Because My Shit is Stuff, and Your Stuff Is Shit

Occupation: FANGIRL, unemployed college graduate (but aren't we all)

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Friends, let me tell you about Rebecca Gomperts.

Rebecca Gomperts is a sea captain, a certified physician, and the founder of Women on Waves, a Dutch pro-choice non-profit organization that brings reproductive health services to women in countries with restrictive abortion laws.

This is how it works:

  • Rebecca Gomperts and her team installed a specially constructed mobile clinic aboard a commissioned ship.
  • They sail to countries with restrictive abortion laws, answering phone calls and e-mails from women who need another way out.
  • Upon landing, they take the women who come to them aboard the ship, and then they take the ship out into international waters.
  • There the laws of the flag ship are in effect.
  • They then perform non-surgical medical abortions, while walking the women through the process.
  • They sail back to shore, and once they depart, they continue to follow up with their patients to ensure they remain healthy and safe.

In response, Rebecca Gomperts and her team have been:

  • hit by eggs thrown by physically violent pro-life activists
  • met with resistance by government officials of the countries they visit
  • been forced to disguise themselves and their patients to save the women who come to them any public shaming (which the media helps to perpetuate)
  • and once, harassed by two war ships sent out by the Portuguese military

And yet they continue to answer the calls and e-mails of women who want their help, providing reproductive counseling and teaching them how to circumvent the dangerous laws of their country when necessary.

Director Diana Whitten is telling their story in her documentary, VESSEL. It’s a beautiful doc, a necessary doc, and the film is premiering this week at SXSW. Please show your support for these women on social media. It’s so incredibly important.

Here's VESSEL's facebook page. Here's their twitter. Here's their instagram. Use #VesselLanding to tweet at them.

Women on Waves can be found on their official site, their facebook page, and their twitter.

If you’re in need of reproductive counseling or an abortion service, you can find Women on Wave’s international support and informational collective on Women on Web.

These people are heroes. Rebecca Gomperts is a hero. What they do has and will save countless lives. It’s so incredibly important that their story is told and the struggles of women living in countries governed by restrictive abortion laws (including the United States) are brought to light.

(Source: thatcupofjo)


Feminism is having a wardrobe malfunction.

Does your brand of feminism remove barriers for women, or simply move them around? Does is expand options for women, or does it just shift them? You don’t liberate women by forcing them to choose option B instead of option A. What is comfortable for you might not be comfortable for someone else, and it’s entirely possible that what you see as oppressive, other women find comfortable or even downright liberating.

Before you think the girl in the middle is a strawman, let me tell you I used to be her, back in my misguided youth. I considered myself the standard to which other people should adhere. But that was stupid. It’s not up to me to tell people how to dress, and it’s much nicer to let everyone choose for themselves.

Some women would feel naked without a veil. Some women would find it restrictive. Some women would feel restricted by a bra. Some women would feel naked without one. Some women would feel restricted by a tight corset. Others love them. Some wear lots of clothes with a corset. Some only wear the corset and nothing else. What makes any article of clothing oppressive is someone forcing you to wear it. And it’s just as oppressive to force someone not to wear something that they want to wear.

Ngl, I struggle with this sometimes.

I think a lot of my issues are the result of school ‘Dress Code’ policies which were selectively enforced during my middle school and high school careers.  We had rules like ‘shorts and skirts must reach mid-thigh’ and ‘tops must have shoulder straps four inches wide’ and ‘midriffs should not be visible when sitting or standing’ and so on and so forth… but the only people who ever got called on anything were people with ‘bad reputations/attitudes’ or girls who actually had boobs.  I spent my entire freshman school year wearing men’s t-shirts in large or XL to avoid having my TEACHERS harass me about my body.    

Telling me to put on my gym uniform every time I wore a gender-appropriate shirt because it was too-tight/too-low-cut/too-sheer/etc. while watching other girls wear the EXACT SAME ARTICLE OF CLOTHING didn’t do anything but make me ashamed of my body and tell my peers that my body was something to be mocked.  

I came out of that experience with hyper-vigilance regarding how much of the body an article of clothing provided coverage for.  It has taken years to loosen the rigidity of my own adherence to my personal ‘dress code’, and even longer to learn not to apply it to others.  I still have moments where I place my own view of appropriate clothing on other women, and spend a moment judging them in my mind - then I snap out of it (usually) and say to myself, “It is none of your business what she chooses to wear, get over it.” and move on.







I am SICK and TIRED of people objecting to seeing women using their breasts for what they are actually for. BREASTFEEDING IS NOT VULGAR OR OBSCENE.

it was what breasts are for, people are so stupid

This week in one of my classes we had to read an article on breastfeeding in different cultures and it showed that only 13 cultures out of 190 found women’s breasts sexually attractive. 

And the rest of the 177 cultures? They all view breasts as just a functional part of a person’s body used to feed their children.

We live in a society where breasts have been sexualized and objectified to the point where a person with breasts can’t even feed their child in public without it being seen as ‘disgusting’ or ‘obscene’.

And yet those same people who think so lowly of public breastfeed can’t even see how truly ridiculous those views are compared to the views of the majority of cultures.


My cousin has a 6 month old that is breastfed. It’s just not possible to always breastfeed at home. The other day, a woman scolded her for breastfeeding in public and told her that she was going to give her son impure thoughts. You could see less boob during the breastfeeding than most low cut shirts reveal. My cousin reminded her that according to state and local law, she could take off her shirt legally, and she thought that it WAS getting pretty hot in there. The woman walked off in a huff, of course.

Come on lady. This is something that has literally happened since, oh, I don’t know, the first fucking mammal. It is a normal and natural thing. Shame on YOU.

your cousin sounds like the best person

Bolded for emphasis.




Let me tell you a fucking thing about costume design. That’s some in depth, difficult shit to learn. And the fact that this goddess can ramble this shit off the cuff means she knows her shit. ELLE WOODS IS A GODAMNED GENIUS AND IT’s NOT A STRETCH TO BELIEVE SHE GOT INTO HARVARD LAW MMMK?


this movie is literally about an attractive woman who loves to party having to prove over and over again that she’s also intelligent and hard-working to those who judge her based on her looks (who also empowers and fights for other women, and fosters unlikely friendships instead of engaging in girl hate) and if you don’t think that’s some great feminist shit then I don’t know what your problem is

(Source: ehyperrie)

I think the best part of this, is that it acknowledges the existence of marital rape.  Consent doesn’t suddenly become optional, just because you are married to someone.

I think the best part of this, is that it acknowledges the existence of marital rape.  Consent doesn’t suddenly become optional, just because you are married to someone.

(Source: feminishblog)

The Twilight thing and a lot of these franchise attempts coming out, everything rests on what this girl will do, but she’s completely passive, or not really knowing what the hell is going on. And that’s incredibly frustrating to me because a lot of what’s taking on the oeuvre of Buffy, is actually a reaction against it. Everything is there — except for the Buffy. A lot of things aimed at the younger kids is just Choosing Boyfriends: The Movie.

Joss Whedon (X)

(Source: whedonesque)


Miss America Contestants are Feminists too
I’m a feminist! 

I love your blog. Keep up the good work! People are always shocked when I tell them I do pageants and I’m a feminist. Part of feminism is being able to do whatever I want! 



Miss America Contestants are Feminists too

I’m a feminist! 

I love your blog. Keep up the good work! People are always shocked when I tell them I do pageants and I’m a feminist. Part of feminism is being able to do whatever I want! 

An 18-year-old black woman had become the youngest Barrister ever in England and Wales

What do I want instead of a Strong Female Character? I want a male:female character ratio of 1:1 instead of 3:1 on our screens. I want a wealth of complex female protagonists who can be either strong or weak or both or neither, because they are more than strength or weakness. Badass gunslingers and martial artists sure, but also interesting women who are shy and quiet and do, sometimes, put up with others’ shit because in real life there’s often no practical alternative. And besides heroines, I want to see women in as many and varied secondary and character roles as men: female sidekicks, mentors, comic relief, rivals, villains. I want not to be asked, when I try to sell a book about two girls, two boys and a genderless robot, if we couldn’t change one of those girls to a boy.

Sophia McDougall, “I hate Strong Female Characters” (via charlottefairchild)

I recommend reading the whole article in the link.  It’s long but good, and also points out the annoying trope of Hollywood thinking that as long as the female character gets a token “can beat people up” scene, then it’s totally fine that otherwise they still are filling very typical fictional roles women are pigeon-holed into, and usually are still just a love interest or plot device.

Also, to the above quote, this is about having that diversity in a single story, or even having many of those traits in 1 character, and not just plucking a few examples out of all of fiction and go “see, in this story, the woman was shy and quiet, and in this story, the woman beat somebody up, and this story the woman was mean.  There!  Diversity!”  It’s about overall trends, it’s about not just having one or two women in a cast, it’s about how women are situated in the story, it’s about whether the women are protagonists or plot devices, it’s about all sorts of ways that women are marginalized, pigeon-holed, etc in fiction, and not simply just about one thing.  There’s no easy fix where you go “see in my story, the woman warrior wears a shirt and she doesn’t get raped!”  The problem is there are so many issues with the way women, and every other marginalized group, are portrayed in fiction (and even more so with the intersectional problems with characters who are part of several of those groups), and only so much that people can talk about in one go, so usually people are only able to address one or two issues at any time, and it leads to the idea that as long as you fix (or superficially) fix that element, then it’s all good, and it’s more than that.

From the standpoint of this blog, sometimes there comes the misconception that as long as a story has fully armored women, or has battle-ready posed women, then that’s something that’s necessarily a good story about women, or necessarily a good depiction.  It’s a step forward, definitely, and I absolutely think it’s good for people to keep the visual portrayal of women in their minds when creating fiction and not just doing one thing over and over because it’s just how we’re so used to seeing women depicted visually.  But it can’t stop at that.  How many women there are in the story matters.  Whether or not she’s portrayed as being “exceptional” for her gender, and therefore all other women in the fictional world are still flat stereotypes matters.  What happens to her in the story, how she’s situated, presented, talked about matters.  Whether she’s the protagonist, or if despite her armor, she gets kidnapped by the villain to anger the male hero matters.  It’s about more than simply avoiding one single way women are portrayed, and then dusting off our hands and patting ourselves on the back for fixing how women are portrayed in fiction.  It’s about examining the way we see women in our society, and being aware of how that affects the way we depict and situate them in our writing, often without realizing it.

Escher Girls, The Bechdel Test, Bikini Armor, etc, are all catchy terms, and great things to keep in mind when writing fiction with women in it, but it’s not as simple as just “not doing this one thing”.  These phrases and ideas are meant to highlight specific issues about the way women are written and drawn in fiction and to open up a discussion about the larger picture of how women are portrayed.  The Bechdel Test is meant to point out how few women have roles and how even fewer of them have stories of their own that don’t revolve around men.  Escher Girls is about showing the prevalence of female characters being contorted or dressed in ways that maximize titillation over function. They are symptoms, not the cause, and addressing just one of them once doesn’t fix the underlying issue.  Change comes by challenging ourselves to not just settle at “my princess punches people before being captured” or “the male hero’s love interest talks to her female friend about dogs at one point”, but to be willing to examine the overall way we’re depicting women in our fiction, how many there are, and how they’re situated.  Centaur women, battle bikinis, and the boobs and butt pose are the beginning of the discussion, not the end.

- escher-girls

(via eschergirls)

(Source: greywaren)