books and reading · pop culture

What I’m Reading and Thinking About this Week

These are the things that got me reading and thinking this week.  Without further ado:

How to Support Rad Lady Authors (Book Riot)

This is an excellent, practical piece by Kelly Jensen about how to continue the conversation we’ve been having on social media about sexism in publishing, misogyny in the broader culture, etc.  She offers practical ways to support female authors (and they’re great and totally doable):

Select books written by ladies as book club reads. Select books featuring dynamic female main characters as book club reads, too, then talk about the authors and those characters at your discussions. Make the female experience part of the discussion.

This is the one I’ll be focusing on (though I’m already choosing female-written and driven books).

Things I Believe to be True with Perfect Trust and Perfect Faith About Yesterday’s Modern Love Column (The Toast)

Mallory Ortberg’s lengthy, itemized responses to articles on the internet are basically my favorite things to read because they combine snark with incredulity and also intelligent dissection.  This one is totally worth it for so many reasons.  In this case, Ortberg takes on a piece about a woman who received a marriage proposal from a man over her answering machine:

3. Here is a list of the “feeling words” this woman uses to describe the man she marries:

lithe
eager
balding
flattery
revolted
onslaught
hyper
THAT’S LITERALLY IT

Ortberg isn’t done, though:

This article was 100% written by a cynical detective in a John Fante novel, not a living human woman. This is a misogynist’s idea of a femme fatale whose veins run with ink and interest, not blood. Right? This woman cannot exist. She must not exist. She is the most banal and simultaneously the most monstrous person to ever move to Florida; her heart is a gun and her brain is a ledger.

It goes on and gets funnier and smarter.  It is 100% worth your time to read it.

How I Made Peace with My Love of Makeup (Ravishly)

As a lover of makeup and also a loud and proud feminist (remember, I was called an “ultra feminist” by a dude who used it as a pejorative not that long ago), this is an essay that is near and dear to my heart.  It’s a pretty simple premise: Dimeo-Ediger loved makeup but wondered if that meant she was buying into the beauty myth that the patriarchy and capitalism were trying to sell to her.  So she went without it and discovered that she didn’t need it, but she missed it:

Makeup was a creative outlet, a form of self-expression, a fun hobby, and an almost sacred form of “me time.” What if my makeup obsession wasn’t driven by weak will and pressure from fashion magazines? What if I just really liked makeup?

The article is about finding a middle ground, which is something I’m working on, too.  I’m down to one beauty box subscription (and consider cancelling it every single month), and I don’t wear a face full of makeup to work (it’s usually just concealer and mascara these days).  But I do love listening to music and staring into the mirror when I’m getting ready to go out.  I like that it affords me some totally selfish me time, and that I feel happy with getting to change the way I look for a few hours.

What got you reading and thinking this week?

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