Late last year, Debbie, a woman in the male-dominated field of engineering, became frustrated with what she saw as the link between the gender disparity in her field and the toys children play with. Specifically, that toys which encourage inventiveness are typically marketed towards boys and therefore lead boys to become more interested in subjects like math, science and engineering as they grow up. So she decided to do something about it. She started a toy company called GoldieBlox, with the goal of encouraging girls to love engineering as much as she does. You can watch her introductory video here. But the next step is actually bringing these engineering toys for girls in stores nationwide, especially a major chain like Toys R Us. While the store has stocked some of GoldieBlox’s toys, it’s been in small quantities, dwarfed by the sea of Barbies around them. “We’ve been told that GoldieBlox can’t survive in mass stores next to Barbie,” the company writes on their YouTube page. “Convention says that engineering toys for girls are a “niche” for the affluent, and for the internet. Together, we must prove convention wrong.” You can help them do that in one small way — sharing this awesome video, featuring a bunch of adorable girls singing to the tune of Queen’s “We Are the Champions” about “disrupting the pink aisle” with your Facebook and Twitter followers. Want to do more? Check out more suggestions for how to help at the link! [YouTube via Upworthy]
Godohelp on DeviantArt has reimagined a number of Disney princesses if they were wearing neatly tailored versions of their male counterparts’ most iconic costumes. I’ve never seen so many pants on so many Disney princesses. Read more at The Mary Sue…
A new clothing line called Girls Will Be was inspired by a simple question frequently uttered by the founder’s 8-year-old daughter, Maya, when shopping for clothes: “Why do boys get all the cool stuff?” Thanks to her mom, Sharon Choksi, Maya and other girls now have a much wider range of cool stuff to choose from. Girls Will Be launched in July with a line of t-shirts that defy traditional rules that say all girls’ clothing must be pink, purple, glittery, and festooned with hearts, ribbons, and bows. Girls Will Be shirts feature bold colors and prints of universally beloved symbols like dogs, sharks, planes, baseballs, along with simple, non-gendered phrases like “Be awesome.” Keep reading »
The “burneshas” live in the mountain villages in the hinterland of Albania — they’re women who’ve lived their entire lives as men, forgoing sex in the process.
They’re also the subject of photographer Jill Peters’ collection, The Sworn Virgins of Albania. The women choose to live as men for a number of reasons, many having to do with the strict societal restrictions put on women in traditional Albanian culture. As Peters explains it: Keep reading »
According to a study published in the Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, in an analysis of literature published between 1960 and 2008, the use of first person singular pronouns (I, me) increased by a staggering 42 percent. An article published in The Atlantic Wire looks at this exceptional rise in first person pronouns and writer Eric Levenson theorizes that it may be attributed to the increase in women’s writing. Keep reading »
The majority of both men and women believe that men should be opening their wallets on dates, according to a new study. Most men and women presume that men should pay for most expenses, even after multiple dates, and in fact, a surprising number of guys feel guilty when a woman pays. Keep reading »
“So? What are you having?”
Throughout my pregnancy, that was the number one question I received, tied only with: “How are you feeling?” At first I was polite about it, telling folks that it was too early to tell, but that we weren’t finding out anyway until the birth. After I passed 20 weeks, I attempted to answer all the Nosy Nellies as diplomatically as I could. I said that we would be happy with either a boy or girl, as long as the baby was healthy. Yet as my belly expanded, my patience shrank and I found myself coming up with more creative ways to answer the increasingly frequent queries over “what” we were having. “Fingers crossed it’s not a kitten!” was one of my favorite go-to replies.
And, for those keeping track – no, we did not have a kitten, but rather a beautiful baby boy. Still, the questions kept coming. Since we didn’t know if we were having a boy or girl (and because, you know, colors are for everyone), my son wore a rainbow of onesies, which only seemed to confuse folks. Multiple times a day I would have people question why my son was wearing purple. Or pink. Or even yellow. I did not get the same stares or questions when he donned his blue, green or brown onesies. Our society, one that is heavily entrenched in traditional, stereotypical gender roles, seems to want to plug children into these boxes as quickly as possible — even before they’re born — and that can be both frustrating and confusing. Keep reading »
It’s safe to say that Netflix’s latest original series, “Orange is the New Black,” is nothing short of binge-worthy. I devoured the entire first season in under 96 hours (seriously). Groundbreaking on many levels, the show openly displays queer female sexuality and features a uniquely complex portrayal of a black transgender woman (played by the brilliant black trans actress Laverne Cox). What’s more, the vibrant cast of diverse characters offers viewers a rare exploration of what privilege is and how it works. Nowhere is that more apparent than in the show’s main character, Piper Chapman (Taylor Schilling), a perfect lesson in privilege.
I can’t stand Piper. I find her whiny, entitled, possessive, incredibly self-obsessed, an emblem of unchecked privilege. But I actually think that’s intentional; Piper would be the character we all root for, when in reality, she seems to be one of the least liked. As Salamishah Tillet noted over at The Nation, the main character of “Orange” probably had to be white and college-educated for the show (and memoir upon which it’s based) to get picked up, and this is a valid point. But with Piper, we’re also forced to come face to face with her privilege, and we can’t stand what we see. [Spoilers after the jump!] Keep reading »
Anthony Weiner’s communications director calling a former intern a “cunt,” “slutbag” and other slurs is just one aspect of the choppy waters surrounding the sex scandal-ridden NYC mayoral candidate’s sinking campaign. But of all the what-are-they-thinking? Weiner campaign moments in the past few weeks, it is the one that has stood out in my mind. Because when Barbara Morgan, the communications director, went off to a Talking Points Memo reporter about former intern Olivia Nuzzi, who dished secrets about the campaign in the New York Daily News, it wasn’t just Morgan’s overall frustration or unprofessionalism that was questionable. It was how she called another woman “cunt.”
That’s a word that I use myself, quite liberally in fact. Now I’m thinking maybe I shouldn’t anymore. Keep reading »
As told to Lauren Gitlin.
It was always kind of under the surface, this idea that I wasn’t quite comfortable with my body. I remember looking at this book my parents gave me when I was 8 years old and I saw drawings of what men’s bodies were like and what women’s bodies were like, and how bodies changed through puberty. And I remember identifying more with male bodies, like that was the kind of body I wanted. Keep reading »