Feminist Philosophers

News feminist philosophers can use

F*** Safe Space September 7, 2014

Filed under: academia,glbt — Lady Day @ 11:30 pm

On Canadian university campuses, Frosh Week (orientation week for freshmen) has just ended. Frosh Week typically involves a mixture of official and unofficial activities, and the donning of various types of matching apparel. Alas, the apparel at Carleton University in Ottawa included t-shirts reading “Fuck Safe Space.” According to this story from Carleton’s student newspaper, The Charlatan, a handful of people were wearing the shirts, in apparent defiance of Carleton’s safe space program, which seeks to “reduce the impact of homophobia and heterosexism on campus.” Apparently, the t-shirts, which were not official Frosh Week garb, were donned by upper year students at the close of Frosh Week to protest aspects of the Frosh Week contract to which Frosh leaders were signatory.

 

ED: As anonymous and Rachel rightly point out, the Charlatan story I linked here describes a handful, not hundreds, of frosh leaders wearing the offending shirts. I misread the sentence in the original and have now corrected the post above.

 

 

On Sochi-mania and the media’s appropriation of LGBTQ* rights February 10, 2014

Filed under: glbt,sports — Lady Day @ 4:59 pm

I am one of the people who has been delightedly sharing on Facebook various videos, adverts, and so on inspired by Sochi and by solidarity with Russia’s LGBTQ* population. In the case of corporations like Britains’s Channel 4 and Google that have, in one way or another, flown the rainbow flag since the Olympics began, I have no illusions. They’re corporations and their stance on Sochi is ultimately marketing. However, I’m enough of an incrementalist to think to myself, “Well, whatever their motives, it’s better for the big corporations to think it’s profitable to trumpet LGBTQ* solidarity than not.” And, in my more optimistic moments, I hope that the international outcry against Russia’s anti-LGBTQ* legislation might mark a positive sea-change.

A large bearded man, shirtless, wearing red shorts, bear ears and boots, is flanked by women in silver lame body suits and fur hats. Behind them is a large rainbow with many electric lights.

A frame from a pro-LGBTQ* ad Britain’s Channel 4 broadcast repeatedly the night of the Sochi opening ceremonies

Over at A Thousand Flowers, however, B. Smeaton is not so optimistic. Not sure if I agree with everything in this post, but it’s thoughtful and well worth the read.

Here’s a taste:

Turning off your TV during Sochi and climbing the gay mountain is unlikely to do much good for LGBTQ people at home or in Russia, at least in my mind. On the one hand it provides nothing more than a problematic distraction from a violent situation in one of the world’s largest countries, on the other it paints very dangerous images of what LGBTQ people are like and how they think. If we are to be serious about challenging the tired stereotypes and tropes, we don’t let straight marketing executives and editors tell us what is and isn’t ‘gay’, not in Russia, not in Rutherglen, and what the appropriate response is. That’s for The Gays® (remember them?) to decide – listen to them.

 

What’s the state of your state? January 25, 2014

Readers: Does your state/city/municipality have non-discrimination protections for the LGBTQ communities? Is there relevant legislation in place or pending that you know of? Post here on the state of the laws in your place of residence with regard to LBGTQ equality for the sake of our readers on the market, and save some already exhausted candidates some time.

 

NFL Player fired for speaking up in favor of equality? January 2, 2014

A pretty stunning account from former Minnesota Vikings punter Chris Kluwe. 

 

Amy serves up some advice November 20, 2013

Filed under: discrimination,glbt,sexual orientation — philodaria @ 5:10 pm

Is your son really gay, or is he just trying to get back at you for forgetting his birthday the past three years? Not sure how to get him to stop before your church group finds out? Amy Dickinson is on the case. (With advice you probably won’t like if you weren’t offended by those two questions.)

 

Transgender Day of Remembrance: Two Galleries

Filed under: glbt,trans issues — Lady Day @ 4:21 pm
Tags:

Today is Transgender Day of Remembrance, a date set aside in 1999 in memory of the murder the previous year of transwoman Rae Hester.

Fourteen years later, the violence continues. According to HuffPost Gay Voices,

This past year 238 trans* people were murdered worldwide, according to Transgender Europe’s Transgender Murder Project. And these are just a fraction of the real number of deaths, because many go unreported, are not designated as hate crimes, or are not recognized as deaths of trans* people, because the media frequently reports birth-assigned names and sexes without honoring the true chosen names and gender identities of the victims.

And, as is well known, the rates of non-fatal assaults and suicides among trans* people are likewise disastrously high.

Image

Here are two photo galleries to mark Transgender Day of Remembrance.

The first, from Advocate.com features photos and discussions of some of the trans* people who were murdered in 2013. It is a sobering reminder of the importance of this day of remembrance.

The second, much more uplifting, gallery, “16 Beautiful Portraits Of Humans Who Happen to Be Trans,” is part of PolicyMic’s series in honour of Transgender Day of Remembrance 2013.

 

Shakuntala Devi, the Human Calculator (1929-2013) November 5, 2013

Filed under: discrimination,glbt,mathematics,sexual orientation — philodaria @ 4:02 am

If you’re wondering who Google was honoring today on their search page, it was Shakuntala Devi, also known as India’s human calculator. In addition to being famous for her stunning mathematical ability, she also authored The World of Homosexuals, in which she wrote,

When we have arrived at a concept of morality and ethics in interpersonal relationships according to which the dignity of the human condition is respected, we would have ascended to a higher plane of morality in which only hatred is condemned, never love. Then we will have a saner and more healthy society and also a more enlightened sexual morality.

 

The Genderbread Person Redux – When Activism Gets Problematic September 21, 2013

Filed under: body,gender,glbt,internet,sex,sexual orientation,trans issues — Stacey Goguen @ 2:18 pm

[This post has been completely re-written, so if some of the earlier comments seem to be referring to things that aren't here, that's because they are. Thanks to Sam B for pointing out the plagiarism issue and to Rachel for helping me find the end of the article...because it's been just that kind of day for me.]

This weekend I stumbled onto the site It’s Pronounced Metrosexual, and found a graphic explaining the different aspects of sex, sexuality, and gender.

It turns out that site’s creator, Sam Killermann, plagiarized that graphic, and now has thrown a bunch of intellectual property stamps on it, and has even included it in a book he made. (Though you can get the book for free. But he has still made money off of all this.)

The four original authors of the concept are: Cristina GonzálezVanessa PrellJack Rivas, and Jarrod Schwartz

As awesome as it is to have people want to be cis straight while male allies,  we have to as allies constantly keep vigilant that we are not blocking out the voices of the people we are trying to support with our own.  Otherwise we are undermining the very project we are trying to help. And one thing you notice sort of quickly from Killermann’s projects is that you see a lot of him, and hear a lot of his voice but you don’t see or hear a lot of specific people that he is advocating for.

So again, here are some of their voices, specifically on his plagiarism.  (Same link as above.)

And here is one of the earlier gingerbread persons:

Some parts of Killerman’s projects still have merit: the comment thread on this post has some good stuff in it. But I think legitimately, some people will not want to visit his websites.

As Laverne Cox said when this issue of plagiarism was brought to her attention,

“…those who lay the groundwork don’t often get the credit. The universe is trying to tell me something. We cannot silence the voices of those doing the hard work so that we can flourish.”
(Sorry I can’t find the exact tweet. This is also in the storify post linked above.)

That is, without respect for the people we are trying to support, our support is hollow.

From Cisnormativity (the Storify OP):

 Without that respect, any work done in the name of social justice isn’t actually the practice of social justice. It’s erasure. It’s a tossing of the most marginal people from the bus of acceptance, enfranchisement, and citizenship. It’s the theft of lived experiences. It’s why intersectionally marginalized people along multiple axes still cannot reach so many of their dreams, their potentials, or their hopes .

 

More appalling news from Russia July 26, 2013

Filed under: glbt — Monkey @ 5:56 am

TRIGGER WARNING: LINK TO NEWS STORY CARRIES SOME GRAPHIC PHOTOGRAPHS.

So, the crusade against LGBT folks continues in Russia. The Gaily Grind reports that Russian Neo Nazis have been creating fake profiles on dating sites to lure in gay teenagers. When the young men turn up for a date, they are tortured and humiliated. Their treatment is videoed and publicised, outing them to family, friends, and the wider community. Unsurprisingly, the victims are deeply traumatized and many have committed suicide.

Infamous Russian ultra-nationalist and former skin head, Maxim Martsinkevich, known under the nickname “Cleaver” (or “Tesak” in Russian) spearheaded a country wide campaign against LGBT teens using a popular social network VK.com to lure unsuspected victims through personal ads. Mr. Martsinkevich’s numerous and enthusiastic followers started two projects: “Occupy Pedophilyaj” and “Occupy Gerontilyaj”. Allegedly they are trying to identify and report pedophiles using these “movements”. In reality, over 500 online groups have been created inside VK.com social network in order to organize illegal militant groups in every Russian city. Oddly enough their idea of fighting pedophiles targets exclusively male teenagers who respond to the same-sex personal ads and show up for a date. Captured victims are bullied and often tortured while being recorded on video.

You can read more here.

 

This week’s Monkey Medal goes to… July 25, 2013

Filed under: glbt,global justice — Monkey @ 10:04 am

…the major of Reykjavik, Jón Gnarr, who has decided to cut ties with Moscow over Russia’s treatment of LGBT people. Moscow and Reykjavik had agreed to co-operate on family issues, according to a contract drawn up in 2007. But Reykjavik city council have now issued the following statement:

In light of the developments concerning the affairs of gay, bisexual and transsexual people that have taken place in Russia over the last few months, the district attorney, Human Rights Office, Office of the Mayor of Reykjavík, and City of Reykjavík chief administrative officer propose amendments or the termination of the collaboration agreement between Reykjavík and Moscow, in cooperation with the Ministry for Foreign Affairs.

What can I say except, Bravo!

Here is Mr. Gnarr addressing the crowds at gay pride:
Photo from the Guardian.

And here he is riding a truck bearing a Free Pussy Riot banner:

Photo from Twister Sifter.

You can read more from Gay Star News.

 

 
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