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Category Archive: sociology/culture

I realize that this category is entirely too broad, so if you're interested in this sort of stuff, you should probably use the tags at the right side of the screen to look for specific topics.

Jun 23 2014

Why “Hipster Sexism” Fails

[Content note: sexual harassment & domestic violence] My new post at the Daily Dot is about “hipster sexism/racism” in fashion. It doesn’t surprise me at all when CEOs of major clothing retailers or famous celebrity photographers turn out to be harassing, intimidating, assaulting, or abusing women, because the same thing happens everywhere else: politics, tech companies, sports, evenscience journalism. It …

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May 24 2014

Masculinity, Violence, and Bandaid Solutions

[Content note: violence, guns, mass shootings, misogyny] We’re all familiar with the pattern now: a solitary young white man goes on a shooting rampage. People die. The media describes him as “crazy,” “disturbed,” “troubled,” “insane.” Everyone collectively bemoans the failings of our mental healthcare system, presuming that its failure is relevant here. People with mental …

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Apr 22 2014

Individualized Feminism

Public scrutiny of individual women’s choices is a spectator sport in our society. Women’s aesthetic, sartorial, professional, parental, sexual, social, and health decisions are debated passionately whether these women are entertainers, politicians, business executives, relatives, neighbors, or fellow PTA moms. These decisions are presumed to reflect strongly on who these women are as mothers, daughters, …

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Mar 18 2014

Surprise Weddings are Nonconsensual and Icky

Okay, I promise I’ll actually write something for this blog soon, but for now I have another Daily Dot piece, this time about “surprise weddings.” (It’s as icky as it sounds.) Here’s an excerpt: It’s incredibly ironic that an event meant to celebrate the joining of two people in marriage would be so one-sided, and …

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Dec 25 2013

Against Role Models

Whenever a famous person does something of which the general public disapproves, much is often made of that person’s status as a “role model” and how it influences the public’s judgment of their behavior, and whether or not it is time to revoke that status. It seems that celebrities cannot escape being seen as “role …

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Aug 03 2013

Strawmanning Rape Culture (Part One)

[Content note: sexual assault] Rape culture is a very difficult concept for many people to understand, perhaps because, like many sociological constructs, it works in such a way as to make itself invisible. Understanding rape culture, especially if you are someone who isn’t affected by it very much, requires a keen attention to detail and …

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Jun 11 2013

[guest post] Dictionary Arguments, and Why They Suck

CaitieCat, a frequent and awesome commenter around here, has a guest postI It’s not news to any activist for any cause that people just love to whip out dictionary definitions as ostensibly authoritative guides to what words mean. Even so august a person as a fellow whose name may or may not rhyme with Shmichard …

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May 24 2013

On Useful and Not-So-Useful Definitions of Racism

[Update 10/22/13: If you've found this post through a racist hate forum, don't bother commenting. Your comment's going straight to the trash and nobody will ever read it. :)] Richard Dawkins, whose Twitter feed never fails to amuse, has lately been discussing racism–specifically, against white people: [Here's the link in case you can't see this] …

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May 12 2013

Richwine and the Inherent Goodness of Intelligence

[Content note: racism] In news that should surprise absolutely no one, conservatives have once again embarrassed themselves by attempting to “prove” with “science” that people of color are stupider than white people. Yup, again. You’ve probably read this story elsewhere so I’ll make my recap brief: It has come to light that Jason Richwine (I’m …

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May 05 2013

[blogathon] Restorative Justice for Sexual Assault

This is the eighth and last post in my SSA blogathon. It was requested by a reader. Don’t forget to donate! [Content note: sexual assault] Restorative justice is a word you sometimes hear in discussions about how to reform our criminal justice system. It refers to “an approach to justice that focuses on the needs …

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