Women, healing, and community: Cyberfeminist activity on Reddit

Meg McGuire

Key Concepts

Womens health symbol
"Icon representing womens health" by Kaldan is licences under CC BY-SA 3.0.)
In this section, I will review the concepts of feminism and cyberfeminism, as these can provide a useful framework to understand the rhetorical interaction that occurs on the subreddit r/PCOS. Further, I draw from other studies examining how women turn to online spaces to communicate and learn about illnesses and diseases that are primarily women’s issues including breast cancer and infertility. Because women are coming to a space where men often showcase anti-women views to share intimate details about their bodies, it is important to understand the ways women discuss health and illness or find medical information online. As women are choosing to occupy online spaces that are almost always powered by gendered conditions, being able to observe how women use these spaces for their own information is important, and these frameworks give us insight into this observation.


Feminist and cyberfeminist lenses are important when examining the lived experiences of women. The lived experiences of women are further important when understanding previous cases where women were empowered to use other online spaces to educate themselves on other health issues. This section outlines previous work in feminist research and women's online health practices.


Key Concepts

  • Feminism
  • Cyberfeminism
  • Lived Experiences
  • Online Health
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