These are the things I’ve been reading and thinking about this week. Woo hoo.
Why I Can’t Wait to be a Fat Bride (The Guardian)
I’ve written before about how Lindy West is sort of “polarizing” or whatever, but that’s actually my nice way of saying that misogynists hate her? Whatever, I like Lindy West. This piece in the Guardian was all around excellent. In it, she tackles the “issue” (and here I use the word facetiously because the only “issue” here is that people are the fucking worst) of her being fat and her fiance being a conventionally attractive, thin man. It’s powerful stuff:
And now we’re getting married. Now I’m not just a fat girlfriend – I’m a fat bride-to-be. (As though being a feminist bride wasn’t contradictory enough.) And, it turns out, that feels like a lot of responsibility.
It’s not a very long piece, but it’s got lots to unpack and think about. What West is talking about–a fat woman marrying a thin man–is still seen as a radical act. Which is fucking insanity.
None of this is New: An Oral History of Fanfiction (The Mary Sue)
It’s an interesting and thoughtful look at the history of fanfiction, as well as attempting to determine where the origins of the act of writing fanfiction come from. Mostly, I just like this line:
Then I remember that not everyone spends as much time on the internet as I do, and I calm down.
It sums up my whole life.
2014 Was the Year Men Finally Got Feminism (Mother Jones)
We’ve been talking about feminism a lot in our house lately. I mean, I talk about it a lot, anyway, because I’m an “ultra feminist” or whatever, but it’s been a topic of discussion a lot between J. and me. We’ve been talking about what it means to be a man and a feminist, what it means to be a “real” feminist, why it’s so important to identify as one today, etc. etc. So this article struck a chord with me:
The arrival of the guys signifies a sea change, part of an extraordinary year for feminism, in which the conversation has been transformed, as have some crucial laws, while new voices and constituencies joined in. There have always been men who agreed on the importance of those women’s issues, and some who spoke up, but never in such numbers or with such effect. And we need them. So consider this a watershed year for feminism.
I’m not sure how much new stuff there is here for people who are already clued into what’s happening, but it’s nice to see an article recognizing that more men are doing the work necessary to examine the movement, etc etc. Also, this:
Feminism needs men. For one thing, the men who hate and despise women will be changed, if they change, by a culture in which doing horrible things to, or saying horrible things about, women will undermine rather than enhance a man’s standing with other men.
It’s a good read and a strong primer for anyone who wants to dip their feet into what it all means.
What got you reading and thinking this week?