Leia Organa often gets the fuzzy end of the lollipop where the casual Star Wars fandom is concerned. Most attention focuses on the cinnamon-roll hairdo and/or the bronze bikini. In honor of last night’s release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Nicki Salcedo gives Leia her due, celebrating her uncelebrated badassitude. (And providing me with my new rough-day mantra: Was your home planet just destroyed? Then pull it together, young Jedi.)
A high-school senior and her classmates speak up for accurate information and against a terrible abstinence-only speaker. An eight-year-old girl chases down a Tennessee state senator to get some answers. And an Oscar nominee shows she’s more than just an exceptionally talented young actress. Today, on Today in Badass Young Women.
Fiona Apple has postponed her South America tour to be with her ailing pitbull Janet. She writes a heart-wrenching, wonderful letter which will feel familiar to anyone who has ever loved and lost a pet or even a person. If you feel like reading something sad and beautiful, is here. A taste:
These days of course there are so many added venues for women to get together -– drinks after work, lunch, maybe a film, etc. My experience with such opportunities often, however, did not seem to me so different from my mother’s day. Often isolated, often individualized, often professionally segregated or age separated.
Considering this a few years ago, I decided a new, big gathering of women was just the ticket.
The Anew School, which provides “unprecedented academic, emotional/mental health, and social training to “at-risk” seventh and eighth grade youth” by taking American students and educating them at the Anew international boarding school in Ghana, is hosting its annual fundraiser tomorrow, Friday, October 5th from 6pm-10pm at Santos Party House, 96 Lafayette St, NY, NY. The party features DJ Commish, special live performances, and an amazing crowd assembled for a good cause. More about the Anew School:
I know it’s only Tuesday, but I feel fairly safe saying it’s this. The piece is about support groups for children whose parents have cancer. But the truths that Mary Elizabeth Williams extracts are profound. That culturally, we fear death, when really there’s power in acknowledging it. That for all of us, but especially for children, in situations that are socially cast as tragic or abnormal, there is power in a community of your peers — even if the very fact of that community means there will be pain and loss. That as MEW writes, in a way that universalizes the lessons she and her girls have learned:
Stephanie Coontz is a national treasure and I wish her work were required reading for everyone in the world. She’s in the Sunday Times writing about how all of this “End of Men” / women are dominating / Girls Rule! stuff is… not quite true. We’ve made some progress, but gender parity is still long off. Oh, and the reason why it seems like men are “doing worse”? Is because for a very long time, men were the beneficiaries of some major gendered affirmative action through a “patriarchal dividend” in which women as a class were largely excluded from public life, propping up men as a class and offering virtually no competition:
Everything about this interview is fantastic. The interviewer, the interviewee, the questions, the answers… it is really really really fantastic. [Trigger warning at that link for description of sexual assault].
The lovely Kate Carraway let me weigh in on her advice column this week in response to a question about workplace sex-talk — that is, someone wrote in to complain that they feel their co-workers are judging their sex life. You can read Kate’s response, with a few thoughts from yours truly, here. The summary: Have whatever kind of sex you want, but STFU about sex when you’re at work. Even if your workplace is cool.
Yes and yes. My favorite parts: