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Some quick links to items worth your time:

Shira Tarrant writes for the new (and proving to be quite fabulous) Ms. Blog on the ongoing fuss about Hooking Up and asks the question:

Is casual sex all about fun and free will, or is hooking up linked to sexual assault and women’s objectification?

As one commenter pointed out, men are taught to expect sex to be for their own pleasure, short-changing the women–and their pleasure–in the relationship.

There is so much attention given to young women and the perceived physical and emotional perils of engaging in any kind of non-hetero-matrimonial-whatever sex. As far as I'm concerned, if even a fraction of the amount of copy and video generated on that the perils of female hook-ups were devoted to schooling guys, we’d be way ahead of the game.

Can you imagine how cool it would be if we could reinforce positive ideas about healthy, mutually pleasurable, consensual sexuality to young men through movies, articles, sex ed, peer conversations? Instead we just keep harassing the gals. Or as Shira puts in a later comment:

While there might be some problems for women (and men) in hooking up, there’s a lot to be said about exploring sexual boundaries and sexual pleasure, risks and all. I’d like to see sexism decreased (eradicated, really) but I don’t know why sexual exploration, hooking up, or consensual ethical sluttiness should have to go down the tubes, too. That puts women in a very problematic purity box.

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Lena Chen wants you all to know Why I’m Against Gay Marriage (And Marriage In General). In this call to arms, Lena makes the case that:

Marriage, because it relies on recognition from the government, is inherently not based on love, but rather, based on the interests of the state, which in turn, is very much invested in the procreative potential of its citizens. If marriage were really about love, then it would not come with benefits and incentives that induce people to marry even in absence of love. If marriage were really about love, it would not be an agreement mediated by law. If it were about love, there would be no history of parental vetoes, anti-miscegenation legislation, or queer discrimination.

A year or two ago I had a similarly dim view of the institution of marriage. But now that I'm a happily-married gal myself, the world looks a little changed. I would have never predicted this, but marriage does feel somehow different. And it's got nothing to do with the floor length gown or printed Save-the-Date cards Lena was so amusingly fantasizing about herself. What do you think?

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And on a lighter note (or not) the Comic Coverage blog has a great collection of comic book covers from the 60s and 70s that featured female superheroes. The covers were responding to changes in women's roles and status, but the blog points out that while they start at 'fighting females,' over time they devolved into symbols of 'scary feminists.' They write:

By this point, it’s obvious that sincere (yet tone-deaf) comic book creators weren’t so much promoting equal rights for women as they were selling the message that “feminists are scary”. Rather than coming across as role models, the feminism-tinged characters were more often than not brawling, bitter females bent on humiliating males.

In the “All-New! All-Now!” Green Lantern #82 (1971), writer Denny O’Neil draws subtle parallels between feminist activists and savage mythic females (such as Harpies, Amazons and Medusa). Supposedly, an older and wiser O’Neil was so embarrassed by this story, he requested that it not be reprinted in an early collection of his GL run (though it was later restored in subsequent collections).