Weekly Feminist Reader

gabby douglas If you, like us, aren’t quite done gushing about Gabby Douglas…Plus, Dominique Dawes on Gabby’s historic win, the sacrifices her mom made to keep her in gymnastics, and a guide to her victory in gifs.

Roxane Gay has 14 tips for how to be friends with another woman. First off: “Abandon the cultural myth that all female friendships must be toxic, bitchy or competitive.”

The Feminist Wire is hosting a forum on Muslim feminisms this Ramadan. Check it out!

An interesting look at how Cosmo is exported via 64 international editions distributed in more than 100 countries in 35 languages.

On Olympic gymnastics as reality TV
: “In girl world, gymnasts are superheroes not just because of the tremendous power they explode from tiny, ropey bodies, but because they are survivors and infidels.”

Audra Schroeder explains how not to write about female musicians.

A trans neurobiologist explains why women aren’t advancing in math and sciences. Related: “When asked to indicate their gender on a test, girls scored 20% lower.”

Garland has a “not at all respectful or kind or complete assessment” of the late Gore Vidal.

Julianne Escobedo Shepherd on Nicki Minaj’s retro ’90s-style feminism.

The Guardian reports on how the blockade has affected life for the women of Gaza. A recent survey found that more than half of all married women in Gaza had experienced violence from their husbands in the last year.

A Hairpin writer lists all the things that made her angry after her rape.

A sexist dude reacts to watching women’s Olympic judo for the first time and it’s hilariously terrible.

Suparna Chaudhry on the recent spate of violent crimes against women in India.

Be forewarned
: The new no-cost birth control mandate covers all kinds of contraception, but not necessarily all brands.

Reveal, a summer camp sponsored by Texas Right to Life, teaches teenagers to be anti-choice activists.

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

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3 Comments

  1. Posted August 5, 2012 at 10:20 am | Permalink
  2. Posted August 5, 2012 at 11:34 am | Permalink

    I wrote Belly Shot about yoga and body image — particularly my relationship with my belly.

    And Something About Boobs on Planned Parenthood Arizona’s mobile mammography clinic.

    Obamacare, Birth Control, & Me on hormonal contraception, endometriosis, and affordability — which I now realize may be based on an inaccurate understanding of the provision.

  3. Posted August 6, 2012 at 3:43 am | Permalink

    Re: “How To Be Friends With Another Woman” and “Women are not funny” – I read posts like that a lot because I do want to soul-search and explore why I sometimes gravitate toward the guys’ table at parties and at work, and why I often find myself trusting men more than women on a personal level. But once again, the post turns out to be a snarky, unproductive rant about how women like me supposedly need to just get over ourselves and embrace the sisterhood. (“Don’t be competitive.” Okay. Don’t think of an elephant.) Needless to say, I rarely walk away convinced after having read something like that. Usually I just feel defensive, repeating, “Why the hell does EVERY female friendship article have to espouse clothes shopping as a means of bonding?”

    Rarely do such posts dare to explore facets of female culture that could be the reason women like me have difficulty enjoying ourselves. (The constant default to fashion talk, the fact that women are less likely than guys to mercilessly riff each other for fun, the fact that women will more likely push the “When you gonna have a baby?” question, the fact that many women can be a bit *too* quick to spill their problems and life stories to any woman who’s around, the fact that women tend be a lot less atheist than I am… I dislike these tendencies in female culture as much as I dislike macho tendencies in male culture.) I understand the hesitation to generalize lest it sound sexist, yet as feminists we are constantly generalizing about traditional/mainstream male culture for the sake of better understanding the sources of the problems. The more the discussion refuses to address mainstream cultural aspects that could be a turn-off to women like me, the more women like me will just stew about them and resent the “Maybe it’s not women, maybe it’s you” lecture.

    It’s too bad because I think the discussion as a whole is really important.

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