A very warm welcome to the Thirteenth Carnival of Feminists. I’d offer you refreshments and to take your coat but, er, that’s not exactly possible in cyberspace, so the carnival itself will have to do. I’m Chally, blogger here at Zero at the Bone, and I’m presenting you with all kinds of amazing feminist writing from around the blogosphere.
So let’s get to it!
Of course, many people wrote on the devastation in Haiti.
abby jean has posted lots and lots that you should read.
Atlasien has a pretty thorough rundown on The Dangerous Desire to Adopt Haitian Babies at Racialicious.
Roxanne Samer from Gender Across Borders posts Haiti & art therapy. ‘In both Haiti itself as well as with Haitians living outside the country, people are turning to creative expressivity to respond to the pain that they are feeling.’
There are some suggestions for helping in Christine C.’s Responding to the Needs of Women and Girls in Haiti at Our Bodies Our Blog. ‘Our Bodies Ourselves has compiled a list of organizations focused on addressing the health needs in Haiti, particularly the needs of women and girls, during and beyond the initial aid effort. Additional background articles and press releases are also included.
The Pursuit of Harpyness’ SarahMC writes In memoriam: Haitian women’s rights activists. Magalie Marcelin, Myriam Merlet and Anne Marie Coriolan all died in the earthquake.
Friday 22 January was the 37th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, a very important case in American reproductive rights history, and therefore Blog for Choice Day. The theme this year was ‘Trust Women’. Let’s take a look at some posts:
- Becky from Happy Bodies asks Is choice the right question? ‘Right now, I basically have the choice: if I need an abortion, I can afford one. It’s not often when my choice gets truly challenged in the debate about abortion.’
- From AngryBlackBitch aka Shark-fu: Blog for Choice – Not a plea or a request, but a demand…. ‘A bitch ain’t begging or asking for what is mine by law. [...] Trusting women means respecting women and respecting women means acknowledging all of our rights and acknowledging all that would threaten those in power.’
- Julia Kaye writes The Onion’s Abortion Satire Brings Tears to The Eyes at Womenstake.org. ‘If only it were just a joke.’ On abortion law in Oklahoma.
- Clarisse Thorn posts Our bodies, our choices: Beyond sexuality to selling organs and giving aid: ‘I’m more interested in talking about how being pro-choice, and the assertion that my body is absolutely my own to do with as I please, feeds into other issues — issues of sexuality, privilege, humanitarian aid, charity, other types of bodily integrity.’
- At Gender Across Borders, Carrie presents Depicting Choice: Pregnancy and Abortion in Film. ‘But abortion is simply not as popular a subject matter as pregnancy is in mainstream U.S. film. Moreover, it’s rare for a film about pregnancy to even address the option of abortion.’
- Amanda ReCupido has a whole list of reasons as to Why I am Pro-Choice posted at The Undomestic Goddess.
As ever, there are a number of posts on violence against women.
Over at Womanist Musings we have A Pelvic Exam Without Permission is Rape by Renee (womanist): ‘medical students are performing pelvic exams on unconscious women without consent. It seems that this is a standard procedure in Canada. [...] They are not really worried about causing pain or embarrassment, this is about who has access to female bodies.’
The Girl On The Subway was posted at this ain’t livin’ by meloukhia, who spreads the word on tumblr’s horrible public transport harassment “joke” and their subsequent silencing of responses. ‘The Tumblr Staff just did what the rest of society does; it told us that our words were not fit for public consumption, because they challenged something.’
There was a focus on reproductive coercion, too:
- Cara of The Curvature writes Reproductive Coercion is Sexual Violence. ‘And we’re not going to be effectively able to deal with this widespread problem until we’re able to recognize it as what it is: not a choice, not a personal problem, not a relationship “issue,” but as sexual violence, as intimate partner violence, and as abuse.’ It’s really quite an excellent post.
- In Reproductive Coercion posted at Shakesville, Melissa McEwan reports on the same story and adds several points of note.
- Meanwhile, at Our Bodies Our Blog, Rachel takes a look at the stats: Partner Abuse and Unintended Pregnancy in Young Women.
Here are post posts on teaching and learning, in the classroom and out.
Emily discusses ‘moving towards a culturally relevant classroom’ in Social Contexts of Education Series: Race in the classroom at lovely new blog Equality 101.
At Cold SnapDragon, Nandita writes on life lessons and ways of framing What Disability Teaches.
Next up, Female Students, Female Teachers, and Math Anxiety ? Oh My! Ashley from Small Strokes thinks that ‘in order to figure out what really changes girls’ attitudes toward math and science, we need to conduct a study that is fair to the teachers and the students, and that requires a study that includes teachers and students of all genders.’
There is a lot of lovely stuff on parenting.
Spilt Milk writes about spending Quantity time with one’s children and ‘fostering closeness, trust and yes, reliance, through essential care’.
Veronica of Viva La Feminista writes on imparting knowledge with nuance and on imperfect human beings. The post is called Feminist Parenting: Teaching History.
Have a read of The public policing of pregnancy over at brand new blog Fertile Feminism. ‘Making sure that we are afforded the same rights to make decisions regarding our health, safety and care as anyone else (even if an onlooker or doctor doesn’t approve) is absolutely imperative in ensuring we have full human rights, let alone “women’s rights.”‘
Despite ban, shackling of incarcerated women continues in Pennsylvania. Miriam of Radical Doula highlights an article on this appalling practice, attempts at reform and the doulas helping these women out.
At The F-Word, Laura Woodhouse reports on the case of Kerry Robertson and her son Ben in Baby taken from mother with learning difficulties. ‘Everyone has the right to a family life, and social services should be enabling the family to stay together (if they actually even need any support), not ripping them apart. ‘
Now to Arwyn’s Whose child is this? Kyriarchy, privilege, and motherhood posted at Raising My Boychick: ‘if you are not the “right” kind of woman, motherhood further invites society to comment on and assert control over your life, if society allows you motherhood at all.’ On the impossibility of mothering the right way – or being the right sort of mother. ‘We cannot, we simply cannot extrapolate from a singular, privileged experience of motherhood/childfree womanhood to the entire population of women and think it relevant or right.’
Let’s contemplate our bodies.
In Name and Shame at Something More Than Sides, PharaohKatt tells us about a couple of incidents of body shaming and gender presentation policing… at the childcare centre at which she works.
‘It is easier for onlookers to avert their eyes than it is for a woman to dress in a way that makes her feel uncomfortable.’ Exactly so. Covering up is a feminist issue by PhD in Parenting.
From Tami we have Dispatches from Nappyville: The sensual pleasures of textured tresses at her blog What Tami Said. ‘From my own experience, and the stories of other women, I’ve learned that a curious thing often happens when a black woman “goes natural.”‘
Chally from Zero at the Bone (why, hello, it is I!) goes into The Privileges and Pains of Passing. It’s the third post in the Invisible Identities series. ‘At the end of all this anxiety and modification and thought and care, one thing remains constant: it’s the perceptions and actions of people in dominant bodies that count.’
shinynewcoin is thinking on and the conversations we don’t have in on taxes and toilets at a shiny new coin. ‘Why do I have a basic desire to control my body, rather than let it do what it needs to get by, to be healthy? Maybe what I’m trying to say is something along the lines of you can tell who’s in charge of the world by which bodies are taught to feel shame. ‘”
volcanista writes Of boobages posted at Volcanista: a magmalicious blog, which is, well, exactly what it says on the tin.
And, of course, we must have a hairy-legged feminist post! Here’s PhDork with Wave Your Legs in the Air If You Got Hair posted at The Pursuit of Harpyness.
Now to talk about what we’ll have to term unpopular culture.
As caitlinate of The Dawn Chorus reports, The Australian Office of Film and Literature Classification is refusing classification for films featuring female ejaculation. Apparently Female Ejaculation Doesn’t Exist. ‘It’s not only that female ejaculation has been rendered non-existent by the OFLC that bothers me – it’s the way it becomes condemned by default. Male ejaculation = awesome, female ejaculation = freaky, non existent, fetish.’
‘While there are a fair amount of pilots about women, the story here is the lack of women who are writing and creating the shows.’ At Women & Hollywood, Melissa Silverstein asks What is This 1950? Women Are Missing as TV Creators.
On to women’s paid work.
Sady has a great rant about gender and work and recognition at Feministe in The Hangover That Never Ends: What I Learned From the Golden Globes. ‘If you’ve ever heard that old second-wave saw about how women have to be twice as good and work twice as hard as men to get the same or fewer rewards, and have wanted to verify it for your very own self, I submit to you that you can just re-watch the last half-hour of the Golden Globes.’
Posting at The F Word, Amica Lane discusses The professional masquerade of sexist workplace dress codes. ‘Over the centuries of wearing garments; the threads began to integrate into our skin, especially for women, and became a mask; a way of extroverting our inner selves to the world through signified implications. At some point in our history, image became a fundamental essence of our identity. [...] Whilst the archaic practice of making a triviality (such as makeup and wardrobe) a serious job requirement, larger issues such as the wage gap and promotions will continue to suffer as a result.’
We could all do with some mansplainin’. What, you mean, we could do without? Pipe down, little lady!
- Zuska started it off: You May Be A Mansplainer If… posted at Thus Spake Zuska.
- SKM carried it forward: It Looks Like We’re Going to Have a Mansplainer Thread After All posted at Shakesville.
- Jo Tamar has a nasty story to tell in Talking about mansplaining… posted at Wallaby.
- Karen Healey, who popularised the term: Mansplaining Redux posted at Attention Rebellious Jezebels.
Cheryl Morgan has Hugo Voting on the Cheap over at Feminist SF – The Blog!. It’s a how-to guide to getting more women nominated for the Hugo science fiction awards.
Elizabeth Kate Switaj writes Are women writers now sexless? at Daughter of the Ring of Fire, a response to an opinion piece on the nature of women’s writing; on bodies and change and difference.
Geek Feminism Blog’s Skud has an introduction to the current fannish conversation around privilege and oppression as they relate to slash fiction. On LambdaFail, women writing m/m erotica, and the queerness and/or misogyny of slash fandom.
Kelly Diels of Cleavage considers that the blogging for money game seems a ballsy one, to me. ‘this linear, solution-hunting model and attendant blog-writing genre just feels very male to me’.
The world is not kind to trans people and the following are just two ways how.
Oh no, trans people have need of bathrooms, whatever will Michigan do? Lisa Harney posts Paul Scott Targets Trans People In Race for Secretary of State at Questioning Transphobia. ‘This is a deliberate attack on trans people – a deliberate instrumentalizing of trans people as threats that must be controlled in order for Paul Scott to win votes and energize his base.’
Helen has been posting about violence against trans women in Turkey for some time. Her latest post on the subject at bird of paradox is Turkey: cis man sentenced to life imprisonment for deliberate homicide and aggravated looting. Previous posts are linked at the bottom.
Let’s explore women’s lives.
fbomb’s Julie Z presents An Interview with Sara K. Gould of the Ms. Foundation, who works on all sorts of projects around economic justice for women. It’s an excellent interview, including discussion about the intersections of race, gender and class across generations.
Next up, at elle, phd we have The Susan B. Anthony Bench in which elle and her lunch companion discuss systemic oppression. ‘She calls it her Susan B. Anthony bench, because shortly thereafter, she became involved in the feminist movement. That is what gave her the words to name the oppression and discrimination she’d seen.’
meganwegan takes a look at the extraordinary life of journalist Dora Jane Hamblin in What would Dora Do? at Craft is the New Black.
Defying categorisation, because boxes are the tool of the patriarchy!! Ahem.
‘This is the story of a little girl who tried to be like everyone else.’ T. R Xands at Adventures of the TV Addict, the Wannabe Writer, and the Should-Be Famous writes on racism, the standards we hold each other to and policing behaviour. Give Uppity bitch a read.
Eugenia has a really good post on the importance of continuing women’s activism in Bolivia. ‘In other words, “just uttering that women are involved in everything does not give us access.”’ Here’s Hagamos un cambio, y no sólo desde arriba posted at Eugenia de Altura.
C.L. Minou writes The Secret Lives of Married Men – Now With Bingo Cards at Tiger Beatdown in response to, well, ‘an astonishing tour de force of just about every half-assed cliche in the whole wide world of gender-essentialism, and passive sexism’.
K reviews a book by Dr. Leonore Tiefer in Let’s read books: Sex is not a Natural Act and Other Essays over at Feminists with Female Sexual Dysfunction.
Jill of Feministe topples over the idea of those feminist marriage-ruiners in Feminism: Great for Marriage. ‘Feminists have shifted the focus of marriage away from an economic necessity and towards a truly fulfilling partnership.’
Presenting Colleen Hodgetts’ Feminism & Food at Gender Across Borders, a glance into how the politics of food may fit with feminism as well as thoughtfulness concerning intersectional feminism more generally.
femspotter warns us of the dangers of hazing in Bleeding to get in at her blog The Fem Spot. There’s a particular focus on the harm young women do to each other.
At Like a Whisper, prof susurro writes a Want Ad For Feminist Revolution Pt. I. Just read it. ‘What I want is a feminism that fights for all women equally and takes accountability seriously across difference but also within a single group. And I want feminism to be a place where marginalized women don’t have to beg privileged women to see their humanity so they can eat, work, and/or live. I want every woman who has ever felt uncomfortable around other women to check herself first and not start victim-blaming, and every woman who has ever been victimized by systems of oppression to be able to walk through the world knowing that day is ending and the only burden she has to carry is the burden of doing the right thing & being self-reflexive about her own actions. They must let go of their bigotry and privilege evasiveness and we must heal from the pain they have inflicted so that all of us can do the work at hand.’
That concludes the Thirteenth Carnival of Feminists. Please consider hosting a future edition of this carnival. It’s a bunch of fun and you get to sort through some amazing writing! Thank you very much for writing, submitting and reading.