The UK press have had a field day this week reporting claims that feminism is dead, all because of a survey of members of the parenting website Netmums. I wasn’t the only one to blog about; Why the Netmums ‘Death of Feminism’ Survey is Utter Bollocks, I’ve added more links to the end of my post.
In which I point toward some pressing issues about which our otherwise loquacious presidential candidates are conspicuously silent — and call on voters to talk back:
Why We Cannot Eradicate Homophobia by Ignoring the Nick Griffins of the World
Nick Griffin is the leader of a far-right political party in the UK, frequently spouting racist, sexist and homophobic nonsense. Recently, he got into trouble for tweeting a gay couple’s home address, encouraging his supporters to harass them. I write about the incident, the public response to it, and what it tells us about society.
I wrote about a brief, annoying article (with accompanying annoying comments) in Runner’s World magazine about a study that says that men running at a moderate pace report feeling more comfortable running when a woman is watching them (facepalm): The Female Gaze Redux.
Then I briefly made fun of Disney’s new Latina princess, Sofia the First.
And I wrote a brief rewrite of the Greek myth of Ariadne.
I’ve started a superhero webcomic that is intentionally meant to appeal to feminist readers. It’s pretty young right now, with an archive of only 20 comics, but this is a great time to jump on board. There’s a lot of female characters, constant Bechdel test passing, I try to avoid some tired tropes and cliches, so hopefully it is feminist-friendly as opposed to a lot of other superhero webcomics. It updates Thursdays and Sundays, and here’s the Sunday update: http://www.oathkeepercomic.com/?p=62
Yishan Wong, CEO of Reddit, wrote a memo to his moderators defending Reddit’s “free speech” policies.
I responded with some humor: a “Translation from Weasel-Speak to English of Reddit CEO’s Recent ‘Modtalk’“
This week I’ve written about a couple of things that have been in the news: firstly, the story of two teenagers whose parents found out their children were gay due to Facebook’s stupid privacy controls; and secondly Timothy Kurek, the straight man who pretended to be gay for a year in an attempt, I guess, to pry open his tiny mind.
At Consider The Tea Cosy:
I look into callout culture, tone trolling and being the perfect ally.
In Trans* Recognition not Pathologisation: how bad could it be? I question why on earth we’re still putting barriers in place for trans* people to get their genders legally recognised. I wonder what’s the worst thing that could happen if we removed these barriers?
Some facts on abortion in Ireland.
And finally, on the opposition to the upcoming Children’s Rights Referendum here, if you can’t trust me with a choice, why do you trust me with a child?
I also wrote a piece for Irish LGBTQ women’s blog Gaelick, Meteoric Mistake, calling out phone company Meteor for a disgustingly transphobic advertisement showing for the past couple of months on Irish TVs and cinemas.
I haven’t been around here lately, but I have been blogging! Enjoy!
Reaping the Harvest – In which I bundle herbs, talk about emotional harvesting, and Underworld journeys, which are so popular this time of year!
Chapters 17 & 18 of The Mists of Avalon – part of my read-through of the prolific women-centered fantasy saga of goddessy- goodness
La Festa della Ombra – In which I ditch Columbus Day and find a new way to honor my Italian ancestors.
Rudolph Valentino – In which I reveal my celebrity crush and discuss Valentino’s impact on xenophobic early Hollywood, masculinity, and artistry.
The day before the presidential debate, I revealed my brilliant (or very, very bizarre) theory that Mitt Romney is a runaway Jane Austen Character. It explains EVERYTHING.
I laughed CRAZILY at this and then read the entire thing out loud to my roommates. Love it.
This week I wrote a couple brief posts on the hipster racism in videos by two “provocative” artists, and voiced my support for Bitch magazine’s decision not to run its interview with Caitlin Moran.
“The Hardest Thing About Teaching“- Midterm grades were due this week, and it pushed me up against the hardest thing about teaching.
“Blogging to My PhD“- This week’s post is on Plato’s Phaedrus and whether we should be judged by our written pasts.
“Romney Voters, a Word, Please?“- Birth control is not a talking point. It’s a very real part of people’s day-to-day lives. Hands off!
“Radical Eating: Is My Dinner a Feminist Issue“- Are the whole foods movements trying to force women back into the kitchen?
“The (Feminist) Risk of Marrying Young“- I met my husband when we were 18. I didn’t know my own feminist politics yet, so I certainly didn’t know to ask him about his. Was that a risk?
Pissed Off Woman presents:
Some highlights from the 2nd presidential debate, translated into English.
You can thank me later.
This week I’ve written about a couple of things that have been in the news: firstly, Timothy Kurek, the straight man who pretended to be gay for a year in an attempt, I guess, to pry open his tiny mind, and secondly, the story of two teenagers whose parents found out their children were gay due to Facebook’s stupid privacy controls.
The Worst Book I Have Ever Read: quite the conundrum.
‘Revolution’ and Aggressive Masculinity : Looking at the way the dystopian television show constructs the only good form of masculinity as aggressive whereas the female characters are rewarded for acts of compassion.
Michonne and Her Zombies: What does it mean when a Black female character is given to male zombies to drag around in chains?
The Friday Discussion: Race on Warehouse 13 : Comparing and contrasting the characters of colour to the White characters.
Recap and review of The Walking Dead Season Three, Episode One: Seed
It’s been a while since I’ve self-promoted here, but today I wrote about a University of Chicago professor who noted the lack of “super model types” at a neuroscience conference. As someone who might do a PhD at that school next year, I was impressed by his colleagues who called him out for his behaviour, but saddened that this still happens.
I blogged about that professor, too!
I presented a round-up of some of the coverage (and I think it’s heartening how much coverage there has been).
I also spelled out why I think it is important to call out this kind of behavior in professional communities.
Since some of the commenters in the various venues where this has been discussed were of the “you’re being oversensitive” or “free speech!” or “why must you oppress our boners?!” variety, I had to get out the bingo cards.
When your attitude towards perfection has shifted so much that you’re celebrating a D on your exam:
Ada Lovelace, bumming out youth, why 0/0 is undefined:
I wrote about Perpetua and Felicity, whose story includes sections believed to be written by Perpetua herself, making it the earliest record we have of a Christian woman’s voice, and includes some elements of feminist interest.
I also reviewed The Scribes, a novel set in the early church.
And don’t forget, we’re taking nominations for the October biblioblog carnival at email@example.com.
Last Sunday I had food poisoning, which made me ponder about how society values thinness over health.
I also wrote a little bit about the male opinions I encountered this week.
On TV celebrities and our focus on their weights: “Weighted Words“.
My round-up of interesting articles: “Good Reading This Week“.
On BBC’s Call the Midwife: “Do You Call the Midwife?”
Quotes that express my grief over my mother’s death two months ago: “Wise Words on Grief“.
Camouflage — On the difference between functional strength and perceptions of what “good abs” look like.
Why I’m Voting Yes on Prop 204 — An Arizona ballot measure would increase the sales tax in order to better fund education and other services. I explain, with much swearing, why I have the apparently controversial position that we should fund education better in my state.
And my own links round up wherein people should feel free to self-promote as well.
Replying to myself because I mistyped my email address in the last comment. Any mod-type people, the one that goes with this reply is actually the valid one.
I wanted to share this letter from my friend B to her college-age niece. You may want to share it to — it’s for everyone:
As you think about casting your first vote in an enormously important election, ask yourself the following questions:
As a young person, would you like access to safe, reliable, affordable birth control while you are single? If you should unexpectedly become pregnant, would you like some control over your choices? And by choices, I mean real choices — not simply abortion, which should be viewed as one of several options. If, for example, you would like to adopt out the baby, are there social services that could help you find a fine home, give you medical support, advice and services along the way? If you chose to keep a child, are there systems to help you stay in school, to help you provide appropriate nutrition, care and education so that you and the child do not fall down the almost inescapable rabbit hole of single motherhood and poverty? If you chose to terminate, are there safe, legal and affordable clinics within a reasonable distance, with trained and professional staff, or do you think a coat hanger should be enough? Choices are available under a liberal government, but are slated to be dismantled by Romney’s conservatives.
For those who say you should be voting on economics: Control of your own body IS the ultimate economic issue. Remember what your great, great grandmother, the midwife, said: if you can’t control your womb, you can’t control your purse and you will be no different than the breeding beast in the field. Frankly, Obama’s plans say everyone should pay a fair share and Romney’s plan requires the middle and lower classes to pay more so that the rich can have even lighter taxes — and, by the way, the super rich already pay a far, far lower tax rate than most of us… if they pay anything at all. This is not even going into the scores of women who marched, who were beaten and imprisoned and sometimes killed, who fought for your right as a woman to vote.
Do you like college tuition assistance? Government financial support that make colleges more affordable? Pell grants? Funding for scholarships, research and grants? Romney has pledged to do away with them. This will create a return to 50s America, where wealthy, white sons go to school and everyone else gets to train as service workers. As an admissions reader, I KNOW this is so. And the money no longer going to schools will go to beefing up the armed forces (so Romney pledges). Great. Guns, not brains.
And could you really tell (deleted names of friends) you chose for them to remain second-class citizens, denied marriage, inheritance, legal protection, financial, familial and tax rights given to other citizens? Would you like to be the one to insist that orphans and fosters remain in state institutions, as single people, older people, gay people, and non-religious people aren’t fit to adopt them?
When Nannie Dodgion was a midwife, birth control and abortion were illegal, with horrific punishments. It was viewed as “taking a man’s property” from him, as women and children were viewed as mere chattel. Romney’s party thinks it would be a good idea to do away with many forms of birth control, publicly available women’s health care, insurance coverage of birth control (but not Viagra), low-cost and easily available pregnancy prevention, abortion UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCE (after all, you don’t get pregnant from rape unless you enjoyed it… and then maybe it wasn’t really rape rape), etc.
Or, as a recent pundit put it- Do you have a vagina? Would you like to control what goes in it? Would you prefer that your husband not legally own you? And if you are raped, would you like it to be considered a crime? Just this year, a bill was NARROWLY defeated that would require pregnant women seeking terminations to have vaginal probes inserted and interior ultrasounds recorded. After all, joked one legislator, they had already been penetrated — what was one more time?
All it takes for bad things to happen is for good people to do nothing.
It’s your choice. For now, anyway.
All my love, B
Missouri’s Right to Life is as hypocritical as ever: http://clarissasblog.com/2012/10/20/missouri-prop-b-and-right-to-life/
Sexism is not restricted to the conservative sphere. Liberals can be sexist, too: http://clarissasblog.com/2012/10/18/what-real-women-should-want/
Why I don;t like what Obama had to say about women in the last debate: http://clarissasblog.com/2012/10/17/tears-of-gratitude/
Stop calling female characters a “Mary Sue” just because you don’t like them. Anastasia Steele – Mary Sue?
Alfred Hitchcock’s Notorious (1946) is about a woman with a “notorious” sexual history. On the surface it looks like a classic film with a classically retrograde storyline, out to punish a woman for her past sexual freedom.
Yet a closer look — and oh, everyone needs to see this film again — reveals a far more interesting criticism of sexual mores and male behavior. Read more and let me know what you think!
In the United States, Native American women are more than 2.5 times as likely to be sexually assaulted or raped as other women — and it’s most likely that their victimizers will be non-Native men. Complicating this scourge is the fact that most Indian Health Service pharmacies don’t provide emergency contraception. We published a great piece about the depths of these problems and the steps that are being taken toward positive change.
Earlier in the week, we looked at how border issues intersect with the transmission of HIV between populations. With blame being thrown around on all sides, it’s clear that we need to have a more complex conversation about migration and HIV/AIDS than the one we’re having.
Also, if you are in Arizona, please check out this activism opportunity. You also might be interested in this awesome interview we ran with pro-choice House candidate Carol Lokare, who as a former school nurse actually knows what the hell she’s talking about when she discusses comprehensive sex ed, sexual activity among teenagers, and the importance of access to family planning services in general.
I blogged about the netmums ‘femenism’ survey that’s annoyed a lof people this week.
this week I wrote a post about some of the bad, accidentally sexist language I still use.
I made a couple quizzes on the online trivia site sporcle.com that I thought some people here might like to check out! One of them is called “Feminist Bookstores,” and you’re supposed to guess which US cities contain independent feminist bookstores. Here’s the link:
The other quiz is called “Famous Transgender People,” where you name some famous transgender individuals after reading a brief description of their lives and accomplishments:
Thanks for the trans history quiz; I got 25 out of 30 right!
Excellent Donna! That’s really good! I partially made the quiz for myself because it was very, very fascinating to do the research involved in making it. I’d estimate I would’ve been able to get maybe 15 or 20 of the people right before doing the research to create the quiz–so I learned about a lot of cool people. And some of that was pretty inspiring, actually. Like a trans woman composed the soundtrack to the movie A Clockwork Orange. Or served in the Parliament of New Zealand for eight years. I’d had no idea.
And even with the people I was already familiar with, I learned a lot of interesting things about their lives I hadn’t known. But anyway. . .thanks for taking the quiz, and I’m glad you liked it!
Gender Across Borders is asking for help from feminists around the world! We would like to know your thoughts on global feminism in a survey that you can find here.
Releasing the things that no longer serve you: http://humaneconnectionblog.blogspot.com/2012/10/what-humane-world-looks-like-releasing.html
Are you turning people off with the images you use?: http://humaneconnectionblog.blogspot.com/2012/10/are-you-turning-people-off-with-images.html
I tried responding to Republican nonsense about women in two different ways: imagining futures and being surprised to discover that I do not actually exist.
Today’s free short story download is “S is for Succubus,” a PI story in an urban fantasy Memphis
Last week’s was Ain’t No Easy Run, a m/m paranormal trucking romance. Because some runs are literal Hellruns.
A call for help for a hydroponic farmer. When that call went out, he had about 1/12 of his goal. Now he’s got over a third.
Seasonal recipe: Brain Dip
My oldest daughter announced her engagement. I posted romantic Halloween stuff in honor of this.
Slut-Shaming and Related Attempts to Silence Women. I wrote a heated response to several recent articles slut-shaming and more generally name-calling women, including one calling a prominent female evangelical author the c-word.
I’m starting a new series on my blog, Business for Good, that will highly double- or triple-bottom line companies.
Merium wrote about some of the tabloid and news coverage of the relationships and fashion choices of Hina Rabbani Khar, Pakistan’s foreign minister.
Sya looked at the differences between how boys and girls are portrayed in Islam-focused Malay-language Facebook groups.
Azra reviewed the recent documentary Half the Sky, and its portrayal of women in developing countries.
Eren looked at efforts by some Muslim activists to fight homophobia within Muslim communities.
I wrote a few thoughts on a study showing a potential female faculty candidate in the sciences would be paid less than the same male candidate.
I reviewed a short documentary called “Kimyet”: http://film-nut.tumblr.com/post/33634257265/kiymet-2012
and chose 5 interesting links of the week: http://film-nut.tumblr.com/post/34019101488/the-weekend-5
I wrote about Lynn Nottage’s amazing new play By the Way, Meet Vera Stark and what it says about women and race in Hollywood.
This week at W*News Emily wrote about pelvic pain , its causes and how to deal with it. Meanwhile, in a story about her boobs one of our readers mused about her boobs and what happens she just doesn’t feel like wearing a bra sometimes.
This week I reviewed A Devil in the Details, which was a fun change of pace in that the protagonist is a father holding down a retail job in addition to his supernatural tasks. I also filled in a gap and backdated a review for A Madness of Angels, which is beautifully surreal and reminds me a bit of Neverwhere.
My problem with the Men’s Right Advocates:
Short version: I can’t even finish one of their posts.
I co-authored an opinion article on the need for women’s rights advocates to adopt a reproductive justice framework in pushing back against the ongoing War on Women. Fem2pt0 published the piece this week.
Hayao Miyazaki’s Films: Surprisingly Feminist?
I loved Spirited Away and consider it one of the best movies I’ve ever seen. I would recommend Princess Mononoke if you haven’t seen it yet; the main character is male but it has plenty of strong female characters as well.
This week at The Provider Project…
Kelly adds a new installment to the “Radical Figures in Health History” series. This month she profiles Dr. Marie Equi, a radical doctor active in labor and anti-war struggles during the early 1900’s.
I wrote about the disrespect for the women’s space in separate sex Orthodox Jewish prayer environments and the way sexism is overlooked in “Jewish humor” geared towards high school and college students.
This week, Fem2pt0 published our article “No One Wins a (Tug-of) War on Women: From Uteri to Personhood, Why Feminists Must Reframe the Debate.”
The article looks at the way the discourse surrounding the ‘War on Women’ reduces women to body parts. “While reproductive rights advocates have tirelessly defended threats to control women’s reproductive capacities, they have unwittingly entered into a dangerous game of tug-of-war. What’s at stake in this reactionary tug-of-war, which locks reproductive rights advocates into a perpetual power struggle with conservatives, is the recognition of women as whole persons.”
Co-Authors, @feministfriends: @mullenkat, @elchavodorado, @rachelapiazza
Yay, my first contributions!
I went over several important points to consider when discussing the issue of sexual assault and this election:
And I talked about the legacy of the United Farm Workers and why the narrative about the Delano Grape Strike needs to be expanded:
This week I wrote:
A response to an anti-affirmative action op-ed in my school paper
How depression affects trust
Rape’s not funny when the victim is a man, either.
On men who think street harassment would be awesome.
Jealousy, murder, and musical instruments made from dead bodies:
I wrote about why the anti-choice position is inherently misogynistic, contrary to what some believe.
I released an anthology about sexual assault in virtual worlds called VIOLATION: Rape In Gaming.
This is not me, but the guy’s story does have some interesting resonances with stuff often discussed here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=V4_MeS6SOwk
Well, it’s Monday now – but I still want to highlight this article I did about Russian hospices. Simply because the head of the Russian hospice fun, Nyuta Federmesser, is one of the most amazing women I have ever met. She works in a terrifying, adverse environment – and performs miracles for people who have long given up on them.
Not all opinions are tolerable.
Oops, missed SSPS by two days!
This week at my blog: Pondering Asexuality and living arrangements, and finding out there’s not really that many alternatives to partnered (with or without children) living.
And a post on why feminism is for men, too. I hope I’ve managed to balance some arguments all right.
This blog posting is on the treatment of women who criticize city government
A woman gets pushed to the ground and handcuffed for exceeding the three minute speech rule after she leaves the podium. She’s on her knees which are painful and she’s unable to get up because her hands are cuffed.
Women including disabled women (and there’s another example in the posting) are often treated disparately if they criticize the mayor and city government. The mayor will interrupt them while they’re speaking so they lose some of their time. Men are more likely to be able to speak longer as well as those who flatter the mayor and council or pay into their campaigns. The police chief had also made disparaging comments about this women and others in public.
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