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Feb 22 2011

I suck at titles

I’m doing a speaking tour in Minnesota in March, and if I don’t come up with a title for my talk soon, my host groups are going to greet me with torches and pitchforks. Okay, it’s not quite that bad yet – but I certainly am being a stereotypically difficult speaker at the moment. There are flyers to be made! It’s odd being on the other side for once.

Anyway, I need your help. I’m absolutely horrible at coming up with creative, witty titles. My talk is basically about:

  1. Why women should give up religion
  2. Why skepticism benefits feminism
  3. Why atheists should be feminists
  4. Why women are underrepresented in atheism, and how to help fix that.

I am so excited to give this talk in rural Minnesota.

But right now my working title is “Atheism & Feminism,” which is embarrassingly awful. Some fun titles my friends have suggested so far include:

  • Dispelling Fallacies and Phallusies
  • Denying The Man In Charge: Hey, It Worked For Suffrage
  • How To Be Cooler Than God: Respect Women
  • God’s Lady Problem: Breaking up with abusive supernatural beings
  • Free Beer At This Talk

…Okay, maybe not that last one, though it would probably be effective.

Any suggestions, my lovely readers?

88 comments

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  1. 1
    Paula

    I vote for “Dispelling Fallacies and Phallusies” cuz you might bring in some who are not expecting a talk on atheism and feminism and that would be good!

  2. 2
    dagfin

    I vote for#4 !

  3. 3
    Egoistpaul

    You can make the title interesting by attacking religion in the realm of sexual satisfaction, so you might want to consider an interesting title like “Give up religion and have orgasm.” Anything packaged with sex usually sells well.Religion uses fear and guilt to control people. Fear and guilt inhibit people’s desires to pursue happiness, and fearful women are less likely to have an orgasm.

  4. 4
    Nominatissima

    I like number four as well. If I were giving a similar talk, I’d title it, “If I had a hammer… Smashing the patriarchy and dogma with one weapon”. But that’s way too long.

  5. 5
    benjamin_sa

    I vote: God’s Lady Problem: Breaking up with abusive supernatural beings.But, how about:Why woman don’t leave abusive supernatural spouses?Getting woman to leave theism, feminism in atheism.A significant proportion of atheists are dicks, and how to change that.

  6. 6
    The Great Attractor

    I vote for #4 and would also like to suggest “Why god Is Not Getting Any”.

  7. 7
    breadbox

    Faith and FeminismFaith vs. Feminism?Women’s God DelusionWhen Faith Goes Pear-ShapedGods Who Hate Women (And the Women Who Love Them)(That last one would probably be too cliché if it weren’t so dated….)

  8. 8
    PDX_Greg

    How about: The Reality of Atheism; No Penis Required!

  9. 9
    Cbc

    “Yahweh. He’s Just Not That Into You.”

  10. 10
    PDX_Greg

    BTW, among the 5 you listed, I like #1 first (especially after I noticed the cleverness of the -IES in PhallusIES), followed by #4 and #3, in that order.

  11. 11
    mcbender

    Am I the only one whose favourite of your choices is the second?

  12. 12
    LegendarySandwich

    Pretty much all of the ones suggested in the article and in the comments section are good, though, as Paula said originally, it’d probably be best if you went with a title that didn’t explicitly give away that your talk is about atheism and feminism (to reach a broader audience).

  13. 13
    Fatima Abrar

    Emancipating women from religion?Reaching out to women?A feminist perspective of religion in women’s lives?

  14. 14
    Fatima Abrar

    Women’s empowerment via religious emancipation?-yeah … when i get stuck on a word, i tend to stay stuck a while

  15. 15
    Kai Haswell

    I like just “Dispelling Phallusies”. The pun gets across, and it’s pithy. :3

  16. 16
    Chris

    Exiting Eden: Forging new roles in Feminism and Atheism

  17. 17
    Azkyroth

    Gyah, finally.I emailed you, but just in case, I suggest: “What’s In It For Us? Women, Atheism, Feminism, and Skepticism.” Particularly if you make clear in the surrounding advertising, etc. that you are intending to mostly *answer* that question and it’s not intended as a demand. ^.^

  18. 18
    Lodevijk

    Hmm… but isn’t feminism inherently biased? If you want equality, maybe use the term ‘humanism’. Wittiness is entirely dependent on the people you’ll be talking to, so if they’re all atheists and self-proclaimed free-thinkers, I think you can easily trick them by a title like:”Atheism, Girls, and Beer”You can throw some talk about beer just for the sake of making people listen to you.

  19. 19
    Azkyroth

    Hmm… but isn’t feminism inherently biased?

    No, though you’d think so given the etymology of the word. >.>

  20. 20
    Rmguest

    Never pass up a golden opportunity to coin a new word/term, perhaps:Skepti-feminismSkepti-feministsSkepti-feminomicsSkeptifemsAtheo-femsFemino-skeptoids (sounds biology-based)

  21. 21
    plublesnork

    I can only think of things that might be considered a bit dickish.”Women and God: The canonical abusive relationship”

  22. 22
    Ziltoidia

    I really liked “How To Be Cooler Than God: Respect Women”.The only idea I could come up with is something like “Atheism and feminism are natural allies”. (By the way: your comment system didn’t work in my Opera, Firefox or Chrome browsers. Safari worked though.)

  23. 23
    Smoking Glacier

    Sisterhood solidarity in the face of omnipotent adversity

  24. 24
    Jochem Atteveld

    God’s Lady Problem: Breaking up with abusive supernatural beings, denifinitely.

  25. 25
    Sarah Certa

    I suck at titles too but just wanted to say how pumped I am that you’ll be in Minnesota. I’m hoping to make it to St. Cloud on the 22nd!

  26. 26
    Lloyd

    I like God’s Lady Problem: Breaking up with abusive supernatural beings

  27. 27
    Ray

    I like #4!

  28. 28
    Kari Edgerton

    #4 is made of win!

  29. 29
    Brian H.

    I really liked God’s Lady Problem: Breaking up with abusive supernatural beingsOr “No Oh God! Sex & Dissatisfaction With Religion”

  30. 30
    Star

    I totally agree.

  31. 31
    sunnybook3

    I like “God’s Lady Problem”–that’s a title that would make me want to hear more. From the comments, I also like “Gods Who Hate Women (and the Women Who Love Them),” “When Faith Goes Pear-Shaped” (a nice invocation of current events), and “Yahweh: He’s Just Not That Into You.”

  32. 32
    Jerry Dunsmore

    How about:”That’s what SHE said! – A feminists view on Atheism and Religion”"That’s what SHE said! – Feminists atheists and escaping the Religious trap”*”That’s what SHE said! – Feminists, Skepticism, Atheism and Religion”*”That’s what SHE said! – Giving women a skeptic voice in Atheism, while avoiding Religion”I like the last two best..- JD

  33. 33
    Zuche

    Unfortunately, all I’ve got is Broads before Gods–not exactly helpful, despite its soundbiting qualities.

  34. 34
    SuperHappyJen

    I suck at titles, but I don’t think you do. Your blog post titles always draw me in when I see them on my reader. Maybe you’re just thinking too hard.

  35. 35
    the_Siliconopolitan

    Ack. Bad flashback to FanFiction.Net.I like the classics: “Feminism: The radical notion that women are people too.”

  36. 36
    Vern

    Why Women and God Don’t Mix

  37. 37
    J'Carlin

    Atheists: Give misogyny back to God.Or since these are atheists anyway “Give Misogyny Back to God.”

  38. 38
    Danielle Hs Taylor

    Bra-burning Atheists?

  39. 39
    Drakk

    “Free your mind – leave religion in the kitchen.”The unintended half rhyme, it burns >.<

  40. 40
    Aaron Harmon

    Wow. I totally misread the title of this post the first time and thought it was going to be a WAY NSFW porn related post! Now I am a little disappointed. :(

  41. 41
    Jen

    A surprising number of people like #4… oddly, that’s the one I actually came up with, haha. Maybe I’m not so bad with titles after all.

  42. 42
    Jason Bailey

    I like #4.Or how about, “Godless Ovaries”.Nah, stick with your #4. Good luck!

  43. 43
    tegan

    I vote for Be Cooler than God

  44. 44
    Three Ninjas

    The person who thought of that title must be very good looking.

  45. 45
    MScott

    “Mars (And Atheism) Needs Women”

  46. 46
    Steve in SA

    Completing the ranks of atheism: how to draw more women to atheist meetings… or something along this line. This gives the feeling that we’re not complete without women in our ranks (which of course we aren’t). The idea is to be inclusive instead of trying to turn the tables on men.

  47. 47
    Unbeliever

    “Yahweh or the Highway”?

  48. 48
    J. Mark

    Religious feminists women…WTF!

  49. 49
    J. Mark

    “Why women NEED religion…Why God loves feminists…Atheism is for men”…A FOX News story…

  50. 50
    Steve

    The fact that all of those titles seem at least witty and fresh indicates that there’s lots of room for lots more talks.When I first scanned this post, I thought the first list was also a list of working titles, and actually, I think “Why Women Should Give Up Religion” is a great title, if it really is apt to your subject, especially in the areas of getting people to notice who wouldn’t already attend out of enthusiasm. It also sounds the most Dawkins-y since it uses the fewest possible words to explain a concept clearly, which is something I love him for always doing so well.(By the way, don’t forget to update your copyright line.)

  51. 51
    bildungsroman

    Gods Who Hate Women (And the Women Who Love Them) is pretty awesome

  52. 52
    bildungsroman

    I like “equalism” myself

  53. 53
    Mango

    I like the pun in the first suggestion on your list. If you want to be more blatant,”De-institutionalizing Misogynist Phallusies”

  54. 54
    TFM

    Feminism & Atheism: Natural Allies Against Supernatural SexismFeminism & Atheism: Leveraging a Natural Alliance Against Supernatural SexismFeminism & Atheism: A Match Made in MindsThe second one is on the long side and light on wit, but I think it comes closest to capturing all four bullet points you mentioned, with the bonus of not framing atheism as mere a-Christianity. Plus, there’s “sex” in the title…sort of. Lots of good suggestions already, though, including your own #4, so it’ll be hard to go wrong.

  55. 55
    cps

    Feminism & Atheism: A match made in….um….. Well it’s a match that bloody well needs to be made!

  56. 56
    Katherine

    I also like #4.

  57. 57
    littlething

    I’m basically reiterating what has already been said, but here are my suggestions anyway:Feminism and Atheism: A Marriage of EqualsBreaking Up [with Jesus] Is Hard to Do: The Challenges Faced by Atheist WomenPhallusies of Faith: Women and Their Misogynist God

  58. 58
    LS

    Normally I’d try to come up with something witty and urbane, but I saw this with 5 minutes left on my lunch break and half a sandwich left. #4 is good though. I would go to that talk. I would point out though that the word “lady” is very important in #4. Without that, it just sounds like someones attempt at being witty about leaving religion in general.

  59. 59
    littlething

    I like all three of these. I definitely think that either the title or subtitle should give a clear explanation of what Jen’s going to cover.

  60. 60
    LadyAtheist

    How about “I’m a skeptifeminazi with a vagina. Got a problem with that?” (referencing the vagina comment from a few weeks ago… maybe would be lost on your audience)Yeah, my inclination is to be more in-your-face”Stop letting men tell you what to believe and think for yourself!”hmmm maybe”Afraid to give up the spaghetti dinners and the softball league? Take the leap!”

  61. 61
    LadyAtheist

    yeah, I stole an idea from Rmguest. I may actually start describing myself as a skeptifeminazi

  62. 62
    jrandom

    “God’s Lady Problem: Breaking up with abusive supernatural beings” gets my vote.

  63. 63
    Woozle Staddon

    1. Sock It to the Man: Escaping Patriarchy and Theocracy (while losing unwanted pounds of dogma overnight!)2. Gods, and the Women Who Love Them Too Much(variant on an earlier suggestion)3. Good Girls Don’t Hang Out with Bad Belief Systems4. Misogynistic Patriarchal Deities: do they stay up all night wondering why they’re in the doghouse?5. A Woman Needs a God Like a Fish Needs a Bicycle6. Not Tonight, Honey: Just Saying “No” to Dogma7. A Woman’s “Special Place”: why stay with a system that insults your intelligence?(that’s probably too long, and this is probably me jumping the shark, so I’ll quit before I get further behind)

  64. 64
    K.W. Ramesy

    How about “We’re Not Ribbing you About Atheist Eve: Atheism, Feminism, and Where They Intersect”?

  65. 65
    draab

    Number four absolutely.

  66. 66
    Walt Yarbrough

    Ayup – I was going to suggest this as well. “God, He’s just not that into you.”

  67. 67
    Alexa Joy

    Phallsues and Fallacies: Feminism and the Atheist Movement. :)

  68. 68
    TPRJones

    Biting the Apple: Atheism & Feminism in the 21st Century

  69. 69
    Liew Xiang Xiang

    I thought all four titles were great, but I’m particular to 3 and 4. And out of those two, 4 is the one that is most suited to your actual content. So definitely go with four.

  70. 70
    jimmyboy99

    And I like feminism. It makes the point that there is an unbalanced issue. Much more of an issue on one side than the other. I’m a bloke – I describe myself as a feminist.

  71. 71
    jimmyboy99

    Your 4th one sounds like a contraceptive!

  72. 72
    bildungsroman

    My only issue with the term “feminism” is that the ultimate goal is full equality, not the dominance of women over men. That’s why I like “equalism” – the mission is embedded in the term.

  73. 73
    Rmguest

    “Honey, can you pick up another pack of Skeptifems while you’re at the store? I feel a bout of religiosity coming on.”

  74. 74
    jimmyboy99

    I understand what you are saying here – the term describes the intended outcome. The point that perhaps I didn’t make clearly was that equalism appears to suggest that there is an equal problem.I like feminism because it explicitly recognises the inherent inequality of the problem. ie it’s much bigger for women than men. Also it’s kind of in your face, and is provocative when a bloke adopts this title. I am explicitly choosing to side with a group who endure mockery from many sides. However, contrary to a suggestion from a lad in the pub last year, it has never got me an extra shag. :)

  75. 75
    Kelly Cosgrove

    God? I Don’t Believe Her.

  76. 76
    Azkyroth

    Unfortunately it’s also the screen name of a Pharyngula-and-elsewhere commenter (and reportedly blogger) who’s perhaps unfairly best known for being fanatically anti-pornography and deeply intellectually dishonest (and unskeptical) about it.So maybe this is kind of weirdly appropriate? O.o

  77. 77
    Katalina

    Agreed, #4 is de best.

  78. 78
    Katalina

    Or, at least, none that’s consensual… the Greek gods were much better at getting it on with unsuspecting women.

  79. 79
    Katalina

    Sorry Mom, I can’t go to church today. I have a serious case of the Femino-skeptoids.

  80. 80
    Katalina

    I really like your first one. It really appeals to my logic, as opposed to trying to be clever. I do like cleverness a lot too, but these titles are so clear and indisputable. Nice.

  81. 81
    Jenny

    Not Church Ladiesor some variation.

  82. 82
    Lynn

    Who is your audience? Are they church goers, atheist, or a mix? It matters who you are speaking to.~~You Don’t Need Religion to Be A Real Woman~~Break Free from Religion be Your Own Guide~~What has God Done for You Lately~~Fire Up Your Life Without God~~A Beautiful Life Without God~~Real Women Don’t Need God

  83. 83
    Jarahdai

    “Dump the God: How to leave your abusive Deity.”

  84. 84
    Tom Hail

    Skepti-feminism: Feminists Leaving God for SkepticismI saw the Skepti-feminism above somewhere… seems like you.

  85. 85
    Rmguest

    An auto-introspective procedure? Skepto-feminoscopy?

  86. 86
    Shelley Protte

    i love #4 too!

  87. 87
    Brian Westley

    If you want lots of people to show up, make the title “Free doughnuts!”

  88. 88
    Ekke

    Those titles are awesome (I really like #4) but I would like to know what you think of religions with no supernatural elements to them — Reconstructionist Judaism, Ethical Culture, Unitarian Universalism to an extent, as well as Nontheist Quakers. Could you present those as alternatives to the more ‘typical’ religions? Do you accept that many women — I am one such woman — enjoy going to church? And yes, I am a skeptoid, atheist feminist. Do you want women to stop attending church, or do you want us to stop believing in G-d? You can be a godless heathen and still attend church services at your (liberal, humanist) institution of choice.

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