You might have seen that former Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg has been in the news lately for her campaign to ban the word “bossy,” because it discourages young women from speaking out and pursuing leadership roles. When I first read her op-ed in the Wall Street Journal (which she penned with Girl Scouts CEO Anna Maria Chavez), I found myself nodding in agreement. I couldn’t help but recall all the times I was called bossy. I was loud, opinionated, and had a younger brother who did just about anything I asked if it meant I would stop bothering him.
But the more I thought about the topic, the more I wondered if banning the word entirely is the right idea. Here’s my biggest problem with the word “bossy”: It’s almost always used exclusively to describe girls negatively, discouraging qualities that are praised in boys. Maybe instead of banning bossy, we should be reclaiming it—like Kelis did with her impossibly catchy song—and celebrating loudness, stubbornness, and honesty in young women.
That’s our goal with Mochi’s Outspoken issue, dedicated to women who may or may not have been called “bossy,” but certainly embody (and embrace) the qualities associated with it: CW actress Katrina Law, Arden Cho of “Teen Wolf,” “Frozen” animator Clio Chang, and more. Actress Yin Chang, formerly of “Gossip Girl,” wrote a fantastic article for us on her new documentary on bullying and the effect it has on both the bullies and the bullied. We interviewed entrepreneurs and engineers like Pinterest’s Tracy Chou, who proves coding can be cool. And we explored the new phenomenon of vaping, or smoking an e-cigarette—is it really better for you than a traditional cigarette?
With spring finally coming, prom is also on our minds. Our beauty editor answers your pressing prom beauty questions. And I somehow convinced the fantastic Mochi staff to pony up their embarrassing prom photos to share the lessons they learned from that ultimate high school rite of passage. If that’s not brave, I don’t know what is.
Photo credit: Diane Jong