The riot grrrl movement (sometimes spelled with only two R's, as in "riot grrl
") took place during the early nineties
and is often attributed to the bands Bikini Kill
. Supposedly, the two bands came up with the idea together during a gig
and thought it was a good term to identify their unique brand of third wave feminism
. Originally used just as a genre
, the meaning expanded to describe much more.
Riot grrrls expressed ideas through zines and songs, and started groups and clubs to bond with one another. Most considered themselves feminists, pro-choice, anti-war, activists, and many were anarchists.
Riot grrrl clubs were created in many states in the US and several other countries. Although it was in operation for quite some time, I believe my local NYC chapter is now defunct. However, many other chapters around the world still exist and function.
I believe that almost all female musicians and bands today were influenced (at least slightly), by the riot grrrl movement. Even though some have not heard the term before, if you mention the names of some "riot grrrl" bands to them, it is almost certain that at least a couple of those bands have been a strong influence.
The term "riot grrrl" is still used among many groups of people; however, some other groups highly dislike this term because of the "selling out" that they associate with it. I myself embrace the term, as it is the only thing that describes this unique phenomenon of previously-hushed women taking over the punk scene.