You know Avital Norman Nathman as the columnist behind Mommie Dearest, our feminist parenting column. But Avital is also the “mom” of her first book, The Good Mother Myth: Redefining Motherhood To Fit Reality.
The anthology explores the same ground she writes about here on The Frisky, like teen parents, postpartum depression, the changing face of the American family. Contributors included maternal health advocate/model Christy Turlington Burns, New York Times Motherlode blogger K.J. Dell’Antonia, Feministing co-founder Jessica Valenti, Manifesta co-author Jennifer Baumgardner, The Radical Housewife blogger Shannon Drury, and many others.
I’m not saying this just because Avital is one of our columnists — I genuinely loved The Good Mother Myth. It provoked me to think about feminism and motherhood in ways I hadn’t before and opened my eyes more to how gender identity, race and class alter the experience. I gave Avital a call over Skype to chat about her book, myths surrounding motherhood, and how to know when you’re ready to have kids. Our interview, after the jump: Keep reading »
Just in case you were under the assumption “we don’t need feminism anymore”: today brings us an analysis study by Media Matters For America about the demographics of the Sunday morning talk shows during 2013.
You’ll be shocked, shocked to know that white men are still the most common guests for seven of the shows studied. Keep reading »
When a woman attempts to find some semblance of “having it all,” she automatically becomes demonized. We can’t seem to rise up in the ranks — whether it’s in the corporate world or in politics — without our personal lives, particularly our mothering skills, being called into question.
The latest female politician in the hot seat is Texas State Senator Wendy Davis, who is running for governor on the Democratic ticket. She has recently been skewered (again) for having been both a young mother and a single mother. The focus circumventing her actual politics (like her support for women’s reproductive rights) and instead revolve around how she is as a mother. A reporter for Fusion even asked Davis to respond to a blog post by Sarah Palin’s daughter Bristol Palin — seriously, her — that called Davis a woman “whose ambition and ego were so big she couldn’t have both a career and kids at the same time.” Both Jessica Luther and Carolyn Edgar wrote insightful pieces this week explaining why these allegations are egregious, erroneous, and just plain clueless.
I could spend hours picking apart what is wrong about these attacks. Instead, I’d like to note that we hardly ever see male politicians skewered for their parenting. We look past that aspect of their personal lives — for the most part, barring a mistress or financial scandal — and focus on their politics. A male politician who is also a father gets to be, first and foremost, a male politician. But a female politician who is also a mother? It’s completely different. Keep reading »
Many Frisky readers are too young to remember the 1991 Supreme Court confirmation hearing of Clarence Thomas, then a federal circuit judge. One name you might recall is Anita Hill. She was the Black woman who came forward to publicly testify that Thomas, her boss at the Department of Education and the EEOC, had sexually harassed her in a gross, relentless manner. The accusations against Thomas were a powderkeg, taking on a life of its own and igniting racial, sexual and political tensions. Anita Hill herself became the one put on trial in the court of public opinion. For a lot of women, how her behavior was picked apart and the violent threats she endured were a chilling reminder of what could happen to any woman who speaks out against sexual harassment at the hands of powerful men. (Thomas was confirmed and remains on the Supreme Court to this day.) “ANITA” looks like an absolutely gripping documentary and a must-see for all working women. It will be released across America in March 2014. [YouTube]
Any “Girls” fan worth her battery-operated boyfriend knows that Jemima Kirke, who plays Jessa, is first-and-foremost an artist. In this new short film presented by the Tate galleries and Le Méridien hotels, Jemima takes us back through Western civilization’s long history of ignoring female artists. (Obviously such a conversation could not exist without the feminist activist group The Guerrilla Girls, who are front and center in the short film!) “There were always women who were artists, but men who wrote the history books,” says Jemima. “And somehow, they forgot to mention them.” I do recommend you watch — it’s a must see for any feminist or art history buff. [Unlock Art]
“If the Democrats want to insult the women of America by making them believe that they are helpless without Uncle Sugar coming in and providing for them a prescription each month for birth control because they cannot control their libido or their reproductive system without the help of government then so be it! Let us take that discussion all across America because women are far more than the Democrats have played them to be … [Democrats] think that women are nothing more than helpless and hopeless creatures whose only goal in life is to have the government provide for them birth control medication.”
This is former Republican Governor Mike Huckabee of Arkansas at the Republican National Committee’s winter meeting, finding new and creative ways to insult women. Uncle Sam as sugar daddy? Women who use birth control can’t keep their legs together? What about women impregnated by rape***? I guess us ladies should be controlling our reproductive systems with our God-loving minds and the power of prayer, not with contraception and medicine and SCIENCE. Just keep talking, old white Republican men! Keep talking all the way up until the 2016 election. (***They’re probably sluts who were asking for it.) [Talking Points Memo]
On Monday, 19-year-old Eugenie Bouchard of Montreal became the first Canadian tennis player in history to reach a Grand Slam semifinal. That’s pretty cool, right? But what inquiring minds really want to know is what celebrity this teenager would like to date. Keep reading »
The 2014 Winter Olympics will be the first time ever that women’s ski jumping will be a sport. Previously, women were only allowed to test the courses for the men. The International Olympic Committee has long said women were excluded from competition because the category does not have enough elite female competitors, a charge actual women ski jumpers disputed. So it is with great “Ugh”-ing and eyerolling that I point out the actual fucked-up, sexist, medically inaccurate belief that was (not officially, but still) holding women back: ski jumping is bad for the uterus. Keep reading »