Posts Tagged: sexism
…there is a canonical body of literature in which women’s stories are taken away from them, in which all we get are men’s stories. And that these are sometimes not only books that don’t describe the world from a woman’s point of view, but inculcate denigration and degradation of women as cool things to do.
It’s December, that magical time of year when newspapers and websites across the globe unveil their “Best of the Year” lists. Valeria Luiselli has been all over them with her innovative novel The Story of my Teeth, and lucky for us, this week Guernica gifted us a new Luiselli short story, “Shakespeare, New Mexico,” translated by Christina MacSweeney....more
Domestic duties are regarded as feminine in popular culture. Karl Ove Knausgaard’s enormous three volume tome, My Struggle, is full of descriptions of domesticity, and he has been showered with highbrow literary praise for them. But would the same be true if he were a woman?...more
Call it “Goldfinching,” after Vanity Fair’s 2014 yes-but-is-it-art interrogation as to whether Donna Tartt’s Pulitzer prize-winning, mega-bestselling book The Goldfinch is or is not literature. It’s the process by which a popular and previously well-regarded novel and, more importantly, its readers, are taken to the woodshed, usually by a critic who won’t hesitate to congratulate himself on his courage, as if dismissing popular things that women like requires some special kind of bravery—as if it doesn’t happen all day, every day.
For Electric Literature, Sigal Samuel suggests that reading sexist male writes is “compulsory for women writers,” as sexist works can “give insight into the history and logic of sexism”:
If reading sexist male writers is recommended for women readers, it’s downright compulsory for women writers.
In a recent interview with the Guardian, Claire Boucher describes her song “California” as “kind of shitty.” Via her stage name, Grimes, Boucher has released an eclectic and not-at-all-“shitty” catalogue of hybrid dance pop that has seized the attention of critics and listeners internationally....more
The sound of “pobreza” (poverty) and “filia” (-phile) pushed together could almost sound poetic, if the word didn’t mean having a sexual affinity for poor, young women.
A pervasive, and frustrating, myth is that dancing pays enough for us to stop complaining—that we get paid enough to be cool with however we’re treated. But that’s not true.
Over at the Ploughshares blog, Cathe Shubert discusses the historic nature of sexism in the publishing industry, and urges her readers to keep searching for an early canon of women writers:
Despite the many gains we have made in including women in our understanding of the history of literature, many students graduate with the false understanding that women did not really write until the nineteenth century–that they just couldn’t.
Independent Irish publisher Tramp Press requests that writers submitting manuscripts list their influences. Co-founder Sarah Davis-Goff had a suspicion that she was only seeing male names among the influencers, so she tallied up the influences of 100 submitters. Only 33 percent of the listed influences were women writers....more
The message sent to women that what they are writing isn’t important or serious enough is not a new one. It is as old as literature itself. And its persistence has everything to do with how women’s literature is treated in college and university classrooms and, in turn, how it is treated in the literary world.
At Salon, Lydia Millet gets serious about sexism, climate change and extinction, and the literary establishment’s dismissal of funny books:
“Important” serious books often seem to be picked based on the simplicity and safety of their content as a barometer of upper-middle-class cultural preoccupation, and humor’s too complex and ambiguous to be a flagship like that.