Another round up

// 12 February 2009

Scottish judge Roger Craik threw a rape victim in prison overnight, after she got so upset that she fled the witness box. Un-fucking-believeable.

Pegah Emambakhsh has won refugee status at last:

She fled Iran for the UK almost four years ago when her sexuality became known to the religious authorities – her same-sex partner was arrested and subsequently tortured and sentenced to death.

But her application for refuge fell on deaf ears at the Home Office and in the summer of 2007 she was told she would be returned to Iran.

Hundreds of people around the world lobbied the British Government who postponed the deportation while “the case was reviewed” in August 2007.

“We have just been informed that Pegah Emambakhsh … has finally been granted refugee status in the UK after almost four years,” Arsham Parsi, the executive director of IRanian Queer Railroad (IRQR) said last night in Toronto.

“This is fantastic news and a great reward for all the hard work you supporters put in to ensure she was not sent back to Iran.”

Mr. Parsi said that he had received a telephone call at 11pm (UK time) from Ms. Emambakhsh.

“I could not believe it,” she told Mr. Parsi. “A few hours ago I received a phone call from my lawyer to say that I have been granted refugee status.

“I will meet my lawyer tomorrow [Thursday]. I have to read that paper several times to make sure I am free from now.”

(Via Shakesville)

An HIV positive woman in Chile is bringing a human rights case against the government, after she was forcibly sterilised immediately after giving birth – see Think Girl for more.

The blogosphere has been swimming with stories about Chris Brown assaulting the well-known singer Rihanna; largely concentrating on whether or not the media was acting unethically when she was named as the victim of domestic violence perpetrated by Brown. The Angry Black Woman posts about how the story has turned into victim-blaming.

Cara at The Curvature posts about why statutory rape is still “real” rape.

A t-shirt worn during a famous protest against Section 28, which saw lesbians storming the Six O’Clock News, is being exhibited as part of LGBT history month – see Pink News for more info.

Amy Brian has been kicked out of the US military under the soon-to-be-scrapped ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ policy which forces LGB soldiers into the closet. Jezebel breaks down the case – Brian didn’t actually ask or tell, she was reported for kissing her girlfriend in Wal-Mart, by a civilian co-worker who would be protected under law from being fired for being gay.

She was kicked out of the service, while hetrosexual soldiers were only disciplined for sexual harassment and credit card fraud.

More reasons the National ID Card scheme is bad news.

Women’s studies and gender studies programmes in the US are under threat of being closed down because of the economic situation in Florida, and in Georgia from legistators who want to ban it being taught in state universities – Feministing has more.

Contrary to popular wisdom, women do not get stupid when they’re pregnant. Jezebel has more.

Apu posts about the police inaction over a case where a woman was groped and stripped by a mob – the police have so far only charged one man, for stealing her wallet, although the incident was captured on camera.

The Life and Times of an Indian Home-Maker has been posting some amazing stuff lately – check out: Our India, Their India, A Sari To Make You Bhartiya Nari and Not just a pair of jeans….

Women’s Glib examines how sexist, hetronormative ideas have held science back. Although, given that this is about reconstructing how to make nuclear weapons, for once maybe this is a good thing, hey?

Jessica Yee had a bad day, and a reminder about why Black History Month is necessary. Renee at Womanist Musing argues, meanwhile, that setting aside a single month is tokenistic.

Natalie Bennett reviews a switched-gender production of The Tempest. Good idea, poorly executed?

Finally, Sarah Haskins turns her attention to chocolate marketing in the latest Target Women:

Comments From You

Louise // Posted 16 February 2009 at 10:56 am

On Women’s Studies – in the UK the situation is more complicated in that Universities attacked courses before the convenient excuse of the recession. Now, in terms of named Women’s Studies courses, we have two undergrad level courses left (Ruskin College Oxford and Westminster University) and a proliferation of MA courses which are reliant on self-funding (i.e. enough students = course runs).

If you are thinking about a BA or an MA do consider Women’s Studies – it consistently has high rates of graduate employment in a range of areas and is the only dedicated space to women’s lives.

Lindsey // Posted 17 February 2009 at 2:26 pm

Last time I checked I think Swansea University was expanding it’s gender studies courses, going from MA to joint hons with something else…

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