December 8, 2013


  • Technology for women! Microsoft created a prototype for a high-tech bra that prevents women from overeating. It might be worth asking how they plan to market an app that reminds you that you are out of control. And also, won’t those reminders only contribute to the anxiety that apparently plagues ‘emotional eaters’? And also, how come Harvard Medical School is investing time and money in this development? Booo.
  • Friday was the 24th anniversary of the Montreal Massacre and the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women. Christina Turner discusses the ongoing discrimination and violence against women in Canadian post-secondary institutions in her piece: Remembering the Montreal Massacre on campus.
  • There are some great responses to Catching Fire this week. We are excited that, in a not so distant world, the revolution is necessary. But it’s also fun to imagine a revolution that might alter the tired gender dynamics of Suzanne Collins’s narrative, which is, inevitably, still driven by a kind of compulsory monogamy.
  • In her smart piece on hyperemployment and the feminization of technology, Robin James asks the pertinent question: “Does digital technology, especially insofar as it is masculinized or seen as gender-neutral, resignify the gendered stigma conventionally attached to care work, affective work, and other sorts of feminized work that never quite counts as ‘real’ labor?”
  • James Butler talks to Dawn Foster in an inspiring interview about the failures of prescribed feminism to address the issues of class and work.
  • In an excerpt from “a book of women talking about the processes of becoming themselves” Carla Blumenkranz, Emily Gould, and Emily Witt talk about the books that changed their lives: How to deal with misogynists and male masturbation.
  • In her blog post “Comrades,” Jodi Dean builds on Mark Fisher’s recent critique of identity politics, “Exiting the vampire’s castle.” For those of us writing daily cover letters and competing for underpaid, contract positions, Dean’s points could not be more relevant: “Work is more and more figured as an individual matter. It’s a choice, an option, a matter of one’s own unique ability to work hard, play the game, think outside the box, be a team player, demonstrate leadership skills, give a 110 percent, seize the opportunity, and take risks. One has to be be unique, different from all the rest, so that one stands out from the crowd, shows that one has what it takes — no wonder it’s hard for some people to think of themselves as part of the 99%. The demands of so-called flexible employment (flexible for whom?) make the process of differentiation constant and inescapable: one is perpetually trying to show that one is the best for whatever job comes around.”
  • “Suddenly, it feels a lot like 1984—not the iconic 1984 of Orwell’s dystopia, but the 1984 in which Margaret Atwood composed The Handmaid’s Tale.” Check out Rebekah Sheldon’s great piece, Somatic capitalism: reproduction, futurity, and feminist science fiction. 
  • And finally, Deformed freak born without penis: “Sources said the abnormal, visibly blemished creature has been repeatedly passed over for employment opportunities, frequently gawked at and harassed on the street by total strangers, and has faced near constant discrimination for over two decades, all due to the horrific and debilitating birth defect.”


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