July 6, 2014


  • “‘We,’ the people who live here, have never had Canada.” In the week after Canada Day celebrations, there’s time to reflect on the history of our country and its current state. Here’s Judy Rebbick on why she doesn’t celebrate Canada Day, with its nationalist and colonial overtones.
  • One entertaining way to reflect on these issues is to check out the Red Man Laughing podcast  – start with these episodes, which feature 10 incredible Indigenous voices from Canada, including Christi Belcourt, A Tribe Called Red, and Chelsea Vowel, whose “Indigenous Women and Two-Spirited People: Our Work is Decolonization!” was featured in our spring issue.
  • “While it seems that women have accepted the pill’s link to moodiness as a truism—check any online discussion board, where depression, mood swings, and anxiety are frequently reported—this relationship remains understudied in the academic world.” From Hazlitt, Rhiannon Russell on the birth control pill’s dire effects on many women’s moods, and why the medical community remains reluctant to study the links between hormonal birth control and depression.
  • “Women who choose a–holes guarantee child abuse. All the cold-hearted jerks who run the world came out of the vaginas of women who married a–holes. I don’t know how to make the world a better place without holding women accountable for choosing a–holes.” Jessica Roy attends a Men’s Rights Conference in Detroit, and finds that while there are many men in need of a movement that supports them, this hateful group is not it.
  • “I’m a white blonde girl who went out and willfully fucked up and committed armed robbery, and I got five years. There were tons of black girls in my prison who were holding onto a bag of dope for a couple of days, and they always seemed to get, like, 10 years. If you ever find yourself in prison and wonder why there’s tension between white and black, shit like that is probably one of the reasons.” Have you been watching Orange is the New Black? A Washington ex-convict watches the show, and details some inaccuracies and some telling details. 
  • “Male doctors invariably interrupt patients when they speak, especially female patients, but patients rarely interrupt doctors in return. Unless the doctor is a woman. When that is the case, she interrupts far less and is herself interrupted more.” Soraya Chemaly unpacks the conversational patterns that prop up patriarchy in our everyday lives: men interrupt, take credit for women’s ideas, and women’s voices are heard as chatter. Chemaly wants us to teach all girls how to say “Stop interrupting me.” You can practice at home.
  • “Though women are well-represented in undergraduate science courses, fewer and fewer women appear at each subsequent level of study. Fifty-two percent of biology Ph.D.s are women, but their representation shrinks to 39 percent at the postdoc level, and only 18 percent at the tenured professor level. It’s not just biology, either: A 2012 study found that while 50 percent of Ph.D. candidates across the sciences are female, only 21 percent of tenured professors are women.” From Jane Hu at Slatean article with proof that backs up what many people likely already know: that women in the upper levels of scientific world face great obstacles  and systemic barriers to progressing in their careers. A huge part of this has to do with who gets hired at the most prestigious labs – male professors, particularly those with Nobel laureates, are much less likely to hire women to their labs.
  • After he underwent a sex change nine years ago at the age of 42, Barres recalled, another scientist who was unaware of it was heard to say, ‘Ben Barres gave a great seminar today, but then his work is much better than his sister’s'”. For a fascinating first-person account of this gender bias in action, read this article from a scientist who has seen both sides: a transgender biologist who, now that he is a man, receives much more respect for his work.
  • “I asked him if it wasn’t the case that Rad had shunted aside a good, if not excellent, female employee in favor of someone whose main qualification was being his “bro pal.” Munoz laughed. “I think that’s a fair interpretation of events,” he said.” For more dispiriting news about the challenges women face in STEM, a cofounder of Tinder, Whitney Wolfe, has filed a sexual harassment lawsuit against the company due to the actions of another cofounder, Justin Mateen, who has now been suspended indefinitely. 
  • For those in less high-profile positions, here’s a great comic illustrating the frustrations of naming and changing sexist patterns within the heavily male-dominated tech industry.
  • And finally, for an uplifting link, some sweet illustrations that have been floating around the web this week, reminding everyone that they are the only ones who get to make choices about their own bodies.



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