Weekly round-up and open thread

Welcome to another weekly round-up, where we share (what we see as) the most interesting and important articles and essays from the previous seven days. This week’s collection of links includes everything from Iain Duncan Smith to Disney’s Zootopia. We’d love to hear your thoughts on either (or both!) of these subjects or on any of the other issues covered.

As always, linking to articles does not mean endorsement from the F-Word and certain links may be triggering. We welcome debate in the comments section and on Facebook/Twitter but remind readers that any comments containing sexist, racist, homophobic, transphobic or disablist language will be deleted immediately.

If you notice that we’ve missed out any important articles from the past week, feel free to let us know.
Devotees and Disability (The Ladylike Punk)

From the article: The problem of creepy devotees is twisted and arguably confused by the issue of disability – which is not to say it isn’t awful and bad, but that it is a deeper and wider problem. This is behaviour we see elsewhere – catfishing, revenge porn, fake online dating profiles, ghosting, fuckboys on tinder … the list goes on. “I want to suck on your residual limb” is a variant on the unsolicited dickpic, the upskirt photo, or the tube groper.

All 135 Dead Lesbian and Bisexual Characters On TV, And How They Died (Autostraddle)

Do women and men write differently? (language: a feminist guide)

The real reason everyone freaked out over Kim Kardashian’s nude selfie (Ms.)

Who Approved These Fat-Shaming Photos For Plus-Sized Clothing? (Bust)

Refugee crisis: the EU cracks down on volunteers (Red Pepper)

Don’t call me girl, please (Feministing)

You don’t have to love your body (The Establishment)

Ellen Page’s Gay Imperialism is Not Activism (Harlot)

Worlds of opportunity beyond ‘he’ and ‘she’ (Forum for the Future)

From the article: “Heteronormativity can confine human relationships to a transactional essence, by dictating various roles; typically, a man must provide a certain lifestyle, and thus a certain level of consumption, in exchange for a woman’s beauty, fertility and domestic labour. Where we see ourselves in the social pecking order – a disempowering construct in itself – can hinge on how adequately we feel we fulfil these roles, as well as how much wealth we accumulate. And so these roles contribute to status anxiety: Do I have as much as those around me? Am I rich or beautiful enough to be worthy of security, economic stability, family and love?”

The above article is by D H Kelly who also writes for the F-Word. You can read more of D H Kelly’s writing HERE.

Adult Learning: False Assumptions Thrust on Child-Less Women (She Does the City)

White Men Needed to Play Devil’s Advocate (Montreal Craigslist)

From the article: “We are looking for qualified and enthusiastic candidates who are interested in our highly specialized Opp-roach™ program which will train you to become the loud voice in the room that is never required. Our goal is to train a legion of warriors who are interested in dismantling “PC culture” and believe that the best approach to social issues is to deny their existence.”

Deal reached to scrap ‘tampox tax’, officials say (BBC)

New poll puts Labour ahead of Tories for first time siince Jeremy Corbyn became leader (Independent)

100 Fat Activists #5: Stigma (Obesity Timebomb)

From the article: “In this book Goffman explores what it is like to be a stigmatised person. He identifies different kinds of stigma based on character traits, physical difference and group identity. He writes about how stigmatised people manage their stigma, for example through compensation, passing, or through hypervigilance. To Goffman, stigma is a means of social control; by creating a group of shameful outcasts, societies use stigma to keep people in line. He writes about people, he talks to people and reflects their experiences, although he theorises his work, it is built on the people’s lived experiences and that’s partly why the book is so accessible.”

Why Therapists Should Talk Politics (New York Times Opinionator)

From the article: “When therapists make the dialogue only about their patient’s life narrative, without including a frank discussion of social and economic hardships, they risk reducing psychotherapy to a tool of social control. That might sound overly polemical, but consider a government proposal in Britain last year to put psychotherapists in jobs centers to offer counseling for the unemployed, with the unemployed possibly facing a reduction in benefits if they declined treatment. In such a situation, therapy could easily become an arm of the state, seeking to “cure” listlessness or a reluctance to work, potentially limiting social and political awareness among those it is intended to serve.”

Iain Duncan Smith quites over planned disability benefit changes (BBC)

Comedian Destroys Sexist Heckler [with subtitles] (YouTube)

Content note: This video contains some language that could be interpreted as disablist.

Matt Healy’s comments about Taylor Swift were not the words of a misogynist (The Guardian)

Superqueeroes: Gender and superheroes (OpenLearn)

From the article: If we are to shift the hierarchical positioning of men as superior to women in the superhero movie genre (and beyond), perhaps we need to go further than fighting for the inclusion of equal numbers of female characters at an equal level to male characters, and no more sexualised than male characters. Perhaps we need to also encourage the inclusion of characters who question the assumption of a fixed gender binary.

Understanding Gender Bias in Autism Research (The Takeaway)

Zootopia: Yes, Disney Made a Movie about White Supremacy and the War on Drugs (The Root)

As Women Take Over a Male-Dominated Field, the Pay Drops (New York Times)

Does feminism have an ageism problem? (Mixed Race Feminist Blog)

The image is used with permission from L.Taylor. It shows a forest in early evening; lots of tall, thin trees silhouetted against a deep blue sky.

Editor’s note: This article was published before Elliot Page came out as trans, with he/they pronouns.