Using Anne Garréta’s 1986 novel, Sphinx, as a springboard, Stephanie Hayes explores the superpowers of gender-blank characters for the Atlantic. Sphinx’s recent translator, Emma Ramadan, describes how what began as an Oulipan constraint to avoid gender became a freedom from preconceived notions of male and female, and sometimes, a guessing game....more
Posts Tagged: gender
An essay by Daniel Harris in the most recent issue of The Antioch Review has sparked a backlash from the transgender community, with many members of the trans community feeling Harris missed the point completely, and worse—wishes they would just accept themselves as they are, in their “true” gender....more
For Motherboard at VICE, John R. Platt examines the gender disparity in journalism sources and the consequences in his own work when addressing and correcting that disparity. Platt’s piece ran as part of Motherboard’s Silicon Divide series that looked at gender inequality in the tech industry....more
Emily Dickinson continues to appeal to literary critics fascinated by her poetry’s terse and alarming emotional breadth. Many biographies attribute her emotional poetry to a sense of agoraphobia, but at Lit Hub, Jerome Charyn makes the case for Emily Dickinson as a more complicated and clever character who was very aware of how the emotion in her poetry would be interpreted through the lens of gender....more
Over at The Toast, Naomi Gordon-Loebl recounts the particularly fraught experience of being gender-nonconforming while in the locker room:
My parents raised me to believe that my boy-girl self was beautiful and natural. I got a crewcut and began to wear men’s clothes when I was 15 years old.
In 1983 six Hollywood filmmakers sued Warner Brothers and Columbia Pictures for practices that discriminated against women. Their story was recently profiled in Pacific Standard by Rachel Syme and these six women, known as the Original Six, will be hosting an AMA on Reddit today from 1-3pm ET....more
I had considered envying men before—I pretend to envy things like their higher incidence of ungrounded confidence and monomania, but I don’t really envy those things, and I’m not sure I even believe in them…
In an excerpt published in the New Yorker from her forthcoming book, Rivka Galchen writes about her first experience of real gender envy....more
Susan Burton profiles Dana Spiotta for the New York Times. Burton praises Spiotta’s work for its “ambitious” subject matter that explores the way we are “shaped” by the material world. In addition, the article discusses how Spiotta’s work has been gendered, and “cited in discussions about whether culture properly values the work of female novelists.”...more
Man Booker prize-winner Marlon James was right: the people who work in publishing are overwhelmingly white and female. New data shows that publishing executives, editors, and the staff behind books are predominantly white women:
At the executive level, publishing is 86 percent white, 59 percent female, 89 percent “straight/heterosexual,” and 96 percent normatively-abled.
I think it would be a great time for men, basically, to go on vacation.
Eileen Myles is interviewed by the New York Times, touching on poetry’s place in politics, and men’s place in either: open femaleness, memorable lines, and the many acts available to us after our first—short and sweet from poetry’s best....more
Donna Drucker writes for Notches on the Dean of Women’s Office at Purdue University. The Dean of Women’s Office was the late 1960s predecessor to the university’s modern-day Dean of Students role. In her piece, Drucker looks at the period-specific complaints and concerns registered by female students, and how the office addressed a wide range of issues on sexuality during this time period....more
Slate’s Rebecca Onion and Andrew Kahn analyze the overwhelming maleness of both the subjects and authors of history books, discussing their findings with book publishers:
Our data set revealed some answers about the publishing of popular history that we expected: Authors are largely male, biographical subjects too; “uncle books” make up a third of the total titles published.
Jessa Crispin discusses discovering the darkly fascinating self portraits of gender-bending surrealist photographer Claude Cahun and the mystery in her life, in an excerpt from The Dead Ladies Project:
The Cahun version of Acker had the shaved head, but angled to look frail and sickly, near death, a pre-Holocaust vision of the Auschwitz survivor.
Allison J. Pugh writes for Aeon on the role of labor in defining American masculinity. After interviewing nearly a hundred subjects, Pugh looks at how work defines the self-worth of men, and how un/underemployed men try to redefine masculinity in light of this:
What does it mean to prize something—to understand it as a primary measure of what it means to live a life of value—when it is becoming scarcer?
Let me prove that I’m not a misandrist by starting [my book list] with Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged, because any book Paul Ryan loves that much bears some responsibility for the misery he’s dying to create.
Have you read Esquire’s list of “The 80 Best Books Every Man Should Read”?...more