Tag Archives | Feminism

Slutty Feminist = Determining One’s Own Sexuality

Natalie Solidarity writes at Diatribe Media:

SlutWalk centers on empowerment of women to own their sexuality, to reconstruct or destroy traditional gender roles in which women who enjoy sex are criminalized as “sluts” and even worse, asking for rape.

“We are tired of being oppressed by slut-shaming; of being judged by our sexuality and feeling unsafe as a result. Being in charge of our sexual lives should not mean that we are opening ourselves to an expectation of violence, regardless if we participate in sex for pleasure or work. No one should equate enjoying sex with attracting sexual assault [as Toronto Police have in 2011],” (via SlutWalk Toronto)

SlutWalk stomps past raising awareness to cast off the shackles of accepted misogyny, normalized patriarchy and rape culture. Feminists (whose ranks include men, too!) are joining forces to deny their consent to this domination and seek to build a world without sexual double standards and victim blaming.

Read the rest
Continue Reading

Pioneering Radical Feminist Writer Shulamith Firestone Dies

The controversial and brilliant thinker predicted a future in which reproduction would be divorced from sex, with fetuses grown outside the body via technology, which she felt could end the oppression of women. The Villager says:

Shulamith Firestone, who shot to fame at age 25 with her best-selling book, “The Dialectic of Sex,” was found dead in her East Village apartment on Tuesday. She was 67. Suffering from mental illness, she had shut herself off from contact with other people…the cause of death is unclear at this point.

“The Dialectic of Sex” was a key feminist work that presaged today’s issues surrounding birth and science. “No one can understand how feminism has evolved without reading this radical, inflammatory, second-wave landmark,” said Naomi Wolf.

According to Amazon.com, “The book synthesizes the work of Freud, Marx, de Beauvoir and Engels to create a cogent argument for feminist revolution. Identifying women as a caste, she declares that they must seize the means of reproduction — for as long as women (and only women) are required to bear and rear children, they will be singled out as inferior.”

According to Wikipedia, “She advocated the use of cybernetics to carry out human reproduction in laboratories as well as the proliferation of contraception, abortion and state support for child-rearing; enabling [women] to escape their biologically determined positions in society.

Read the rest
Continue Reading

The Western Media Refuses To Respect Pussy Riot

Pussy Riot are some of the most powerfully effective artist-dissidents of our era, so why does our news depict them as punkette Manic Pixie little girls lost? Michael Shean deconstructs:

The members of Pussy Riot have done something remarkable in modern Russia, both in their actions before their arrest and in their statements during trial and conviction: they have straight up called President Putin on this political floor show, and declared bluntly and loudly that the Emperor has no clothes.

What I did not expect was for the complete and utter marginalization of the three performers by the Western media. Perhaps it is naive of me to think that at least some major news outlets west of Moscow would try and handle the situation in a mature and factual manner, but from the very start these women have been pushed into the comfortable, sexualized box of the Manic Pixie Dream Girl.

Read the rest
Continue Reading

Jailed Russian Punk-Rockers ‘Pussy Riot’ Begin Hunger Strike

Игорь Мухин (CC)

Via Common Dreams:

Three members of Pussy Riot, the Russian feminist punk-rock band, began a hunger strike Wednesday after a Moscow court suddenly told them they must prepare their defense for trial by Monday.

Maria Alyokhina, Yakaterina Samutsevich and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova were taken into custody in March, after the group’s February performance of “Virgin Mary Put Putin Away,” an anti-Putin song, inside the Russian Orthodox Church’s main cathedral, asking the Virgin Mary to chase President Vladimir Putin out of power.

The three women were arrested over four months ago and have been held without bail on charges of criminal hooliganism  — which carry a possible seven-year prison sentence. Two other female members of the band have avoided arrest thus far.

“I announce a hunger strike because it is unlawful,” said Tolokonnikova, wearing a T-shirt with the famous slogan of the Spanish Civil War, “No pasaran!” (“They shall not pass”), emblazoned across it.

Read the rest
Continue Reading

The First Feminist Film

In the mood for a lost landmark? The Smiling Madame Beudet, from 1922, may be the prototype of feminist cinema. Directed by Germaine Dulac, the lone female figure among the notable French avant-garde filmmakers of the 1920s, it's an impressionistic, surrealist, silent tale of a woman's psychological imprisonment. Her primary source of release is playing her piano, to which her husband holds the keys. Futher explanation available at The House of Mirth and Movies:
Continue Reading

Can Feminists Be Good Mothers?

Via ScienceDaily:

What kind of mothers do feminists make? According to a new study by Miriam Liss and Mindy Erchull, from the University of Mary Washington in the US, feminist mothers endorse the importance of the time-intensive, hands-on parenting practices associated with attachment parenting — a child-centric parenting technique in which children’s needs are ideally met on the child’s schedule rather than the parent’s. Their work is published online in Springer’s journal Sex Roles.

Feminists are often portrayed in the media as anti-family and anti-motherhood and the stereotypical assumption that feminists are uninterested in caring for children has contributed to the backlash against the feminist movement.

Liss and Erchull looked at whether attachment parenting practices, specifically, are endorsed by feminist women to help sharpen the conversation about whether or not attachment parenting is actually an empowering or an oppressive way to parent. They were also interested in whether stereotypes about feminist parenting matched the reality…

Read more here.… Read the rest

Continue Reading

Study: People See Sexualized Images Of Women As Objects, Not People

adCritiques of popular media as “objectifying” women are dead on — both males and females have been found to  subconsciously process sexy women as being inanimate objects, yet recognize sexy men as human beings. Via Psychological Science:

Perfume ads, beer billboards, movie posters: everywhere you look, women’s sexualized bodies are on display. A new study published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science, finds that both men and women see images of sexy women’s bodies as objects, while they see sexy-looking men as people.

Psychological research has worked out that our brains see people and objects in different ways. For example, while we’re good at recognizing a whole face, just part of a face is a bit baffling. On the other hand, recognizing part of a chair is just as easy as recognizing a whole chair. One way that psychologists have found to test whether something is seen as an object is by turning it upside down.

Read the rest
Continue Reading

A Radical History Of Mothers’ Day

Julia Ward Howe

Julia Ward Howe

Here’s wishing all the disinfomoms in America (it’s not Mothers’ Day in most other countries) a happy day, but of course you’ll want to know the alternative scoop, provided by Laura Kacere for Nations of Change:

There’s a good number of us who question holidays like Mother’s Day in which you spend more time feeding money into a system that exploits our love for our mothers than actually celebrating them. It’s not unlike any other holiday in America in that its complete commercialization has stripped away so much of its genuine meaning, as well its history. Mother’s Day is unique in its completely radical and totally feminist history, as much as it has been forgotten.

Mother’s Day began in America in 1870 when Julia Ward Howe wrote the Mother’s Day Proclamation. Written in response to the American Civil War and the Franco-Prussian War, her proclamation called on women to use their position as mothers to influence society in fighting for an end to all wars.

Read the rest
Continue Reading

Can Porn Be Feminist?

Feminist PornMaura Kelly, reporting on the Feminist Porn awards, from the Daily Beast:

To kick off the annual Feminist Porn Awards on Wednesday night, adult filmmaker Buck Angel screened his documentary Sexing the Transman XXX to a cheering crowd at a University of Toronto lecture hall. In the movie, Angel talks to female-to-male transsexuals, like himself, about their sex-change experiences. Then he films them masturbating, with and without dildos.

Welcome to feminist pornography, a genre of sex films designed to appeal to people who feel put off by mainstream porn. In the world of feminist porn, women come in all shapes, sizes, and sexual orientations. The actresses don’t necessarily conform to the typical big-boobed, tiny-waisted ideal; some sport armpit hair. They look more like the average woman walking down the street or standing in line at Whole Foods than “porn stars.”

Angel’s documentary is one of 41 films from eight countries being celebrated at the annual awards event, which features several days of screenings and presentations, including an awards ceremony, held last night.

Read the rest
Continue Reading