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Today’s Lady News: Introducing Spider Girl!

  • Meet Spider Girl, Marvel Comics’ newest character! Anya Corazon is a 16-year-old Latina high school student who moonlights as a superheroine. Her writer said the comics company wanted a strong female character who wasn’t “sexualized” or a “trophy” girl — and Marvel stressed she is not Spider-Man’s girlfriend! Spider Girl comics are currently on sale in the U.S. and the U.K. [BBC]
  • Rocker Patti Smith won the National Book Award for nonfiction for her memoir Just Kids, about her friendship with the photographer Robert Mapplethorpe. Another female author, Jaimy Gordon, took home the fiction prize for her novel Lord of Misrule. Have any Frisky fans read either book? [New York Times]
  • Sarah Palin told ABC News’ Barbara Walters she could beat President Obama in the next election and is seriously considering a run for the White House. The interview will air on December 9. [NPR]
  • Actress Portia de Rossi has been accused of sexism for requesting a female interviewer on an Australian show. In defense of Portia, her memoir is about her struggle with anorexia and coming out of the closet as a lesbian, so I could see why she wanted to chat with a fellow lady for a gender-related discussion. [Sydney Morning Herald]

  • House Democrats voted yesterday to make Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) their leader for the next session of Congress. [CNN]
  • Maya Angelou will receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor. Angelou is the author of the acclaimed memoir I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings. [Essence]
  • Five abortion clinics in Louisiana filed a lawsuit yesterday against the state’s strict new law regulating clinics. [WXVT]
  • Lesbian high school student Sarah Lloyd of Marion, Arkansas, who likes to wear “boys’ clothes,” had to get permission from her friggin’ school board to break tradition and wear a tuxedo in her school photo. All the girls wore drape-y gowns and all the guys wore tuxes. “I’ve never felt comfortable in girls’ clothing,” she told the local news. Fortunately, the school board let Sarah break tradition and express her true gender identity as she wanted. [Queerty]
  • Peter Dabish, 24, the heir to Powerhouse Gyms, was sentenced to life in prison without parole for torturing and murdering his girlfriend, Diana DeMayo, 23. Dabish had a history of threatening and abusing girlfriends, many of whom testified at his trial. In the past, Dabish had refused to take court-ordered anger management treatment. [Detroit News]
  • Tampa General Hospital nurse Pam Mizerany is giving one of her kidneys to a coworker, Debbie Ismer, who was born with polycystic kidney disease and needs a kidney. [a href="http://www.baynews9.com/article/news/2010/november/174008/Tampa-General-Hospital-nurse-donates-kidney-to-coworker" target="new">BayNews9.com]
  • The sorority Zeta Chi at Trinity University in Texas has offered a transgendered student the chance to rush. [Queerty]
  • Good question: why do mothers get so crazy judgmental regarding about each other’s parenting choices? [Salon]
  • Actress Angela Bassett will star as the first female NYC police commissioner in a new drama series on ABC called “One Police Plaza.” [Black Voices]
  • Meet Amiya Alexander, a 12-year-old who runs her own business, Amiya’s Mobile Dance Academy, out of a big, pink bus with the seats ripped out. Amiya started the company two years ago when she realized inner-city Detroit kids often couldn’t get access to dance lessons. A ballet barre inside the bus makes this dance school a mobile one! [ColorLines]
  • Actress Sandra Bernhard had some harsh words for Sarah Palin when The Onion magazine asked her about Palin calling herself a feminist. “That is the biggest joke on the face of the earth,” Bernhard said. “She always exploits what seems to be the right thing for her, whether it’s feminism or grizzly bears. She’s a crackpot. She doesn’t know what the hell she’s talking about.” Oof! She also said of her lesbian partner, “We’d love to get married so we can get the same tax breaks as the rest of the crackpots in this country.” [The AV Club]
  • Blogger Trish Bendix at lesbian ladyblog AfterEllen.com on the “If I Were a Boy” trend and why female singer are so keen to imagine themselves as the opposite gender. [AfterEllen.com]

INTERNATIONAL

  • Australia’s federal government has been backtracking on support for equal pay for women. [Sydney Morning Herald]
  • Over 5,000 Australian women will need their mammograms re-reviewed after several weeks of botched screenings. Specialists will re-check the screenings to ensure women weren’t given a false all-clear for breast cancer. [Sydney Morning Herald]
  • Immigrant women who work in various aspects of the American food industry face numerous risks, according to a study by the Southern Poverty Law Center that interviewed 150 immigrants from Mexico, Guatemala, and other Latin American countries. Women described earning below minimum wage, sexual abuse by supervisors, and exposure to harmful pesticides. [CNN]
  • Eleven Mexican-born women from El Paso, Texas, have ended their hunger strike in front of the White House. For nine days, the women have been striking to encourage the American government to increase development funding to the border areas, rather than just border security. [Latin American Herald Tribune]
  • The family of Asia Bibi, 45, a Christian woman in Pakistan, is still waiting to see if she will be executed for blasphemy after she dipped her cup into a bucket of drinking water used by her Muslim co-workers. [CNN]
  • Does it really matter how much Pride and Prejudice author Jane Austen was edited by a male editor? [NPR]

Image via BBC.co.uk

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