Weekly round-up and open thread

// 19 February 2018


It’s time for another weekly round-up where we share (what we see as) the most interesting and important articles from the previous seven days. We’d love to hear your thoughts on any of the issues covered in the articles we’ve picked.

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.

Trolls are lying about assaults at ‘Black Panther’ showings (Nicole Bitette, Daily News)

Migration & marriage: women of colour and the politics of surnames (Shahnaz Ahsan, Media Diversified)

Meet The Dominatrix Who Requires The Men Who Hire Her To Read Black Feminist Theory (Amanda Duberman, Huffpost Personal)

From the article: “Mistress Velvet is a dominatrix with a syllabus: ‘…I am now given this platform to make white, cis men think about things in certain ways. Just allowing them to be submissive doesn’t always allow for the more drastic shift in the framework and thinking that I want. So I have to bring in my girls, like Audre Lorde and Patricia Hill Collins, and make these men actually read about black feminism. Then, it’s moving from them simply fetishizing black women, to realizing: This is a systemic issue I’m contributing to by the virtue of being a white man and being rich.'”

Their ‘cute’ ad is the tip of the iceberg—this is how the DWP damages real relationships (Grace Fletcher-Hackwood, Prospect)

From the article: “Nobody expects to be given financial help from the state without some conditions. But are the conditions proportionate to the help? 14 million people are living in poverty, many in work. And their benefits have been frozen while the price of rent and travel and food continues to soar. And yet, from sanctions to Universal Credit, the government continues to demand ever-increasing compliance, and meekness, and loss of privacy, in exchange for so little money that you’ll need to use a food bank anyway.”

The Many Lives of Pauli Murray (Kathryn Schulz, New Yorker)

From the article: “Murray herself felt she didn’t accomplish all that she might have in a more egalitarian society. ‘If anyone should ask a Negro woman in America what has been her greatest achievement,’ she wrote in 1970, ‘her honest answer would be, “I survived!”‘
[From April last year, but shared by Kee Hinckley and Dan Weese via Facebook in connection with Black History month.]

Ruby Tandoh: ‘Food fads are toxic – they erode the faith you have in your appetite’ (thejournal.ie)

From the article: “Often the ‘body positive’ movement is used to just bolster the supremacy of slim just-a-tiny-bit-wobbly bodies, but that leaves behind so many people whose bodies are bigger, fatter, disabled, whatever.

“So I want to book to not only be body positive, but fat positive, supportive of people with eating disorders and mental health problems, inclusive of people of all sexualities and genders… all of this stuff plays into a meaningful kind of body positivity that benefits everyone, not just a select few.”

My Ready Meal Is None Of Your Fucking Business (Cooking on a Bootstrap)

From the article: “Many of the families I have worked with over the years are living in temporary accommodation, usually a bed and breakfast paid for by their local council due to a shortage of available social housing, or private landlords ‘willing’ to take on a tenant on benefits. These generally have no cooking facilities whatsoever, for insurance purposes and safety reasons, as cramming a hob next to a single bed that is usually pressed against the wall poses a risk to fire and health. After the Grenfell tower tragedy, dozens if not hundreds of residents were living in hotel rooms nearby, for weeks and months, with no cooking facilities available. They lived off ready meals, microwaved in their contraband microwaves, and takeaways. Ain’t nobody on earth, not even me, who can turn that into a cheap option. I dare you to tell someone who has been the victim of a house fire, is living with PTSD and anxiety, has lost their home and their job and doesn’t even have a saucepan, to pop along to the shop and pick up some spices because it’ll work out cheaper.”

It’s not just men who abuse power in the workplace. Women do, too (The Pool)

From the article: “After the #MeToo movement takes a pause and we’ve had all the conversations we need to (which could be some time), I think we need to consider women in the workplace, not as vulnerable to men, but as aggressors themselves. I’ve had too many friends with appallingly behaved female bosses and, as unsisterly as it sounds, I don’t believe that women can’t abuse power, either (I promise I have no affiliations with Philip Davies). When I’ve interviewed women who have experienced maternity discrimination, their bosses have been women, as well as men.”

Rape culture and the duet (Nora Research)

Response to Mary Beard by Priyamvada Gopal (Medium)

From the article: “But I will urge you to rethink the problematic concept of a ‘disaster zone’ (Trump was more upfront — he called them ‘shitholes’) and what that really means in geopolitical terms in terms of who does what and who is responsible for their appearance as spaces of catastrophe. Still more troubling is your notion that moral bearings (‘civilised values’!) understandably disappear in spaces where people struggle with the worst things that can happen to human beings. We know that, in fact, some of the most courageous human actions, borne of deep decency, manifest themselves in these situations and not on the part of white saviours but those at the sharp end of misery. We also know that in zones like Hollywood, or indeed, academia, that have very little truck with ‘disaster’, notwithstanding the copious amounts of mediocrity they put out, we have seen depraved behaviour and enormous amounts of misconduct.”

The image is used under a creative commons license with thanks to Matthias on Flickr. It is a black and white, close-up image of a knife and fork. The image is so detailed that droplets of moisture can be seen on the cutlery.

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