Girlcott 2013: Females who Jettisoned their Cosmetics to Foment Change

The Documentary “Killing Us Softly 4” also will be screened

What: Girlcott 2013, a movement of women who have gone makeup-free during the month of March to raise awareness about the representation of women in the media, the pressures women live with to look attractive, the objectification of women, and their impact on women’s lives, will be highlighted by the screening of a documentary, Killing Us Softly 4, and a panel discussion. The events are free and open to the public.

From left to right: Mitchell Mirtil '14 and Xonana Scrubb '14, co-coordinators of Promoting Healthy Awareness of the Body (PHAB), and Lauren Donais M'12, WGRAC and Health Promotion Program coordinator
When: The activities will take place Wednesday, March 27, with a reception at 6:30 p.m.; the screening of the documentary at 7 p.m.; and a panel discussion at 7:45 p.m.

Where: The reception will be in the Alumni Lounge in Mather Hall, and the film and the documentary will be shown in Rittenberg Lounge in Mather Hall on the Trinity campus, 300 Summit Street.

Background: Girlcott 2013 was organized by several Hartford-area organizations, including the Charter Oak Cultural Center; the YWCA of the Hartford Region; the Harriet Beecher Stowe Center; the University of Hartford Women for Change; the Connecticut Women’s Education and Leadership Fund (CWEALF); the Connecticut Humanities Council; the state Permanent Commission on the Status of Women (PCSW); The Ethel Walker School; and Trinity’s Women & Gender & Resource Action Center (WGRAC).

Members of the groups decided to go makeup-free during March 2013 and to donate the money usually spent in a month on cosmetics to organizations that aid women and girls around the world, while raising awareness about body image and the relationship between women and makeup.

The group also hopes to encourage conversations among women about body image and the definition of beauty.

The WGRAC and The Connecticut Humanities Council are sponsoring the screening of Killing Us Softly 4, a documentary that examines “how advertising traffics in distorted and destructive ideals of femininity,” challenging viewers to think critically about popular culture and its relationship to sexism, eating disorders and gender violence. The format of the film is one woman giving a lecture with a multitude of examples around themes of sexual exploitation, unrealistic body image and the glamorization of violence.

The panel will focus on how and why advertising intentionally portrays women in negative ways. The panelists are Teresa Younger, executive director of the PCSW; Donna Berman, executive director of the Charter Oak Cultural Center; and Theresa Morris, associate professor of sociology at Trinity. The moderator is Deborah Ullman, CEO of the YWCA of the Hartford Region.

For more information, please contact Lauren Donais at or at 860-297-4131.