Comments from April 2007

From Irina

Re: Could Britney Spears be the feminist icon of our generation?: I agree with the author, I hate all this Britney-bashing. I had a

poster of her above my desk at my new work saying “hands off Britney”

long ago when some moron came up with computer game where one would

burst her tits (in the times when there were speculations that she

had a boob-job). Just think of it, so much hatred! Ever seen Bush’s

balls on offer to burst on the Internet? Or Hugh Hefner’s nuts to

crack? No? Why not?

Ah, but they are men, and it’s just very cool to hate “a girl”. It’s


Even before Britney hair-do, I was thinking: surely it’s none of your

business how much she parties when all the newspapers wrote about her

in such a chiding tone. They would never allow such tone for a man, the

whole point was policing, finger-wagging, and you only do it to a

girl. Not to a man.

So, they all stink and she is right. I hope she is not down but is

kicking asses, because that’s what all these asses deserve.

From marika lahti

No Britney Spears can never be a feminist icon, regardless of how many

men she dumped, how much attitude she has or how short her hair is;

she is still the girl who’s backed up her career by acting out a role

as a sex symbol. Britney simply enhanced the pre-existing message

that to get somewhere as a woman you need to strip naked, cover

yourself in makeup, fill your breast with silicon and pose for the

cameras: This is not role modelling for women. Feminism is not about

being famous, neither is it about acting as a man or being

aggressive. The closest Britney has been to feminism, in my view, is

when she told the world she had enough of being an object owned by

the public by shaving her hair off. Note that having short hair by

itself is not feminism; but in the context of Britney’s story it is.

Now the next step would be for Britney to speak about her experience:

a chance to be a true role model.

Theadora Jean, author of the article, replies

Fair points, I’d say, and I wanted someone to disagree with me to a certain extent. However, to counter your arguments, I do have some comments of my own.

I never once suggested that being a feminist was about being famous, or acting as a man or being aggressive. I argued that she could be an icon essentially because she has a successful career and continues to do the things she wants to do. Meanwhile she faces constant criticism from the media and the public, and I believe this is because she is a woman. My intention was to encourage women especially to stop targeting a young mother who has a lot of talent and we are led to believe is fairly vulnerable at present. There are many more male figures who I think should be criticised.

You seem to think that the only action she has taken that is vaguely feminist is cutting her hair. I think feminism is much broader than such stereotypes and any woman in my view who makes a success of her life against unsurmountable odds and faces a daily barrage of media intrusion deserves applauding, not denouncing. I don’t think that wearing revealing clothing, makeup or even stripping naked precludes you from being a feminist either. If she was famous for being in a punk rock band would she be more acceptable to you as a face for feminist cause? Beth Ditto, singer for the Gossip, is lauded for being a feminist icon when she takes her clothes off at gigs, and wears skimpy outfits and cosmetics too. Its never been confirmed that she has had a boob job.

I doubt that Ms. Spears herself would describe herself as a feminist, let alone a feminist icon. However my aim when writing the article was to support a woman in the public eye who I think is unfairly lambasted for doing the things that many young women do and should have the freedom to do. Also I wanted other people to think twice before slagging her off when I think she has much to be proud of, and maybe turn the spotlight on some bad fathers that are famous who could probably do with a good (verbal) kicking.

From Michelle Abrahall

I have to admit I was shocked when I saw the shorn Britney, mainly

because she has made money from being a sex symbol, and there aren’t

many bald sex symbols around. But now I think she should leave the

ironic baby-blond wigs at home and flaunt the tank girl look.

From Louise

Britney? A feminist icon? You must be joking. A girl who got breast

implants to sell herself better to the masses, a self-confessed

Christian with conservative values (virginity until marriage! Was

this a clever move to keep her deep-south evangelists fans on side

for a while?), an enthusiastic supporter of G W Bush, an mediocre

entertainer whose lyrics could have been written by a 10-year old, a

career built on gyrating her bottom _ come on, any Hollywood

blonde’s done that, there’s nothing revolutionary about selling your

sexuality. Just because she shaved her head doesn’t make her

feminist, sorry. And please don’t call her punk rock. Good Goddess,

if Britney’s punk then punk’s truly dead. I know there were people

like Courtney Love to celebrate Britney’s new hairdo, and fair enough

this is an unconventional move (for once !), but so far she hasn’t

proved that she had anything radical or remotely feminist to say.

Female chauvinist pig, yeah. Liberated woman ? Mmm. You gonna have to

try harder than this sister.

Theadora Jean, author of the article, responds

I never said feminism was about shaving your head, I actually wrote about how hard she’s worked her entire life, that she is a young mother who is consistently slated for having a social life and who performs minor acts of rebellion against the mainstream. I personally don’t think that to be a feminist you have to adhere to particular political parties or be an atheist.

As for her lyrics, I don’t propose they are genius reams of poetry, but are you suggesting that most punk rock acts are composed of brilliant lyrics? I suspect that your real objection to Britney Spears as a feminist icon or feminist at all is perhaps that you just don’t like her music. Beth Ditto is also fond of taking her clothes of and gyrating, and I imagine she much more fits your bill of what a feminist should be.

My intention while writing the article was to highlight the constant criticism Britney and young women today face, and to try to change peoples perspective of a famous woman in the media (who I believe is unfairly judged on account of being a woman) to be more positive and supportive. But if you’d rather join in with the Britney slagging match, I’m sure you’ll find plenty of punk rockers, conservative christians, and Daily Mail readers right there with you.

From mags

I just can’t agree with what you have written here. As a frequent

reader of this web site I find this article at odds with the usual

intelligent insight to be found on this site. I know everyone is

entitled to an opinion but the one espoused here is the one the

mainstream media feeds us everyday, when women like Britney are still

slaves to, and promote, women to live up to unreachable standards of

objectification etc. etc.

From Amanda

Britney Spears a feminist icon? Ha.

“Tattoes, piercings, perfumes”. Is that the criteria these days?

Let’s get a few things straight. Spears is no rock star. She is not

an exceptionally talented musician, for one. Her fame is based on the

fact that she was a blonde busty teen, total boner material, who had

the potential to sell a hell of a lot of Pepsis. Throughout the

successful era of her career she perpetuated the sexualised image of

unrealistic female beauty, with the help of an airbrush. Her fans

were predominantly a few young women and a lot of young girls, and

yet she was marketed as Sex McSexerson. So she married and divorced

two guys, since when has ranking up a few failed marriages been

something to aspire to? And as for being a mom…i know a whole lot

of moms. I don’t see them being written up as feminist icons either.

And as for the clinch with Madonna -I guess I missed the memo where

straight women who kiss straight women for media attention brought on

by appeasing heterosexual male fantasy was cool again. I mean correct

me if I’m wrong but this wasn’t a moment of womanly loved shared on

Brit’s sofa right, this was onstage at the MTV awards right? Yeah,

thought so.

Okay, even being the Britney cynic that I am, I can give props to her

for shaving her head, as someone whose livelihood has been based on

her looks, but hey, it hardly warrants pinning a medal on her scalp.

From Lucy Griffin

In response to Hair today, mad tomorrow.

As I was walking through a train station the other week two women

caught my attention. One was sashaying along in a pair of 4-inch’ers

and a tight black dress, with shiny, blonde, bouncing, shimmering,

glossy hair, she was followed by around 8 or so drooling men (of

varying ages). The other was walking confidently in comfortable shoes

and a warm coat, she had a completely shaven head and i couldn’t

imagine her to have been more beautiful. She looked stunning and

definitely not in the page 3 way of the above ms shinning bob. The

best thing about this experience was that the bald woman wasn’t

receiving any negative attention, the men let her carry on as normal.

There is a possibility that Britney might just have paved the way for

a more open minded attitude.

From Kat

What about Natalie Portman? The stunning Israeli-American actress had

her head completely shaved ON FILM for the film “V for Vendetta.” She

went to red carpet galas, posed for magazines, all without her hair.

And then after filming wrapped, she stayed bald for a while…because

she LIKED IT! Nobody accused her of lesbianism. Nobody even batted an

eye. In fact, the most people said was how stunning she looked. I

think in overlooking this major example, you overlook a major

issue…that Britney Spears WAS acting crazy. Shaving her head was

not even CLOSE to the craziest thing she was doing at the time! When

a woman acts like a sane, sensible, lovely lady like Natalie did,

being bald is a non-issue.

From Maria Seijo-Richart

Re: A worthwhile women’s day: I loved Angela Brant’s article and I would have loved to attend that

conference. I also had a very enjoyable Women’s Day, this time at

Leeds Met University. The day celebrated the life of Winifred

Mercier, the first female dean of the University (beginning of 20th

century). Most important of all, I commented on my experience as a

teacher in a school where sexism seemed to be encouraged rather than

challenged. The positive responses I received made the day totally


From rach

In the article on housework I was irritated that although you started

by saying that your own husband had normal domestic skills, the tone

of the rest of the article suggested he was in a tiny majority. This

is simply not my experience of modern partnerships – I can think of

one friend whose husband is unable to iron a shirt or make his tea –

amongst my friends (thirty-something professional men and women) he

is considered a somewhat inept throwback to an earlier age and his

wife to be martyring herself like an idiot. When people of both sexes

now live alone for longer surely real partnership is becoming at least

the norm we all aim for. As a female doctor who works variable hours

washing, ironing and cooking is done by the person with the most

time, not the most testosterone.

JC Sutcliffe, author of the article, replies

I’m glad that your experience is so different from mine, and I would certainly expect, as you say, with people living alone for longer that both parties in a relationship would have the necessary domestic skills. But even so equality in the home just hasn’t turned out to be the case among people I know.

It’s not that I think most men don’t have the ability to cook and clean and so on – and even the ones who don’t have no excuse not to learn. But for most of the couples I know, it really is unusual and surprising if the man actually uses these skills without being asked. Even among households where both partners share chores, I can only think of one couple where the woman is not the ‘house manager’ delegating tasks. But I’m pleased you disagree – it gives me hope!

From Summerhill

Brilliant! At last an article about the real world of ordinary day to

day stuff that us feminists inhabit, and not about how we are

portrayed in the ‘meeja’. Well written too. More please.

From Yvonne Goodfield

I don’t think that it is right to say that housework is not worthy of

women’s attention but perhaps that it is worthy of more attention from

men too whether co-habiting or living alone.

One way of ensuring fair distribution of household chores might be to

threated to “charge” the more reluctant partner at least minimum wage

(or equivalent) for each extra hour of housework you end up doing


I do agree with the author that people should stop feeding into the

stereotype of the incapable male (in terms of housework) since this

just creates a situation of a self-fulfilling prophecy. Indeed, I

often hear women complaining that ‘he’ failed to complete ‘X’ chore

to their exact specifications. Such women could do well to remember

that we are all individuals and will necessarily approach tasks in

different manners. I can only hope that these women did not express

these sentiments to their partners since they are hardly motivating


From Dr John Crippen

Re: Tories sack woman for having breast cancer: Like you, I was outraged by the post from “Trixie” about the woman

who was sacked for having breast cancer.

Quite reasonably, you did not care for the quotes from the junior

hospital doctor about women in “geographical locations”

I agree.

The BritMeds are, however, largely based on nominations; and that

post was nominated by a lot of readers. Should I have ignored it

because I did not approve of it?

Gawd knows! I find this sort of question taxing.

But, for what it is worth, I did not agree with it.

Finally, and most importantly, I think it is a great shame that you

do not allow comments. I can understand your problems with possibly

rabid posts from those who disagree with your feminist politics, but

I think you weaken you position by not letting them in.

Best of luck, though – you have a great site.

Jess McCabe, editor of The F Word, responds

I must say, I don’t agree with your argument on why you included that particular post in your BritMeds post. I just think that by including it, without any sort of comment, you’re giving your tacit approval for the sentiments it expresses. I also wonder whether something that amounts to little more than one of those crappy “humorous” circulars you see on “why women/men suck”, is really such a great example of a blog post anyway.

From jo

I was very interested in the post on the Ofsted report on sex

education and in particular Ofsted’s comments on men’s magazines.

What concerns me that in the absence of sex education, these

magazines become more influential and that the sexist attitudes they

perpetuate are seen as the norm. I find it extremely worrying that

Ofsted considers that they ‘redress the balance’.

From A.

Re: Eritrea bans female circumcision: Both The Lancet

and UNFPA have

published articles recently about the progress being made in Africa,

some of it, though not all, fairly positive.

Meanwhile, Papillon, the French woman who is recording her path

towards having her circumcision reversed, continues to blog. She has

had an initial consultation and the operation is scheduled for May.

Her blog is here. If there are any

French speakers out there who could add to her discussion on what

femininity is, it might help.

From Claire

Joanna Tocher’s review of the Observer’s 50 men list is spot-on. I just

came across the list in question yesterday and it’s good to see I

wasn’t the only one gnashing my teeth in discomfort. First up, why is

a magazine devoted to women all about men? Why is there a man on the

cover? Why are so many of the men included ‘pioneers’ of fashion and

medicine who have encouraged women to bankrupt themselves on handbags

and destroy their bodies with costly surgical procedures? In fact I

take objection to pretty much every word in the Observer article –

any chance it was all an ironic joke?

From Jane Lockwood

This is the first time I have looked at this site and how refreshing

to read something intelligent, observant and thought provoking when

faced with the every day bombardment of utter rubbish from magazines

and television.

From Suchandrika

Joanna Tocher’s article on Observer Woman Monthly, Who’s to Say Who

Understands Us? is fantastic. I have only just discovered it. Very

good examples indeed. I read the original ’50 Men’ article with my

jaw on the floor. It was insane. It was as though they had just

sourced pictures of the first 20 or so men who came to mind, for

whatever reason, and then sent off the workie to google


OWM is a monthly disappointment – I would expect so much more from the

Guardian. What I get is a free issue of ‘Grazia for Dummies’.

From Holly Barnes-Thomas

Re: Suffering in silence: How fantastic to hear a man not afraid to stand up against the

injustices women experience on a daily basis. Only last night I took

an early evening, ten minute walk from home to meet some friends and

was harassed twice in that short distance, once by a group of men

shouting at me as I passed them and once by another man who appeared

to be stopping to ask me for directions then proceeded to make lewd

comments on my appearance. I arrived at my destination furious that I

couldn’t even leave my own house without experiencing intimidation

of this kind.

The unfortunate thing is that people do not take issues such as these

seriously. The general perception seems to be that women should

somehow be flattered by the attention; that they should perceive

intimidating, drunken displays of hyper-masculinity and downright

creepy approaches from strangers on the street as compliments.

So thank you George! Spread the word; feminism’s not just for

girls! (-or for that matter angry women who think they’re better

than men)

If we were all feminists there would be no need for feminism!

From Maria

This is a comment on the article titled Pretending that men aren’t

grown ups. I agree with every word put forward by the author. However, being young and crazy as I am, I would go one step further.

Where I come from, the rules regarding car accidents is simple “the

one that crushes INTO is the culprit”. Even if I so choose to stop my

car in the middle of the motorway and I get hit as a result, it is

still the car that crushes into me the one at fault. That said, I

think regarding rapism in general, the same rule should be applied.

Why? Well, as it was clarified in the article, women can get hurt

from sex, men can’t.

I know I may be oversimplifying the situation, but I think it’s high

time men are being held responsible for their actions.

From Stephen Austin

I am a 16 year old male from B.C. Canada. I

recently read the article about slogans on women’s t-shirts. I have

decided to do essay for my English class on sexuality in fashion.

While researching the topic I came across this article, and I thought

I’d let you know that I do agree with what the authors message is.

Although being a male I don;t find these slogans attractive by any

means! Therefore i do not feel that fashion is “male-focused” and

find this outlashing completely offensive.

From Amy

I really enjoyed this article, and agreed with pretty much all your


I particularly liked your alternative options for slogans, especially

the “I am Woman, Hear Me Roar” slogan.

From Rachael

I just read Sick of celebrity it was brilliant, I often find it

difficult, at the moment, to put into words (that other people

understand) what I think. And this article spoke of exactly how I

feel about this celebrity obsession, how the media control by saying

what we should want i.e. get thin, pretty, laid. And its true, when

I’m at school I see it ALL the time, girls starving themselves,

either eating little or not at all. Girls who are frankly skinny and

still, they pinch their own skin and claim themselves ‘fat’ or of

course, there is the ‘i’m ugly!’ option too. I’m sick of it, and I

find it difficult to ignore, I find myself beginning to worry about

my own weight, because, surely if everyone else is? And if that girl

in my class says she’s fat, and I’m twice the size of her… And that

is exactly what its like.

From Kelv

Re: Paper dolls: searching for women within Kerrang magazine: Rock music is dominated by men. It\’s like picking up a reggae

magazine, and saying “Whites aren’t represented in this at all, I’m

going to complain.

Collette, author of the article, replies

Yes. Rock music is dominated by men (and specifically white men) but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t female rock musicians out there who have just as much right to coverage within the pages of a magazine like Kerrang which purports to represent this specific music scene.

My main point of contention with magazines like Kerrang is that there is an essential assumption made that music generated by women is somehow less valid than that created by men. The rock industry also seems to perpetuate this belief when they spoon feed the public a packaged image of women in rock as ‘;sexy’ as opposed to musically able.

Music is an art form, a form of expression, and as such it should be free to be enjoyed by all regardless of class, gender or race. I doubt very much that the rock bands themselves would discriminate against certain groups or believe that only white males should enjoy their music. By the same token Kerrang shouldn’t discriminate against musicians or fans on the basis of their gender or only allow them to be seen within their pages if they fit a highly sexualised image.

From Lord Continuum

I’m sure countless others have posted this already, but I highly doubt

Kerrang! has even remote notions of sexual discrimination against

women – for a start, the female staff in Kerrang! outnumber the male

staff 3 to 1.

With regards to there being less coverage of female rock artists in

the magazine: the simple fact is, there are more male fronted

rock/metal acts than there are pre-dominantly female. Quite why this

is, is an uncertainty, in the same way that it’s an uncertainty as to

why there are generally more women working in the care and nursing

fields than men. It’s not discrimination, it just “is”.

From Alba

There isn’t enough articles that deal with representations of women in

rock. I hope the writer continues her investigation and goes on to

shed more light on this subject. Thanks for the article.

From Debbie

Re: Mooncup

Ailsa, your article was great! Thanks! Hearing what the product was

like from another woman telling it like it is for her rather than

some sales blurb was great. I’m going to give it a try.

From Ash

I have been looking at the article regarding Deconstructing

Masculinity and feel as though it is a load of rubbish biased and

poorly researched information, I have never seen such nonsense, and

to say it from a professional on a what looks to be a respectable

website… o dear sack the editor for even allowing it. I am a BA

student and am my self research the role of masculinity and the

change of it becoming ever more effeminate in today society; men are

just as much violent towards women as women are towards men. As

Sheryl Plant had contradicted her self in the above article, it is

media that portrait’s women as the weaker sex. In-fact when it

comes to violence women are the brewers of violence, it is women

mother, wife of young that can make the difference. Men are

stereotyped by women and have to behave in a certain way! Most of the

men that commit this violence are from family where women allow them

to bear witness to violence, any women that bring children up in them

environments and then the one that, complain when their sons are

beating women robbing and rapping… that’s the world that women

(the strong sex) I feel are the ones that control.

Jess McCabe, editor of The F Word responds

So, a man beats up or rapes a woman, and it’s not his fault – it’s his mother’s fault. Or his wife’s fault? It’s amazing, it really is. Here are some real statistics on domestic violence and rape. According to the British Crime Survey, 81% of domestic violence victims are women and 19% are men. That’s four out of five cases. Strong evidence, indeed, that women are just as violent towards men as men are towards women.

From ange

Re: Bad Mothers: Hailing from a background throughly devoid of feminism & being the

mother of two small children I was surprised at how much this article

made me laugh! I love my children dearly but do understand the

contempt for the ideal that is the PTA mother – fortunately I still

work so I think this has enabled me to retain some basic grasp on

reality -long may it continue. Well done! (Although not really ecstatic

or enthralled by the deflated balloon comment.)

From JJ

Re: “Feminists are sexist”: Antifeminist men don’t complain about not being the center of

attention when feminists depict sexism…they complain because they

often get no attention whatsoever. It really unfair to just

concentrate on one sex and ignore the other with these issues, and

saying that men benefit as a consequence of concentrating on women is

a pretty immature and self-serving cop-out. The system is clearly

flawed and your “defense” of it was more condescening to men than it

was convincing. Men that define how women should be based on mens

issues and what benefits men would be called one thing: sexist. Women

who do the same are no different.

From John Dakin

Re: Oh, Mr Darcy!: I am dismayed by this article; as Sheryl Plant does not seem to have

read the book. Darcy is not described as brutal; nor would he in any

way subscribe to the morals of James Bond; he is caring of his

younger sister; Elizabeth Bennett’s response to his first proposal

causes him to reflect on his own behaviour, and to think of it with

abhorrence. He is never shown as “dumping” women, or as being

violent towards them. Do read the book with attention, if you are

going to write about it!

From Lara Bradley

Re: The story on picking up your own tab: I’m a married woman, a

reporter who works for a daily in Sudbury, Ont., Canada, and this is

something I’ve struggled with when male coworkers have offered to

pick up the cost of lunch or even coffee. It has always made me

uncomfortable. We make exactly the same wage and like them, I’m the

primary provider for my household (my husband decided to run a

business from our home while looking after the children). I’ve always

refused and have in fact gone out of my way to pay for my own food or

coffee. I don’t want to feel beholden or allow the other person the

sense of ownership that develops when paying for another’s food.

From Irina

Re: Fear Factor: Although I agree with the author that society should eliminate male

aggression towards women rather than scare women into staying in, I

think this particular ad is good. Information is power, in this

context. Unsafety of an unlicenced mini-cab should be made public and

well-known, otherwise many women will be guiled by smiley or

friendly-looking strangers into their cars if there are no bus in

sight, or they can think it is a better option.

This ad is different from, say, an ad which could link drinking alcohol

to higher chances of attack and which would sound like blaming the


I also think that in men’s loos and on public billboards there should

be ads for men, something like: if you forget to ask, we will be

asking you some questions in the court – like it was actually done by

Home Office couple of yours ago. Yes, there should be more adds

targeted at men to warn them off rather than terrify already

terrified women.

Gosh, how I hate men on couple of days a year when I have to come

home late, I think this can be seen on my face by anyone. Between

fear and hate, I choose hate. Not nice, but honest. I am sure such

emotions are part of many women’ lives, even for a short time. That’s

nothing to do with feminism, just anger that you simply cannot feel


From Loni Ellsworth

Re: Contraception and control – teenage rights: This article helped me alot with a research project I’ve been working

on, and confirmed my views on our rights. I too am a female teen and

I think your article rocked.

From Polly Trenow

I would like to say how relieved I was reading Dawn Kofie’s article on

the Observer Woman. Many of my female friends held the same hopes and

were similarly disappointed. It has the opportunity to provide a

truly refreshing read but instead it plays to masses and air-head

cliches about make up and sex. My faith was completely lost when the

article ‘100 most important men for women’ included mainly fashion

designers and pop stars and barely anyone who has massively impacted

my life. I am still disappointed every month and the Observer Weekly

supplement remains a much better representation of my interests in a

magazine. I’m just glad I wasn’t the only one whose expectations were


From Sean O’Doherty

Re: Why it’s time for the ‘battle of the sexes’ to end: I came across this site by chance while researching a University

assignment about football and music, in a part of a review I talk

about ‘lad culture’ and its tie in with such songs as ‘Three Lions

and ‘Vindaloo’. We all know the stereotype of a guy involved with

‘lad culture’, drink excessively, talk gratuitously about personal

sexual exploits as well degrading females in the street with horrid

and sometimes embarrassing un-called for comments, also to talk about

football and sport as a whole throughout any point in history upto

present day is a must do, attending football or watching is

essential, and the odd bit of fighting also can tie in with the

weekly routine of being a ‘Geezer’.

Ok, I found the feature by Laura Baldwin was absolutely superb titled

‘Why It’s time for the ‘;battle of the sexes’ to end’. I found

the piece very witty and gave me a wee chuckle now and again with

some great sarcasm especially the ending. Laura made some great

points and gave me a better view and re-assured my own personal

opinions about ‘lad culture’.

Just to confirm and confess I am a re-formed person once bemused and

trapped as such in ‘laddism’ throughout my mid-teens after falling in

with the wrong crowd drinking and attending footy matches and

fighting, but I always seemed different to the rest of them, for one

my mother brought me up to be a gentleman and to respect women as

equals and I was never one to put my opinions to one side I have

always believed in expression and when I saw my ex-friends belittling

women and treating them with un-gentlemanly conduct, I was quick to

change my ways I totally stopped drinking, changed my appearance and

removed myself from that peer group.

Now even though I still have a love of football and playing sport and

even writing about it, I enjoy the fact I am my own individual person

and that I am a follower in equal rights for women, especially equal

pay for female sports competition winners.

Finally I would like to say thank you to Laura Baldwin and the fword

as a whole.

From Joanna

I just wanted to comment about the article on Ariel Levy’s book, ‘Female Chauvinist Pigs’, which I really enjoyed reading myself, and

also enjoyed reading your discussion about it. Some expressed

concerns about how the issues about women’s sexuality could

potentially divide women into opposition with one another which

could be detrimental to the feminist agenda, perhaps that is true,

but then again, I am inclined to think opening a can of worms is

preferable to not having any discussion about it at all. I think the

discussion/argument might be the first step in achieving some level of


From Martina

Re: Dreaming of a pink Christmas: On a happy note, one of the biggest children’s clothes retailers in

Sweden recently started redecorating their stores so that all clothes

are divided by size and not gender – and introduced a huge collection

called unisex for babies. This has gone well so far, over half

clothes sold are now from the Unisex collection. “Function before

fashion, girls tops shouldn’t have to be tight and short, they need

something just as relaxed as boys t-shirts,” the owner states. So

looks like if retailers could just dare to put something less

gender-stereotypic out there, they might actually gain


From Sam Duffy

Re: Taboo for who?: I don’t see that using the word ‘cunt’ as an offensive term is the

problem. I know a lot of cunts – all female, as do I know a lot of

dicks – all male. ‘Dick’ or ‘cock’ to me represents a male and a male

only. For example there is a Jarvis Cocker song entitled ‘Cunts are

Still Running the World’ To me that’s just not true- since men are

still running the world it should be ‘Cocks’ instead of ‘Cunts.’ I

think by using the term ‘cunt’ towards a man is aggressive and dare I

say it, hateful towards the vagina and women’s sexuality in general.

Yet should we make terms gender exculisve? Dicks for those who have

dicks and cunts for those who have cunts? I think its prehaps the

only way to claim back our ‘cunt’!

From Julie

You are just a bitter, twisted hate filled woman destined to live a

lonely loveless life just as you deserve.

What a horrible existence you must lead and who can imagine the

amount of damage you have done to women everywhere, who now have to

put up with just that little bit more poison between the sexes

because of hate-mongering women like you.

Good luck. Your life is empty and deserves to be that way.

From daniela

who cares if the world often sees women in relation to their house? I

am an ex manager, and I am only too happy to take a break and care of

my children now. How fantastic to have someone who works and cares for

you, so you can abandon the work stress and take on the “house stress”

which is as hard, but much more worth, as all sacrifices are only made

for your own family and the reward is love…

From poppy

I love this site.