This week’s installment is a bit of a gender-fest, with sprinklings of fashion, creativity and popular culture for good measure.
If you read one thing this weekend, make it Ruth Fowler’s essay on LA’s body dysmorphia:
The saddest thing about living in LA is how quickly you become immune to the freakshow parading around Robertson, encapsulated on The Hills, immortalized in weekly glossies. I’ll defend it when I get back to the UK. “No, not everyone’s had plastic surgery,” “It’s really quite a normal place to live,” “of course people have a sense of humor,” “there are many angelenos who aren’t obsessed with fame.” But cliches become so for a reason, and after 24 hours back home, I realize that it is possible to have a conversation with someone whose face moves when you talk to them, and that this same conversation might exclude movies, celebrities, television, awards ceremonies, wealth or plastic surgery. And then you kind of think to yourself, ‘Oh fuck.’ (Huffington Post via Early Bird Catches The Worm)
Feminism in London hosted a postcard auction at the Aubin Gallery this week. Click here to check out some of the interesting and provocative images. (Amelia’s Magazine)
The Feminist Breeder (aka Gina Crosley, who incidentally played with both Veruca Salt and Courtney Love - drool) writes on the myth of the popular blogger:
[D]on’t assume that more “fans” or followers means they’ll all be adoring. The truth is, the more people who read you, the more bullshit you’re going to have to put up with – especially if you have any opinion on anything whatsoever. (The Feminist Breeder)
She’s right, by the way. As much as I would like more readers (wouldn’t every writer/blogger), I’m grateful that the ones I do have tend to be smart, respectful and more interested in discussing ideas in a positive way than attacking people.
Blue Milk wonders why mothers are tougher on their daughters than on their sons. (Blue Milk)
Rabbit White interviews asexual activist David Jay on asexual masculinity. (Rabbit White)
Jessica Valenti has written a moving post about giving birth to her daughter Layla just 29 weeks into her pregnancy:
Though I’m still mourning for a pregnancy cut short and longing for a birth experience that isn’t mired in urgency and fear, I learned to be humble about having good health. And while it breaks my heart to see Layla in the hospital, as she grows up Andrew and I will be able to tell her how strong she was despite her small size and early age.
This isn’t to say there’s a silver lining to all we’ve been through – life isn’t that fair. Layla had to experience suffering before she could even be held or comforted. I’ll never be able to have a natural birth, and given the increased risk that I could develop pre-eclampsia and/or HELLP again, it’s likely I won’t have any more children. (Jessica Valenti)
In the wake of Australia’s latest football scandal, Ben Pobjie presents a 7-step guide to not raping people:
When you meet a girl who wants to have sex with one of your friends, remember the golden rule: You Are A Different Person To Your Friends. Maybe this handy mnemonic can help: Yentl Acted As Ducks Probed Three Yucky Frenchmen. This will help you remember that a girl who wants to have sex with one person does not necessarily want to have sex with every person she meets. Confusing, I know; what can I say - political correctness, etc. (Ben Pobjie)
Hoyden About Town has a great post on addressing the “squishy bits” of intersectionality and privilege:
And those conversations that we have in the squishy bits — they are important conversations. They aren’t always safe conversations, and what makes them unsafe for some people and not others can’t be easily defined. The squishy bits are where we talk about differences between things like cultural appropriation and cultural integration, and why sometimes neither of those terms are appropriate. The squishy bits are where we talk about why something can be simultaneously empowering and damaging. The squishy bits are often uncomfortable. There are no rules for dealing with the squishy bits — not permanent ones, anyway. (Hoyden About Town)
Sister Wolf wonders if fashion bloggers’ influence is overrated. (For what it’s worth, I’ve bought a couple of items because bloggers I liked recommended them, including my Favourite Ever Swimsuit.)
Many fashion bloggers are stylish and level-headed. But I can’t imagine being influenced by any of them to buy the stuff they like or anything else. (Goddamnit, I’m mad!)
For the opinion writers/bloggers with less-than-friendly readers out there: this might cheer you up. (Meish dot org)
And The Awl advises you on how to get that bad job you really need. (The Awl)