ayjay + feminism   6

To Be or Not to Be a Role Model
As someone who has given more narrative talks than I would care to remember, as someone who I think would be regarded as a champion of women, I would say the best way to champion women is not to put expectations on any single woman that would not be expected of a man. I would remind readers that taking an active role in this sphere can sometimes feel overwhelming and exhausting, even if rewarding. I am happy to see a third woman win the Nobel Prize in Physics. I am happy that she should enjoy the rewards of that prize without being told she is letting the side down because she doesn’t immediately see the need to put herself into the media as a woman’s champion.
feminism  science 
11 weeks ago by ayjay
The Warlock Hunt - The American Interest
In recent weeks, I’ve acquired new powers. I have cast my mind over the ways I could use them. I could now, on a whim, destroy the career of an Oxford don who at a drunken Christmas party danced with me, grabbed a handful of my bum, and slurred, “I’ve been dying to do this to Berlinski all term!” That is precisely what happened. I am telling the truth. I will be believed—as I should be.

But here is the thing. I did not freeze, nor was I terrified. I was amused and flattered and thought little of it. I knew full well he’d been dying to do that. Our tutorials—which took place one-on-one, with no chaperones—were livelier intellectually for that sublimated undercurrent. He was an Oxford don and so had power over me, sensu stricto. I was a 20-year-old undergraduate. But I also had power over him—power sufficient to cause a venerable don to make a perfect fool of himself at a Christmas party. Unsurprisingly, I loved having that power. But now I have too much power. I have the power to destroy someone whose tutorials were invaluable to me and shaped my entire intellectual life much for the better. This is a power I do not want and should not have.
sexuality  politics  harassment  feminism 
december 2017 by ayjay
Living 'The Handmaid's Tale' — courtesy of the secular liberal elites of L.A.
Finally, the Handmaids. As in the fictional Gilead, real-life elite-class Wives have something of a fertility problem, although it’s related not to environmental degradation but delayed marriages and childbearing attempts of women who pursue high-power careers. Thanks to 30 years of advances in egg-transfer technology since Atwood published her novel, today’s gestational surrogates don’t have to get into embarrassing “threesome” sexual positions with the Commanders and their Wives in order to do their jobs. And they tend to be drawn not from the ranks of political dissidents, but from the financially strapped Econowife class (military bases are common surrogate-recruiting centers) who are willing to put up with a year’s worth of uncomfortable hormone treatments and possible pregnancy problems for the $40,000 or so that they receive.

Still, as in Gilead, there is definitely a class of female pariahs on whom the elites heap condescension, contempt and, when they can, punishment for holding views at variance with what the elites deem correct. They’re not called Handmaids, of course. They’re called Deplorables.
politics  feminism  from instapaper
may 2017 by ayjay
The future of the pro-life movement.
Women aren’t just leading the next generation of the pro-life movement—many of them are doing it using the language of feminism, which would have been anathema to the old guard of pro-life activists. If you believe, as sociologist Kristin Luker suggested in her influential 1984 book Abortion and the Politics of Motherhood, that opposing abortion is really just a stealthy way of controlling women, the notion of an anti-abortion feminism will sound either absurd or morally outrageous. But the idea that pro-lifers are simply out to oppress women was always an oversimplification, and it’s especially imprecise as a description of the next generation of activists.
feminism  life 
october 2016 by ayjay
Feminist Choices
What’s missing from the discussion is a recognition that the choices of feminist sex workers could, in fact, be immoral. By insisting that we respect and value all female choices, choice feminism creates a double-standard which trivializes women’s moral capacities and denies our agency the same kind of significance that we attach to that of men. Male choice remains subject to critique, and men are still expected to take responsibility for the social and political consequences of their actions; only women are exempt.

This attitude is profoundly demeaning to women. Generally we will only praise a person for doing something badly if we are impressed that they can do it at all. When a toddler draws his first recognizably humanoid squiggle, the adults present applaud as though it were the Mona Lisa. Choice feminism makes sense only if we honestly think that women, as a group, have such infantile decision-making skills that every time one of us makes a choice the rest have to gather round and pat her on the back.
ethics  feminism  from instapaper
october 2015 by ayjay
Dorothy Sayers on women and trousers
Dorothy Sayers on feminism, trousers, and braces (AKA “suspenders”):
feminism  clothing  from notes
august 2015 by ayjay

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