Weekly Feminist Reader

These girls are the best. [Via]

Occupy Wall Street updates: More than 700 protesters were arrested trying to cross the Brooklyn bridge yesterday. The General Assembly of the protests has released their first official declaration. A variety of labor unions and community organizations have endorsed the protests and are planning a solidarity march on Wednesday. The brutality by some members of the NYPD continues to be appalling. A few smart thoughts here and here and here.

Horrifying tales of undocumented pregnant women forced to give birth while shackled in police custody.

Grey’s Anatomy creator Shonda Rhimes discusses Christina’s abortion.

“I want justice, I will not stop until I get justice,” says Pakinstani gang-rape survivor Kainat Soomro.

Brilliant: A 7-year-old girl responds to DC Comics’ sexed-up reboot of Starfire.

Cool photo project in which real women strike typical model poses.

Sylvia Robinson, the R & B singer and record producer who built the very first rap label, died at age 75.

A great letter to college dudes on how to get laid without being a “manipulative, coercive asshole.”

Nobel Peace laureate Wangari Maathai of Kenya discusses how women in developing countries are hit hardest by the effects of climate change.

Check out the Repeal Hyde Art Project.

Mindy Kaling compiles a guide of the women that exist only in rom-coms.

Meet the fringe Christian activist behind the “Personhood Amendment” that will appear on the Mississippi ballot this November.

SlutWalks were held in New York City and Minneapolis yesterday. If you attended, what was your favorite sign? Mine was: “Rape prevention tips: 1) Don’t rape. 2) See above.”

What have you been reading/writing/watching/learning this week?

Atlanta, GA

Maya Dusenbery is an Executive Director in charge of Editorial at Feministing. Maya has previously worked at NARAL Pro-Choice New York and the National Institute for Reproductive Health and was a fellow at Mother Jones magazine. She graduated with a B.A. from Carleton College in 2008. A Minnesota native, she currently lives, writes, edits, and bakes bread in Atlanta, Georgia.

Maya Dusenbery is an Executive Director of Feministing in charge of Editorial.

Read more about Maya

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  • http://feministing.com/members/emilyk/ Emily

    this week, i’m learning that i am indeed a feminist and that i am proud of that, and that i don’t have a problem letting people know.

  • http://feministing.com/members/ekissling/ Elizabeth

    This week at re:Cycling, Chris H. wrote about new research that shows in a pretty compelling way that it’s not menopause that puts women at higher risk of heart attack but aging that does so; I wrote about dads dealing with their daughter’s first period; a guest poster from David’s class wonders why certain topics about bodily experiences have become so taboo anyway; and our weekend links include the “Raise A Stink!” video from Breast Cancer Action about the Komen Foundation’s latest pinkwashing venture.

  • http://feministing.com/members/frolicnaked/ Tori

    Invisible Illness Backtracking (TW ableism) — What I’ve learned from having endometriosis.

    I think it’s my soleus. (TW body policing) — On people telling me I can’t do something because I’m fat — and then discovering that they are wrong.

    More Censorship Subversion: Song of the Lioness Quartet — How the Tamora Pierce novels informed my understanding of sex (for the better) and how I knew that would not be accepted in my community.

    Triggering Talk & Staircase Wit (TW body policing, talk of triggers) — How I think of responding when someone complains that I’m too sensitive.

  • http://feministing.com/members/guavajellyfish/ albonie

    You know, I’m a model, and the last time I checked I’m also a “real woman,” whatever that means. I feel like you’re using this as code for “real feminist” or something. I see phrases like this used often and I’d like to start a dialogue about this. Would you consider Shere Hite a real woman? Who gets to be a real woman? Am I one? If not, would I become one again if I stopped modeling? Adult models are a subset of sex workers. Are other sex workers real women, but adult models excluded from “realness”?

    If a woman LOOKS like a model but is not employed as one, is she still a “real woman”?

    • http://feministing.com/members/maya/ Maya

      Thanks for your comment, albonie. I agree. I hate the term “real woman” too since, as you say, what does that even mean? In this case, I was just repeating the description that the linked article did. My apologies. I definitely agree that it’s not accurate at all. “Non-model in real-life situation” seems like what the project is really getting at.

    • http://feministing.com/members/evelyn/ Evelyn

      Natasha on Sociological Images raised a similar point: “High fashion isn’t SUPPOSED to represent so-called ‘real’ women (which, by the way, models are just as much ‘real’ women as anyone else). High-fashion photography is intended to be artistic, and its real intention is to help make the clothes look exceptionally beautiful and create a fantasy surrounding them.”

      Yes, the “real women” phrase is super problematic. A more accurate (and less alienating) phrase is “women of all shapes and sizes”—but, of course, it isn’t as catchy as “real women,” which is why I think people cling to the latter term. With that said, I don’t think we should stop asking the following questions: why can’t women of all shapes and sizes be models? Why is our society fixated on the notion that skinny=beautiful and fat=ugly?

      As for the Sociological Image article, I’m going to agree with the commenter Ophelia: “While this [parody of high-fashion] is hilarious, I do think it misses a point.” Most art is not intended to capture the daily lives of ordinary humans. We are proud consumers of modern dance even though ordinary people “don’t move through their lives with the same sort of practiced effort as a dancer mid-performance,” Ophelia explains. Even through art should not be immune to criticism, we shouldn’t hold double standards for photography as an art form.

  • http://feministing.com/members/azure156/ Jenny Gonzalez-Blitz

    That Repeal Hyde art project is a cool idea, I’m going to make a bird for it!

    At the Slutwalk in NYC, there were so many great signs, the most eye catching one for me was a very colorfully rendered vagina with the word “Respect”. There was also a wonderful speech made by a Latina woman in the second band that performed, I wish I’d caught that band’s name (They said this was their first ever gig & opened with a cover of Bikini Kill’s “Rebel Girl”) I’d love to know if there’s a transcript somewhere.

  • http://feministing.com/members/evelyn/ Evelyn

    Don’t forget to read “The Freedom To Choose Your Pronoun” in the Sunday Styles section of the NYT!

  • http://feministing.com/members/snowdenfairy/ Lloyd Sheridan

    I wasn’t at Slutwalk NYC, but my favorite sign from Slutwalk Baltimore, which was a few weeks ago was “Send rapists to Azkaban.”