This traveling exhibition seeks to provide a voice for those too often marginalized or shoved off to the side

Sometimes I feel like I wake up from a slumber and hear all the chatter around me and think I’m on some kind of alien planet. Terms fly around: “culture wars,” “cancel culture,” “wokeness.” There are probably more out there. If not, they’ll be invented and slung around. But they’re all meant to diminish one point of view in favor of another one. It seems like we’re in a never-ending tug of war to prove who’s “right.”

So when people come together to call for change or point out imbalances, more epithets are hurled. This has even happened to me, here in this space. It happens in the comments section, it happens through emails, it happens through voice messages — all from disgruntled readers. I’ve been called everything from a “virtue signaler” to a “libtard Marxist p----.”

Truth be told, it’s a common part of working online these days. Some groups, like women and minorities, are clobbered with these kind of messages with a frequency I have no way of personally understanding. And for many, it’s just not possible to abandon an online presence because, these days, it is an important component to work.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned in my nearly 50 years on this planet it’s that there are always people who want to bring you down, even in the unlikeliest places. It can come from the anonymous gibes of Internet commenters, a colleague undermining you for their own benefit or any other numerous examples of someone trying to succeed in the rat race. It reminds me a lot of playground politics from the fourth grade. I suppose it’s human nature. It is very ugly.

Over the past few years, several groups have emerged to say no to all of that — to create places to bring the inequities humans love to foist on each other out into the open. And as an antidote to that, they are creating ways to circumvent that nastiness and to celebrate the work of people who have long been marginalized and shoved to the side. They are saying no to the continued obstacles put in their way.

Today we’re presenting a collection of images from one of these groups called We, Women. The group was founded in the wake of the 2016 U.S. presidential elections out of a sense of frustration over the direction the U.S. was headed in, the country’s political divisions spanning economics, race, gender and more. You’d be hard-pressed not to acknowledge that this country is deeply divided on these issues. It seems to be more and more apparent every day.

The work gathered here is part of the group’s first exhibition, titled “We Women: The Power of We.” It is a traveling exhibition that will be coming to outdoor, public areas but began in Brooklyn this month.

“We Women: The Power of We” brings together the work of 17 people and will be on view at Brooklyn Bridge Park through Sept. 12. After that, the exhibition will travel around the country, making stops in Anchorage, Atlanta, Chicago and New Orleans.

The work in the exhibition spans such issues as immigration, climate change, race, motherhood, health care and more. Here is a selection of the images you can see at the exhibition.

For more information about “We, Women,” visit its website here.

In Sight is The Washington Post’s photography blog for visual narrative. This platform showcases compelling and diverse imagery from staff members and freelance photographers, news agencies and archives. If you are interested in submitting a story to In Sight, please complete this form.

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