“Everyone is a complicated human being, and everyone is strong and weak and funny and scared, and we get to have the full range of emotion experienced with these women. I don’t want to make a centralizing comment about womanhood, because I think that’s problematic from a feminist perspective, but we just see these amazingly complicated women, who are strong, and vulnerable, and scared, and want to support each other at the end of the day.
I think about #YesAllWomen and the culture of misogyny that I believe we exist in that a lot of people don’t want to acknowledge. I’ve said loving transgender people is revolutionary, but I think loving women — really loving women, is revolutionary too, in a social context that is deeply misogynistic, deeply does not celebrate women. And we have pockets of that, we do have places where we celebrate women a lot, but I think the way the culture is aligned and structured is misogynistic. It just is. So it’s really great to have a show that creates spaces that really do celebrate women and our diversity, and not just one kind of woman. That’s revolutionary.”
Transgender actress Laverne Cox spoke to ELLE about the complexity of the characters on “Orange Is The New Black” and what an impact that can have on viewers by portraying women as complicated people. I love Cox’s willingness to talk about subjects like misogyny and feminism in interviews. It’s really refreshing to have an actress on a hot show in the public eye right now who talks about those topics with candor. [ELLE]
Amelia recently sent me a link to a Tumblr that will absolutely gut you. It’s called When Women Refuse and it collects news article about women who became victims of violence after they tried to leave a male partner or rejected sexual advances. We know that violence is fundamentally about control and therefore the most dangerous time during an abusive relationship is when a person tries to leave. All too often, children and other bystanders are injured or killed, too. The statistics about abusive relationships show that they are frighteningly common. According to the National Domestic Violence Hotline, one in four women and one in seven men over age 18 will be the victims of severe physical violence during their lifetime. Statistics also show that half of both men and women will experience “psychological aggression” by a partner during their lifetime. Stereotypes about what an “abused woman” is supposed to look like don’t do us any good because victims are all around us. They are our neighbors, our cousins, our sisters, our coworkers, our friends. Abusive relationships thrive in part because over time, the pattern of the abuse becomes normal. The abuse starts with smaller areas of control and then escalates until it becomes reality, which the person on the inside may not even see. But even if we have not been in a textbook abusive relationship per se, I’m sure many of us have had moments with partner or a friend where he or she did something that felt wrong.
In the spirit of #YesAllWomen — which is drawing attention to the physical and sexual violence all women experience — I want to share some warning signs that a partner or other person does not respect you, your boundaries, or your personal space. These are all anonymous, real world examples from me, my friends and co-workers. Keep reading »
During a chat with HuffPo Live on Thursday, comedian Chris D’Elia, who stars in some sure-to-be-canceled show called “Undateable,” decided to weigh in on the Twitter hashtag #YesAllWomen. To recap: the hashtag was launched following last Friday’s mass murder near UC Santa Barbara, which shooter Elliot Rodger justified in a misogyny-drenched, 137-page manifesto and in a YouTube video called “Elliot Rodger’s Retribution.” Twitter was flooded with stories from women of having their personhood violated by men assuming ownership, just as Rodger felt that women owed him sex, love, attention, and adoration, and intended on killing them for not delivering it. These stories illustrated what women fear even if “not all men” engage in those behaviors. While upsetting, it was inspiring to see women of all sorts come together in solidarity to share their stories. Chris D’Elia, it seems, wasn’t as impressed:
“I think that it’s terrible that a lot of these people tweeting about this—using this hashtag—I think that it’s a little bit shitty to what actually happened. I think that what happened was terrible, people died, and somebody’s like, ‘A guy looked at my butt, that’s not cool, #yesallwomen’? I think that that’s kind of rude to the people that lost their lives.”
Keep reading »