The Better Bombshell: Writers and artists redefine the female role model

Cover of the book The Better Bombshell

This is a guest post by Angela Eloise Smalley. Angela Eloise Smalley is a blogger and essayist based in Seattle, and writes regularly at Plying the Muse With Gin.

It’s been an interesting year for gender politics. Anne-Marie Slaughter had everyone buzzing with her Atlantic article, “Why Women Still Can’t Have It All,” the online version of which had record-breaking page views and which sparked a multitude of articles, blog posts and commentary from fourth-wave feminists and male social conservatives alike. We’ve had women in positions of influence, who wouldn’t be where they are today were it not for the feminists who came before them, making public statements against feminism, like Yahoo CEO Melissa Mayer, who just this year became the youngest CEO in the Fortune 500 and, more recently, Billboard’s Woman of the Year, Katy Perry. Hanna Rosin’s The End of Men launched the Fox-fueled hysteria over an imminent “war on men,” which we might dismiss with an eye roll were it not for the alarming number of elected officials, most of them male, some on the national stage, bloviating views and proposing vagislation that would take us back decades.

For all of the frustration over the fact that we are still protesting the same shit, it’s clear that finding fresh ways to engage people in a conversation about women and their roles in society can only be a good thing.

The Better Bombshell, a book and accompanying blog, brings together some of the best creative, intellectual, and artistic minds to do just that. Through written word and visual art, the project explores how feminine role models and sex symbols of the past have given way to new and developing ideas about women and sex, sorting through the barrage of conflicting ways women are portrayed and perceived in today’s popular culture to identify positive, multidimensional female role models and gain new insights into the way modern female role models affect us all.

Conceived as a collaboration between Seattle-area writers and artists, primarily friends, The Better Bombshell quickly took on a life of its own as enthusiasm for the project grew and people whom the editors never dreamed would say yes were eager to contribute. Editorial director, Charlotte Austin, recounts their lunch with Stanford professor and feminist author Valerie Miner, who has written a piece of short fiction for the book: “She’s this eloquent, well-dressed, distinguished lesbian icon, and she’s telling us that she loves our campy charm over a glass of Pinot Grigio.”

If talking about bombshells might seem like an odd choice for a project whose aim is to add a fresh voice to contemporary feminism, then that, with all its campy charm, is precisely the point. The Bombshell, with its Hollywood origins, has become something of an archetype of the female sex symbol and a decidedly anti-feminist label that seemed ripe for examination, conversation and deconstruction. It was a title sure to spawn plenty of debate (and it has) and the choice of an illustration of an atom for the book’s cover speaks directly to the project’s intent to address the dynamic and often explosive nature of modern gender relations. “In my mind, modern feminism should reclaim the flesh, and frankly, my version of a ‘Better Bombshell,’ is an intelligent, capable woman who is not afraid to also be a sexual being and who may at times welcome the attentions and superficial validations of others without shame,” artistic director, Siolo Thompson says when asked to explain the choice of title. “Those things – the body, sexuality, beauty, the need for validation – are just part of being human and women should be no more ashamed of them than they are of bi-pedalism and yet, we are.”

One of the guiding ideas behind the project was that it’s impossible to have a truly in-depth conversation about feminism without acknowledging it as a universally relevant topic. “I’m really proud of the range of people that have been willing to work with us and the strength of the project comes from the collaboration and juxtaposition of all these different voices,” Thompson said. The artists and writers brought into this project are “a beautiful motley assortment of talent”: male and female, emerging artists and established veterans, jocks and academics, gay and straight and everything in between. Contributors are as diverse as Roxanne Gay, assistant professor of English at Eastern Illinois University and co-editor of the literary magazine PANK, and humorist Dave Barry. “Visually the book will be a feast as well; we have outdoor photographers and master painters, cartoonists and landscape painters.”

In “The Hand of Yael,” Tim Lash reimagines, via screenplay, the Hebrew legend of the heroine who delivered Israel from the hands of King Jabin by brutally crushing Sisera’s skull with a tent peg and mallet. This is accompanied by the work of illustrative painter and portraitist Chris Crites. One chapter features “Strength,” a short story by Dan Mickelson, and photographs by Jason Thompson of RMI Guide Katie Bono, who recently completed the fastest ascent of Mt. Rainier by any female climber. Together, they celebrate the fortitude women bring to bear in athletic competition, childbirth, and changing a tire. In another chapter, “A Short History of My Breast Cancer In Bombshells”, poet and memoirist Eva Saulitis shares a raw and strikingly honest account of her own experience, illustrated by a series of drawings by Seattle-based painter Kate Protage that perfectly capture the intimacy of the examined self, at once evocative of the way women view themselves and of the literal self examination our doctors extol us to perform every month.

Siolo Thompson says that at the outset of the project she felt compelled to inform people that they were NOT making a pin-up book. “I was worried that the artwork that came in would be a literal reflection of the title rather than a conversation about feminism.” She needn’t have worried. The Better Bombshell is a powerful compendium of truly thoughtful artistic works about strength and spirit, sex and family, guns and gender violence, and the construction of beauty and activism, among other things.

The Better Bombshell is scheduled for release on February 14, 2013 and is available for pre-order on the project website (thebetterbombshell.com). For additional content, be sure to check out The Better Bombshell blog.

_________________________________________________
The Better Bombshell editorial team: Siolo Thompson, Artistic Director, is a self-taught visual artist with a background in comparative literature. She is represented by Bherd Urban Art Gallery in Seattle, WA. Charlotte Austin, Editorial Director, is a writer, editor and international mountain guide. Her work has appeared in many publications and anthologies, both in print and online. Amanda Paredes, Visual Director, is a photographer and graphic designer whose fashion photography and travel photojournalism has appeared in several national publications. She currently spends most of her time with a local nonprofit, documenting families battling terminal illnesses.


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59 Responses to The Better Bombshell: Writers and artists redefine the female role model

  1. Marni says:

    Certainly sounds interesting, but one can’t help but wonder if sex is still being used as a marketing ploy.

  2. Donna L says:

    The link to the project’s blog doesn’t work; it should be http://www.thebetterbombshell.blogspot.com/

  3. Donna L says:

    It sounds like a fascinating project. But. (There’s always a but, isn’t there?)

    When I read this:


    “I’m really proud of the range of people that have been willing to work with us and the strength of the project comes from the collaboration and juxtaposition of all these different voices,” Thompson said. The artists and writers brought into this project are “a beautiful motley assortment of talent”: male and female, emerging artists and established veterans, jocks and academics, gay and straight and everything in between.

    I knew, without even looking, what would be missing. And I was right, so far as I can tell. It’s so depressingly predictable, isn’t it? (Yes, I’m sure they would have loved to have someone, but nobody applied, so what can they do, right?)

    If I’m shown to be wrong, I’ll apologize, of course. But I doubt it; they would have said so if there had been someone trans.

    And, no, I do not consider it sufficient that one of the contributors is a well-known Seattle drag queen, who’s quoted as saying “I became a better man by becoming a better woman.” Very heartwarming, to be sure, but isn’t that a line from Tootsie?

    • Donna L says:

      Apologies if I sounded a little bitter; there’s nothing special about this particular project that makes it any more blameworthy than any other, and I have no doubt that I would enjoy reading it. I’m really just using it as a convenient example of what’s typically missing from even the most progressive of projects intended to address “the dynamic and often explosive nature of modern gender relations,” and “to identify positive, multidimensional female role models.”

      • A4 says:

        I think there’s two aspects here. We can discuss the level of diversity among contributors, and we can discuss this advertisement’s claim that the contributors are very diverse. Or like, both, obviously, but I do think it’s worthwhile to point out that though they claim a great diversity of voices, they do not discuss any homogenous aspects of the contributors as well. I would assume that this is because this article is an advertisement for this book, which I guess is fine as long as the book is fine, which brings me back to discussing the level of diversity among contributors.

        But here’s the thing. When someone says “and everything in between”, as this article does, they should be ready for the parts of everything that aren’t actually included to say “hey that’s not true, you’re wrong, and I wish you would stop erasing my existence”

        So in a long winded fashion, I am saying thanks for your comments DonnaL, because they shouldn’t be casually proclaiming their inclusion of “everything in between” if that isn’t actually reflected in those whose voices they included.

      • Tim says:

        A good point, and even if there were, for example, a trans contributor, the “everything in between” language is kind of weird. I mean, it’s a cliche and I’m sure I’ve used it, but when you think about it … if there were trans or POC or other type(s) of contributor(s) in addition to the explicitly-mentioned ones, what would be “in between” about them in relation to the others?

      • I think that wording ‘gay straight and everything in between,’ had more to do with sexual orientation than gender. I’m an openly bi-sexual person and it seems appropriate to set myself somewhere between gay and straight in this kind of conversation. There simply is no way to elegantly or fully cover the entire gambit of human sexuality in one sentence.

      • A4 says:

        I don’t think that sexuality is a spectrum that lies between the endpoints of “perfectly gay” and “perfectly straight”, so I am still uncomfortable with the phrasing.

      • dc says:

        (honestly, i wouldn’t mind seeing someone trans on this blog.you actually spring to mind.)

      • Donna L says:

        (honestly, i wouldn’t mind seeing someone trans on this blog.you actually spring to mind.)

        That’s very kind of you, but I’m never going to blog here or anywhere else. In terms of public disclosure of my history in a way that could identify me, that’s a step beyond commenting that I’m not willing to take.

      • Actually Donna, you make a really good point. I personally feel that any discussion of modern gender dynamics is missing a really important piece if Trans voices are not included. We are working hard to make that happen!

    • Donna L says:

      And I’ll let someone else, if they choose, address what appears to be a nearly uniform sea of white faces among the contributors. Again, so far as I can tell.

      • I thought about addressing it, but I didn’t want to be Racial Representation Party Pooper again after that whole One Billion Rising thing. -_-

      • lisa says:

        Yeah, I noticed those things too, which is a bummer because it sounded like a interesting project.

      • Hi Donna and others,

        Thank you for reading the post and I hope you will follow the project! I wanted to address the subject of Transgendered contributors. We did feel it was important to have transgender voices be part of this discussion and we initially had a wonderful trans contributor. We were not able to make that collaboration work out for the book but we are working on some upcoming blog posts and interviews. Stay tuned for some really fun and interesting posts with transgendered activists and artists.

        As for our panel being too white – well, we do have various ‘non-caucasian’ contributors and we would love to have as many voices as possible be part of this important discussion. We would love to have the perfect rainbow of representation but we have moved ahead with the voices we do have. We can only continue to make an effort to bring in as many different viewpoints as possible. If you know of someone who would be a great addition to our project, please send them our way!

      • Siolo, that’s a really awesome reply. Thank you!

      • Thank you Macavity, I hope people will give the project a chance even if it does not hit every goalpost right away. We are working really hard to create a forum where we can have interesting and dynamic conversations that represent as many viewpoints as possible. Come on over and visit us! http://thebetterbombshell.com/category/thebetterbombshell/

      • Donna L says:

        Thank you, Siolo. Just FYI, most people agree these days that the correct term is “transgender,” not “transgendered.” Using “trans” or “trans*” generally solves the problem.

      • Thanks Donna L! I appreciate the correction.

      • LotusBecca says:

        Y’all seem like nice folks. . .but I’ll be blunt here. You say you would “love to have the perfect rainbow of representation,” but I’m guessing you don’t really know what that would entail. It’d entail doing years of painful introspection over your own privilege and then completely restructuring the culture of your blog. I’ll postulate there’s a reason why your project hasn’t been able to attract more women of color, working class women, disabled women, trans women, etc. to contribute. I didn’t see a single mention of race on the entire front page of your blog. The only mention of class I saw was in a article that basically erased class distinctions among women, talking about a hypothetical divorcee who had married a doctor and then had to go on welfare after her divorce. Women who are in a position to marry a doctor are hardly the women who experience the most class oppression in our economically unequal (and economically unequal WITHIN genders not just BETWEEN genders) and capitalistic society, and yet there was no note of this.

        It’s pretty clear to me that your project looks at how sexy representations and other forms of mass media representation affect Woman in today’s society (Woman as a idealized category with a unitary experience. Distinctions of race, class, ability, gender background, and so on are erased). This isn’t surprising, as this has been the typical way most of the women’s movement has looked at women’s issues for decades. . .as Donna pointed out this merely puts you at the par for the course in terms of mainstream progressive thought.

        But, I guess my unsolicited advice is, if y’all actually value intersectionality and diversity, I think you should recognize what “diversity” really means, how far you fall short, and whether you really want to change your entire perspective to incorporate it. And if y’all DON’T really value it, (and understandably simply want to focus on addressing issues that more directly impact you personally), I think you should be self-aware about THAT. OWN it and don’t just use a bunch of buzzwords to bullshit people.

        As a person who is simultaneously extremely privileged and extremely oppressed, I’ve learned that if I want to include people from diverse perspectives, wishing isn’t enough. Where I’m the one with the privilege, I’m the one that has to take the first several steps. It’s easy to include people like Dave Berry, but with more marginalized folks you will have to make a concerted, sustained effort.

        Sincerely,
        a low-income, mentally ill survivor of sexual abuse, who is also a queer transsexual woman, who also has a college degree, is not in prison, is mostly able-bodied, and is thin, white, and from the United States.

    • Word. It gives me a sad to have to say this, but word.

    • Mztress says:

      Seems to me like that answer to the lack of diversity was a bit contrived. As far as I can tell, it only functioned to shut us up for the moment. And I have to agree with LotusBecca, because a lack of dialogue about diversity and intersectionality in a project this size really stinks of zero effort (and possibly, zero concern) on the part of the editors.

  4. Marni says:

    Are there any scientists/engineers/astronauts (ie. STEM) women?

    • Charlotte Austin says:

      Hi Marni,

      Thanks for the question! It’s been so interesting to read everybody’s comments — you all raise great questions.

      In answer to your question about whether we have any STEM women, the writers who are contributing to the book are, broadly speaking, professional writers — novelists, writing professors, journalists, etc. But we’re doing our best to feature women in the sciences on the blog, including a four-week series we’re currently running about women working in the video game industry. We’ve got many STEM posts in the works, too. As Siolo said, if you have any suggestions, please send them our way.

      Best,
      Charlotte Austin

    • jrockford says:

      None. Ever. Never happened.

  5. Zeldy says:

    Does it bother anyone else that the public response to a project that seems solid, well intentioned and forward thinking is to point out that they don’t have enough ‘trans people, people of color, scientists, little people, sex workers, etc.’ These people are trying to prompt a community discussion about gender and feminism, maybe we should talk about that instead of scrutinizing their roster to make sure everybody in the whole world is equally represented.

    • Beatrice says:

      I don’t remember who to credit for the following statement, but I fully support it:

      “My feminism will be intersectional or it will be bullshit.”

      Just for the example people have already complained about. Transwomen are women. But they are often not included into this group, so it should be obvious why not being included yet again into something that is supposed to discuss women is a bit suspicious.

      • Beatrice says:

        I think my writing is unclear again.

        “Just for the example people have already complained about.” might imply that my position on intersectionality is only about the erasure of trans women. It’s not.
        It was meant as “I’m not going to give all the examples, just talk about the one already mentioned”

      • Jadey says:

        Flavia Dzodan can be credited for that excellent statement.

        @ Zeldy

        My answer is a resounding NO, chased by a FUCK NO, and finished off with just a hint of CUT THAT SHIT OUT.

        I think much better of this project with the additional clarifications provided by Siolo, which would not have been forthcoming without the entirely valid and appropriate promptings of a critically-aware commentariat. I think the exchange on this thread is an example of what we all OUGHT to be doing.

      • I think much better of this project with the additional clarifications provided by Siolo, which would not have been forthcoming without the entirely valid and appropriate promptings of a critically-aware commentariat. I think the exchange on this thread is an example of what we all OUGHT to be doing.

        Ditto.

    • LotusBecca says:

      LOL. We’re hardly merely nitpicking. People of color make up a majority of the world’s population, so barely representing them is more than a slight oversight. Actually, if you add up all the different groups that are seriously underrepresented in the project, you don’t have a lot of people left that the project DOES represent. If you, Zeldy, are personally one of the lucky few that’s being represented, well, congratulations. But how you can say it’s all “solid” or “forward-thinking” is beyond me. Perhaps a project like this would have been forward-thinking thirty years ago. Now it seems more like the same old story: another way the status quo is perpetuating itself.

      • matlun says:

        People of color make up a majority of the world’s population

        Is this relevant?

        This book seems to be trying to work from a modern North American cultural perspective. If you look at it from a global perspective all the unrepresented cultural views will almost certainly be a much larger issue than the lack of racial diversity.

        While the OP did perhaps exaggerate the breadth of representation, demanding that they should represent all possible perspectives seems very unreasonable, and in practice impossible to implement.

      • A4 says:

        The current top article: http://thebetterbombshell.com/2012/12/27/a-visit-from-the-pitch-squad-rich-chiappone/

        Guest blogger Rich Chiappone writes about women’s roles in fiction.

        I’ve read very few recent women’s novels, and almost exclusively only those written by female friends—which means, I don’t dare say anything about them here

        What I remember about For Whom the Bell Tolls is not the long existential conversations among the Spanish revolutionaries: what I remember is handsome Robert Jordan traipsing through my testosterone-addled mind toting a backpack full of dynamite, drinking wine from goatskins, and a sleeping in a cave with a Spanish gypsy woman. What guy wouldn’t want to live like that — vicariously and safely? Guns and bullfighters and expensive cars sent novels flying off the shelves for much of the last century. Today, as men leave books behind in favor of X-Boxes and ESPN, it takes the right shoes, the great job, cool friends and big city apartments to effectively pitch a novel to the distaff book buyer. No doubt about it.

        All I’m saying is: I thought women were a little smarter.

        Seriously.

      • Beatrice says:

        Well, that was a weak article.

        Of all the questionable things authors do to fictional women, the character this blogger chose seems like a pretty average (non-realistical) reader stand-in (again – white, cis, straight…).

        Take this:

        And I make no claims of expertise in the area of “women’s fiction” (books written about women by women).

        Blogger could have taken this and worked a damned good article from it.

        Why are books written by men for everyone, but books written by women are largely “women’s fiction”? Why do women who want to write for everyone still have to hide behind male or ambiguous names so that their books won’t be thought less of?
        Why do we rarely see female leads in books that are not specifically targeting women (or straight men’s wet dreams)?

        etc.

    • A4 says:

      It appears to me that the critical response to this piece has a lot to do with the way the piece presents so obviously as an advertisement for the project rather than a balanced discussion of it. The post looks designed to “generate buzz” which is a pretty radical departure from the usual questioning nature of the discussions at Feministe.

      I can’t speak for other feminists, but I often am very suspicious when someone attempts to tell me of a new “perfectly feminist” or “perfectly good” book, movie, person, project, TV show, etc. My first question, even if I don’t say it out loud, is “what is this thing missing? How is this successful thing perpetuating oppressive practices and attitudes?” because if I’ve learned anything from feminism it is that success in a kyriarchy requires compromising ideals, and perfect feminist or social justice praxis does not exist.

      This piece does not provide this balance at all, and instead offers only effusive compliments and praise for the feminist and empowering nature of this project. I am not surprised that this community of commenters reacted to this by trying to supply a perspective that was critical of the aspects of this project that fall short of feminist ideals.

    • Donna L says:

      Zeldy, if the article hadn’t expressly made this claim:

      it’s impossible to have a truly in-depth conversation about feminism without acknowledging it as a universally relevant topic. “I’m really proud of the range of people that have been willing to work with us and the strength of the project comes from the collaboration and juxtaposition of all these different voices,” Thompson said. The artists and writers brought into this project are “a beautiful motley assortment of talent”: male and female, emerging artists and established veterans, jocks and academics, gay and straight and everything in between.

      I might not have said anything. But it did.

      Just because I’m used to trans women being excluded from “universal” concepts of feminism doesn’t mean I have to keep quiet about it.

      • We are not excluding Trans women! Or trans men! We are not excluding anyone! Look, we are three individuals that wanted to start a community discussion about feminism through the use of art and literature. We started in our own community and the project has grown. We don’t have any funding, we have spent a year of our lives on this and we would have to sell over two thousand books to even come close to breaking even. I don’t even know how to respond to all these comments about how we are not doing a good enough job representing everyone. How can we? We are just working from where we are, with what we have. Like we have already said, if you want to be part of this project, please, we welcome you. If you want to write a response to any of our guest bloggers or a challenge or participate in positive way, please do!

      • amblingalong says:

        I don’t even know how to respond to all these comments about how we are not doing a good enough job representing everyone. How can we? We are just working from where we are, with what we have. Like we have already said, if you want to be part of this project, please, we welcome you. If you want to write a response to any of our guest bloggers or a challenge or participate in positive way, please do!

        Here’s my take. I’m broadly sympathetic with what you’re saying; I think its important to remember that authors’ ability to represent people of different backgrounds is limited by forces other than willingness. For example, if I wanted to put together a project on race and racism, drawing from my professional/personal contacts, I would probably overrepresent certain ethnic minorities and not include others based on where my life has taken me. I totally think it’s reasonable to say “here is our project about gender, and we realize that it isn’t entirely comprehensive, because we are missing X, Y, and Z voices.”

        Where I think you went wrong is that it sounded like you were making a claim to comprehensiveness. In my hypothetical project, I would say something like “here is a project about how people in the US experience racism; it’s primarily focused on black/latino peoples’ experiences, though we’ve worked to include Asian/Native American/Middle Eastern voices and so on as much as possible.” What your blurb said was more like “here is a cross-section of everybody’s experiences,” and so people are pointing out that there are some grounds who aren’t in your cross-section at all.

        Does that make sense? I really don’t find fault with your project- demanding everything include all identities is futile because that means only people with extensive resources can do anything– but I do have a problem with the way you presented it. To use one more analogy- I have no problem with a hypothetical project on race that doesn’t include me (as a biracial- or triracial, in fact- person). I understand that someone might not have biracial friends, and for many people, their friends are their only resource for this type of thing. I do have a problem if that project comes with a tag saying it covers a ‘universal experience of race,’ because then someone is claiming to speak for me, when they don’t.

      • amblingalong says:

        That should read “some groups who aren’t in your cross-section.”

      • Donna L says:

        How could you respond? By editing your advertising to remove the claims of comprehensive diversity. That would help. You can’t use hyperbolic rhetoric like that without expecting pushback. I have nothing against your project itself, as I said before. Just the way you presented it. Sticking only to the issue of trans-inclusiveness, did you ever stop to think how it makes people like me feel when you use words like “everything” and “universal” with respect to your project and its contributors, and talk about “positive, multidimensional female role models,” and then — predictably — you include men, gender diversity is represented by a drag queen talking about how being a woman makes him a better man, and there are no trans women and no mention of trans issues? This project doesn’t exist in a vacuum, and it’s not as if anybody reading your website would know that you tried to include a trans person.

      • LotusBecca says:

        I get that you are desperate to sell copies of your book, but you need to work on your marketing. People in the progressive/radical activist community generally aren’t impressed by overblown promotional talk that makes claims to false universality. We’re critical thinkers, and this isn’t Parade magazine. Your marketing would probably make a better impression in spaces like this if you toned down the hyperbole and instead openly acknowledged your limitations. Using words like “patriarchy,” “privilege,” “racism,” or “marginalization” might boost your credibility by showing you are have some familiarity with the concerns of the social justice community and are not just some interloper with a bright, shiny new idea who is trying to cash in.

        Oh, and BTW, I definitely don’t believe that I’m being included in your project as a trans woman, and I have no desire to participate. Inclusion doesn’t mean scrupulously avoiding addressing something, and then when this is pointed out, saying “hey, rather than complain, why don’t you help us out? We will allow you to create content for us.” It takes a little more than that for me to feel that something is worth my time, and my time isn’t even particularly valuable.

      • Donna L says:

        Using words like “patriarchy,” “privilege,” “racism,” or “marginalization” might boost your credibility

        I doubt it, because it would come across as lip service if those words were used without the project actually having a broader scope, or being more diverse — which is not something I’m suggesting they’re particularly required to be. It would be far better if they avoided the hyperbole and buzzwords altogether, and stuck to describing the project itself.

      • LotusBecca says:

        Well yeah, Donna, I was being sort of tongue in cheek. I’m not looking for them to use a bunch of buzzwords either. I’m just pointing out that they’ve missed the mark by so much here that, in terms of buzzwords, they aren’t even using the right buzzwords for their audience.

      • Donna L says:

        Sorry, Becca — my sarcasm detector must have been turned off last night!

    • Mztress says:

      Sure. Why not let them off the hook for the usual over-representation of what is mainstream. Because intersectionality isn’t huge in the lives of real people, right?

  6. matlun says:

    It appears to me that the critical response to this piece has a lot to do with the way the piece presents so obviously as an advertisement for the project rather than a balanced discussion of it.

    Angela Eloise Smalley has been a guest blogger on The Better Bombshell. She is also based in Seattle so perhaps she is also a personal friend to the team IRL.

    Still, this is hardly uncommon, surely? Very often when someone writes about a book or project on a blog like this, it is because it is something they are very enthusiastic and positive about.

  7. Radiant Sophia says:

    I’m curious if this includes, in it’s discussion of women and sex, “never”. Some women’s idea of sexual freedom and bodily autonomy includes the freedom from ever having to be sexual/have sex. Also, does it discuss “none” with respect to gender identity? I doubt it, but my point is: does it need to to be relevant to feminism?

    • tomek says:

      i think it is not so relevent. we are biologic beings for whom the sex is the key. for woman, this means making herself sexy to show the fertility. like say angela smaly in original post, the beuty and the need for validation is big part of being a woman. and so woman should be not ashamed. and feminism should also admit this instead of being idealog. then we have proper progress in sexism discussion

      • Radiant Sophia says:

        “we are biologic beings for whom the sex is the key.”

        …vaguely heterosexist.

        “for woman, this means making herself sexy to show the fertility.”

        …very heterosexist.

        “the beuty and the need for validation is big part of being a woman”

        …and dismissing women as being varied people.

        It’s clear that you think all women behave in a similar fashion. Some of us, however, believe that bodily autonomy allows us to choose not to be sexual. I’m not sure if you can understand this, tomek, but you might as well have said gay people don’t exist. Please put a little more thought into your responses before dismissing huge sections of people.

      • EG says:

        we are biologic beings for whom the sex is the key.

        For some people, this is true. For others, it is not. Welcome to the wide world of being a human being. It is far more complex, from biology on out, than being, say, an amoeba.

        for woman, this means making herself sexy to show the fertility.

        Nope. On practically every level, you are wrong. First of all, biologically, it is almost always males who must make themselves sexually appealing to females. Second of all, what is considered sexually appealing in a woman varies greatly and has little to do with fertility. Third, and I know you’re going to have a difficult time with this one, objecthood is not actually the dominant part of female sexuality. We are sexual subjects, just like men, and for most of us, fully integrating our sexuality into our identity is about understanding what we desire.

        For some, like Sophia, integrating sexuality is about deciding not to have sex or be sexual. Again, that is about what she desires, not about what others desire in her.

      • Radiant Sophia says:

        Again, EG, thank you for the angry to English translation.

      • Radiant Sophia says:

        In my defense, it’s hard to be eloquent with a cold/sinus infection clogging up my brain.

      • tomek says:

        everytime i have try to start a conversation on this website my comment is get remove. always my first comment is not removed. and then people have respond, so i write more comment to clarify what i say in first comment. however all comment after first comment get removed!!!

        i have request please, i am comment in good faith. if feministe author want me not here, please remove me. do not let me write one comment, and then prevent me write more comment. otherwise i cannot clarify original position when people is misunderstand me.

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