I think I’m a decent aunt. Not so good at remembering birthdays, admittedly, but what I lack in presents-giving, I make up for in lots of facetime. We play all kinds of games — usually “doctor,” in which I pretend to have some terrible malady wrought by a zoo animal (“Help! A hippopotamus bit my leg off!”) and they wrap toilet paper (“bandages”) around me pretending to fix it. Either we do that, or we play Barbies.
Usually my nieces’ Barbie dolls are going to a ball to meet a prince. It doesn’t matter if she’s Color-Change Mermaid Barbie or I Can Be USA President Barbie. She is always going to a ball to meet a prince. Sometimes directly after the ball, she and the prince get married. So, last weekend when I was babysitting, I tried to set the tone for something different. Keep reading »
I don’t know if I’m the right kind of feminist.
Oh, my principles are in the right place -– birth control and abortions for those who want/need them; equal pay for equal work; full participation in government and society; equal funding for girls’ sports; the right to wear whatever the hell I want and not get chased down a street; and so on and so forth. But sometimes when I read articles by professional, ivory tower-approved feminists, I can’t understand what the hell is going on.
I’ll see an interesting headline over on one of the feminist-friendly websites, and I’ll click on through to expand my knowledge. And then I’ll come upon something like this:
The intersectionality of the diagonalism of the duality of the Hegelian manifesto advanced by Paglia shows evidence of unchecked cannibalistic governance that was meant to be unpacked by POC. Constructivism teaches us that inordinate amounts of identities are compromised by the culture of “being-ness” currently infecting conversations that ought to question assumptions of race, class, and woman-ness. We must disrupt notions of cis intertextuality.
OK obviously the paragraph above is total nonsense. But “nonsense” is exactly how some of these essays read to me. Keep reading »
As a feminist, kinky person and sex commentator, I am the target audience for Jillian Horowitz’s xoJane essay “I’m a Sex-Negative Feminist” — and that’s exactly the point. Part of the site’s “Unpopular Opinion” series, I can only surmise that the essay, like others before it, was written largely with the intention of riling up its supposed targets rather than fostering a nuanced debate.
I’d also quibble with her quickie history lesson—yes, sex-positive feminism in part emerged as a response to anti-porn feminist activism, but it also sprang from the anti-BDSM and anti-lesbian bent of much of mainstream 1970’s and ’80’s feminism. My understanding is that sex-positive feminism was about embracing feminist ideals and furthering sexual freedom—for everyone, not just women. Keep reading »
“It’s always just been in my nature—it’s just kind of my everyday. Sometimes I access it in a conscious way, but it wasn’t always the headline of stuff that I was doing. We just had Gloria Steinem do ASSSSCAT, which was so great. Kathleen Hanna came, and I’m just a huge Kathleen Hanna fan. She, for me, was closer in age and a practicing and working feminist, at the time, that I related to. When I was in my late twenties and thirties, there were these amazing female musicians, like PJ Harvey and Björk and Kim Gordon.… These musicians are all still around, but, I mean, they were the most popular musicians! Just constant, really interesting women; sex wasn’t their currency, but they were really sexy and sexual. I gave you a long-winded answer. [Laughs] So the answer is: Yes, I consider myself a feminist, and it informs my work only in that it’s just who I am, in the same way that I’m a woman, or I’m 5’2″ or whatever. I was lucky that I came through a system that had many people who did much more hard work and road-clearing before I got there.”
– Not that I had any doubts that Amy Poehler was a feminist, but I’m still glad to hear her say it. [Time Out New York]
Last week, Alex Salmond, First Minister of Scotland, announced that he will be sending a junior minister to the British Open, a prestigious golf tournament, instead of attending it himself. He’s an avid golfer and is not forgoing the event out of disinterest. Rather on a matter of principle: the club hosting the event does not admit women as members. In about a month, the tournament will be held at Muirfield, a privately-owend club that is run by the Honourable Company of Edinburgh Golfers, which only allows male members. Salmond feels the male-only membership rule of the club sends the message that women are “second-class citizens” and that Muirfield should have been made to change its membership rules before it was considered for the honor of hosting the tournament. Alas, discrimination against women in golf is nothing new. The Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Georgia, just admitted its first female members last year after a long, long time of feminists protesting this injustice. For some reason, golf clubs have gotten away with not admitting women for an unreasonable amount of time. What’s up with that?! [Telegraph UK] [Photo of a woman golfing via Shutterstock]