A new website aimed at teen girls isn’t about the latest must-have fashion accessory or perfect shade of lipstick.
Launched in June, jGirls is a pluralistic online magazine for female Jewish high school students looking to engage with serious subjects like feminism, Israel, mental health issues, sexual orientation and gender identity.
But jGirls is not only for Jewish teen girls, it’s also by them. The publication is produced by a diverse editorial board of 12 Jewish girls between the ages of 13 and 19 from across the United States. The board is entirely responsible for soliciting, curating and preparing the site’s content.
Jewish girls in the same age range from all over the world are invited to submit material for publication. An initial call for submissions yielded 127 pieces of fiction, non-fiction, poetry, music and visual art from 72 individuals from 18 US states, the UK, France, Australia, Spain, and Israel.
The girls have a lot to say, and the material currently online indicates the teenage writers and editors have not shied away from dealing head-on with difficult topics like sexual assault, drug abuse, and suicide. June’s launch was a soft one, with many of the site’s features in place, but some still to be added or changed when a hard launch takes place in the fall as students go back to school.