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TEACHING THE COMPASSIONATE USE OF POWER
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Archive for January, 2010

29
Jan
How group emotions and issues of collective identity change the world.
by Molly Castelloe Fong, Ph.D. (Woodhull Alumna)
Originally posted to Psychology Today

Suicide bombers blasted Baghdad yesterday, striking three hotels favored by Western businessmen and journalists. In addition to being a tragic event and familiar headline, an expression of political despair – suicide terror is theater.

As with all theater, the main ingredient is conflict. There is often a carefully scripted first Act: the bomber ritualistically gets dressed, ties his shoes. The action gradually escalates to a climax, viewed by certain Muslim audiences as the ultimate test of religious faith.

The hero’s noble death evokes powerful emotions.  For militant Islamics: pleasure, awe, and inspiration. For Western viewers, it is more likely fear and pathos.

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Category : News | Blog
29
Jan

by Madeline Wheeler (Woodhull Alumna)

Originally posted to The Huffington Post

As a woman, mother and activist, to me, one week in American life and politics is like seven dog years. Women don’t need to worry about keeping up with the Joneses. Keeping up with the news alone is a daunting task.

Here are a few stories that have stirred my inner activist. The star-studded Hope for Haiti Now broke telethon records and raised $57 million. China’s attacks on Google highlight problems with cyberspace freedom, censorship, and intellectual property. All three hang in the balance as governments bustle to catch up with technology. And finally, the Supreme Court overturned limits on corporate campaign finance and, in the words of President Obama, sealed a “major victory for big oil, wall street banks, health insurance companies and other powerful interests that…drown out the voices of everyday Americans.”

Don’t be overwhelmed by the news. Learn to take part in it.

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Category : News | Woodhull in the News | Blog
29
Jan

by Nancy Matsumoto (Woodhull Member)

Originally posted to EatingDisorderBlogs.com

Dear Readers,

You may know Diane Israel from the powerful documentary film about her life, Beauty Mark. Diane was a highly successful triathlete for 15 years, the Colorado mountain running champion and a world-class racer. She was also anorexic from about the age of 12 until well into her twenties. She did not have a period until she was 30, and as a result, her bones weakened, leading to 17 stress fractures.  Diane knew what she was doing to her body. Yet the combination of the teen’s belief that she was invincible and her fear the curves and added weight of womanhood would put an end to her running greatness made it easy to ignore the warning signs of a serious eating disorder.

The truth for her and for many eating-disordered athletes is that, “we don’t know how to handle being and staying a great athlete as our body changes,” says Diane. Coaches, she believes, must be educated so they can help the eating-disordered athlete “make the transition into adulthood while remaining a great athlete.”

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Category : News | Blog
29
Jan

by Alexandria Stevens (Woodhull Alumna)

excerpt from Power Tools: Ideas You Can Use to Disassemble Fear

The time has come.  You’ve done the work and honed your skills. You are about to go forth boldly toward what it is you’re really passionate about, but have always been afraid to attempt in the past.  Just before you begin, take a quiet moment and review why you are here:

1 – First and foremost, I am here because I love this activity.  This is my chance to use my talents in a way that is meaningful to me.  I will enjoy every minute of it because it is my passion. The worst part of this whole experience is that eventually, I will have to stop doing it and go back to mundane things like cleaning the toilet and grocery shopping.

Make use of visualization. The brain does not differentiate between what it experiences mentally and what actually happens in reality, so hone those skills in your mind before every attempt.

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Category : Careers | Community Member Projects and Updates | Blog
22
Jan

Written by Woodhull Co-Founder Naomi Wolf, as published in the China Daily on January 22, 2010

As the world struggles to emerge from the economic near-collapse, one sub-group in the United States has slid below the waterline in record numbers: formerly middle-class women. A new report shows that about 1 million American middle-class women will find themselves in bankruptcy court this year. Their number is more than the women who will “graduate from college, receive a diagnosis of cancer, or file for divorce”, according to economist Elizabeth Warren. Their plight, symptomatic in many ways of the plight of women around the world, holds lessons for us all. continue

Category : Education | Woodhull in the News | Blog
20
Jan

by Margot Magowan, Woodhull co-founder

Originally posted to Margot’s blog Reel Girl

The big news in this week’s People Magazine is that Heidi Montag’s plastic surgery has successfully transformed her into the object she always aspired to be. She is now an “it.”

Heidi describes herself: “It’s a new face and a new energy. It’s a new person.”

Yet another People Magazine cover girl exuberantly refers to becoming a real life Cinderella.

(If you recall, the last reference was made by rock star virgin Kevin Jonas’ new wife who was given real glass slippers by her husband as a wedding gift. If you get one thing out of this blog, here it is: Cinderella is not a good movie for your kids **SSS*** Do not let them watch it unless they are 17 or over.)

Heidi goes on to tell People, “I feel like almost all of the things I don’t want to be…got chiseled away.”

When Heidi waxes effusively on the magic of plastic surgery, she refers to a universal fantasy: everyone has flaws they wish they could remove. Unfortunately, these are emotional or historical, not physical– duh.

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Category : News | Blog
12
Jan

by Margot Magowan, Woodhull co-founder

Originally posted to Margot’s blog Reel Girl

woman-on-computerDid anyone read the great article in the NY Times Sunday magazine by Virginia Haffernan? Her whole thesis is that instead of women leaving the home to go out and tackle the world, technology has super-powered our homes and thus given women the tools they require to dominate without walking out the front door.

I never thought of technology that way, as the best thing to happen to women since the pill. I thought of it as useful  but also annoying, and I wished people would get off their blackberries and drive. But I see Haffernan’s point, and I do think its pretty ingenious for women that homebase has been superpowered, that you can write your business plan, skyping with partners in Japan while the baby is napping upstairs.

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Category : News | Blog
12
Jan

by Margot Magowan, Woodhull co-founder

Originally posted to Margot’s blog Reel Girl

hillarypic

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton spoke on the 15th anniversary of the International Conference of Population and Development, reminding us all, choice is not just one issue. (More quotes from her at http://feministing.com/)

Here is what I think– totally obvious– but maybe not: reproductive rights do not exist in isoaltion. They have everything to do with women’s economic and political power, women’s access to education and health care, women’s status in societies, and women’s abilities to take care of themselves and their children.

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Category : News | Blog
11
Jan

Photographs by Joanna Lipper, Woodhull Fellow
as posted in http://socialdocumentary.net/

Seaweed farming is an occupation dominated by women who live in rural villages and it is one of the few jobs accessible to women that pays them in cash.

Joanna Lipper traveled to Zanzibar in the summer of 2009 to photograph women of diverse religious, ethnic, and economic backgrounds in both urban and rural settings. She visited Jambiani, a rural village on the east coast of Unguja where women work as seaweed farmers.  Zanzibar lacks the large-scale infrastructure and hardware needed to process seaweed and extract valuable algae. Therefore the raw materials are shipped abroad. Without microfinance loans, improved education, and community organization amongst laborers, seaweed farming as a cash-generating, economically empowering occupation for rural village women, runs the risk of becoming obsolete in Zanzibar.

Click here to view the exhibit.

Category : Community Member Projects and Updates | Education | Living | Blog
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