Tag Archives: feminism

Nattering Social Justice Cook: This Is Not A Review

So I read a book recently and I loved some parts of it and other parts…not so much. And I’ve been thinking about it ever since because there was one part of it I just adored but I don’t feel like I could tell anyone to read the book without a big “hey and you should watch out for this” addendum. I’d bounced off a previous book by this author with what was supposed to be grimdark but had a big ol’ weirdly ungrimdark gendered cliché early on that made me think so hard about it that I couldn’t pay attention to the rest of the book.

I’ve talked before about reading when the protagonist is markedly not you, and how used to it women — and other members of the vast majority the mainstream media calls Other — become. And this was a good example of a very young, very male, very heterosexual book. Which God knows I’m not opposed to. I remain a huge fan of the Warren Murphy and Richard Sapir Destroyer series and Doc Savage was a big influence on me, growing up.

So why did this book hit me so hard in an unhappy place? Because it was so smart and funny and beautifully written and involved connected stories about a favorite city and magic, which are three of my favorite things. And because it had a chapter that was one of the best short stories about addiction that I’ve read, and that left me thinking about it in a way that will probably shape at least one future story.

And yet. And yet. And yet… Continue reading

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Playlist for Female Leaders

Women in leadership positions face a lot of unwonted and unwanted bullshit. Self care’s important, both physically and mentally. Here, for your weekend, is some music. This is some of the playlist I listen to when walking.
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Chan Culture and Good-Faith Arguments

Getting ready for the New Year.[/caption]I wrote a piece, #PurpleSF, about feminism and SF for Clarkesworld. It was in part stirred up by the convulsions of the Gamergate controversy, which has continued to provide plenty of food for thought (and probably will continue to do so).

One of the many interesting (and sometimes positive) things that’s come out of that controversy has been a lot of examinations of Internet culture and many of its subsets. Before last year, I had only the vaguest idea what “chan culture” would be, so I found this piece really fascinating, particularly because questions about anonymity are (imo) going to continue to rear their heads whenever they bump into notions of transparency in coming years.
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You Should Read This: Herland by Charlotte Perkins Gilman

Last week, I pointed to one of the foremothers of science fiction, Margaret Cavendish, the Duchess of Newcastle, and her work The Blazing World. Herland comes several centuries later (in fact, it’ll be exactly a century old in 2015) but it’s just as important a landmark in this often murky territory.
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Yes, Beyoncé Can Be A Feminist

So Beyonce appeared at the VMAs and called herself a feminist. More than that, she stood in front of an enormous glowing sign saying “Feminist” in an image that’s exploded across the Internet.

I think that’s pretty darn cool.
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You Should Read This: Woman and Nature by Susan Griffin

I found this book in grad school when I was first learning to look into metaphors to find out what they contained.

Who: Read this if you’re a woman, whether or not you call yourself a feminist. Read it if you’re a man trying to write realistic women, because the structures Griffin talks about are ones that affect all of this, but particularly women. Read it if you don’t mind some poetry mixed in with your thinking.
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Writing: Reading in Another Land

Recently — or perhaps not so recently — much has been made of women writing science fiction. Often it’s coupled with a complaint about “PC” behavior stifles creativity or how leftist writing “has no new ideas.”

Hmm. Speaking as an unabashed leftist and someone lacking a penis, which may bias me somewhat, in my experience the opposite is true. I find much more interesting stuff in those who are willing to question the status quo, rather than simply write fiction using the same old stories, but this time with lasers! or infinity drives! or whatever. As Patty Jansen put it recently in her blog post, “There are girl cooties on my spaceship — on women writing hard SF,” “There are many younger readers out there who do not want their SF with sauce of sexist golden age nostalgia.”
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The Pink Hair Manifesto

The first time I dyed it, I was about to head off to my first Wiscon – a large feminist science fiction convention held yearly in Madison, Wisconsin. As I’ve found the case at sf conventions since then, I wasn’t the only person there with an odd hair color; I glimpsed rainbows of pink, blue, and green. And I realized it was becoming. Complete strangers would lean over and whisper, “I like your hair,” including two flight attendants on the way home.
After the con the color faded, softer and softer, until finally, when I went to get a haircut, the hairdresser was cutting away dusty rose tips. I looked in the mirror and saw a middle-aged woman with a short, practical cut.
I bought a new kit on the way home and re-pinked my hair that afternoon.
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