Entries Tagged as 'Notices & Announcements'

Tuesday, December 1st, 2009

The little blog lives again!

And it’s all down to this guy:


I don’t think I’ve ever been happier on a Tuesday morning.

Thursday, February 19th, 2009

for joy

naom naom naom

via @barrysaunders on Twitter

Thursday, January 1st, 2009

Happy New Year!

I have been neglecting this poor blog for my cookery blog, but I couldn’t resist sharing the joy that was my family Christmas this year. We went to my cousin Narelle’s house in Fullerton Cove, just north of Newcastle. Everyone enjoyed themselves tremendously, but our beloved Aunty Tiser seemed to enjoy herself the most:

The first throbbing V8s of Australia’s pre-eminent bogan festival, Summernats, could be heard gathering last night. Expect updates.

Friday, October 10th, 2008

a big shout-out

I would just like to say a hearty “thank you!” to the lovely financial advisor from the ANZ who cancelled our meeting 5 weeks ago, the one where I was to sign over all the secret squirrel money I have in the whole world to your “moderately aggressive” investment strategy. Love your work, Geoff!

Sunday, September 21st, 2008

The Great Feminist Denial – more than just pole dancing and brazilians, although they do feature

MUP sent me a copy of The Great Feminist Denial, by Monica Dux and Zora Simic, which was nice of them. Here are some thoughts about it. I would have liked to been able spend more time thinking about it, but life intervened.

As a young woman, I would identify as a feminist if asked, but it wasn’t something that I foregrounded. I grew up in an explicitly feminist, activist and very middle class household, and so did my partner. I expected that I was entitled to be treated as a human being, and that I wouldn’t be passed over or denied opportunity because I’m female. What made me more strongly identify as feminist was getting older entering the workforce and learning a bit more about the world. Since I started blogging I’ve ramped up my feminist identification again after seeing misogyny and feminist-blaming in the blogosphere.

So I’m not the target market for this book, which attempts to pick apart why young women are so alienated from feminism.

The authors relied on an informal survey, which they say is not meant be scientific or statistically valid. But they don’t give us much information about it and it all ends up coming across a bit like a Cleo article. In fact, most of the first half of the book has that feel, leading me to wonder whether tighter editing could have woven the two author’s contributions together more seamlessly (and got rid of the typoes and a few other infelicities – for example talking about “‘control crying’ and ‘attachment mothering’” rather than “controlled crying” and “attachment parenting”. )

Dux and Simic say that the feminist that lives in the imaginations of young women as channelled through the mass media “is a feminist who hasn’t kept up with the times, an anachronism that overshadows the way women perceive contemporary feminism”, and that those negative stereotypes persist because there are so few positive images of feminists about. It’s a problem, but the answer can’t be this ahistorical rejection of an unpretty, serious and passionate form of feminism:

“While the ideas of the radical lesbian feminists might seem threatening to many, their power is largely illusory. Their influence on the feminist movement in Australia has been about as significant as that of an eccentric opposition backbencher in our federal parliament.”

Particularly when they have correctly identified the media’s tendency to discuss feminism without feminists, why are they doing this?

Grrr. And there’s a lot more grr in a long thread at the Hoydens’ in response to a recent op-ed in the Age by Monica Dux, including comment from Dux. The op-ed serves to highlight the book’s problems with tone and to show up how an ironic authorial voice only really works when your reader already knows what you mean and is inclined to agree with you. Irony is actually easier to use successfully in the context of blogging because bloggers are more enmeshed with their readers. Also we have smilies ;)

The authors point to lively feminism on the web and include a lengthy interview with tigtog and Lauredhel from Hoydens About Town. The interview is weirdly tacked on the end of a chapter in a grey box and not contextualised or developed. And why don’t they consider whether the online world might be a better vehicle to inform young women about feminism than a mass media that shown it doesn’t care to?

The tone of the second half of the book is more sober and analytical, and I found it much more persuasive. They canvas a number of media debates where strawfeminists have been invoked – in respect of single women, mothers in the paid workforce, raunch and the positioning of feminists as neglectful or uncaring of Muslim women by the “noisy sisterhood” of female MSM columnists such as the late Pamela Bone and Miranda Albrechtson. Angela Shanahan gets a thump too, which earnt my hearty approval.

These descriptive sections are fairly solid, but their attempts to reframe the debates seem underdone in the face of the relentless volume of their earlier material. For example in their discussion of mothers they suggest reframing the conversation as one about “rights” rather than “choices” but don’t acknowledge how rights discourse almost inevitably resolves into a contest of asserted rights. They claim that “choices made by labouring women are a little like confessions extracted under torture”. They ask whether the lower c-section rates and better perinatal mortality (I wonder whether it’s actually morbidity; no reference was cited) enjoyed by Dutch women are a result of robust health attributable to clog wearing. I know, I know, it’s a joke, but it’s not funny and it detracts from the seriousness of the argument.

See also a post by Helen from Cast Iron Balcony, who liked the book more than I did. I wish I had liked it more, but I think the problems with tone and clarity hobbled their attempt to persuasively address misrepresentations and misunderstandings of feminism.

Sunday, August 24th, 2008

Me tooism

Everybody’s doing it. You can make them here, and you can see Laura‘s, and PavCat‘s and Kirsty‘s and BlueMilk‘s.

Saturday, August 9th, 2008

The olympics rocks for the same reasons that airports rock.

Did you see the 48 kilo women’s weightlifting? Wow. Heh.

And whatever else you think about China, they’re on message, aren’t they?

Also, I miss you Paul.

Sunday, August 3rd, 2008

Jane Austen is aware of all internet traditions

A belated welcome to the new bloggers of the Rethinking Jane Austen course at La Trobe University. Here’s a little something I whipped up earlier:


An explanation of title is here, and here is the blog of the phenomenon.

Hat tip to Hoyden About Town.

(And yes, I will post proper soon.)

Bad Behavior has blocked 286 access attempts in the last 7 days.

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