Two inspiring reads

For those of you in the states already back in school, those of you in Canada gearing up for Orientation Week, and those of us in the UK and elsewhere counting the dwindling days of summer, here are two inspiring feminist reads to rev your teaching engines.

One is rather global: a terrific piece by Jane Martinson from last weekend’s Guardian on how mumsnet may be supporting a feminist resurgence, defying BOTH claims that all is won/over for women, AND the notion that moms (especially stay at home moms) cannot be politically or intellectually feminist (or feminist at all). The other is more local, but chimes brilliantly: my Canadian colleague Jessica Schagerl guest-blogs at Fit, Feminist, and Almost Fifty “in praise of physically aggressive sports” and how they support and perpetuate healthy feminist experiences both on and off the playing field.

These posts excited me precisely because they offer two totally different views of what feminism looks like while conveying a very similar feminist ethos: the notion that women can come together and find solidarity across a wide range of activities (from goal-scoring to breast feeding), whether those activities are culturally marked as “feminist” or not. Divergent representations of feminism are, in my experience, key to talking about what feminism is, what it could be, and what it can do for younger men and women who have grown up with a decidedly narrow, stereotyped understanding of the term – something that often leads to the perpetuation of a knee-jerk, media-driven anti-feminism. I’m going to keep both of these pieces handy as the term starts up again, ready to press them into skeptical hands.

Click and enjoy. Meanwhile, the sun is shining and my calendar still reads August. I’m going to go jump in the lido!

Cheers to September,


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