Weekly Feminist Reader

What Danica Patrick’s victory means to young girls who aspire to be racecar drivers.
Last week, coincidentally the Global Action Week for Education, UNICEF released a study showing Afghan girls are excluded from the country’s education system.
The awful Maricopa County (Arizona) Sheriff Joe Arpaio is now adding to his resume of “shaming” male inmates by forcing them to wear pink underwear and denying female inmates abortion access by throwing a few immigration raids into the mix. Last week he rounded up 150 immigrants against even the wishes of the mayor , who said, “That’s not acceptable behavior for anyone, let alone someone whose job is to help make our community safer.”
A good post from secondhandsally on obsession, objectification, and Judd Apatow movies.
Why young women in particular are at risk for pay discrimination.
Menstrual blood could save lives! (Now I’m waiting for the Christian right to come out against this because there are baaaaaabies in that blood… or something.)
A Saudi court ruled that a man had not, in fact, attempted to rape a woman (despite the fact that she leapt out a window to get away from him) because her jeans were found folded on the bed.
Ashton Kutcher is a real asshat.
A plus-size woman will compete in the Miss England pageant. I’m torn between being glad that the pageant is expanding its definition of what beautiful looks like, and still hating on pageant culture as a whole.
Someone has started a cleaning service called Dust Bunnies in which women clean your house clad in lingerie or topless. Endorsed by Time Out Chicago: “The chance to entertain your sexy-maid fantasies while actually having your place cleaned…need we say more?” Sigh.
Christina Ricci: “I think people are learning to actually aspire to be objectified. It’s like the highest form of flattery for teenage girls. The culture we live in right now seems to reward behavior that we used to frown upon. We used to teach our daughters not to be like this.” Well, I agree with the general sentiment, but let’s not veer toward the “gee, everything was great back in the 1950s” mode of thinking, mmkay?
NPR’s News and Notes had a good segment on women’s rights in Sudan.

The Missouri House passed some awful anti-choice legislation
WTF headline: “Are There Too Many Women Doctors?”
How Chris Matthews has profited from him misogyny.
Congress held hearings on one of our personal favorite topics, abstinence-only education.
Sweden considered a ban on sexist ads, but rejected the idea because of free-speech concerns.
How girls bully differently than boys.
There’s some serious sexism in the field of physics.
Actions and Events
There’s an ecofeminist event in NYC on Thursday, May 8. Tickets available here.
On April 19, Angela Shelton Day, people nationwide are encouraged to show up at their local county courthouses to report sexual assault, and others will rally on courthouse steps. Click here to see a list of locations.
On May 17 the Bronx Museum of Art will feature a day performance artists, including the Waitresses, who will stage an “Unhappy Hour,” charging women 77 cents to men’s $1. Plus the young collective the Brainstormers, which will hold a “satiric demonstration” in collaboration with the Guerrilla Girls. And, via webcam, the transnational feminist collective 6+ will create an interactive travel “tourâ€? of Bethlehem. Organized by Christal Brown’s INSPIRIT, teenage girls in Project: BECOMING will create living tableaux from exhibited art works, exploring issues of body image and objectification. And the internet-based GuerrillaGirlsBroadband will enlist “soldiersâ€? at an anti-war “Feminist Recruitment Centerâ€? in the Museum’s lobby. Sounds awesome.

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