The lack of respectful coverage, the slut-shaming and name-calling, all the girly book covers and not-my-titles despite high literary aspirations, has worn me down, made me question everything: my abilities, my future, my life. This is what sexism does best: it makes you feel crazy for desiring parity and hopeless about ever achieving it.
The man who got fired said something in a professional setting and Richards put a face and name to his statements. For some reason, a certain type of Internet folk think that the right to free speech includes the privilege of other people not saying mean things about you. The way this works in practice is that people on Reddit and 4Chan and Twitter will say terrible, harassing, and hateful things about Richards (and anyone who stands up for her) because they think she shouldn’t have said something.
Anyone passingly interested in this sort of industry gossip will have no doubt heard by now that, on Monday morning in Santa Fe, director Lynne Ramsay (“We Need to Talk About Kevin”) declined to appear for the first day of production on her new film “Jane Got A Gun”, allegedly abandoning the 25 million dollar project and its 150 eager crew members in the process. This decidedly minor news item, though conspicuously light on both detail and corroboration, has already proven compelling to those most predisposed to casual indignation, circulating widely after Deadline broke the exclusive and commented upon extensively and ceaselessly by the web’s vocal peanut gallery since.
A common sentiment has recurred on both Twitter and the comments sections of the articles reporting the story, seemingly gaining in animosity with each passing day: Lynne Ramsay, by virtue of being a woman, has somehow made things harder for other female directors by her sudden—and as of yet unexplained—absenteeism, ruining not only her own chances of working in this town again but those who incidentally share her gender as well. The rhetoric is weirdly uniform in most cases: Ramsay is “hysterical”, “emotional”, “ungrateful”, and has “set female directors back 20 years”. One particularly noxious comment even describes Ramsay as “clearly P.M.S.ing”, written by somebody who is clearly an assh**e.
That wide swaths of the (overwhelmingly male) film-nerd public would flock to social media to express grossly misogynistic thoughts after the slightest opportunity presents itself is perhaps not so surprising. But what is surprising—and what’s much more disconcerting, given the circumstances—is how deeply and needlessly gendered the response to this story has been from professional journalists and news organizations. Leaving aside the somewhat unexpected shift in default editorial sympathies from the artist to her producer, the articles reporting this story have continued to lean on language tailored, at least implicitly, for gender-based condescension.
Damsel in Distress: Part 1 - Tropes vs Women in Video Games
This video explores how the Damsel in Distress became one of the most widely used gendered clichés in the history of gaming and why the trope has been core to the popularization and development of the medium itself. As a trope the Damsel in Distress is a plot device in which a female character is placed in a perilous situation from which she cannot escape on her own and must then be rescued by a male character, usually providing a core incentive or motivation for the protagonist’s quest.
ABOUT THE VIDEO SERIES
The Tropes vs Women in Video Games project aims to examine the plot devices and patterns most often associated with female characters in gaming from a systemic, big picture perspective. This series will include critical analysis of many beloved games and characters, but remember that it is both possible (and even necessary) to simultaneously enjoy media while also being critical of it’s more problematic or pernicious aspects.
For more examples of the Damsel in Distress see our Tumblr for this series: http://tropesversuswomen.tumblr.com
Visit http://www.feministfrequency.com for more information, videos and a full transcript.
What bothers me more than anything else about these jokes is how boring they are. I’ve heard variations of them countless times from people who think they’re hilarious, and act as if no one has ever unearthed such comedic gems before, and they’re always wrong. They are the scraps of humor actual comics left on the table a decade earlier in their careers after they learned that playing to people’s dumbest, most stereotypical assumptions is not actually the same thing as joke-making. But the laziness of MacFarlane’s brand played particularly poorly at the Oscars given the movie industry’s very real problems with both women and derivativeness, in a celebration of what’s supposed to be Hollywood’s best, the things that the profits of things like The Avengers make it possible to keep in production.
The best moment of Seth MacFarlane’s Oscars hosting gig may have come late in the night when, in announcing Meryl Streep, he said “our next presenter needs no introduction” … and then just walked away.
If only he’d kept his mouth shut more frequently.
Read more. [Image: AP]
UGH. AMY & TINA OSCARS HOSTS 2014
One of my good friends is a very successful novelist. I was with her when she was approached by another (male) writer who was attempting to deride her work: ‘Aren’t all your books about the same thing?’ My friend asked him what he meant by that. He replied without missing a beat — ‘Well, aren’t they all about women?’
Do you want your government run by The View?
I wrote an article about the relationship between everyone’s favorite bugbear and the policing of masculinity in geek culture.
Photo: AP Photo/Cliff Owen
There’s the notion that the affair is somehow Broadwell’s fault. How could Petraeus resist? Broadwell with her “form-fitting” clothes, “tight skirts,” and “toned arms” — in other words, “a shameless self-promoting prom queen” and a “slut” to boot — apparently “got her claws” into him. “The anecdotes and chatter that implicitly or explicitly wonder at the spidery wiles she must have used to throw the mighty man off his path are laughably ignorant of history,” says Frank Bruni at The New York Times, “which suggests that mighty men are all too ready to tumble, loins first.” And it’s further evidence that women are “unfairly assigned the role of gatekeepers of sexual morality,” says Alison Yarrow at The Daily Beast, “a designation that makes them easy to blame when men fall short.”