Category Archives: Mommy Dearest

April 5, 2015, 8:14 am

Sunday Radical Roundup: What We Are Reading

bugs-bunny-clip-art-16It’s Easter, it’s Passover. But what is Tenured Radical doing? Visiting Mom and catching up on email, that’s what. But in the middle of everything, there is time to read, and here are a few things that have caught my eye:

  • Oh My God! I Left the Baby on the Bus! A brilliant essay about choosing not to have children — many times — by M.G. Lord, “You’d Be Such a Good Mother. If Only You Weren’t You,“ Dame (April 3, 2015.) Yes, yes, and yes.
  • You Must remember This. Daniel Zalewski’s essay, “Life Lines,” The New Yorker (March 30, 2015), is about an artist and illustrator whose hippocampus and memory were zapped by encephalitis. I cannot even begin to describe what an amazing essay this is. Not one of those New Yorker pieces that endlessly devolves into brain science, it teaches about the brain and brain research through the life this former New Yorker cover illustrator Lonnie Sue…

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May 12, 2013, 12:00 pm

Mama Tried: A Queer Mother’s Day Celebration


If you aren’t a mother, you have had one at some point, right? Talk about an all-inclusive holiday that is ripe for queering! So without further ado:

Madwoman With A Laptop Has A Mother Too! All us feminists come from somewhere, don’t we? Tracing the impact of the gifts our momz gave us is an important part of our generational history. Go here for my favorite queer English proffie and the impact a plane ticket can make on a young woman’s life. Mother’s Day is a dopey, reactionary holiday, but a mother’s touch can make all the difference.

Best Gay-Straight Alliance I Know: If one mother is good, two is better! Top of the day to Jennifer and Deirdre Finney-Boylan, who are once again making the rounds of talk shows and women’s mags on behalf of queer families everywhere.  Has any couple in history ever had such a high tolerance for repeatedly answering the question: “But are…

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January 17, 2011, 4:29 pm

Old Racism, New Clothes: Middle Class Child Abuse Is Not An Asian Thing

White women can be good mothers too, Amy!

It isn’t news that Yale Law prof Amy Chua has written a book about what she calls her “Tiger Mother” philosophy of parenting.  Most of us would never have known about it if her publicist had not arranged to have an op-ed placed in  the Wall Street Journal called “Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior.”  It went viral, at least on academic Facebooks, almost immediately.  Re-packaging the model minority thesis as a tough love philosophy, rather than the genetic predisposition to excellence that ignoramuses talked about for years, it raises a fascinating set of questions about the social construction of race as it intersects with ideologies of parenting.  It has also, according to ABC News, caused Chua to receive death threats from readers who were outraged at parenting techniques that include yelling at her children, forcing them to practice the violin…

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