In all the discussion of sex and consent — and there’s been a lot of it, and it’s not all recent, and unfortunately it doesn’t change all that much for all that the debate is pretty much constant — a recurring theme is the idea of somehow recording consent and negotiating it in an official context to avoid any confusion. Now, a smartphone app is available to address that. Available for iPhone and Android, the Good2Go app encourages prospective sexual partners to assess consent — electronically — before embarking on their sexual adventures....read more
It’s Banned Books Week, celebrating books that are absolutely, objectively horrible and mustn’t be read by anyone. They’re books that need to be blocked from school libraries, ejected from public libraries, struck from publisher’s lists and set on damn fire every time they’re encountered. Which means that most of them (although by no means all of them) are worth reading, particularly when it comes to books for school-age kids who shan’t be exposed to naughty language or mentions of sex. Because if there’s one thing that abstinence-only education has taught us is that if you never, ever mention it, kids will never do it.
So here are six banned and/or challenged children’s and young adult books to read to a kid this week in honor of Banned Books Week....read more
I’ve been writing about it over at Cosmopolitan.com. Here’s the basic summary of the case. Here are 13 of the biggest misconceptions about the case (this one is especially helpful for Twitter / Facebook / family dinner table fights). And, finally, how the right-wing reaction to women with opinions on Hobby Lobby is a pretty good illustration of how this is all about misogyny and hostility toward female sexuality, not religious beliefs....read more
Finals are here, but we managed to squeeze out one last episode before semester’s end. Yes, it resembles the question we answered last time, but… Okay, we really just wanted to do a simple, non-intersectionality-laden question, to avoid extra stress on top of revising for exams. But even if you already know everything about virginity, feel free to watch if you want to be entertained by what we played whilst answering the question…...read more
Well hello again! Yes I am still here, although MIA for the past month or so as I wrapped up my freelance life and started at Cosmopolitan.com full time. And I’m writing a lot over there: On illegal abortion in Brazil, on pro-choice advocates embracing life, on the minimum wage, on the increasing inaccessibility of abortion in the American South, on the kidnapped Nigerian girls. I’m also doing a series of interviews with women who have interesting careers, detailing how they got to where they are. So far I’ve spoken with Jordan Zimmerman, a cheese educator; Anna Holmes, a journalist and the founder of Jezebel; and Sadie Nardini, a yoga instructor who was paralyzed as a child and now runs a massive international wellness empire. The latest: On PUA and MRA responses to the misogynist murders in Santa Barbara. Here is one of those things:...read more
[Content Note: shootings, murder, misogyny]
Andie and Donna have both posted links in the Open Thread to news items about the Isla Vista mass shootings, and rather than let this atrocity swamp the social thread I’ve decided to give this its own post.
I ask commentors to avoid speculating about possible mental health diagnoses. What we know as facts is horrific enough....read more
From outside, it probably seems we quit the Feministe vlog after just 4 months of vlogging. In actuality, despite scepticism from professors, we’ve been labouring for 4 months behind the scenes to reboot the vlog, brainstorming ways to deliver content with appeal beyond the feminist blogosphere. Frankly your mates and ours might need this more than you, if they never got sex education in school. So come, judge what we came up with. For one thing, it involves Call of Duty…...read more
Guest Post by Sabia McCoy Torres
Some of the backlash, commentary, and critiques Beyoncé has received for using Nigerian novelist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichi’s words from “Why We Should All Be Feminists” in her song “Flawless” has inspired me to react. Not in support of Beyoncé, but instead against a notion that I do not support implied in these critiques: that somehow her “hyper” sexuality is a contradiction to her being a feminist....read more
At the Texas Monthly, Jenny Kutner tells the story of her affair at 14 with a married teacher 10 years her senior. She paints a complex portrait of herself as both a victim and a survivor, but also a willing — and unwitting — participant, a young woman believing she has full agency and later an adult coming to terms with the manipulation and abuse. More than anything, the piece is powerful because it gives voice to both the 14-year-old girl who lived the experience, and the adult woman assessing and processing it. She’s not a news story or a silent figure in a larger morality tale; she’s a real girl, with all the complex feelings that come along with infatuation and adolescence and victimization and breaking through. It is a must-read....read more
So begins a miniseries for the next couple months on rape culture and the finer points of victim-blaming illogic, as part of an effort to stray from tried-and-true topics and cover more divisive subjects that typically attract online harassment and rape threats. Afterward we’ll talk next semester’s plans and ask how you’d grade Feministe’s first attempt at vlogging this year. But first, here’s our last episode of 2013, as of this writing…...read more
I’m not a Cosmopolitan reader. There are endless reasons to leave it on the magazine rack. And then there’s Cosmo fashion editor Charles Manning, who is both a dude and the fashion editor for Cosmo. In an editorial on the magazine’s site, Manning points out that teaching women to “fix their figure flaws” and camouflage their bodies to fit traditional standards of perfection doesn’t exactly promote a positive body image....read more
Women are more likely to regret casual sexual encounters than men. Is that because women are evolutionarily predisposed to feel shame after sex? A team of UCLA evolutionary psychologists says yes. I say no:...read more