Two women made history at the 2012 Olympics for being the first-ever female Saudi Arabians to compete in the Games.
But one of those young women, Wojdan Shakerkai, who competed in judo (and lost), has paid dearly for being a trailblazer: the 16-year-old girl has been lambasted as a “prostitute” by misogynists back home. Keep reading »
“Broad-shouldered, flat-chested women with small hips; [they are] totally indistinguishable from men. Their breasts – the symbol of womanhood, motherhood – flattened into stubs as they were seen as mere hindrances to speed. I am not even talking about female javelin throwers, shot-put athletes, weightlifters, wrestlers and boxers. Their appearance is just pathetic.”
You know how sometimes crusty old dudes say laughably sexist things? Like, things you can’t even waste the energy getting offended about because they’re so preposterous? Meet Turkish columnist Yuksel Aytut, who wrote a column called “Womanhood Is Dying At The Olympics.” Yes, seriously. Womanhood is dying. All those female athletes are running, swimming and kicking soccer balls when they should be back at home rubbing their husband’s feet. Such a shame!
Oof. Obviously this man has not clicked through a slideshow of women’s beach volleyball butts. [Wonkette; Daily Mail UK]
“You’re just jealous!”
It’s not just a playground taunt for 5th grade girls anymore. It’s also Fox News contributer Liz Trotta’s eye-roll-inducing comment on why female reporters — just female reporters, mind you, because a male reporter has never once written anything about the Romney family’s wealth, ever — have it out for Ann Romney. All reporters are Democrats, duh, or as Trotta calls them, “Barack Obama’s political operatives.” And they have their “knives out” for Ann Romney because they are “driven by envy … of a woman who managed to do exactly what their mothers told them, although they would never admit it: marry a good, preferably rich man; raise your children full time and dress like a lady.” Keep reading »
The death of Irish novelist Maeve Binchy earlier this week has inspired a lot of articles, most of them warm tributes to her kind heart, quick wit, and writing ability.
British novelist Amanda Craig took a different tack.
In a piece published today by The Telegraph, she wonders whether Binchy might have been a better writer if she had been a mother. The subtitle is even more blunt, asking: “Does a female novelist need to have experienced motherhood to truly understand human emotions?” Keep reading »
Today, The Washington Post ran a column praising 17-year-old Olympic gold medalist Missy Franklin as a tenacious athlete. In fact, you could describe columinist Sally Jenkins’ piece as gushing. So it’s unfortunate in an otherwise awe-filled piece that Jenkins’ made a poor choice of words (emphasis mine):
This was her first Olympic gold medal attempt in a grueling program of seven planned events — and on top of that, she had had to swim a semifinal heat in the 200 freestyle less than 15 minutes earlier. But with about 25 meters to go in the backstroke, a mean girl took possession of her.
Whoa, hold up. Why does winning have anything to do with being a “mean girl”? Keep reading »
“With ‘The Daily Show,’ I felt like [people criticizing her] were only satisfied when everyone fit into a certain box. “Pretty and stupid” — one box. “Smart and funny” — another box. I believe they fit into this other box, which is, ‘hates women who are pretty and smart and funny.’
The only thing I can do is look at the people who have supported me. Tina Fey is the one who recommended me to the creators of [Munn’s short-lived sitcom] ‘Perfect Couples’ on NBC, and she wasn’t thinking about my breasts. And Jon Stewart would not jeopardize his show to cast some girl based on her looks. I think a lot of women should realize that when we’re putting each other down, you’re putting the same glass ceiling over you that you are on me. The only difference is that I will find a way to go around that. I refuse to live in a world where somebody’s gonna tell me who I am.”
– Olivia Munn addresses that long-ago criticism of her appointment to “The Daily Show,” which rankled some ladybloggers, including me. At the time, what bothered me was that of all the funny women in all the land that Jon Stewart could have cast on his show, he chose a funny lady who was also young and beautiful who had also taken her clothes off a lot in magazines. It seemed … annoying. I don’t believe I personally was trying to put her in a box, just that I felt annoyed by how she wasn’t owning up to using her sexuality to get ahead — which is fine, just own up to it. In retrospect, it seems like criticizing her personally may have done more harm than good. She makes good points here and actually sounds pretty rad. So, I’m sorry, Olivia. (Not that you care what I think, but hey.) [NY Post]