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. We’d love to hear your thoughts on any of the issues covered in our chosen links – there are loads this week!
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.
From the article: “You become the manic pixie dream girl; your sickness gives the guy’s life a sense of meaning and depth, which is exactly what he craves, granted you’re not too overbearing and, you know, he actually has to look after you too much.”
From the article: “This week the Prison Reform Trust and Women in Prison published a new report. It found that a chronic shortage of safe and stable housing for women leaving prison is leading to more crime, more victims and greater use of unnecessary and expensive imprisonment. Six in ten women leaving prison may not have a home to go to on release, and recent prison inspectorate reports suggest that the situation may be getting worse.”
Imagine if Donald Trump were a woman. You simply can’t (The Guardian)
From the article: “But imagine it wasn’t Trump who was the conduit for this anger. Imagine it was a woman. Picture a woman up there on the podium last night shouting over her rival, jabbing her finger in the air, denying she’d said things there was ample evidence of online that she had said. Imagine a completely inexperienced woman insisting she had better political nous than someone who had been at the forefront of politics for decades. And, of course, you can’t: it is, literally, beyond imagination.”
From the article: “Earlier this year, a report compiled by the Asia Floor Wage Alliance found that the fashion giant was routinely exploiting its employees. Based on 251 interviews with garment workers, the report alleged that staff from 11 out of 12 Cambodian supplier factories claimed they had witnessed or experienced employment termination during pregnancy. It also claimed that every single one of the 50 staff surveyed in India said that women were often fired when they fell pregnant. In a predominately female industry, this is a colossal problem, particularly when coupled with the workplace sexual harassment that was also reported as commonplace.”
From the article: “This is a really fascinating period for the textile trade in general: English weaving, for example, is just beginning to shift from being a craft carried out by women on a small scale, producing fabric from their own looms, to a more lucrative business on a larger scale, using a bigger, fancier loom, and dominated by … yes, of course, men.”
From the article: “Casting trans people in trans roles might not sound revolutionary, and some trans actors are wary of being pigeonholed that way, but it’s important in a context where trans actors often struggle to get work at all, and concerns have been raised around the fact that casting men as trans women in films like Dallas Buyers’ Club and The Danish Girl sends the message that trans women are really men, reinforcing prejudice that too often leads to violence. Jeffrey Tambor, star of Amazon’s Transparent, recently said that he hopes he will be the last man ever cast in such a way.”
From the article: “The vast majority of popular culture’s male femmes are presented as jokes or villains, with an entire catalogue of Disney villains reinforcing the message that male femininity is inextricable from depravity—a tradition upheld with Harry Potter’s Lucius Malfoy and The Hunger Games’ President Snow. When the characters are more aspirational, they either overcompensate for their femininity with a dash of aggressive masculinity, like the flamboyant Captain Jack Sparrow from the Pirates of the Caribbean series, or their effeteness itself is played for humor, as with the Crane brothers on the long running series Frasier.”