Posts tagged feminism

africashowboy:

To my mother, a photo is not a photo unless it’s printed. She doesn’t understand how I can be so famous when I hardly print my pictures.
As a self-declared African male feminist, I will be celebrating some phenomenal women I have met across the continent on BBC, and I do hope to start with this amazing woman.
Photo by Nana Kofi Acquah @africashowboy (at Acquah’s Residence, Kokrobite)

africashowboy:

To my mother, a photo is not a photo unless it’s printed. She doesn’t understand how I can be so famous when I hardly print my pictures.

As a self-declared African male feminist, I will be celebrating some phenomenal women I have met across the continent on BBC, and I do hope to start with this amazing woman.

Photo by Nana Kofi Acquah @africashowboy (at Acquah’s Residence, Kokrobite)

81 notes 

Raising Awareness: Male Entitlement

I spent almost 10 hours on trains on Tuesday. I am adverse to train travel after commuting from Leeds to Manchester for 9 months in 2010/2011 because someone man always touched me. I was outspoken to my Uni colleagues, many of which responded: ‘This never happens to me; are you sure?’ Reflected in ‘10 common comments on feminist blogposts - and my responses' on the Guardian today:

You can keep trying to suggest the problem isn’t really there because you haven’t seen it, but there’s a pesky amount of evidence to the contrary. Wouldn’t it be easier just to believe us?

I was, again, outspoken about the touching and harassment I experienced on Tuesday to a female colleague, someone I consider to be a feminist. She responded by suggesting there’s just ‘something about [me]’ that attracts creepsters, maybe pheromones… As I walked home, I considered this. Maybe, I exude vulnerability. Maybe creepsters have an innate sense for humans who have been harassed, abused, and raped and find it convenient to continue the cycles of gender-based abuse suffered by ‘vulnerable’ people. 

I was victim-blaming myself… and so had my feminist colleague. The sheer frequency with which these incidences occur to me must mean it’s something about ME, not society, that sees me continually enduring this abuse. I’m (often) blonde or have brightly coloured hair; I have an arm of tattoos; I make eye contact with other humans… but none of this translates that I deserve to be harassed, abused, or raped. It never has. Rather more so, the issue is reflected in a quote from dapperandspiffing:

“Certainly there’s something wretched and hateful about gentlemen scrutinizing and inspecting women. Their eyes stroll boldly and disrespectfully about the peripheries of the female person, thereby performing something neither wise nor beneficial but rather destructive, for there’s no love in it… .”

Rober Walser, The Robber (1925) (translation by Susan Bernofsky, 2000)

And today we have the reaction to Cee-Lo Green’s comment on what constitutes rape. I was date-raped when I was 17. I collapsed, and my ‘brother’s’ army mate began to rape me before the drug afforded me the luxury of unconsciousness. So, Cee-Lo, does that count as rape?

The point is, harassment, abuse, or rape exist whether society, colleagues, or Cee-Lo acknowledge it. They exist, and they affect us like the weight of a dorm mattress whether our perpetrators intended it as harassment, abuse, or rape (H/T: jessicavalenti). The men who touch me on (or off) the train, who harass/stalk me in public/private, who rape me aren’t giving me a compliment; they aren’t just ‘being boys’; they are expressing what they perceive as their right over my existence. Which brings me back around to (part of) a gif set ceborgia reblogged:

This post is to increase awareness that the problem of gender-based abuse is a societal problem that stems from the sense of entitlement people, and particularly, men, feel towards their world. 

8 notes 

There’s some pretty depressing shit on the Guardian today if you’re a feminist

Today, being Thursday, 28 August 2014.

BUT!

I’ve got something to cheer all the feminists up.

All FIVE Manchester Politics Senior Teaching Assistants for the entire ACADEMIC YEAR are female … and feminists.

And that’s pretty damn epic. Let’s celebrate!

3 notes 

I’m appreciative that young men [like the ones who created the “anti-rape” nail polish] want to curb sexual assault, but anything that puts the onus on women to “discreetly” keep from being raped misses the point. We should be trying to stop rape, not just individually avoid it.

If it were truly that simple, previous iterations of this same concept would have worked. Remember “anti-rape underwear”? Or the truly terrifying “Rapex” – a female condom that would insert tiny hooks into an assailant’s penis? You can’t really expect women to wear modern chastity belts or a real-life vagina dentata in order to be safe. That’s not trying to stop rape - it’s essentially arguing that some people getting raped is inevitable.

Even if a woman were to wear special nail polish or anti-rape underwear, or if she listens to common – but misplaced – advice about not getting drunk and always walking home in a group, all she’s supposedly ensuring is that she won’t be attacked. (And even then it’s not real security, because women who do all the “right” things get raped too) What about the girl at the same party who decided to have a few drinks that night? “So long as it isn’t me” isn’t an effective strategy to end rape.

My latest at the Guardian US, Why is it easier to invent anti-rape nail polish than find a way to stop rapists?  (via jessicavalenti)

I’m loving following jessicavalenti on tumblr.

Yesterday I asked my female colleague, do you ever think: ‘If something horrid were to happen to me, how much it would put me back in my PhD; instead of, you know, just how awful it would be in general?’ She replied: ‘I think about it all the time; like if I got raped, it would be worse for my PhD than for me as a person.’

Sexual violence is like an onion; just when you think you understand the complexity … there’s another layer.

3,011 notes 

What I would like to do post-doc: identify barriers in market access for female entrepreneurs and provide technical training to lobby to national governments for improved market access, including heightened political and civil rights.

What I would like to do post-doc: identify barriers in market access for female entrepreneurs and provide technical training to lobby to national governments for improved market access, including heightened political and civil rights.

65 notes 

Please read:

I’d like to take this opportunity to encourage - as Tang has - all women to start being more forthcoming about different forms of gender-based abuse they’ve suffered to raise awareness about just how poorly women are treated all over the world.

I recently told my partner about sexual abuse I experienced when I first came to Britain in 2009, in York, in an Indian restaurant, right around closing time. A young man was helpful and friendly as I waited for my £2 samosa. When he brought it to me in the bag, I handed him £2 and instead of handing me the bag, he grabbed my breast. 

I don’t remember what happened next other than me leaving as quickly as possible. This incident was so minor (in threat and act) compared to the numerous other encounters of gender-based abuse I have suffered, it almost didn’t register to me. I had never told anyone about this incident, but it encouraged me to tell my partner about more instances of abuse I have and continue to suffer … like just last week whilst waiting for my bus, around 4 pm, on a very busy roadway in Manchester.

And now I want to say this… Over 2011 to 2012, when my partner returned to the US because of visa complications in the UK, I suffered so much gender-based abuse that I developed an anxiety disorder. I became so afraid of suffering more abuse and violence if I left my flat that for about 2 months, I only left my flat to attend weekly counselling at my University.

I asked for a 6 month interruption of studies from my PhD, providing them with detail about my developing an anxiety disorder as a result of gender-based abuse and isolation, combined with the deaths of both of my grandparents and my partner’s absence. I was granted a 1 month interruption (30 days), and I have no doubt my University being audited by UKBA at the time and my status as a student migrant played a role in the denial of my interruption. I took 9 months off my PhD to recover. I will be applying for an extension of studies to complete my PhD because my interruption was denied.

Ellen Paige’s recent appearance on Ellen has helped me see that staying silent is the worse course of action (and on that note, I’d also like to ‘come out’ as a proud bisexual woman - something I feel shame for not disclosing on countless University surveys) if we want change for the better. It’s not as if I want my colleagues to know gory details of abuse I’ve suffered, but I want them to know that gender-based abuse happens, a lot, to a lot of women, and it’s not acceptable. Something that is emerging from treatment of female migrants at the Yarl’s Woord migration detention centre in the UK.

None of what happened to me was my fault, and none of it was acceptable or appropriate. I’m too tired to stay silent any more.

1 note 

Utterly amazing <8minute account of female photographers in war and conflict zones.


The first woman has been appointed to command a United Nations peacekeeping force – a Norwegian general who has served in Lebanon, the first Gulf war, Bosnia and Afghanistan.
[Major General Kristin Lund] told the Associated Press she was proud to crack the glass ceiling in UN peacekeeping. &#8220;I think it&#8217;s time, and I think it&#8217;s important that other women see that it&#8217;s possible also in the UN system to get up in the military hierarchy to become a force commander.&#8221;
She said that was where she fell in love with the UN and learned that &#8220;maybe the most important weapon that you have is communication and to build relations&#8221;.

Photo: Xinhua /Landov/Barcroft Media
Text: AP at the Guardian

The first woman has been appointed to command a United Nations peacekeeping force – a Norwegian general who has served in Lebanon, the first Gulf war, Bosnia and Afghanistan.

[Major General Kristin Lund] told the Associated Press she was proud to crack the glass ceiling in UN peacekeeping. “I think it’s time, and I think it’s important that other women see that it’s possible also in the UN system to get up in the military hierarchy to become a force commander.”

She said that was where she fell in love with the UN and learned that “maybe the most important weapon that you have is communication and to build relations”.

Photo: Xinhua /Landov/Barcroft Media

Text: AP at the Guardian

I’m a romantic love junkie just like the rest of you.

A quote of excellence from Betty Dodson on masturbation, feminism, and romantic love.

To be followed by:

Women tell me they worry their fantasies aren’t feminist enough. I tell them: ‘Honey, the dirtier and nastier, the better.’ I have a Rolodex, a whole series. My fantasies are so dirty, they’d put me away.

2 notes 

From Bronwen Clune of the Guardian:

It’s time we stopped using the ‘boys will be boys’ line.

Men are not inherently violent, degrading and predatory and women are not inherently victims. We need to move beyond the oversimplification of these constructs.

(Source: Spotify)

1 note 

It’s a myth that street harassment is just a bit of harmless fun. It’s about about power and control – and, as I know from personal experience, can so easily turn to violence

Laura Bates: Women should not accept street harassment as ‘just a compliment’ (via guardian)

This quick read helps me express and better understand why I developed such fear and anxiety when leaving my flat after street harassment turned physical.

444 notes