Sunday, January 25, 2009

For the Record...

Judeophobes are unwelcome here.

Monday, May 19, 2008

There's Still Time

to get in touch with your MP before tomorrow's Human Fertilisation and Embryology vote. I did. I have yet to have a reply but I will let you know what it says when I do.

I quote from the government's website: "Amendments to abortion law are likely to be introduced during the passage of this Bill." We need to be all over this like a rash. The bill is before committee as I type and you can watch the privileged white men argue about what happens to women's bodies if you go to - but don't blame me if you end up frothing at the mouth and looking for someone to beat senseless. I'm late with this post because things IRL came up and overtook me, but PLEASE, if you have two minutes to spare, e-mail your MP or phone the House of Commons on 020 7219 3000 and ask to speak to, or leave a message for your MP. They need to hear us.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Oh, You know how it goes...

This goes on and on in my city and elsewhere, perhaps because of this. As an antidote to which, I suggest reading this. And for those of you with a strong stomach and a taste for the extreme, I point you at this. Enjoy.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Guess What!

It's now legal for women to drive cars in Saudi Arabia!! After an 18 year ban, women may finally, legally, get behind the wheel without fear of imprisonment or losing their job. Now, how about some other rights for women and girls in Saudi? Like the right not to be gang-raped and subsequently sentenced to a vicious beating and imprisonment?

And, yes, I know that the "Qatif Girl" was pardoned. I also know that she broke the law and probably understood the consequences. I UNDERSTAND that there are people out there who will tell me that there are cultural issues and differences that I ought to consider. And my answer to those people is an unequivocal NO. I will no longer be tolerating the abuse of women and children simply because it can be explained or excused by men as cultural or religious practise.

How can anyone can argue in favour of disenfranchised women, or the enforced wearing of abaya: full body covering that women must wear after they begin to menstruate? How can anyone accept that women's testimony in court is unequal to her male counterpart? Just like Female Genital Mutilation these are obvious human rights abuses. Cultural codes and norms be buggered. I'm sick of it. Getting behind the wheel of a car is a dramatic, empowering act; I hope it is the very beginning of successful protest and liberation for Saudi women.

Friday, January 11, 2008

This week I have been mostly

putting my hands into bags of unusually wet, mouldy clothing and discovering that said clothing is in fact soiled bedding. Actual poo, people. Poo on my hands. And the thing is, the person who "donated" the diarrhoea-smeared sheets actually looked me in the eye and SMILED at me as she handed me the bag. I have also cut my hand on a bag of broken porcelain figurines. I hate this job. I've ranted before about this and I hate to sound jaded but shitty sheets and smashed up pots? Really?

But! I have also opened bags of the most amazing donations: a gold sovereign, first edition books, beautifully cared for and cleaned clothes, brand new unwanted Christmas gifts! When this happens I love the job. Even though I'm busy being charitable (!) I'm still looking for something PhD related so if anyone has any suggestions? I am working on an article for an academic journal and I am hoping to branch out a bit and write something for our local paper about various Salford-based women's groups.

Oh, and today I am grateful for last night's yoga and also for tasty mushroom cup soup. Yay!

Friday, December 14, 2007

My haitus.

I went AWOL for three weeks because I got notice that my viva was scheduled for 13th December. So I went yesterday and bugger me if I didn't pass! I got my PhD. It seems unreal to me and I feel a bit flat about it yet. I'm hoping for euphoria at some point. I think I deserve it!

I have minor corrections to do, and I am actually looking forward to working on them. So, normal service will be resumed here as of today. Carry on!

Thursday, November 15, 2007


Here it is! The Carnival's in town. Get your comfy boots on and throw on an old, warm jacket, it's November and we're going for a long, satisfying walk round Radical Feminist country.

First off, Holly Ord at the wonderful and thoughtful site, Menstrual Poetry, posts about Planned Parenthood and talks positively about how the organisation is a champion of woman's health issues and reproductive rights. The Truth About Planned Parenthood.

Holly also provides us with an eloquent post on the "pro-life" agenda and the hit-and-miss results that blogs get with Google ad-sense in her post Fun with My Google Adsense Holly says "Whenever looking at this site, I always find myself going through the ads Google has deemed as appropriate for my website. As most know, most of the time Google comes up with some rather interesting ads to display, sometimes having nothing to do with the content on your website." And finally Holly gives us LOL Fetus? Holly's own take on Gary Cangemi's "pro-life" cartoon Umbert the Unborn. Copy it, paste it, pass it on!

Tracee Sioux steps up with a grand post questioning the apparent Pornification of Halloween. Tracee asks "When the focus is on what girls are wearing for Halloween are we blaming Lolita for Humbert Humberts perversions? Girls walk a tight rope of acceptability now that the pornification of everything girly has become normalized." I absolutely couldn't agree more. And don't get me started on the whole "ugly" witch thing...

Felix at BayRadical presents her interview with lesbian feminist photographer Cathy Cade. The photos that accompany the post are beautiful, powerful, startling and joyful. We need more of this positive celebration of lesbian radical feminism! You Can't Stop Me – an interview with Cathy Cade

Marcella Chester at Abyss2Hope talks about the difficulties surrounding traditional police procedure and the treatment of rape victims in her post Troubling Police Interview With Alleged Rape Victim Marcella comments that "With all the emphasis on false confessions and false convictions, many people still accept retractions of rape allegations as if they can never be false and obtained through abusive tactics."

Marcella also posted about Anti-Feminism And Rape saying, "This is my response to a man who claims that feminists are like Klansmen." This is a searing response to the ludicrous and unintelligent accusation that Feminism encourages the wholesale abuse of men in a way that is comparable to the abuse of people of colour by Klansmen. Fear not, Marcella dealt with it!

Maggie Jochild got all excited and showered me with fantastic fodder for you womyn!! I loved the look of her blog, lots of photos to engage the eye and the heart. We'll start with WHO WERE THE WITCHES? a mega-post that begins with a contemplation on the meaning and celebration of Halloween and morphs gently into a wonderful historical overview of the works of Bonnie Lockhart and The Berkeley Women's Music Collective.

Maggie's next two submissions focus on living with disability. LIFE IN A WHEELCHAIR and DISABILITY 101: SOME GUIDELINES are two beautifully illustrated posts about the politics and practicalities of disability. Disability 101 is, if you'll pardon me, a fucking brilliant lesson in how to talk about and understand varied disabilities.

If I give you the technorati tags (Adriene Rich, Class, BMI, Crooked Timber, Fat, Gay and Lesbian Couple Visibility, Sexism, Title VII, Womensspace, Red Stae/Blue State Regionality) for Maggie's next post, that should give you some idea of the range of her thinking! It won't, however, prepare you for the stunning photo accompaniments. Enjoy! BROAD CAST, 8 NOVEMBER 2007: DELVING DEEPER FOR TRUTH

April Spreeman submitted Sexually Vulnerable Black Women: Can America Empathize? It's a short critique for such a massive subject, but the bones of something eloquent and important are there and April, I would really like to read more!

ISPF submitted a post that made me laugh, then made me feel sad and sorry and all kinds of love for the womyn in my (and your) history who had to fight for some dignity in employment. Read and remember to celebrate our foremothers: Guide to Hiring Women!

Feminist Peace Network gives us U.S. Board of Immigration: FGM Not Grounds for Asylum And I have to ask myself Am I surprised? Sadly, I am not.

allecto worked HARD on this next submission and it's good. Allecto discusses and deconstructs the effects of the Northern Territory Emergency Intervention into Aboriginal communities report and the "Little Children Are Sacred" report and their inherent racism. It makes for a challenging read.Will they come with guns? The military invasion of the Northern Territory Aboriginal communities.

The inimitable, unstoppable Ann Bartow pops up to give us Externalities Illustrated her take on what happened during halftime at the Jets/Steelers game some weeks ago, when women were subjected to the jeers, threats and harassment of a massive group of male football fans. Anne discusses the negative externalities that result for the many when the few "choose" to collude with the oppressor.

One of my favourite bloggers,Debs at Feminist Fire, takes issue with a new surgical procedure in What fresh hell is this? I'm still not convinced it's not a joke...

Binging up the rear are two fabulous posts from Maia at Touchingly Naive. Maia is absolutely an artist. I believe that she has talent beyond measure! Anyway, for a while she has been posting for Vulva Liberation Week and here are two of her VLW posts. Bleeding Over Africa is a thoughtful, intelligent response to the subtle marketing of sanitary protection to poverty stricken women in Africa. My Body, My Self! is Maia's art on show! Go and have a look. I'll leave you to guess how she did them...

And finally, because I love my front bottom, I give you Crochet Vulva!. Go and make your own!

Thanks for sticking with me on this wonderful Autumn walk. I have so enjoyed all of your submissions and I look forward to reading your responses. I'm going indoors to make tea now, can someone bring the biscuits? Pippa x