Weekly Feminist Reader


Mr. Frida Kahlo with family, circa 1926. via.
Women and girls are being assaulted in emergency shelters in Haiti.
I am shocked — shocked! — that a feature article telling women to settle rather than remain single has been expanded into a book. Take Back the Loser will be in full effect come Valentine’s Day, I’m sure.
What does a (disabled) feminist [poet] look like?
Hooray for “SAFER SEX JAMZZZZZZZZ!” as my friend Becky puts it.
A Saudi mother of three has been sentenced to 300 lashes for filing a complaint against government officials for corruption and misuse of power.
It’s sad to think about the number of “liberal” organizations where new women hires have to be warned, “[The boss] is probably going to hit on you.”
Help update Our Bodies, Ourselves!
Fathers in the UK will soon get six months of paternity leave.
Read Sady Doyle’s own “rant about women“: Girl Culture and the Race to the Bottom (Extra-credit reading: Rachel Simmons’ Odd Girl Out.)
Transgender rape survivors and the ugly depths of victim-blaming.
Kathryn Bigelow became the first woman EVER to win top honors for feature filmmaking from the Directors’ Guild of America!


Veronica on teaching kids feminist history without rose-colored glasses.
“So, successful women (which by default means “white women”) can excel professionally and romantically, while successful black women are doomed to lives of desperation and loneliness because black men can’t keep up with us… I’m not buying it.”
Fashion without hatred.
Go read Kate Harding on Elizabeth Edwards.
Did the pro-choice movement take the wrong approach to pushing for abortion rights in health reform?
What if we all assumed, just for a day, that everyone was doing the best they could to get by. What if we assumed, just for a day, that poor people aren’t poor because they are less worthy, less smart, less hard-working, or just plain less? Where would that leave us?”
Heartbreaking: Blackwater’s Youngest Victim.
A great video on transgender pioneer Aleshia Brevard.
Frighteningly thin models at Sao Paolo fashion week.
Giving women pop artists their due.
A look at how parental-notification laws and judicial bypasses play out in real life.
What have you been reading/writing this week?

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27 Comments

  1. Posted January 31, 2010 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

    Hey all, here’s what’s been goin’ on at Gender Across Borders this past week:
    Transgender Children — includes a heartwarming story of two transgender girls who become friends
    What does a (disabled) feminist [poet] look like?
    Jessica Simpson’s Shoes ? Relief for Haiti
    Can Feminists Find a Place in the Catholic Church?
    Oh, and we’re looking for a Junior Editor! Position description and application info is here.

  2. GuinnessXXStout
    Posted January 31, 2010 at 2:28 pm | Permalink

    The radical feminism behind women’s studies in Canadian universities continue to “damage to families, our court systems, labour laws, constitutional freedoms and even the ordinary relations between men and women.” I’m amazed anybody would feel fit to believe any of the nonsense in this editorial. http://www.nationalpost.com/most-popular/story.html?id=2484139

  3. Thomas
    Posted January 31, 2010 at 2:28 pm | Permalink

    This week at Yes Means Yes Blog:
    I Fear This, in which I react to Sady Doyle’s reaction to Clay Shirkey. As the parent of a young daughter, I dread the culture of aggression among middle school girls and the possibility that no matter how much strength and self-esteem I equip her with, she’ll face a culture determined to destroy her ability to feel good about her own abilities.

  4. Gnatalby
    Posted January 31, 2010 at 2:33 pm | Permalink

    Finally letting you in: On Dollhouse’s finale.
    Last Train to Baghdad Part I: Classic Melrose.
    Just Say ME! Secret Life of the American Teenager’s female masturbation episode.
    Carmela Gets Her Groove Back: Carmela Soprano takes charge of her life and I love it.

  5. Rebecca K.
    Posted January 31, 2010 at 2:40 pm | Permalink

    Composed of clockwork – I’m feeling a bit trapped by being trans and transitioning, and am having a hard time dealing with it all
    “The Phantom Genitalia” would be a great band name – A study shows trans men and women have different experiences with phantom limbs than cis men and women
    Any experience with Birthright? – A friend is trying to talk me into going on Birthright Israel, but ‘traveling while trans’ makes me nervous
    My mom is awesome – All the anger I’d been feeling toward my mom, but not acknowledging? Turns out she had been thinking about the it, too.

  6. Phenicks
    Posted January 31, 2010 at 2:45 pm | Permalink

    On Hait: This ALWAYS happens when there is a state of anarchy or very little government control. A rapist doesn’t stop raping because of a natural disaster, some only stop because the are incarcerated and have no one to rape.
    WHERE the hell is security? Police? Food, water, medics, shelter AND protection is needed. That was made clear when it was announced that the prisons were destroyed and many dangerous criminals were set free. Not only are the too desperate for food, shelter and water but they have been detained for goodness knows how long and are in a place and time where police and government are practically non-existant.

  7. Jessica Padkin
    Posted January 31, 2010 at 2:49 pm | Permalink

    The comments on the paternity leave article are just precious:
    “That is the whole point of this proposal, to shackle men with the same handicaps as women when
    seeking employment thus in Hideous Hardbints eyes leveling the playing field. She never misses a trick in her anti-male crusade.”
    Yes, it’ll make everyone in the UK equally unemployable. That makes perfect sense. At least he acknowledges that women are at a disadvantage, I suppose.
    Honestly, they moan when feminists aren’t concentrating on men’s issues. Yet when feminists actually work towards something that might benefit men… they moan anyway. There’s no pleasing some people.

  8. Astraia
    Posted January 31, 2010 at 3:08 pm | Permalink

    I finally got around to starting a blog! My first post is a bit of an anecdote:
    Children and Body Image
    As the blog is new, all readers and commenters are very welcome!

  9. Heina
    Posted January 31, 2010 at 3:21 pm | Permalink
  10. Brett K
    Posted January 31, 2010 at 3:45 pm | Permalink

    This week at Radical Bookworm, I posted the first of two entries on the gender gap in higher education, and how it relates to patriarchy and male entitlement: Men Still Studying Less, Earning More than Women.
    I also briefly reflected on Scott Roeder’s trial and the erasure of women from the abortion debate.

  11. Renee
    Posted January 31, 2010 at 3:50 pm | Permalink

    Why Are There No Fat Vampires: Looking at idealized bodies within the occult genre.
    Buying A Trophy Orphan Is Just Part Of The Game: Looking at a video game that encourages kids to buy orphans based on real celebrity kids. Yep dress them up and then feed them things like rats cause that is what kids of colour like.
    A Pelvic Exam Without Permission is Rape: It seems that Canadian medical students are performing pelvic exams on unconscious patients without getting consent from the patient.
    Bristol Is Taking Levi To Court For Child Support, Of Course This Makes Her A Gold Digger: Looking at the way enforcing child support is often painted as men supporting lazy women.
    The People of Walmart an Exercise in Shame and Discipline: Looking at a site dedicated to shaming people for not conforming and examining our surveillance culture.
    Should The Ladies From “The View” Really Be Discussing Monogamy in the Gay Community?: Of course they saw no problem sitting down to discuss the love lives of the GLBT community without inviting a gay man or a lesbian to participate.
    This weeks Sunday Shame we have an epic battle 70’s vs 80’s music weigh in and tell us which decade needs to be wiped away by the sand of time.

  12. Posted January 31, 2010 at 4:12 pm | Permalink

    This week in Evil Slutopia:
    ~Does Joaquin Phoenix qualify as a famous Puerto Rican?
    ~We participated in NARAL Pro-Choice New York’s Reproductive Health Act (Phone) Call to Action.
    ~We read Cosmo so you don’t have to: Cosmo Quickies February 2010
    ~Speaking of Cosmo, we’ve been following their ongoing coverage of Scott Brown’s election. It’s quite insightful.

  13. LadySydney4
    Posted January 31, 2010 at 4:35 pm | Permalink

    The Lady Of Feminism has been blogging about…
    Christine de Pisan, The First Lady Of Feminism…
    &
    YouTube…
    I’ve been busy this week so these are the only two that I got done, but there will be more next week!

  14. Flowers
    Posted January 31, 2010 at 5:28 pm | Permalink

    The article on judicial bypasses for minors is spot-on. In Texas, Jane’s Due Process is a group of lawyers who help minors obtain judicial bypasses. Having a lawyer represent you tends to minimize the hassle.
    If you need help, check it out: http://www.janesdueprocess.org/

  15. kaje
    Posted January 31, 2010 at 5:33 pm | Permalink

    A Way to Dampen Roeder’s Martyrdom- in which I propose Tiller Day, a pro-choice holiday to both honor Tiller and stick it to Roeder by donating money and time to repro rights:
    http://johnnykaje.wordpress.com/2010/01/29/a-way-to-dampen-roeders-martyrdom-pro-choice-holiday/

  16. Posted January 31, 2010 at 6:06 pm | Permalink

    I wrote about the stresses and struggles of being the first minority or marginalized person in a position of authority in…
    Reform Often Depends on Individual Choice, Not Collective Demand

  17. katie
    Posted January 31, 2010 at 7:31 pm | Permalink

    I love the pic of Frida Kahlo and family, I just started my lesson on Frida with my Spanish 3 class. There is a great pbs video called “life and times of frida kahlo”, if anyone is interested. It’s way more classroom appropriate than the hollywood version, even though I love that movie too! My favorite part about teaching this lesson is watching my students transform their misconceptions about her. At first they say “oh man she’s ugly, uh look at that unibrow!” But at the end of the lesson, they learn to appreciate her and her art, and in a way become a little more feminist ;)

  18. Melanie
    Posted January 31, 2010 at 7:41 pm | Permalink

    sad to see that the amount of bad news seems a lot bigger than the amount of good news

  19. MzBitca
    Posted January 31, 2010 at 8:50 pm | Permalink

    AFter the response to the Open letter about cross cultural adoptions and Haiti I wrote a post when there was an article about a church based in Idaho sending missonaries who were caught smuggling children, some of whom still had parents, to be adopted out
    http://mzbitca.wordpress.com/2010/01/31/contrary-to-popular-belief-white-people-dont-always-know-best/

  20. aleks
    Posted January 31, 2010 at 9:21 pm | Permalink

    I did Birthright (Shorashim) in 2003 and from the travel perspective it was a perfect experience. It was all handled very capably and professionally and it didn’t cost me a cent other than flights from home to NYC and back. Flying right now is a miserable experience and I can’t imagine the extra hassle and humiliation trans travelers risk from the National Security Theater show, but Birthright is a gift to be seized if at all possible. IIRC there’s an upper age limit, and funding is always in question, so I suggest doing it when you can!

  21. GREGORYABUTLER10031
    Posted January 31, 2010 at 9:29 pm | Permalink

    I would take those articles with a gigantic grain of salt.
    Remember Katrina?
    And all the articles about the horrible crime wave among the evacuees at the Superdome and the Morial Convention Center?
    And then later it came out that all of those stories were lies
    Of course, the “looting and raping Negroes” stories were page one when they came out….
    …and the corrections were on page 29 a month later (if they even bothered to run a correction – you know that Fox News didn’t!).
    Were there rapes in Port au Prince?
    Yes there were – just like there were in New York, and Paris, and Johannesburg, and Sydney and Tokyo and everywhere else in the world, because we live in a sexist patriarchal world.
    And I’m not trying to minimize the suffering of women who’ve been raped – in Port au Prince or anywhere else.
    I’m just saying this is typical racist media coverage, where Black people get demonized as violent savages.
    Put it this way – has the mainstream media talked about all the Haitians who’ve been frantically trying to rescue survivors from under the crushed buildings? …or bury the dead? …or do the best they can to aid the sick? …or to find food for the hungry?
    You have read about the last group – corporate media calls them “looters” and US Marines have been shooting at them (with ammo paid for by your tax dollars).
    Bottom line, don’t be so quick to believe the racist hype about Haiti.

  22. Shinigami-Sidhe
    Posted January 31, 2010 at 9:37 pm | Permalink

    I briefly discuss a visit to a really creepy gynecologist who believes in regularly showing her daughter pictures of STDs in order to encourage virginity.

  23. April
    Posted January 31, 2010 at 9:51 pm | Permalink

    Kissiegrrrl discusses a recent Lifetime movie that had a surprisingly progressive bent.
    I talked about an experience I had at work the other day with a very hostile stranger who wanted to use my lighter, and how that related to women being treated more negatively for assertions than men are.
    N discusses technology and how it relates to progressive politics.

  24. kaje
    Posted January 31, 2010 at 10:10 pm | Permalink

    A Way to Dampen Roeder’s Martyrdom: Pro-Choice Holiday!: In which I propose a pro-choice holiday to commemorate Dr. Tiller and stick it to Roeder.

  25. jellyleelips
    Posted February 1, 2010 at 10:03 am | Permalink

    WHY does there need to be a link to ANOTHER article that essentially mocks the super skinny models? Silly skinny bitches, look how stupid they are! Honestly. Does nobody but me know people who actually look like that? And, does that even fucking matter? Can feminist blogs all rally together and PLEASE have less posting of nameless, faceless models who are “shockingly thin” as though that helps anything in the quest to make the fashion industry less hateful. More pictures of naked or semi-naked women is just sensationalism.

  26. Phenicks
    Posted February 1, 2010 at 1:24 pm | Permalink

    I’m definitely weary but anytime criminals are set free from prison I’m skeptical of rehabilitation, especially violent criminals. It’s logically sound to think a rapist who was sentenced and jailed in a prison that has recently been destroyed may find himself on cloud nine in a sea of desperate, hungry, weakened potential victims who don’t have much in the form of protection. Given that Haitians were strong enough to endure so much and still survive I have all faith in their resilience, however when many people were going hungry to begin with and then that tiny food source has been disturbed hunger sets in and ANY hungry human starts to become a physically weakened human, race and history be damned.
    Don’t get me started on Katrina. I typically have low blood pressure but that shit pisses me off to no end everytime I think about the way it was handled.
    As for the looters stories, blatant racism. Without a doubt. I remember an e-mail going around of pictures from an article showing white people who “found” food and other items in “abandoned businesses and grocery stores” while there was another article with a photo of black “looters” “stealing goods from vulnerable businesses.”

  27. Toongrrl
    Posted February 1, 2010 at 2:45 pm | Permalink

    Mikaela B. Reid has a blogpost about Feminisit charities and the Haitian earthquake

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