By Emily Johnson, Woodhull Alumna
(This post first appeared on my blog ReelGirl)
Just back from Hardly Strictly Bluegrass, the free three day music festival in Golden Gate Park. Patti Smith is one of the all time best performers I’ve ever seen. She is a total rockstar, swaggering on stage like Mick Jagger or Jim Morrison, so in control of everything, with her callbacks and clapping, she played the audience like an instrument. When she covers songs you think you know well, they sound like nothing you’ve heard before; she slows it all down, savoring every word. Her “Play With Fire” was intense and beautiful with two stanzas of her own lyrics inserted in the middle. If anyone recorded it (I saw you all!) please post. Smith told everyone how lucky we were to live here and then she recited the prayer of St. Francis, reminding the audience to “Be happy, work hard, love one another.” Listening to her under all that swaying Eucalyptus, the fog wisping in around us, was a great San Francisco moment.
by Leighann Lord, Woodhull Alumna
Originally posted to Leighann Lord’s Comic Perspective on September 9th
I’m not a buxom babe and I’m at peace with that. I wasn’t always. Puberty was a trial. Despite reading Judy Blume’s “Are You There God, It’s Me, Margaret” and faithfully executing its famous exercises – repeat after me if you remember: “I must, I must, I must increase my bust!” — my little cupcakes seemed genetically preordained to be modest. They’re a respectable 34B instead of the sought after 36C or dare I dream, D.
I once went to Victoria Secret to get measured, to make sure I was wearing “the right bra.” I was secretly hoping they’d find something I’d missed. The good news? Yes, I was wearing the wrong size bra. The bad news? It was too big for me. According to the evil Victoria Secret measuring tape, I’m a double A. Stand back everybody. I’m packing batteries. I’m an academic. Going from a “B” to an “A” is supposed to be a good thing. What can I say but, “Fie on you, Victoria, and a pox on your secret!”
Originally posted to ReelGirl on September 21, 210
Mia Herndon, Executive Director of Third Wave,
an organization run by and for young women and transgender youth age 35 and under, believes that shutting down Craigslist’s ‘adult services’ section is a simplistic and ultimately ineffective response to the complex issues around sex work and young people.
Herndon says, “Craigslist is one of the few sites that worked with law enforcement. It’s not the right target.”
by Donna Decker, Woodhull Alumna
Originally posted to Ms. Magazine Blog on September 20th.
Jonathan Franzen’s Freedom is your book club selection, the first book of your last season?
The man who told National Public Radio in 2001:
“I had some hope of actually reaching a male audience and I’ve heard more than one reader in signing lines now at bookstores say, ‘If I hadn’t heard you, I would have been put off by the fact that it is an Oprah pick. I figure those books are for women. I would never touch it.’ Those are male readers speaking. I see this as my book, my creation.”
The man who told USA Today he feels bad to have been in the position to “give offense to someone who’s a hero–not a hero of mine per se, but a hero in general.”
Face it, Oprah: he’s just not that into you. He’s just not that into women readers.
by Margot Magowan, Woodhull co-founder
Originally posted to her blog ReelGirl on September 20th.
After coming under fire from women’s organizations such as The Rebecca Project, which successfully pressured law enforcement, Attorney Generals from states across the country finally shut down Craigslist’s adult section. A victory for women and the power of women’s organizations: prostitution and sex trafficking was being advertised on the popular site out in the open as if it were no big deal and perfectly legal. Now its all been shut down! Hurray!
But is Craigslist’s “erotic services” section closing a real victory for women and victims of sex crimes?
No doubt it’s shocking that sex and sex with children was being sold blatantly on the internet– and shocking that no one seemed shocked– letting it all just go on for years like no one cared and it didn’t matter at all except to a few fanatic feminist organizations. Not only was Craigslist perpetuating child abuse and illegal activities, but the company was making 36 million dollars from its adult section.
But is shutting down Craigslist’s adult section really just shooting the messenger?
The Woodhull Institute is proud to suport NOW-NYC for their upcoming event:
Supersexxxed: Porn and Pop Culture
Wednesday, September 29 at 6:30 PM
The National Organization for Women in NYC hosts internationally acclaimed activist, scholar and social critic Gail Dines, author of Pornland: How Porn Has Hijacked Our Sexuality. Whether it’s film, television, music videos or magazine ads – you name it – our visual landscape has been “pornified.” Gail’s perspective on the industrialization of porn, now a $96 billion dollar industry, is not to be missed. Join us for what promises to be an eye-opening conversation on how porn is changing our culture, relationships and sexuality. Please note: this presentation will contain graphic images.
Suggested donation: $5 for NOW-NYC members & students | $15 for non-members
Reserve your seat with an advance online donation at www.nownyc.org or RSVP to 212.627.9895 | firstname.lastname@example.org
Event Location: 434 West 33rd Street, Penthouse Conference Center & Terrace
Subway: A, C, E to 34th Street
By Lori Sokol, Woodhull Alumna
Originally published in The Newswomen’s Club of NY’s Blog on August 23, 2010
The media frenzy over actress Portia de Rossi seeking to change her name to Portia DeGeneres is sure to infuriate long-standing feminists who have fought long and hard for women to keep their maiden names. Or not?
The issue of marital name change can strike near to the hearts of women journalists who often struggle when they marry with whether to give up the bylines that they’ve worked hard at establishing.
De Rossi, 37, recently filed a petition in a Los Angeles court to legally take the last name of her famous same-sex partner, Ellen DeGeneres. California Assemblywoman Fiona Ma introduced a bill that would make California the seventh state to give married spouses and domestic partners equal opportunity to take their surname of choice. Ma says the proposal is really about “equality in relationships.”
But would pioneering feminists like Lucy Stone agree?
by Nancy Matsumoto, Woodhull Member
Originally published to Eating Disorders Blogs on August 6th, 2010
Good news, everyone! The National Eating Disorders Association toolkit for coaches and trainers that I have been coordinating and writing for the better part of the past year has just been launched online. You can download and view it here.
Organized sport, often as early as at the middle school level, emphasizes the achievement of lean muscle mass, peak fitness levels and winning at all costs. The most successful athletes are driven, highly competitive and intensely perfectionistic, traits that just happen to be risk factors for disordered eating and eating disorders. For a genetically susceptible child or adult, the combination of these traits and sport can be dangerous; it’s no surprise that there is a high incidence of eating problems among competitive athletes.
Woodhull Alumna, Erin Tompkins, is reviewed in the final paragraph of the article below in response to her final program performed at the Bay Area Summer Opera Theater Institute (BASOTI).
” Both Tompkins and Georgieva worked excellently with Gomez in establishing the complexities of their respective characters; and those complexities then emerged from solid musical execution that established that these should, by all rights, be two great Verdi voices in the making. If BASOTI is fundamentally a commitment to the future of opera, than Tompkins and Georgieva affirmed that commitment, leaving us with confidence that the future of opera is, indeed, a good one.”