“As a Muslim feminist woman of color, I cannot relate to Slutwalks as it caters mostly to the definition of emancipation set by white women. Slutwalks deviate in terms of delivering the message against sexual assault. It turns a blind eye to women of cultures where flimsy clothes don’t necessarily lead to rapes. Muslim women get raped too. Nassim Elbardouh is right. “Do Not Rape” Walk sounds better. This isn’t to say that I don’t support Slutwalks. I simply can’t relate to a liberating movement that does not liberate nor acknowledge me. Western feminism, despite its undeniable achievements, still perpetuates the image of a white woman as the liberated one. If these feminists do claim to represent all women, they need to understand the dynamics of the cultures other women hail from. Don’t care if you’re wearing a thong or burka, no one has the right to rape you. Burka clad brown Muslim women get raped too. Represent us. I want a movement that represents me regardless of my color and creed. End victim blaming and rape culture by representing everyone.”—
What invisible rat come from the walls of night gnaws at the milky cake of the moon? Tomorrow morning, when it has gone, there will be bleeding marks of teeth.
Tomorrow morning those who have drunk all night and those who have abandoned their cards, blinking at the moon will stammer out: ‘Whose is that sixpence that rolls over the green table?’ ‘Ah!’ one of them will add, ‘our friend has lost everything and killed himself!’
And all will snigger and, staggering, will fall. The moon will no longer be there: the rat will have carried her into his hole.
When I was in fourth grade, I was sitting with my cello, waiting for my orchestra concert to begin. The cello was on the floor, but I was seated in my section in a long dress with my knees spread wide, and my elbows on my thighs. My mom - in the audience - gestured to me for five minutes to sit “properly,” and when I didn’t follow her instructions, she came up and reprimanded me for sitting “like a boy.”
When I was a senior in high school, I gave one of my good friend’s a copy of my senior portrait. Rather than thanking me and saying I looked cute/pretty/whatever, she looked at it for a while until she asked, “Why are you posing like a guy?” In the photo, I was sitting on steps, but my legs weren’t crossed … you know, how people normally sit on steps.
When I was in graduate school, I was walking to dinner with some colleagues. I was in front of the group with a male friend, walking as I normally do - rather quickly and in a straight line. A guy moving toward us had to step out of the way for me, and my male friend said to me, “Wow, you just barrel right through, don’t you?” I replied, “Yeah? Why shouldn’t people get out of the way for me?”
The way women use space and move through space is constantly policed. We are told to fold up, cross our legs, defer space to others, be as small and insignificant as possible, and interfere with the movement and space of others as little as possible. I see it on public transit, where women shrink into their seats. I see it in classrooms, where women don’t spread their stuff beyond the width of their chair. I see it in magazines, where women are photographed differently from men. I see it everywhere.
A good number of these “presence” norms are embedded into gendered constructions of etiquette, and they get internalized; so much of the policing women experience is actually self-policing. It isrude for a woman to cross her ankle over her knee, or stand with her legs shoulder-width apart, or to expect others to move around her. A woman can get all of the other bits of a feminine gender performance right, but if that woman doesn’t use space in the proper manner, she will be met with resistance and condemnation - her own or someone else’s. But where she has gone wrong will be noticed, and she will be told. Even if she is not corrected outright, her behavior will be the subject of comment (as was the case with my male colleague above). She will be made to feel continually anxious about her presence in space. She will shrink and fold until she nearly disappears.
Men can be expansive, and command as much space as they like. They can sit with knees splayed wide and arms draped over several seats, their crap strewn six feet in either direction, creating a massive bubble of space that is theirs. They can walk down the street, and assume the straight line in front of them is theirs, as far as they desire to go. Men take up space - even technically unoccupied space - and no one questions them.
Women’s space is always borrowed. Even women’s bodies don’t really create a bubble that is all their own. If a woman has enough room to sit or to stand, that is deemed to be enough for her. She isn’t supposed to claim anything beyond her physical, bodily allotment, and even that is policed if she is “too tall” or “too fat.” If she does, she’ll be made to feel it.
Something I think about quite often. Sometimes I have to remind myself I don’t need to shrink. I’m already small enough as it is.
My heart sank a little bit. The World/United States of Love line that I created is one of the reasons that I was able to quit my full-time job. They even stole the item name as well as some of my copy.
I’m very disappointed in Urban Outfitters. I know they have stolen designs from plenty of other artists. I understand that they are a business, but it’s not cool to completely rip off an independent designer’s work.
I’ll no longer be shopping at any of their stores [they also own Free People & Anthropologie], and I’m going to do my best from here on out to support independent designers & artists.
Please feel free to pass this link on. I really appreciate all the support & love I’ve received today.
For anarchists who do know something about anthropology, the arguments are all too familiar. A typical exchange goes something like this:
Skeptic: Well, I might take this whole anarchism idea more seriously if you could give me some reason to think it would work. Can you name me a single viable example of a society which has existed without a government?
Anarchist: Sure. There have been thousands. I could name a dozen just off the top of my head: the Bororo, the Baining, the Onondaga, the Wintu, the Ema, the Tallensi, the Vezo… All without violence or hierarchy.
Skeptic: But those are all a bunch of primitives! I’m talking about anarchism in a modern, technological society.
Anarchist: Okay, then. There have been all sorts of successful experiments: experiments with worker‟s self-management, like Mondragon; economic projects based on the idea of the gift economy, like Linux; all sorts of political organizations based on consensus and direct democracy…
Skeptic: Sure, sure, but these are small, isolated examples. I‟m talking about whole societies.
Anarchist: Well, it’s not like people haven’t tried. Look at the Paris Commune, the free states in Ukraine and Shimin, the 1936 revolution in Spain…
Skeptic: Yeah, and look what happened to those guys! They all got killed!
The dice are loaded. You can‟t win. Because when the skeptic says “society,” what he really means is “state,” even “nation-state.” Since no one is going to produce an example of an anarchist state—that would be a contradiction in terms—what we‟re really being asked for is an example of a modern nation-state with the government somehow plucked away: a situation in which the government of Canada, to take a random example, has been overthrown, or for some reason abolished itself, and no new one has taken its place but instead all former Canadian citizens begin to organize themselves into libertarian collectives. Obviously this would never be allowed to happen. In the past, whenever it even looked like it might—here, the Paris commune and Spanish civil war are excellent examples—the politicians running pretty much every state in the vicinity have been willing to put their differences on hold until those trying to bring such a situation about had been rounded up and shot.
There is a way out, which is to accept that anarchist forms of organization would not look anything like a state. That they would involve an endless variety of communities, associations, networks, projects, on every conceivable scale, overlapping and intersecting in any way we could imagine, and possibly many that we can‟t. Some would be quite local, others global. Perhaps all they would have in common is that none would involve anyone showing up with weapons and telling everyone else to shut up and do what they were told. And that, since anarchists are not actually trying to seize power within any national territory, the process of one system replacing the other will not take the form of some sudden revolutionary cataclysm—the storming of a Bastille, the seizing of a Winter Palace—but will necessarily be gradual, the creation of alternative forms of organization on a world scale, new forms of communication, new, less alienated ways of organizing life, which will, eventually, make currently existing forms of power seem stupid and beside the point. That in turn would mean that there are endless examples of viable anarchism: pretty much any form of organization would count as one, so long as it was not imposed by some higher authority, from a klezmer band to the international postal service.
“Extinguish my eyes, I’ll go on seeing you.
Seal my ears, I’ll go on hearing you.
And without feet I can make my way to you,
without a mouth I can swear your name.”—Excerpt from Book of Hours, Rainer Maria Rilke (via inthelowlight)
“What I see in Nature is a magnificent structure that we can comprehend only very imperfectly, and that must fill a thinking person with a feeling of “humility.” This is a genuinely religious feeling that has nothing to do with mysticism.”—Albert Einstein (via atheistfags)
“There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there always has been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that ‘my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.’”—Isaac Asimov (via azspot)
Matt Dillahunty wrote an excellent piece regarding the quote “You can’t reason people out of a position that they weren’t reasoned into.”
So, what’s wrong with this particular saying?
Well, if we’re being very literal, every position someone holds is the product of reasoning. Believing a proposition is the result of being convinced. You can be convinced for good reasons or bad reasons, but as long as the brain is involved (and how could it not be?), reason is involved. In that scope, the statement is wrong because the premise is false. They were, in fact, reasoned into their belief.
Also, in a more colloquial sense, it refers to people whose beliefs were spawned by indoctrination, emotional appeals, socialization/inculturation and other things that aren’t normally in the realm of ‘pure reason’ - and in this scope, the statement becomes a claim that you’re just not going to be able to convince them of their error by using strict logical reasoning.
The problem, though, isn’t just that this statement is wrong, it’s that it’s a white flag. It implies that efforts to free people from religious thinking, via reason, are futile.
There may be some people who are forever beyond the reach of reason, but this isn’t true of everyone and I haven’t seen any data to support the idea that it’s even true for most people.
People often become convinced of things for bad reasons and are remarkably good at protecting those beliefs from critical examination - especially if those beliefs have been long-held, publicly professed and are shared by many others in that person’s social network. But that doesn’t mean that they are forever incapable of recognizing that they’ve accepted something for bad reasons. People can, and do, understand the value of having good reasons for their beliefs - it’s the reason why there are so many attempts to provide apologetic arguments for those beliefs.
I definitely agree with Matt. I “reasoned” myself out of my religious beliefs by having discussions with those who were not religious as well as by reading numerous books on atheism and Christianity. I’m sure that many of you have had similar experiences. I tend to view the aforementioned quote as more of the exception than the rule.
Americans have accumulated well over $900 billion in student loan debt. That figure is higher than the total amount of credit card debt in the United States.
According to very extensive research detailed in a new book entitled “Academically Adrift: Limited Learning on College Campuses”, 45 percent of U.S. college students exhibit “no significant gains in learning” after two years in college.
I’m going to have a shit-ton of student loan debt for my undergrad, and you know what? I’ve stopped caring. Screw it.
I’m studying accounting (and possibly math. ha ha!) and I plan on working for some barely solvent non-profit/doing taxes for math-challenged people who studied art history and the like, so I don’t plan on making much money. And I am quite alright with that.
Also, most students only spend 7% of their time studying? Who are these people?? I study for fun even when I’m not in school.
“Advice for young feminists? Do something else besides feminism. I’m serious. The feminist blogosphere is oversaturated in my opinion. Please, find something else you love and take feminist theory there. It gets lonely over here in tech and video games – I have a great crew of other feminists but we are a little island in a vast sea. We need more feminist minded business bloggers, feminist theory wielding finance bloggers. Labor organizers with a feminist lens blogging. Can you imagine what Deadspin (the sports blog) would look like with a feminist on staff? Restructure writes about science, tech and feminism – join her! Publish a blog doing literary criticism with a feminist lens! Take on the NYT! Talk about class issues and feminism. Whatever it is, apply your feminism in a different space.”—
“If dreaming really were a kind of truce
(as people claim), a sheer repose of mind,
why then if you should waken up abruptly,
do you feel that something has been stolen from you?
Why should it be so sad, the early morning?
It robs us of an inconceivable gift,
so intimate it is only knowable
in a trance which the nightwatch gilds with dreams,
dreams that might very well be reflections,
fragments from the treasure-house of darkness,
from the timeless sphere that does not have a name,
and that the day distorts in its mirrors.
Who will you be tonight in your dreamfall
into the dark, on the other side of the wall?”—Jorge Luis Borges, “Dream” (via seeyoulateraggregator)
As LGBT people (esp. members of marginalized groups: women, people of color, transgender, disabled etc), we all need to do a better job of telling our own stories, and in effect, writing ourselves (back) into history. As I learned from this experience, we’re not just at risk of being completely ignored by mainstream media, but about having our history being talked over, our pronouns mixed up, our hard work being told in passive voice i.e “It happened.” We do a disservice to each other when we fail to affirm the actions of the generations closely following behind us, when we fail to let them know that “We were here,” and as such, that they can do it better, and get further down the path to equality than we ever imagined possible.
I can’t say this enough: Get to it. Start a blog. Create a Youtube channel. Write a book — you can self-publish. Support organizations like the LGBT History Project who work tirelessly to record our histories (orally if need be). But whatever you do from this point, remember the words of Audre Lorde, “Your silence will not protect you,” or the words of my mentor, Letta Neely, if you like your wisdom plain, “Write that shit, down!”
Part of why I started keeping a written journal again. Every now and then I try to step back and think of it as an artifact, and that pushes me to get over my self-censorship and put more substance into it.