[15]

University of Wisconsin-Madison law professor Ann Althouse criticized Feministing in 2006 for its sometimes sexualized content. Erin Matson of the National Organization for Women's Young Feminist Task Force told The Huffington Post the controversy was "a rehashing of a very old debate within the feminist community: is public sexuality empowering or harmful to women?"[16]

Valenti decided to leave the site in February 2011, saying she wanted it to remain a place for younger feminists.[17] In addition to her work appearing in newspapers and magazines[specify], she is a contributing author to Courtney E. Martin and J. Courtney Sullivan's books Click: When We Knew We Were Feminists (2010),[18] Melody Berger's We Don't Need Another Wave (2008),[19] and Diane Mapes's Single State of the Union (2007).[20]



  1. ^ Oliveira, Rebeca (23 September 2011). "Feminist icon moves to JP". Jamaica Plain Gazette. Retrieved 25 September 2011. 
  2. ^ "Jessica Valenti". Women's Media Center. Archived from the original on 2012-01-01. 
  3. ^ Valenti, Jessica (August 21, 2008). "Jessica Valenti". The Guardian (London). 
  4. ^ Valenti, Jessica. "Jessica Valenti". The Nation. 
  5. ^ Valenti, Jessica (February 21, 2010). "For women in America, equality is still an illusion". The Washington Post. 
  6. ^ Valenti, Jessica (May 30, 2010). "The fake feminism of Sarah Palin". The Washington Post. 
  7. ^ Valenti, Jessica (November 19, 2008). "Anti-Choicers Switching Up Strategy?". TPM Cafe. 
  8. ^ Valenti, Jessica. "Stories by Jessica Valenti". Alternet. 
  9. ^ Khaleeli, Homa (March 8, 2011). "Jessica Valenti". Top 100 women: writing and academia. The Guardian. 
  10. ^ a b Wood, Gaby (May 10, 2009). "The interview: Jessica Valenti", The Observer.
  11. ^ Bussel, Rachel Kramer (May 15, 2006). "Jessica Valenti, Executive Editor and Founder,". Gothamist. Retrieved June 8, 2012. 
  12. ^ Lane, Dakota (October 18, 2009). "Jessica Valenti and Andrew Golis". The New York Times. 
  13. ^ Barcella, Laura (April 27, 2007). "Full Frontal Feminism". Alternet. 
  14. ^ Traister, Rebecca (April 24, 2007). "Tough titties". 
  15. ^ Khaleeli, Homa (March 2, 2011). "Jessica Valenti", The Guardian.
  16. ^ Funk, Liz (October 12, 2006). "Feministing: Feminist? Or Just -Ing?", The Huffington Post.
  17. ^ Valenti, Jessica (February 2, 2011). "Farewell, Feministing". 
  18. ^ Martin, Courtney and Sullivan, J. Courtney (eds.) (2010). Click: When we knew we were feminists. Seal Press. ISBN 1-58005-285-1. 
  19. ^ Berger, Melody (ed.) (2008). We Don't Need Another Wave: Dispatches from the Next Generation of Feminists. Seal Press. ISBN 1-58005-182-0. 
  20. ^ Diane Mapes (ed.) (2007). "The Taming of the Threw". Single State of the Union. Seal Press. ISBN 1-58005-202-9. 

Further reading[edit]