Category Archives: gender equality

December 7, 2014, 11:13 am

Is The New Republic Dead? Who Cares?

game-of-thrones-10

What do you mean A DIGITAL MEDIA COMPANY????

I won’t even begin to try to recapture the traffic on Facebook about the recent implosion of The New Republic (mostly because I don’t have time to ask my friends if I can quote them) but several things surprised me about this event.

First, many people who have resigned from TNR in the past week are friends of mine. Second, they were all men, and all white. Yes, this honkin’ radical lesbian has a lot of #whitemalefriends, and some of them wrote for TNR. Surprise!  None of my friends who resigned from this 100-year-old publication were gay, people of color or women: they never wrote for, or worked at, TNR in the first place.

I was unaware of all these things since I haven’t had a subscription to TNR since college (and yes, contra one of my friends, I do…

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November 16, 2014, 10:15 am

Sunday College Roundup

This sweet guy is Derrick Gordon, first out gay man to start a DI college hoops game.

This sweet guy is Derrick Gordon, first out gay man to play in a DI college hoops game.

A powerful essay by Yale professor of women, gender and sexuality studies Inderpal Grewal about why racial and gender diversity on the faculty matters to how women, people of color and queers are treated on campus. Check out the section of the comments thread where someone (presumably a Yalie but maybe not) claims WGSS is not getting adequate resources from the university because the courses are easy A’s, providing even more evidence for what Grewal has argued.

This week, Derrick Gordon, of the University of Massachusetts, the first men’s DI college basketball player to come out as gay, started his first game since the announcement on April 9. Note to campuses trying to recruit talented scholar-athletes: he chose UMass be…

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September 20, 2013, 11:47 am

When Tennis Was King: An Interview With Historian Susan Ware

gamesetmatchToday is the fortieth anniversary of the Battle of the Sexes, Billie Jean King’s legendary 1973 victory at the Astrodome over former tennis champion-turned-hustler Bobby Riggs. In Game, Set Match: Billie Jean King and the Revolution in Women’s Sports (University of North Carolina, 2011), Susan Ware, biographer and women’s historian, used the match to tell a bigger story about the role of feminism in sports and the role of sports in popularizing feminist ideals about women’s equality. Here’s a segment she did on MSNBC’s Up with Steve Kornacki on Sunday, September 15.

Susan and I had the opportunity to see the women’s semi-final matches at the U.S. Open this year. At this prestigious tournament,  women’s prize money has been equal for almost four decades because of King’s leadership in women’s professional tennis, and (more…)

June 26, 2013, 12:44 pm

It’s Called Equal Protection and Due Process, Associate Justice Scalia

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As Associate Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote for the majority in today’s historic decision to overturn the Defense of Marriage Act, “DOMA seeks to injure the very class New York seeks to protect. By doing so it violates basic due process and equal protection principles applicable to the Federal Government.” (p. 20)

Yep. What he said: seeks to injure. That is exactly what those people who wrote, promoted, and signed, DOMA sought to do, for their own political gain. Back in 1996, the House Judiciary Committee explicitly stated that the Defense of Marriage Act was intended to “reflect and honor a collective moral judgment and to express moral disapproval of homosexuality.”

The “plain English” version of United States v. Windsor from Amy Howe is over at SCOTUS Blog:

The federal Defense of Marriage Act defines “marriage,” for purposes of over a thousand federal laws and programs, …

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December 16, 2010, 2:16 pm

It’s A Poor Sort Of Memory That Only Works Backwards; Or, New (Old) Thoughts About Tenure

Alice Ad-dressing the White Queen.

`You’re wrong there, at any rate,’ said the Queen: `were you ever punished?’

`Only for faults,’ said Alice.

`And you were all the better for it, I know!’ the Queen said triumphantly.

`Yes, but then I had done the things I was punished for,’ said Alice: `that makes all the difference.’

`But if you hadn’t done them,’ the Queen said, `that would have been better still; better, and better, and better!’ Her voice went higher with each `better,’ till it got quite to a squeak at last.

Lewis Carroll, Through the Looking Glass (And What Alice Found There) (1871)

Paul Caron over at Tax Prof Blog reports that a new study “conducted under the auspices of the American Bar Foundation with additional funding from the Law School Admission Council” finds that “the perceptions of female tenured faculty members and tenured faculty of color” about the granting of tenure in law…

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October 11, 2010, 1:22 am

What is Our Work? Towards A Feminist Future in Education

Ellie Smeal and Alan Alda, ERA rally
June 30, 1981.  Photo credit

This concludes a three part series on feminist education:  you may want to read Part I and Part II first.

Gender inequality occurs in educational, and subsequently professional, atmospheres in which we have substantial evidence that men and women are equally able. The gender gap in math testing is shrinking rapidly, and at the top levels, it is insignificant. But as  New York Times reporter Tamar Lewin noted in her commentary on “Why So Few,” a lack of faith in women’s abilities on the part of those who should be welcoming them to the next level of achievement may also reduce the confidence of even the top young female mathematicians. Hence, as Lewin concluded, “girls’ lesser belief in their own skills may partly explain why fewer women go into scientific careers.”

So returning to the question I asked in a…

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June 8, 2010, 12:46 pm

Gonna Walk Before They Make Me Run: On Helen Thomas And Retirement

Because of my grown niece, a second wave feminist in a third wave body, I took an interest in Helen Thomas a few years back. Third Wave Niece, a Smith grad, is very into biographies of interesting women who have battled their way through to careers that are characterized by their maleness — journalism, politics, and whatnot. So I purchased a copy of Thomas’s Front Row At The White House: My Life And Times (Scribners, 2000) and read it. A lively account of her career with UPI, it’s a great history of journalism from one woman’s point of view. But it’s also graphic example of all the ways women were locked out of professional life in structural ways until federal legislation, and lawsuits filed under that legislation, literally permitted them in the room. As Thomas (a not particularly ideological feminist) broke down those barriers in political reporting, women streamed in behind he…

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June 6, 2010, 2:08 pm

Sunday Radical Roundup: Policy History Conference Summary

Because I can only be one place at a time, and because I left Columbus at noon yesterday, my view of the Policy History Conference has necessarily been partial. But one of the thing I learned Friday night at the reception sponsored by the Miller Center at UVA is that the sponsoring organization, The Institute for Political History, is relatively young. Founded in 2000, it “supports the training and research projects of graduate students interested in American political history.” As Matt Lassiter explained to me, the organization was responding to a sense that the field was losing ground, but an ironic outcome has been that many of those drawn to the organization are intellectually committed to bringing other fields associated with cultural and social history to bear on politics. As Lassiter put it, it’s “all good.” That would be my take too.

Closer investigation reveals a somewhat

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May 14, 2010, 12:19 pm

Ova There! Ova There! Send The Word, Send The Word, Ova There!

After reading a critical piece in the New York Times about the booming market in Ivy League ova earlier in the week, Radical Correspondent Oklahoma Annie writes that she was “incensed” by it:

What’s going on, in summary, is this: Agencies who traffic in human ova are seeking the highest achieving young women from top universities as donors, and are offering them upwards of $10,000 to donate their eggs.

The American Society for Reproductive Medicine, which set the $10,000 cap on payments in its guidelines, is now “concerned” that young women may be lured by excessively high payments to become donors “against their own best interests.”

Now, excuse me, but we’re talking about the top percentile, crème de la crème of American elite universities, and we’re afraid they won’t be able to make informed decisions about their own health and finances?

Well, OK, so we’re also…

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August 30, 2008, 1:57 pm

Is Sarah Palin Good For Women?

A commenter who can only be known as Anonymous 7:50 (choose names, people! it’s half the fun of blogging!) asked yesterday on my Obama post, “So, given all that, what didja think of the Palin selection today? Another historic step in the advancement of
women?” I hope this person is one of my students, because it is one of the best questions I have been asked lately and the idea that I might encounter Anonymous 7:50 in the classroom sounds fun.

My answer, less direct than you might like, is: Yes. I Suppose. And No. Not Really. And — Good For Her! Let’s Crack Open A Cold One!

For details on Sarah Palin’s career, you can go to this article in the Los Angeles Times. For her official bio, including pictures of her family and of the Governor holding a dead caribou by its rack, click here. For a checklist of why Palin strengthens the McCain ticket among conservatives, go to the…

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