Links for Sexy Feminists: Cherice Morales, Cliteracy, and more

No Blurred Lines Here: An important but mostly overlooked aspect of the Miley Cyrus debacle is the importance of talking to one’s sons about Robin Thicke. And apparently we need to mention that no teenage girl is ever asking to be raped.

Remembering Cherice Morales: A necessary perspective on why the young teen who “consented” to sexual relations with her 49-year-old teacher was too emotionally immature to “consent.”

Feminism 101: Feministe has introduced a new feature specifically set up to introduce young folks to the basic principles of feminism.

Trans Inclusion: Chelsea Manning (known to the world as Bradley)’s decision to come out to the world as trans highlights the importance of trans inclusive healthcare.

40 Days of Dating Experiment: Jessica and Timothy will have their big reveal on the direction of their relationship later this week, so if you haven’t gotten sucked in yet it’s not too late.

Best for Last: Artist Sophia Wallace has made it her mission to educate the public on the importance of the clitoris in a piece she charmingly calls “cliteracy.”

Links for Sexy Feminists: Gay Marriage, Transgender Rights, and more

Marriage Equality!: The SCOTUS has ruled that married gay and lesbian couples are eligible for the federal benefits of marriage. The ruling is not a total victory, since a couple who moved to an anti-gay marriage state could still lose state recognition. Yet the victory is monumental for this lesbian couple and others in which one party is not an American citizen.

Breaking Up: Why the way many women console their girlfriends after a breakup is spectacularly unhelpful.

Pro-Eating: Why do even the most body-positive women still feel the need to eat in secret?

Transgender Rights: Adorable first grader Coy won the right to use her school’s girls’ bathroom, in accordance with her gender identity.

Anti-Feminism: The anti-feminist right wing has taken on a new tactic: rebranding themselves as “freedom feminists.” Ugh.

Media Studies: Writing for the Nation, Jessica Valenti does an excellent job of critiquing media for taking the male perspective as the norm. On a lighter note, see if you can recognize yourself in this charming little cartoon on the pitfalls of feminist self-awareness–as one commentator notes, this just shows why we need more representation of female characters.

Women in the World: Amnesty International issued a statement in support of feminist protesters in Libya who created and circulated a controversial cartoon in favor of women’s rights. In nearby Morocco, local and European women gathered in solidarity with the Saharawi women. On a different note, Bloomberg profiles Jennifer Li, a Chinese woman with a high-flying business career.

Do You Have To Be Coupled To Give Good Dating Advice?

AA046999“Why should I take dating advice from you? You’re single.”

This is a comeback I’ve heard many times for the six years I’ve been writing my advice column, And That’s Why You’re Single.  Apparently, in order for a woman who writes about dating to be taken seriously, she needs to have a man to trot out or cite as evidence that she knows of what she speaks.

My answer to this pointed question is quite succinct. I don’t need a man in my life in order to practice common sense and critical thinking. People throw the fact that I’m single (as far as they know) in my face to try and discredit me.  This one query reveals quite a bit about the person posing it. Namely, that they consider a woman’s ideas and opinions invalid unless she has a man by her side to validate them.

This question isn’t really a question. It’s an attempt to minimize my thoughts. The point of the inquiry is to shame me. Apparently, a woman who isn’t constantly looking for excuses to talk about her relationship is considered suspect.  [Read more...]

Links for Sexy Feminists: Men’s Rights Activists, More Steubenville Fallout, Keeping Dads Involved, and more

Death to the Patriarchy: Jezebel’s inimitable Lindy West succinctly breaks down why everything MRAs rail against are symptoms of patriarchy, not feminism.

Continuing the Steubenville Dialogue: A U of Rochester econ prof put up a thought experiment about “reaping the benefits” of a passed-out individual on his blog, which upset quite a few folks, understandably. Meanwhile, an awesome male feminist starts a dialogue with teenage boys on how to not rape girls. And a queer-friendly blog has some great thoughts on why the silence of a female partner should not signify her consent.

Involved Dads: Iceland requires dads to take paternity leave, and having Dad help out so much in the early stages helps gender equality, both for the household and across the small country.

Dating Dan: A well-intentioned, self-aware man with Asperger’s and OCD searches for love, raising interesting questions about self-disclosure for all of us who have “issues.”

Exotic Dancing: The Frisky offers an anonymous expose of what a dancer deals with at a high-end strip club.

Links for Sexy Feminists: Marriage Equality, lessons from Steubenville, and more …

Marriage Equality: The Supreme Court has now heard two cases, each of which could lead to a redefinition of marriage. There is also a chance that the court could refuse to redefine marriage, instead giving the issue more time to develop. But to refuse to broaden the definition of marriage would put them on the wrong side of history, Stephanie Coontz argued following Obama’s public endorsement last May: Straight people have already changed the definition of marriage. BeyondMarriage, meanwhile, makes a case for reframing marriage, family, and healthcare rather than focusing on marriage equality.

Pink Equality: On the lighter side, Facebook users are doubtless aware of the campaign to change all profile pictures to a pink and red equals sign. If you’d like to show your solidarity in a more quirky way, HuffPo has gathered some alternative examples.

Moving Past Steubenville: One high school teacher’s heartwarming narrative of talking to her ninth graders about consent.

Was Feminism Hijacked? A thought-provoking piece in Al-Jazeera argues that whether women are told to “lean in” or to “have it all,”  the feminist icons delivering the message are undercutting the movement.

Dating While Feminist: A great piece on how to negotiate that oh-so-tricky part of life.

Women in Prison: Oklahoma explores rehabilitating nonviolent female criminals.

Retro Housewives: Meanwhile, New York magazine unleashed a furor with a purposely controversial piece on the “retro wife.” When reached for interview by the Atlantic, Kelly Makino, the woman profiled in that piece, points out that systemic societal biases against women contributed to her decision and that she doesn’t consider herself a traditional housewife.

Cleaning House: Exercise your right to not be judged for a messy house!


Links for Sexy Feminists: Where to Watch the DNC, Why Women Are Happy, More

Watch the Democratic National Convention on PBS. Why? Because co-hosts Judy Woodruff and Gwen Ifill are a) awesome professionals and b) the first all-female duo to host a presidential convention.

There’s good news and bad news ladies. The good news is, there’s finally a study out there that says women are happy—happier than men even!—and this is because we have a very special gene, so, it’s official. It’s about time scientists stopped trying to prove we’re lonely and miserable. The bad news: You’re totally going to be lonely and miserable because of your job, according to a new eHarmony study.

Alison Bechdel makes us laugh (in a good way) about homophobia, gender bias in media and, now, menopause, in this new Jezebel interview.

Links for Sexy Feminists: Akin camp calls for opponent to drop out, Cosmo goes ’50 Shades,’ and more …

Akin Camp Says Opponent Should Drop Out?!?: So first Rep. Todd Akin makes up the redundant term “legitimate rape” and tells us we have magical uteri that can ward off evil sperm and stop pregnancy from resulting after an attack. Then everyone tells him he’s an idiot and even his fellow Republicans demand he drop out of the race. Now his campaign manager/son is calling for Akin’s senate-race opponent, incumbent Claire McCaskill, to drop out of the race instead? If Akin’s people are trying to confuse us out of following this whole thing anymore, they’re getting dangerously close to succeeding. Read about it on Talking Points Memo. If you’re not depressed enough yet, read on about how in 31 states, rapists can get joint custody of the children they fathered by attacking someone. If anyone tells you we don’t need feminism anymore, tell them this.

Dating After Divorce: We’ve written before about how hard this is. YourTango offers some tips.

Cosmo Goes 50 Shades: Two annoying tastes we never want together, and yet here we are. Jezebel makes appropriate amounts of fun.

Vermont Resort Fined for Not Hosting Lesbian Wedding Reception: Kate and Ming Linsley filed a suit against the Wildflower Inn, with the help of the ACLU, after the venue refused to book their reception because of the owners’ “personal feelings.” The resort agreed to settle the suit this week by paying $10,000 to the Vermont Human Rights Commission, placing $20,000 in a charitable trust to be allocated by the couple, and agreeing not to host any wedding receptions instead of turning away only select couples.

Know Who’s Cool? Venus and Serena Williams.: Here they are in The New York Times.

Links for Sexy Feminists: Why cougars are wrong, marriage is optional, and ‘Girls’ is awesome

Science says cougars are living a lie, YourTango reports: The Sexy Feminist will have to break up with her boyfriend now.

Jezebel gives us “10 Very Good Reasons You Aren’t Married Yet”: Print out and keep in your clutch to hand to any nosy old people at family weddings and whatnot.

Girls creator/star Lena Dunham in New York Times Magazine: “If we have done nothing else for you, you cannot say that we didn’t show you Peter Scolari’s penis.”

This week in lady movies: From Indiewire.

Fashion can be a political statement: Especially when your husband is running for president and the designers you wear kick in a ton of cash for his campaign, as The Washington Post reports.

A Love Letter to the Men of New York

You may have heard any number of unflattering things about New York’s male dating pool—their slacker attitudes, their commitmentphobia, their lack of ability to plan a date beyond drinks in a bar. But as a woman who just moved to New York City from Los Angeles, I’d like to openly declare my love for the men of New York, and to come to their defense. Men of New York, you give me the impression that I’ve finally made it to the dating big leagues.  In the four months that I’ve been dating here, I’ve found a refreshing maturity and sense of character in the men I’ve been meeting and I’m afraid there’s no going back.

There are women in LA who argue that men there are more adventurous than men in other parts of the country, that they’re young at heart and a blast to date. These women enjoy dating the dreamers and find that men in New York are too serious and obsessed with their work.  There have been women here in New York who look at me with shock and horror when I relate my positive outlook on the scene here.  It’s possible I am having such a unique experience because I’m starting over in a new place and therefore radiating a positive energy of optimism, freedom, and fearlessness.  A fistful of great guy friends have confirmed this: Men can read that energy from a mile away and are drawn to it. If there’s a real lesson to be drawn from my experience, that’s probably it. It’s crucial to be happy with myself; to respect myself, love myself, and treat myself the way I’d want or expect any man to. It’s just as important to follow my heart as it is independently of a man.  If I feel like living in New York, I’m not going to wait for a man to take me there, I’m going to be on the move.

[Read more...]

Sexy Feminists Read: ‘The Girls’ Guide to Dating Zombies’

Need we say anything beyond that awesome title? Just in case, we’ll add that Lynn Messina‘s adorable mocku-relationship book/chicklit novel (buy it here!) takes place in a near future when a virus has turned “99.9999 percent of human males into zombies,” thus making dating … challenging. We talked to her about books for ladies, zombies, vampires, and challenging relationships.

Since you wrote about being a “chicklit” author for us, first we’ll ask: Is this chicklit?

On one level, it’s absolutely chick lit. I self-consciously and intentionally hit every chick lit convention I could think of. But I poked fun at them too. For example, my characters frequently drop the names of famous designers, but they are the most ridiculous names I could think of. So I’m not sure if something can be the thing and the thing it satirizes at the same time.
And how do you think that market has changed in the time since you wrote Fashionistas?
Publishers would have me believe that the chick lit market has completely dried up since Fashionistas. My manuscripts have been roundly rejected for being chick lit at a moment when chick lit no longer sells. In the meantime, I think readers have gotten more sophisticated. When chick lit blew up, publishers increased their output to the point where they couldn’t sustain quality. Readers figured that out quickly enough and grew suspicious and scornful of the label, a label that, to be fair, invited a fair amount of scorn all on its own. I’m not sure where the market is now–whether the backlash is still in full force or starting to recede. Personally, I’m trying my darnedest to create a backlash against the backlash. How am I doing?

Switch to our mobile site