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Responding to critiques of burlesque cheat sheet (crazy-making edition)

It’s no secret that I’m not a huge fan of burlesque. I think it’s a boring, overplayed example of what you might call neosexism or retro sexism —  meaning that the “vintage” veneer and claims of “subversion,” “irony,” or postfeminism are meant to disguise the fact that it’s just the same old sexism that’s been going on for centuries. When it comes to burlesque, and, for that matter, anything that looks like sexism (see: pole-dancing classes, American Apparel ads, and “feminist pornography“) but is billed as not-sexist-because-women-like-it, the most useful tests to apply are these: 1) Are dudes doing it? 2) Are dudes trying to explain to you that it’s actually feminist? If dudes aren’t doing it but are simultaneously trying to convince you that it’s liberating, empowering, or...
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Facts and science prove to be useful after all!

Generally when questioned about how sexism could POSSIBLY EXIST in this MODERN DAY AND AGE when ladies are allowed to wear PANTS and have abortions (MAYBE IF YOU’RE LUCKY) and HAVE SEX ALL THE TIME, LIKE, WHENEVER, I respond by saying that the thing about sexism today is that much of it is less overt than it perhaps once was. Less measurable. Things like objectification, the male gaze, compulsory sexuality, and silencing are not necessarily the kinds of things you can prove via statistics or math (also, my feelings towards math generally exist somewhere along the “I’m confused” to “fuck math” spectrum. I have a calculator in my phone that I use to figure out important things like how much to tip my hairdresser. AMIRIGHT LADIES?). But lo! A...
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Breaking! Slutwalk is about spectacle, individual empowerment, wearing sexy lingerie, says everyone with eyes and brains

I don’t know whether to laugh, cry, cheer, or drink a bottle of wine and have a very long nap, but this recent post on Ms. Magazine’s blog about Slutwalk LA almost left me speechless. I can’t tell if the author is just being honest, at long last, about the apolitical, selfish, pointlessness of Slutwalk or if she’s just completely clueless.* After all the talk about Slutwalk supposedly being ‘a parody’ or ‘ironic’ (NO, NO YOU GUYS. YOU JUST DON’T GET IT. WE’RE SLUTS! …get it?), this post actually threw me for a loop. So, this is the parody thing y’all were going on about, yeah? Dressed in bras and underwear, fishnets and the occasional lace-up platform boot, we all had, according to comedian Luce Tomlin-Brenner, an air of...
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30 things that will make you want to kill yourself whether or not you’re 30; courtesy of Glamour

HAY LADIES! Turning thirty? Time to crawl into a hole and die. That is, of course, unless you have a man, a sexy bra, and tons of cash. That’s right! Ever helpful, Glamour and Huffington Post have teamed up to squish women down, down, down just a little further and reinforce heterosexism and classism while they’re at it. Because what was popular and relevant fifteen years ago is important news today, Huffington Post has reprinted a list of thirty things that EVERY woman should have and know by the time they are thirty. The list was originally published by Glamour and apparently “became a popular chain letter” — because you know how popular is it for women to hate themselves! Not only will you never be good enough but...
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It's International Women's Day; are our foremothers rolling over in their graves?

It’s hard not to heave a big ol’ feminist sigh on International Women’s Day. But, in many ways, I think that’s just fine. International Women’s Day isn’t intended to be a celebration, from my perspective. Rather, it is a reminder. A reminder that we still need an International Women’s Day. Across the world women are fighting for their rights. They are fighting for equality, for workers’ rights, for reproductive rights, they are protesting poverty and raising awareness about violence against women. Strangely, many Westerners like to imagine that we inhabit an egalitarian society. I’m not sure where they’re looking, but from where I’m standing, we still have a lot of work to do. On Friday, Jarrah Hodge covered the Vancouver and District Labour Council’s annual International Women’s Day Dinner....
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The Trouble With Choosing Your Choice

I’ve re-posted my piece here, originally posted on Kickaction for their annual Blogging Carnival. Check it out – there are a lot of great blogs/bloggers participating. Within feminist or, what some might call ‘post-feminist’ discourse today, ‘choice’ is front and center – it makes up the framework within which so many debates begin and end. And indeed, ‘choice’ is often used as a way to end the conversation. “Well, it’s my choice.” or “No one was ‘forced’ they just ‘chose’ to take off their shirts.” or “These women aren’t victims, they have ‘choice.” are commonly thrown about as ways to defend women’s choices and actions as being representative of freedom and to present every female choice as, in fact, a feminist act. This kind of ‘anything-goes-so-long-as-we-call-it-a-choice’ discourse often, rather...
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