We all have a favorite children’s picture book – one we read over and over, or that our parents did funny voices for. After revisiting my childhood and experiences growing up through Harry Potter, I wanted to look to some of my earlier literary experiences.
When I was in my local bookstore last week, I perused through the Children’s section and picked up some books clearly aimed towards girls. One, the Girls’ Doodle Book, included pictures you could finish – mostly structured around things like butterflies, flowers, baking, and nesting. Boys, on the other hand, had a doodle book where they drew inventions, action scenes, machinery. The other was geared towards “tomboys”, showing that it’s OK to like worms and sports and hate wearing dresses …
Over the past few weeks, the story of a Canadian couple who is keeping the gender of their baby, named Storm, a secret, has made headlines. Their reasoning seems to be that they want to allow their child to choose his/her own gender. They want to help him/her avoid feeling trapped by gender and to give him/her more freedom to express himself/herself. Of course, controversy ensued, even resulting in a segment on the Today show.
Afghanistan has had a rough time in recent history. The sudden transformation from fashionable escape for the West to war-torn warlord-ruled landscape to complete Taliban control (and now it seems that the whole place is more or less up for grabs as the current government’s complicity with the Taliban has been revealed) has been something shocking to look at independently of any time period before or after a given moment, or in a historical panorama of the past century.
Kabul was once named the “Paris of the Middle East.” The high society women were very well integrated into European society and many took on French as a second language in an aristocratic gesture to their high-brow city’s namesake.
Effects of Feminism Not Reachable to All Indian Women?
Recently Indian newspapers have been flooded with reports about the Dar-ul-Uloom?s (an Islamic school propagating Sunni Islam in India) fatwa stating that it is un-Islamic for women to work with men. Yet again we appear to be at the crossroads: having to choose between antiquated traditions and moving forward into a society where men and women are accorded with the same level of respect and treated as equals.
As Indian society is relaxing its earlier rigid views about women and their position in society and allowing them to go out and work in cities, the Muslim clerics are adamant about regressing back in time and making sure that the benefits of feminism and society?’s more liberal attitude towards women aren?t passed on to Indian Muslim women.
Music Video Girls: Exploitive or an Industry of Independence
"what happened to the dreams of a girl president? / She's dancing in the video next to 50 cent"
UK TV Channel BBC3 once in a while produces something worth taking a look at, and the minute I saw an advert for their latest one-off documentary endeavour – “Music, Money and Hip-Hop Honeys” – exploring the job that is ‘The Music Video Girl’ – I was intrigued.
Music videos are a subject that I often bring attention to. It is impossible to turn on the latest music channel without being bombarded with a series of greased up women jiggling their bits around in front of the camera. Of course, we can’t forget the men parading around them with the,‘Yes, these are my bitches,’ attitude. Unfortunately, apart from pop …
It breaks my heart whenever I hear that women in China and India are having abortions or killing their new born babies just because they turn out to be girls. I’m pro-choice, but having an abortion because your baby is a girl instead of a boy is just beyond disturbing, sexist, and repulsive. The worst part is, the same attitude is prevalent in North America. We may not be killing our new born daughters (not that I know of at least) but a lot of women are definitely devaluing their gender and have become active participants in our good ol’ patriarchy.
Think of all the times you’ve heard women say that they would rather have a boy if they ever became pregnant. Now …
With all of this talk of the new woman, it only makes sense that society would begin to contemplate the new man. Newsweek attempted to transform a worn down male identity into a modern lifestyle. Though this may have been the goal of “Man Up!”, I felt personally insulted by this story. The message it sent to me was much less appealing, and frankly, quite narrow-minded.
According to this article, masculinity can only be defined within the domain of an archetypal American household. The modern man defines himself, as always, by his home, his wife, and his 2.3 children All the article suggests that men do is start to look after the kids some more. I have more faith in men than that.