Friday, January 26, 2007
Prize to the best pickup line.....
Thursday, January 25, 2007
Jennifer Fagen, an assistant professor in the department of sociology, social work and criminal justice at Lamar, said the videos take advantage of young women who already feel a need to fit in with sexual stereotypes. While she's not opposed to women being sexual subjects - that is, acting sexually on their own terms, with their own control - the "Girls Gone Wild" girls often are intoxicated, Fagen said, and that's unfair. "I think (series founder Francis is) taking advantage of young girls who do nothave the capacity to consent," she said.
I couldn't have said it better myself. Plus, I'm glad that area girls aren't as excited about the videos as mainstream media would allow you to think. Girls Gone Wild did make an appearance in Beaumont several years back, and girls were EXCITED about it. That's why I like hearing that not all the younger generation in Texas thinks this way.
I also like that Stanhope made himself look, well, not so bright:
Stanhope said he finds the videos exploitative but also said they feed on a society that already degrades women. He pointed to laws that prohibit women, but not men, from going shirtless, as restrictions that encourage women to feel shameful about their bodies."It was a lark," he said. "I just went out for a week's worth of nights and made fun of dumb chicks at last call."
I think Dougie here just wants to see some boobies. Good thing Beaumont just finished a Hooters eatery.
Wednesday, January 24, 2007
Tuesday, January 23, 2007
This is not the salon of Matt Lauer and Meredith Vieira, with
its intrusions of politics and war, but rather a romper room for the ceaselessly
jovial weatherman Al Roker, the peerlessly blow-dried correspondent Natalie
Morales, and Ann Curry, who shucks off the newsreader's role she inhabits
earlier in the show to help prepare easy meals.
If I become too engrossed in my own turmoil throughout this process, feel free to point out my narcissistic ways - or just send me a bottle of wine or some chocolate.
Monday, January 22, 2007
I know that sounds as if I make light of this topic. I don't. Read them. They're great, thought-provoking, and well written.
Wow. I didn't realize how difficult it would be to do this until I just faced the empty text box. Difficult because I was raised Catholic and until several years ago was anti-choice. In fact, I still don't like the idea of abortion. Several years ago on my college campus, however, there was a group of pro-lifers with enormous photos of aborted fetuses. I was nauseated and disgusted. More than that, though, I felt assaulted. Who were these people who came on campus, assaulting students with images meant to manipulate and incite people? I was mad, but more than that, it made me think about abortion.
In a perfect world, I guess, there would be no abortion. Women wouldn't have to worry about getting pregnant if they had no desire to be. Women wouldn't be raped or abused. Women wouldn't be treated differently at a job if they had a child. Men would also be responsible, physically and financially, for that child. Women would have a support system if they decided to be single mothers.
But we don't live in a perfect world. I can't say as to whether or not I'd ever have an abortion. I've never been pregnant.
But mostly, and to echo feministing.com because they put it so eloquently, I trust women. I trust myself to know whether or not I am making a good decision or a bad one. I trust the women I know to make the best decisions for themselves. I trust women. I trust that if a friend gets pregnant, it is her body, her choice, her decision to make. I trust that it may be an easy decision or a difficult one, but it is one that she alone can make.
Addendum: I never stated why I particularly am pro choice. I am pro choice because if I were pregnant, whether it be by a boyfriend, a one-night stand, a rapist - my life as I know it would end. And at 25, I don't know that I like this ending.
Thursday, January 18, 2007
Violence in women - Topic for today. I watched the CBS Evening News last night with Katie Couric, and she discussed the "disturbing trend" of girl fights. Girl fights have increased by 24% apparently since 1995, while boy fights have decreased by 18%. (Notice no exact numbers were given so the increase doesn't necessarily mean there are more girl fights than boy fights, simply that there are more girl fights than there used to be. Also notice, this does not include inter-gender violence.) Viewers were warned that there were going to be "upsetting" images flashed across the scene.
Note: I'm not attempting to discount the horrible fact that these girls are taping fights where one girl is targeted and beat up by multiple others and then posting these tapes on the internet. However, there was a discussion last week at feministing.com about how the media helps to propagate gender differences, and I think this is yet another way it is done.
Having said that, the author of the book See Jane Hit (Garbarino) appeared on the news, stating that for once, girls are realizing that they don't have to follow such gender-specific guidelines.
"It's very clear that girls are being told, 'Even good girls hit,'" GarbarinoGirls are no longer being told, "Nice girls don't hit." Part of me wonders if this trend is in response to that. These girls are growing up in a generation that is more aware that girls don't have to like pink and sit quietly in the background and let boys answer all the questions and get into the playground fights.
told CBS News. "It's not surprising that some of them are taking that to
Tuesday, January 16, 2007
Friday, January 12, 2007
Please, please sense the sarcasm, and don't send mean comments...
Last night, I finished an absolutely wonderful book: Melanie Rehak's Girl Sleuth: Nancy Drew and the Women Who Created Her.
I had picked it up when I was taking an independent study last year in Women's Lit. Of course, I was broke then and working feverishly to put out nearly 50 pages in research papers so I wasn't able to pick it up. But, now it's in paperback, and it's marvelous.
It's really a biography of the two women behind Nancy Drew, and it juxtaposes Nancy with her writers and the backstory of how it all got started. Harriet Stratemeyer Adams, daughter of the man who created the idea of Nancy because girls were less interested in "niceties and more about being brave and adventurous", picks up the business after her father's death and becomes instrumental in Nancy's success. Mildred Wirt, an intrepid young woman from Iowa, begins the stories and becomes Carolyn Keene, and the series became the most endearing and well-beloved in juvenile fiction. Rehak discusses the reasons behind this as well as the women themselves, who were much like independent Nancy Drew.
Rehak opens her book with the line, "Grab your magnifying glass, because this is a mystery story." I personally was transported back to the days when my mother would beg me not to read in the dark, as I could not put the book down. Rehak does a wonderful job in marrying history, non fiction, and bits and pieces from the actual novels to create a book that is extremely readable and enjoyable.
What's best - it points out what we as girls dreamt of: being independent, brave, and intriguing. As one critic put it, once the television version of Nancy tanked for slightly altering the characters: "You don't make a female character strong by playing her opposite a buffoon. You just make her strong..."
I think that may just be the best clue of all...
Wednesday, January 10, 2007
Having been the victim of - count it - more than one stalking episode, let's just say STOP IT. If I state that I am not interested, the phone calls need to stop (especially when I didn't give you the phone number in the first place). If a woman doesn't know who you are and you follow her, it's not ok. It's not healthy interest.
Healthy interest: speaking to a woman. Asking for her phone number (instead of finding it through alternative means or asking a friend). Introducing yourself. Knowing when to stop.
I think it's an interesting dichotomy that women are considered "crazy," "psychotic," and "deranged" so easily but men are "showing interest." Bull shit. It's scary, and it's wrong. And, as the chief of police in my city has told me, as he was part of the sex crimes division, this behavior typically escalates. In lesser instances, it causes women to screen each and every phone call. In other cases, it causes women to constantly check over their shoulders and walk to their vehicles with mace in hand. In sad and horrible instances, such as the linked article, it can end in murder.
Think about it the next time you dismiss stalking as "showing interest."
As the teacher of the class at World Gym says, "It's about doing something for yourself and feeling sexy," said Henson, who has taught the class about five months. "It's OK to move your body and have fun."
Ah, ok. And even some of the students have said that it has given them a better perspective on their own bodies, learning that regardless of looks, women can feel sexy, placing the emphasis internally instead of externally. I guess something that does that is pretty darn great.
I'm sure there are many opinions to the alternative, but in this era of self-loathing, the results of the class sound pretty good. Of course, I'm not sure that this is the way to go. Any takers?
Also, as an aside, feministe had a really great post and thread yesterday regarding self image. Since self image is something that I think both women and men are so screwed up about, it may interest you.
Tuesday, January 09, 2007
"Thought you guys might want to know about this since it probably will not be in the news.Yesterday (12/11/06) around 12:30 in the afternoon, a woman was found at the bottom of the Library's 3rd floor landing. I know this because a classmate of mine was the person to discover her. My classmate had been studying with a group in one of the rooms on that floor. Two adjacent rooms were occupied when this happened. Both rooms did note loud noises coming from the stairway but they said that it seemed to sound like people running up and down on the stairs. Both rooms assumed people from the opposite room were the culprits. Eventually, my classmate went the bathroom (as we know the stairway doors are located right next to the woman's restroom) and, looking through the staircase door window as she passed it, saw a purse lying on the ground. Upon further investigation she discovered the woman at the bottom of the steps.It looked as if she had fallen from the 3rd floor and landed between the 3rd and 2nd floor staircase, which later on proved to be false. She was unconscious when she was discovered. After a bit of time she gained consciousness momentarily and pronounced that she had been attacked. Her attacker had grabbed her from behind and dragged her to the 3rd floor landing and raped her. Once he was finished he then threw her down the stairs. She suffered a broken shoulder, arm, 5 broken ribs, and a concussion. It is suspected that the attacker was hidden on the stairs out of sight, as anyone who has taken the stairs knows that there is a space there that someone could easily hide in unnoticed.While the woman was receiving medical attention, students noticed a suspicious man lurking around the book stacks. Someone walked over and made eye contact with him and he quickly pulled his cap down over his eyes and headed to the elevator. The campus police were notified of this as the suspicious character seemed to get in line to check out a book. The police then said they would let him check out the book and get his name from the circulation desk. With one person in front of him, he suddenly walked out of line and exited the library and got away, unquestioned.I've been told that this is the third rape to occur in the Library staircase this year but it seems that these stories have been kept out of the media. I guess it would be bad PR."
I have since contacted all news outlets, searched websites and archives and been completely unable to find any information on this assault. I am currently on the phone with the Lamar University Police Department who confirms that there was an incident in the stairwell. Lieutenant Baddey (sp?) told me that a girl was in the stairwell on the fourth floor and felt someone touch her left shoulder but before she could turn to see, she fell down the stairs to the second floor. This differs quite a bit from the story I have heard thus far. However, I will continue to dig to find out the truth behind this incident.
On one hand, if the girl simply fell, I feel badly for her and hope she recovers. If, on the other hand, she was assaulted and raped and the university is covering it up for the sake of bad publicity, rest assured, I will cover it here.
In the meantime, if you have any actual information related to this event, please email me or leave a comment. Thanks.
Friday, January 05, 2007
Well, of course, I am. I'll have to read the book (I'll add it to the list of many) and then let you know what I think, but at the moment, I am reminded of two young boys rapidly shoving clothes and toys under the bed and in the closets and then pointing to their Crayon drawings on the walls in their bedroom.
My favorite Crayon is cerulean. I'm about to go to town on the walls of my cubicle as my desk is also a wreck, and I have not felt the least creative today...
Wednesday, January 03, 2007
They link to a book Wake Up, Little Susie by Rickie Solinger, which is now on my wish list as I am poor after Christmas. The book discusses reproduction and mental illness in women - which is exactly what my thesis is about. So read up, friends, it's good stuff and makes you think long and hard about the plight of women.
This, of course, leads me to an aside. The more vocal I have become in my beliefs lately, the more strange looks I get from family and friends. I understand what they're thinking - I am a twentysomething white woman. Do I really have it that bad? Yes and no. But in true feminist spirit, the more correct answer is - Yes, it is bad, and until all women have the privileges that I do - and more - I will continue to educate myself and others as much as possible. This isn't the Brangelina pact, 'I won't marry until everyone can marry' (although I like the idea, but just as all the other celebrity couples, they have been over-commercialized), but it is called solidarity. Solidarity - something I believe we are too much without these days.
So I apologize for the aside but not the meaning and sentiment behind it. Have a great day. And check out Pandagon.