Month: January 2012

So should we just start calling high heels “body modification”?

Disclaimer: I’m in heels today, as I am most workdays. They’re really cute Oxford booties, black patent with white topstitching. They’re currently sitting on the floor next to my desk. According to new research, that might not actually be helping.

Researchers at Griffith University in Queensland, Australia, have been looking at the physiological impact of heel-wearing on women’s feet–not just the back pain and the foot-crunching, but changes on the muscle and tendon level. Those changes? Significant, they found, and negative and long-lasting.

Feministe’s Next Top Troll: Season 8

Ok, everyone, it’s Top Troll season again! We have rounded up some of the best of the worst comments from the past year, and will be publishing them for your amusement/horror. We’ll have a series of voting rounds where the trolls will compete against each other. Judge them however you like; I personally give points for style, (lack of) punctuation/proper grammar, inexplicable capitalization, magnificent use of stereotype, creative insult and degree to which the comment reveals the commenter’s status as a basement-dweller and/or sufferer of total soul-rot.

The Power of Female Friendship

A truly excellent piece over at The Rumpus about female friends:

I was reminded of the Wrinklies, of my friends, of the ways in which they carry me, when I read A Train in Winter by Caroline Morehead, a remarkable book that tells the story of women French resistance fighters who were sent to Auschwitz and who survived by doing what women do: supporting, finding a way to love and nurture in situations marked by the absence of love, tenderness, sense, sanity, or even humanity. In a concentration camp they managed to make Christmas gifts out of string and sticks; they put on plays in their barracks; they supported the weaker women, often hiding them for roll call. They were “a team.”

Reminds me of me when I was her age (if I’d been a badass)

I spent a good twenty minutes trying to come up with some kind of commentary here so it would seem like I’ve made a personal contribution to the post, but it turns out when you have a thirteen-year-old girl who speaks more eloquently on subjects like slut-shaming and sexual double standards than a lot of adults I know, it’s best to just leave the talking to her.

Be my friend, Astrorice.

[Transcript, and more of my blathering, after the jump]

Locked Up

This article on mass incarceration is a must-read:

For most privileged, professional people, the experience of confinement is a mere brush, encountered after a kid’s arrest, say. For a great many poor people in America, particularly poor black men, prison is a destination that braids through an ordinary life, much as high school and college do for rich white ones. More than half of all black men without a high-school diploma go to prison at some time in their lives. Mass incarceration on a scale almost unexampled in human history is a fundamental fact of our country today—perhaps the fundamental fact, as slavery was the fundamental fact of 1850. In truth, there are more black men in the grip of the criminal-justice system—in prison, on probation, or on parole—than were in slavery then. Over all, there are now more people under “correctional supervision” in America—more than six million—than were in the Gulag Archipelago under Stalin at its height. That city of the confined and the controlled, Lockuptown, is now the second largest in the United States.

Fun Facts on Abortion

2011 was a really terrible year for abortion rights. Really, incredibly terrible.

Abortions happen all over the world, regardless of legality. There’s some correlation, though, between liberal abortion laws and low abortion rates, and conservative abortion laws and higher abortion rates. There’s also correlation between liberal abortion laws and low instances of death from abortion, and conservative abortion laws and high numbers of women dying.