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Twitter: @marissakconway

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Palo Alto, CA

Welcome to The Shabby Suitcase - a blog documenting the creative outlets and general wanderings of a nomadic twenty-something. 


The latest adventure.


Silence and Noise

Marissa Conway

the look: top from H&M, skirt by Zara, boots from Topshop, sunnies from Topshop

I’ve decided to write a book.

I decide this about once a year, desperate for my words and my thoughts to find their way onto paper, to be preserved for myself, maybe for other women to read and think - oh, hello.  I can relate to this.

Because there seems to be a lonely, pain-filled cry that threads its way through so many of my course readings - women have been silenced for too long.  Silenced by each other, silenced by institutions seemingly too great to tackle, and yes, silenced by men.  Even today our voice is regularly challenged by those who are inexplicably fearful of bodily autonomy.  Let them rule themselves and they will kill our babies, seduce our men, the nay sayers cry.  But our bodies are not democracies.  They are dictatorships, owned and operated by each of us, individually.

There is much to be said on bodies, but what of the stories of our minds?  Only too recently in history have women been celebrated as intellects, academics, actors in society of their own right.  Sometimes I find myself thinking no one will ever pay attention to my thoughts, but who am I to give up on my voice so easily when so many before me have struggled and even died for the right to be heard?  Engaging in this silly blogger dialogue about whatever captures my attention for the day seems laughably trivial, but it gives me a platform from which to ramble, so ramble I will.

I think many confuse the social media oversharing of millennials as narcissism, when perhaps it may just be a desperate eagerness to be heard, to celebrate not just the right but the responsibility to participate in a global conversation, one that has been traditionally reserved for certain elite groups.  Sure, this comes hand in hand with fruitless and infuriating debates in the Facebook comments section, but I’d rather have women speaking about things I disagree with than not speaking at all.

This is the year I will write my book.  I will give silence the slip and run straight for the noise.