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The Photogenic Side of Women’s Empowerment

The Photogenic Side of Women’s Empowerment

  • Many Indian American women join #ChallengeAccepted to express solidarity with women’s rights.

Women across the globe are coming out in support of each other by posting black and white photos on their social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook as part of the “Women Supporting Women” viral trend. Using the hashtags #challengeaccepted, #womensupportingwomen, and #blackandwhitechallenge, women post their monochrome photo and then nominate other women in their lives to continue the challenge. According to the New York Times, more than 3 million people had used #challengeaccepted hashtag, and “many more have appeared without it.”

Hollywood and Bollywood actresses like Bhumi Pednekar, Sara Ali Khan and Katrina Kaif, Kerry Washington, Jennifer Garner, Kristen Bell and Eva Longoria have helped the campaign gain visibility.

A representative from Instagram told the New York Times that the earliest post the company could surface for this current cycle of the challenge was posted on July 17 by the Brazilian journalist Ana Paula Padrão. 

Meanwhile, in an article on the origins of the challenge, Elle magazine notes that New York Times travel reporter Tariro Mzezewa, in a series of tweets, explained that the photo challenge has its origins in Turkey. “#ChallengeAccepted was making zero sense to me and I wasn’t buying that it was just for vanity’s sake,” she tweeted. “Talked to some women in Turkey this AM who say it started there as a response to them being frustrated over always seeing black and white photos of women who have been killed.” she said. Mzezewa said “the original Turkish hashtags referencing domestic violence and femicide were dropped as the challenge gained steam.”

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According to an Instagram post by Florence Pugh, the challenge aims to shed light into the Istanbul Convention. “I’ve been told that the true meaning of this hashtag and this b&w photo- ‘It is to shed light onto the Istanbul Convention, women are being subjected to violence and this convention is to end forgiveness for the attacker/murderers.’ With that in mind, adjust your hashtags if you didn’t already do so.”

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