Obvious Child is sweetness, swaddled in a dirty joke. It’s the delicate pastel world of Wes Anderson, where characters are imperfect but want to get better. Where every asshole, in the end, has a really big heart....more
Posts Tagged: feminism
The Other Side author Lacy M. Johnson talks about the experience of being kidnapped, overcoming trauma, and fighting the George Wills of the world....more
The overall theme of feminism, for me, is not about having it all. It’s about having what you want and being honest about who you are. It’s about respecting who you are and what you do....more
At the Los Angeles Review of Books, editor and founder of Bookslut.com Jessa Crispin writes on feminism in its contemporary incarnation by way of two recent critiques of 50 Shades of Grey. She draws a distinction between feminism (a discourse) and feminism (a table-turning form of social domination) wherein “The bullied become the bullies [and the] abused become the abusers.”
Any sort of societal critique is thrown at a patriarchal straw man, as if all we have to do is get 50 percent of Fortune 500 CEOs to be female and an equal number of female bylines at The New York Times to have a better world.
Sandwiched between fictions on one side and instructions on the other, a woman is often denied the breathing room necessary to find her individual sexuality. In a conversation at the Nervous Breakdown, Rumpus contributor Ashley Perez and author Cris Mazza discuss sexual pain (both mental and physical) and the damaging standards fabricated by literature and expected in life:
I want every woman who wrote [an unrealistic sex scene] to sit in a therapy group with me and describe her own sexual experience, so I can gauge these fictional ones.
The disparity in the number of male and female bylines might very well have something to do with the artwork featured on their books. Cover art informs readers of a book’s contents, and publishers certainly try to manipulate readers, as Eugenia Williamson explains at the Boston Globe:
Harbach’s all-text cover has a hand-drawn, cursive script (for ladies) on a navy blue background (for men).
The Believer blog has a great interview with avant-garde filmmaker Nina Menkes. Menkes provides some insight into her creative process, as well as her take on being a feminist filmmaker:
I am surely a feminist filmmaker, but not because I set out to become one, or am trying to make any kind of statement.
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie sits down for a discussion of her most recent novel, Americanah, interrogations of race, gendered expectations in the U.S., and the transformative power of hair....more
Writer and founder and director of New York’s Sackett Street Writer’s Workshop Julia Fierro talks about her debut novel, Cutting Teeth, reading with scrutiny, being able to edit your own work, and motherhood....more
Katja Jylkka, writing over at The Toast, looks at the working girl novels of Laura Jean Libbey—19th century love stories featuring “innocent,” “bewitching” heroines. Though these pretty young women were able to attract “the wolfish attention of every male in [their] vicinity” just like modern-day manic pixie dream girls, Libbey’s working girls differentiate themselves by exerting agency:
…the original Mary Sues tended to show young women and ethnic minorities in positions of leadership and power, where before they were relegated to minor roles.
Women’s work has always been awesome, just as the work written by people of color, minorities, and other classes of people who aren’t white men has been. The work of white men has been awesome, too, but it has benefitted from a system where their work has been assumed awesome, rather than graciously granted the chance to be awesome.
During the first meeting with the man who would become my cookbook editor, I said “I’m not going to write another sweet little book about pie.”...more
Back in college, Chelsey Clammer proclaimed herself an ecofeminist with an outbreak of bumper stickers on the back of her car: “Tree Hugging Dirt Worshiper,” “‘The Only Bush I Trust is My Own (and underneath that I wrote ‘and my girlfriend’s’),” and “a slew of…rainbow Ani Difranco stickers.”
These days, she’s more partial to Lil Wayne than the Lilith Fair, but she hasn’t given up her ecofeminist ideals, as she explains in an academically rigorous essay for the Nervous Breakdown:
“My anaconda don’t want none unless you’ve got buns, hun.” Mix-A-Lot views (a part of) himself as a snake—perhaps as being one with nature.
Although plenty of critics and academics have done a wonderful job reinterpreting what it means to be “the canon,” there are still many readers in the US who, consciously or subconsciously, believe that men have contributed most of what we know to be literature.
There’s a heated conversation about online feminism happening—where else?—online right now.
Ignited by a piece in the Nation about Internet toxicity as well as an ill-advised xoJane piece about white privilege in yoga class, the discussion is focusing on intersectionality in feminism, particularly as it regards race....more
Suzanne Koven sits down with the New Yorker‘s Rebecca Mead to discuss My Life in Middlemarch, the way a single great book can illuminate our lives over decades, and how our reading of that book changes as we grow older....more
“Sexuality is more than gay and straight, and probably even more than LGBTQIA. Comics are here to help.” So read the delightful subhed for Greg Baldino’s LARB review of two anthologies of comics about gender and sexuality.
The books are The Big Feminist But and Anything That Loves, and though he’s frustrated by certain limitations, he also finds much to praise, including a comic by our very own MariNaomi....more
As a little gay boy, I played with dolls. I told everybody that when I grew up, I wanted to be a rock star, but it was my dolls that did all the work....more
Briana Fasone reviews Debora L. Spar’s WONDER WOMEN today in The Rumpus Book Reviews....more
In 1975, Robert Altman’s Nashville hit the big screen and introduced American audiences to country and folk singer Ronee Blakley. Here, Blakley sits down for a chat about her Academy Award-nominated role, working with Altman, and her current stance as a feminist and activist....more
I was not heretofore aware feminists were disappointed in [Michelle] Obama and how she chooses to live her life. I was not aware that Obama was not an activist. Now I know.
For Salon, our essays editor Roxane Gay takes on a Politico piece lambasting Michelle Obama for not being feminist enough....more
Porn star, writer, performance artist, social worker, and activist Dylan Ryan sheds light on her positive experiences as a sex worker and advocates for the empowerment of women in the porn industry....more
In a nation as solipsistic as the US, we don’t hear much about politics in other countries. This is doubly true when it comes to woman-centered movements, and triply true when those movements are in Africa.
In an opinion piece for the Guardian, Minna Salami talks about feminist success stories the Western world has largely ignored:
What would have once sounded like a far-fetched feminist fantasy – namely women forming the majority of a parliament – is a reality in one country in the world: Rwanda.
Yesterday, Slate announced the death of the patriarchy at the age of several thousand years.
The Cut’s Kat Stoeffel has honored the dearly departed, which will be mourned by civilizations across the globe, by compiling a list of “39 Things We’ll Miss About Patriarchy, Which Is Dead.”
Some of the blessings we will now tragically be forced to live without: “Not having mandatory paid maternity leave,” “revenge porn,” and “that thing where dudes get an extra half of a seat on the subway for their balls.” Rest in peace....more