Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Blog Entry #3

This blog entry was easy for me to write about because I am a magazine fanatic. I am always reading the articles that they write about girls in Hollywood and all the fashion. The girl in the article that I read was about a girl and how she had a baby and needs to get back down to her old size zero to fit back in Hollywood. Her body before she had her baby was used for sex appeal. I in some ways feel that this article is offensive to women because having a baby means that you your body goes through things that you can't control and people should not be so critical of things you can't control. I think that this article has more to do with how the women is portrayed as being sexy and not as much to do with sexism. I think that article would have to be feminism if I had to pick however it does not discuss women having the same rights as men. The only way that women and men are brought together in this article is by saying how men want their women to look "sexy." I think that advertising being sexy is not a good thing if a women or young girl is not secure with themselves. For women that know they are pretty and are comfortable with themselves it is ok for them to read these kinds of articles. On the other hand, for those girls that are still getting comfortable with themselves if makes them feel as though if they do not look like those in high school that they are good enough. I think way too many young girls go through feelings like that. For the article I read the only way they could stop the publishing would be to stop buying the magazine.

Monday, October 29, 2007

NOVA SCHIN Non- alcoholic Beer Ad BLOG #3 by Ian Moy


For my third blog i decided to find an beer advertisement. The advertisement i found is that of a young beautiful women holding a beer in a modeled positionthe UK. The name of the beer manufacturer is called Nova Schin, they are based out of Now dont get me wrong just from viewing this artidle i have a gained interest in what this advertisement has to say. But the only catch that this advertisement has if you want to view it as a catch is that the yong beautiful model is pregnant. Holding a non alcoholi beer of course. What i get out of this artile from the standpoint of women is that this is somewhat empowering. showing that women can look visually appealing and aggressive while still being pregnant. On the side of guys i feel that this advetisement would be great for a market flooded with husbands and significant others of pregnant women. I think that many guys who have pregnant ladies in their lives could relate well to this advertisement. Because from my point of view most all pregnant women dont drink, and a committed partner probably doesnt drink either, ut to view this advertisement brings back memories of how your lover looked before she gained all the weight and the babye and how you used to drink, buyt this depicts being pregnant as sexy, and being able to drink. NON ALCOHOLIC beer, but none the less even being Non- Alcoholic doesnt mean it is completely non alcoholic. I think to an extent that this advertisement though is sexist, because it is definitely still targeting mainly a male audience while depicting a women though pregnant, in a sexy pose with short jean shorts and a small small shirt. I think that this advertisement affects womens body image by making them uncomfortable with the rigors of pregnancy, and putting unneeded pressure on themselves during those long 9 months. That is why positive support from a significant other during those months is key to keeping the womens confidence high. I also think that this advertisement promotes more variety in advertisements, but i think the wrong way, the advertisement is to sexual even with the women being pregnant. Ithink the advertisement community is obligated to keep everything on a even scale and not overindulge in sexuality and reintroduce more realistic depicitions of life, nd not the 90 mile per hour scenes of the mega cities in the world.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Blog #3

1. How is the girl/woman represented in the ad? How is her body and/or sexuality used (or not) to sell a particular product?
She is placed in the very center of the advertisement. Her left fingers are very softly touching her cheek. She is staring directly out at the viewer with eyes covered in deep red eye-shadow. She is dressed in only a bra top that matches the color of the makeup and lipstick. Her hair is slicked back, and she appears to be wet or sweaty. Directly across her chest is the word, “Fetish” in large, black letters. Underneath the brand name is their tagline which reads, “fetish #16: Apply generously to your neck so he can smell the scent as you shake your head ‘no.” She has the object being advertised directly placed between her breasts.
The way the model’s body is placed and the way she is dressed strongly suggest sex/sexuality. The advertised object looks very phallic and is placed directly between her breasts suggesting sex once again. The way she is staring at the viewer and nonchalantly touching her face is provoking. Her heavy makeup and sweaty body also add to the sex appeal provided within the advertisement.

2. Do you think this ad is offensive to women? Why or why not? What kind of ideologies of gender and sexuality do you think are contained in this ad? What is the dividing line between “sexy” and sexist?
I believe this extremely offensive to women, especially to teenage girls that the advertisement is directed to. I think with the addition of their tagline, the advertisement suggests to men that they can rape or abuse women. The fact that she wears this product would make it acceptable. The company is blatantly using the sexual prowess of the model to sell their product and suggest that forceful sex is alright within society. I think it also tells the girls that they should almost give in to any forced sex they come to. They should just shake their head “no” instead of fighting back.
The line between sexy and sexist is that between nude and nudity in photography. The way in that the picture is used justifies whether it is art or pornography just as the composition of the ad tells whether it is being sexist. The act of appearing vulnerable is usually a key element in sexist works.

3. Is this ad feminist or anti-feminist? Justify your beliefs.
I would say it is anti-feminist because it suggests male dominance over women by the use of their tagline and the placement of their phallic product between her breasts.

4. How does advertising affect body image issues for girls and women? Do you believe that the advertising industry has a responsibility to promote more diverse images of women? Why or why not?
Advertising shows girls what kind of women make it in the media, which selected breeds become famous and desired. In turn, they try almost anything to be like them. I think the industry has gotten away with portraying these ideals for so long that it would be hard to stop them at this point. However, I think we need to step up as people and suggest some sort of responsibility. These people are causing sever mental, emotional, and physical problems to our youth, and we shouldn’t stand for that.
5. What kind of activism can people take part in to protest and/or oppose advertising imagery that they find offensive or harmful to women and girls?
I think the companies need to be boycotted. We need advertising that points out these flaws – beat them at their own game. We also need to show a more diverse sort of people to the world instead of stick-thin, bleach-blonde, Barbies with curves, legs, and breasts.

Blog #3 Casey Page

The girls are both next each other in tight dresses, and one has her eyes closed with her mouth kind of open, and the other girl closed mouth and closed eyes. This image makes you think of sex and the faces that are shown. Their body and sexuality is used to sell the Tanqueray alcohol. There is this stigma that when girls get alcohol in their system they become freer. Then you have Hugh Hefner in the back ground, and he is known for finding the sexiest girls. Yes I believe this add is offensive to women. Not all girls become freer and willing to do things that guys want us to do when alcohol is involved. It is always alcohol ads that portray women to be in this sexy mood and that isn't always the case. On TV when they talk about alcohol you don’t always see women in sexy outfits. You see men having a good time, it’s only on paper ads that women are in sexy outfits. This ad is anti-feminist. As other people have said that feminist are not about exploiting the body and getting people to accept the body. Yes they women are clothed, but it is still exploiting this very curvy yet, skinny dream girl with big breasts. Girls and women think they need this thin perfect body that has like no meat on their body and decent breasts that aren’t small. Women and girls both will go to plastic surgeons or will just crash diet and become anorexic or bulimic to get their bodies to look like that. I do believe the advertising industry has a responsibility to promote diverse images of women because it is their fault we have so many skinny girls out there today. Women need to learn that they can have some meat on them and still be sexy and hot. The marketers need to come up with another idea besides sex sells. Women need to start saying no to these types of shoots. If women start protesting these advertising agencies will have to find another way to do their ads and the companies will need to find another way to get their product to sell. Groups need to get together to brainstorm to find other ways to sell products.

Clothing or Politics--Jacqui Duthie

This is an advertisement for Aeropostale clothing. This girl is being represented as a girl who thinks about many issues. Her body is being used to model clothes you can purchase at this store. Her sexuality is not being portrayed in this ad.
I do not think this ad is offensive to women. This ad is true in a sense. Women think about a lot of issues like the environment, world peace, the next president, what to wear to work, and how should we do our hair. The ideologies of gender and sexuality that are contained in this ad are that women think about everything, even their hair. The belief about gender in this ad if I had to say a negative response would be that women can be selfish. That women think about themselves more than any other topic and that we would rather buy clothes from Aeropostale than to help with the environment. The dividing line between “sexy” and sexist is when any individual takes offense to the ad or comment. Also, is when an advertisement goes to the extreme and is all negative about women, then that would be sexist.
I do not know if this ad is feminist or anti-feminist. Just looking at the ad without reading the caption, I would say that this ad is just a girl selling clothes in a appropriate manner. The caption though could be taken as that girl/women worry about their hair more than other things. However, I do not know what I would classify this article.
This advertisement does not affect body image issues for girls or women. This girl seems to be an average girl and that any girl, big or small, young or old, can go and purchase these clothes. I do believe that the advertising industry has a responsibility to promote more diverse images of women. The advertising world would send a message that all women are different and all women are beautiful in their own way. That not one body image is better than the other. And that a women can be comfortable in the body they have.
The activism that people can take part in to protest and/or oppose advertising imagery would be to petition the advertising group that their advertising is offensive. Other than that I do not think one person can change the minds of an industry. If there were hundreds of thousands of people that came together to protest than I believe we can change the minds.

image from: www.genderads.com (Politics)

Halloween costume ad ~ Elena Funk

It is that time of year again where bad is good and candy is the only sugary thing people want to eat. However, Halloween has turned this innocent dress-up game into what could be considered a sexual fantasy. While updating my Facebook profile I found I was bombarded by ads of scantily clad women promoting a particular Halloween costume vendor. I have had my share of fun dressing up for this holiday, I thought the manner in which this costume was being promoted was disgusting:

The woman in the ad is represented as a sexy corrupt cop complete with handcuffs, evidence bag, and cleavage to spare. That a miniature story line is used in the ad for the costume is all the more disturbing. The company is using this woman’s “perfect body” to sell the costume to a nation of women that mostly do not fit this figure. Even the costume’s brand name suggests how few women could wear this costume and appear as the model in the ad: Dream Girl.

I find this ad rather offensive to women, particularly those that are members of police units. Taking a look at the size chart for this costume I think it is saying to women that if you do not fit within those parameters you are not good or sexy enough to wear it. I saw no plus size models for any of the sexy costumes advertised. This ad would be particularly offensive to policewomen because I am sure they have enough sexist issues to deal with in a unit. That this portrays a female cop accepting bribes could make it difficult for co-workers to trust and respect her. I feel there is this cliché idea that all female cops are sexy sirens and this ad fuels that idea. The kind of ideology that surrounds this ad is that only women who fit into the body type portrayed are sexy and should be “permitted” to show a good deal of skin for Halloween. Any and all models used for plus size costumes on the company’s website do not deviate from the “perfect body” used in the corrupt cop ad. I did find one model that may have been a plus size model, but it was difficult to tell what was beneath the bed sheet of a Cleopatra costume that was draped on her.

I think this brings to light the line between sexy and sexist in regards to this ad. Sure, it is cute to dress as something or someone that a person could not wear every day, but sending the message that only certain women should do this is sexist. There are plus size clothing makers in this nation, why not have them help costume companies design costumes that are flattering for every type of body? Can a woman of larger size than the models this company uses not be some man or woman’s Dream Girl? I think when an advertisement targets only a specific body type for its product that crosses the line from sexy into sexist.

This ad is anti-feminist because it portrays female government workers in a negative light, gives set parameters for what is considered sexy, and lacks the use of models diverse in size and color. The story line of the corrupt, bribe-accepting female cop puts a negative light on professional policewomen. All ads for sexy costumes have the same size parameters whereas many of the plus size costumes that are almost that same thing as the sexy costumes lack the word “sexy” in the costume title. In all my searching within the website I failed to find any women of color being used as models for the costumes and the only plus size model shown was wearing a large sheet that covered her entire body.

I think advertisements like this affect the body image of girls and women alike. Similar images are used not only on the internet, but on television as well where many youth spend their time. Ads such as the one thrown in front of me can make women feel they have to be “sexy” for Halloween or that they are only sexy if they can fit into the Dream Girl costume. The complete lack of diverse models could also make some girls and women of various size and color think they are not good enough to wear these sexy costumes. The advertising company should realize that if they used more images that portrayed the true makeup of American society that they may actually sell more of their product. I think women everywhere would appreciate the availability of a fun Halloween costume they can feel comfortable in.

In protest of any widely unattainable Dream Girl image people can refuse to support the sale of the product or suggest to the company that the images used should change. Perhaps getting a petition together and sending it to a company executive could help rid the media of the “perfect body” image. Change will not occur immediately for as the saying goes, “sex sells.” If people can let advertisement agencies know how much more they could sell if their products were modeled by women of all shapes and color a change that many women have been looking for may begin to happen.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Blog #3 by Andrea Ensley

Pursuing an offensive ad towards women is quite an easy task however choosing just one is difficult. Many of the ads I viewed were absolutely disgusting and I really did not want to post on this blog. The woman in the ad that I chose is being used for a company that produces women's panties called Barely There. Her body is used specifically to attract men and women to buy their product. She has no clothes on except for the panties. Her arms are covering her breasts but the rest of her body is exposed. To me, the company is using the Marilyn Monroe look but that is just my opinion. To say the least, the ad is very offensive to women! Panties can be sold without a women having to be almost naked. I realize the cliche that sex sells but when is enough, enough? This ad portrays the female gender as sexy and in order for the company to increase their profits, they need a "barely there" literally ad and of course use a woman. I do not recall ever seeing an ad with a man is skippy briefs or a thong. This ad does wreak of sexism and sexist thinking. A woman can feel sexy without removing the majority of her clothing for the world to see. In my opinion, there is a FINE line between sexy and sexist. This ad is anti-feminist. The feminist movement deals so much with the exploitation of women. This ad clearly violates all that they fight for. Women need to love their bodies. How does this ad make a women feel who struggles with this issue? Feminist fight the "sex sells" concept and rightly so. With the age of technology, how many young girls see these same images in our ads? Body image is extremely touchy for young girls. Anorexia and bulimia is more of a problem today than ever. Is it any wonder with all these gender ads aimed at women and how the body should look like in their opinion? I do not agree at all with the advertising companies who jeopardize the reality of most women's bodies. They are making tons of money at women's expense. It just furthers societies warped sense that women are nothing more than play toys to be used and exploited. Women have the right to have their bodies portrayed in a more positive manner that does not exploit! In my opinion, activism is this area may need to be a boycott. I have seen other organizations use this to their advantage. It is all about money and if the offensive ad companies against women begin to lose money and get exposed for what they really are, things just many change. It certainly is worth a try. Many of us can write letters to the editor of our local papers to start with. Groups can be formed to brainstorm everyone's ideas to come up with a plan of action. When women put their heads together, amazing things happen to the betterment for all women. To be honest, anything is better than doing nothing. We all can take a part however we choose best.
Ad from www.reclaimyourculture.com/Activism

Heather Holley- Women in Ads

In this advertisement we find a typical in a Calvin Klein ad. A very sexually driven ad promoting a product of Calvin Klein. The female in this ad seems to be object of the man and his desires, he seems to be in control and promoting the idea of sex and the female is quietly going along without protest. Her pants are much lowered than her male counterpart giving a sign of her being more of the sex object and appeal. Her male companion shows only a small sign of his bicep and his neck, while his face is covered by his hair and a deep shadow that hides his eyes. Her face is not hidden by a shadow mask. The male’s face seems to be the one dominating while hers shows an anticipation of his actions seeming as though he is the only one that should be making the moves.
Unfortunately I do not think that this would be viewed offensive in today’s society, mainly because of the desensitization of American viewers. Our televisions and magazines are plagued by advertisements promoting the idea that women are sex objects that are to be used to encourage buying into corporations. This ad shows the typical way that women are used in everyday propaganda that women need to fulfill the American ideology that thin is beautiful and that women are for sex. However with the exposure we have now-a-days and the lack of education of sexism, it is hard to draw the line between sexy and sexist. Today’s showing of these pictures has become routine, and regular and we find it hard to see the problems in such things.
I think that this ad is feminist, and I know many people would argue it is just an ad. But I have found after being better educated in the differences and judgments placed upon women, it is easier to find such problems being silently promoted. The views that companies place on women in order to sell their products is depressing. Women are used as sex attractions to promote products to increase company profit, which is very sexist. Why are men not promoted in this fashion?
These images of women are constantly influencing our society’s view on what is attractive in women. Women are shown as revealing, thin, and submissive. I think it is disgusting, and I hate that women are portrayed this way. We have more women suffering from eating disorders and depression because they do not feel that they can live up to the standards of society. These ad’s make it hard for women to be comfortable in their varying sizes. Many women look better with meat on their bones and I hate when they say that they have to lose weight, such as Star Jones who had surgery to remove her “excess weight”. I hate finding my 10 year old cousin stating she needs to loose weight because her legs are fat. I think that the companies should take more compassion in what they are selling, and realizing what their ad’s are doing to children and women of our society. I wonder if their daughter was suffering from these problems, they would start to change their take on what they are doing. I think that they should be taking more responsibility in the first place. They should see what they are doing to our society and feel a need to make a change.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Advertisement Blog Entry # 3 by Tirabassi

Under Armour Fitness Apparel Ad

Blog Assignment #3 by Rebecca Tirabassi
Shape Magazine, October 2007 issue

The fitness industry is part of a billion dollar industry that has capitalized on selling products and services to enhance a woman’s shape and sexuality. Ads for the next miracle weight loss pill, the most innovative exercise machine for use at home, the gym membership that promises you a better body, and the newest exercise shoes and apparel necessary for more effective workouts daily barrage a woman’s inbox and mail box. And most often, “sex” will be used to sell the product or service.

For this blog assignment, I chose an Under Armour Fitness Apparel ad (see attached scan) in "Shape Magazine’s" October 2007 issue. In my opinion, this ad appealed to consumers of all ages and fitness levels because Under Armour chose (1) “real women” of average sizes to model the sponsor’s newest full-length sweatshirts, leggings, and T-shirts and (2) to highlight the courage and strength of women who were cancer survivors, rather than focus on the thinness of their bodies or sexiness of their poses. By promoting a “cause” alongside of their product, the sponsor was able to increase awareness, provide tangible support in the fight against cancer, and subtly remind readers that exercise is both preventative against disease and a valid part of the healing and recovery process for those with cancer.

It appears that the trends are changing, as this issue of "Shape Magazine" geared many of their articles and ads toward “real women” who more concerned about acquiring health and wellness, than achieving sexy, thin bodies. In addition, many of the ads seemed neutral, rather than feminist or anti-feminist. This advertiser, in particular, found a way to positively communicate to all women that in addition to selling their product, Under Armour was interested in fighting a cause that all women want to win. In comparison to fashion magazines that regularly venture into sexual or political genres with their advertising campaigns, this sponsor’s ad appealed to the woman who wants to live a healthy, balanced life while making a positive difference in the world for themselves and others.
After perusing six women’s magazines for this assignment, it appears that magazines where the focus and/or content of the magazine equals the mission of the sponsors, the ads (1) are more synergistic to the daily lives of women (ex: busy, working women and moms who need practical advice), (2) are more relevant to the true-life struggles of women (ex: fighting against disease and cancer with healthy eating and manageable exercise plans) and, very often (3) use “real women” to sell their products (ex: food products, automobiles, and fitness apparel).
Under Armour made a great impression on consumers (including me) with this positive, inclusive, forward-thinking ad by using “real women” to represent a relevant cause while selling their sporty fitness apparel.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Blog#3 Bali & Women in Advertizing By Bev Ball

I chose this Bali ad because it depicts everything offensive to all women.
In this ad as you can see the woman is suppose to appear exotic and has long hair and
is scantily dressed and you see her wearing a bra. Her body is used to entice both male and females to want this product
for themselves or their girlfriends. They want to look sexy and feminine and if it is the boy
friend he wants his girlfriend to look sexy like the girl in the ad.
I think this type of ad is especially offensive to women because for one we don’t
go out half dressed showing our bra’s and what does “feeling like a natural woman” have to
to do with the wearing of a bra? It doesn’t, which is the point how absurd! But we buy into this type of advertising everyday and rarely even take notice because we have been so de-sensitized to seeing the female body used for promoting products.
This ad is anti-feminist because it projects and portrays women in a sexual manner for
the sole purpose of selling a product.
How does this effect body image issues for women and girls? It portrays that it is essentially
necessary to pose or wear products that show off breasts or other physical assets associated
with sexuality and femininity.
I believe we need to take a stronger stand and make companies accountable for how
they use women in advertising and we need to stop purchasing those products until
changes are made to portray and highlight women in a less sexually defined way.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

CoCo Chanel..Blog #2

"Coco"Chanel, or Gabrielle Bonheur Chanel was one of the most influential French fashion designers of the 20th century. Her modernist philosophy, menswear-inspired fashions, and pursuit of expensive simplicity made her clothing not only brilliant but beautiful. She was born August 19, 1883 the second daughter of traveling salesman Albert Chanel and Jeanne Devolle in the small city of Saumur, France.

"Coco Chanel rose to become one of the premier fashion designers in Paris, France. Replacing the corset with comfort and casual elegance, her fashion themes included simple suits and dresses, women's trousers, costume jewelry, perfume and textiles. By the 1920s, her fashion house had expanded considerably, and her chemise set a fashion trend with its "little boy" look. Her relaxed fashions, short skirts, and casual look were in sharp contrast to the corset fashions popular in the previous decades. Chanel herself dressed in mannish clothes, and adapted these more comfortable fashions which other women also found liberating."

Coco Chanel may not have marched to make it possible for women to vote, or was a major contributor to women's liberation during the World Wars, but this women took women's rights to a different level and the only way she knew how. Coco Chanel freed women from binding and restricted clothing which set women as objects and not strong assets with knowledgeable contributions. Coco took average clothing and made it superb. She allowed women to take on a "boyish look" and to finally have room in their clothing to breath and move. Although in later years she was exiled to Sweden because of a well know affair with a Nazi officer, when the fashions began changing again and the women became bound in discomfort she made her return again to free the women of her generation. She was also looked down upon for her own style of dress, drinking, and smoking. Chanel was a strong believer that she could do as she pleased. And she fact that she was a women should make no difference. Being one of the most well know designers of her time in a field that was make dominate at the time she reveled in the idea that she made men nervous and women proud.

With the creation of the "little black dress" Coco Chanel made it possible for women to work and play. These designs were made to allow women to use one item in many different facets. Chanel was an innovator to the female form. She also took such fabrics as cotton and jersey which were typically for men's undergarments and made women's everyday wear out of them. The idea of making clothing out of the comforts of men's clothing totally for women was a goal that Chanel was eager to obtain.
Coco Chanel died at the age of 87 on January 10, 1971 living in France still designing and still working. Her designs have now been passed on and are revived and lived through Karl Lagerfeld.
I have found that Coco Chanel is one of the most fascinating women that I have ever been fortunate enough to research. Not the typically feminist that people are used to reading about but she indeed liberated women in a very real way. Every thing I read about her whether it be the vast array of books about her or the multiple websites celebrating her vision I am also surprised at the things she did and continues to do even after death for women and the female form. Even know almost one-hundred years later her innovations and classic looks are used. Even if you do not consider yourself the modern fashionista, your closet no matter your style is more than likely got a splash of Coco in it, weather you know it or not.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Alice Walker, Marianne Moscato Blog #2

Alice Malsenior Walker is an African American author born on February 9, 1944 in Eaton Georgia. She is the eighth and last child of Willie Lee and Minnie Lou Grant, who were sharecroppers. When Alice Walker was eight year's old she lost sight of one eye when one of her older brothers shot her with a BB gun by accident. She attended Spelman College, a prominent school for black women in Atlanta, Georgia. During the two years she attended at Spelman she became active in the civil rights movement. She then transferred to Lawrence College in New York. There she continued her studies and active involvement in civil rights .In 1962 she was invited to the home of Martin Luther King Jr. in recognition of her attendance at the Youth World Peace Festival in Finland. Walker also registered black voters in Liberty County Georgia, and later worked for the New York City Department of Welfare.
Two years after receiving her B.A. degree from Sarah Lawrence in 1965, Walker married Melvyn Rosenman Leventhal, a white civil rights attorney. They lived in Jackson, Mississippi, where Walker worked as the black history consultant for a Head Start program. She also served as the writer-in-residence for Jackson State College (later Jackson State University) and Tougaloo College. She completed her first novel, The Third Life of Grange Copeland, in 1969, the same year that her daughter, Rebecca Grant, was born. When her marriage to Leventhal ended in 1977, Walker moved to northern California, where she lives and writes today.
Still living today, and is known as one the of the most admired African American writers. Alice Walker's early poems, novels and short stories dealt with rape, violence, isolation, troubled relationships, multi-generational perspectives, sexism and racism. She is most likely best known as the author of the Color Purple. She was awarded the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award in 1983.
I had heard of the name Alice Walker, but could not of told you what she did or who she was. However I have saw the movie The Color Purple, but did not know that she was the author of the book. I can't say that I enjoyed the movie in it self, but I think the message it sends out needs to be heard and known. I think it gave women who have been abused, shy, misunderstood all their childhood (like she was), or simply just scared it gives those children or adult women to believe that there is hope. The movie is very empowering, and knowing now that she was the author makes me want to read more of her books. She set out to let the voices of women be heard, and I believe she is still doing a great job at it today. Especially being active in the civil rights movement her speaking out through her writing may have been an inspiration for other women of color who were oppressed at that time. She did not care that she was criticized for some of her writing, she just kept moving forward.

Resources for further study:
In Love and Trouble: Stories of Black Women (1973)
You Can't Keep a Good Woman Down: Stories (1982)
The Way Forward Is with a Broken Heart (2000)
To Hell with Dying (1988)
Finding the Green Stone (1991)

Alice Walker, Marianne Moscato

Alice Malsenior Walker is an African American author born on Feburary 9, 1944 in Eaton Georgia. She is the eigth and last child of Willie Lee and Minnie Lou Grant, who were shatecroppers. When Alice Walker was eight year's old she lost sight of one eye when one of her older brothers shot her with a BB gun by accident. She attended Spelman College, a prominent school for black women in Atlanta, Georgia. During the two years she attended at Spelman she became active in the civil rights movement. She then transferred to Lawrence College in New York. There she continued her studies and active involvment in civil rights .In 1962 she was invited to the home of Martin Luther King Jr. in recognition of her attendance at the Youth World Peace Festival in Finland. Walker also registered black voters in Liberty County Georgia, and later worked for the New York City Department of Welfare.

Still living today, and is one of the most admired African American writers.
I had heard of the name Alice Walker, but could not of told you what she did or who she was. However I have saw the movie The Color Purple, but did not know that she was the author of the book.

Eleanor Roosevelt by Jenny Mauerer

Eleanor Roosvelt assignment attached
Jenny Mauerer
Joelle Ruby Ryan
Women’s Studies 200
Blog Entry #2

Eleanor Roosevelt was best known for helping her husband in the making of the New
Deal. She is niece of Teddy Roosevelt and wife to Franklin Roosevelt. She was born in New York
City on October 11, 1884 (she would have celebrated her 123 birthday tomorrow!!) and died in
the same city that she was born in November 1962. Her mother and father had both pasted
away by the time Eleanor was 10. Therefore her and her siblings went to live with their
grandmother who raised them. She attended a school in England at the age of 15, that gave her
the confidence and drive that she would need to complete the tasks that her life held for her.
She married her distant cousin Franklin Roosevelt in 1905 and then gave birth to six children in
11 years.
She began to gain her knowledge in politics in 1910 when her husband joined the Senate
and has been part of politics ever since, helping her husband gain presidency in 1933. Eleanor
dedicated her life to her husbands politics starting in 1928 when he was made governor and
remained until the day he died. She did all her duties as First Lady very well, greeted people,
supported her husband, went to political gatherings and most importantly helped her husband
write the New Deal.
She used her life to contribute to feminism by making the way for First Ladies and then
some to do more than what is expected. She made herself public to people and stood on her own
with her views and spoke out to support her husband. When she stepped up to help write the
New Deal she was the first lady to have their political views in a document. Her courage and
bravery set the way for women to stand out with their views and show how they support others.

I have heard about Eleanor Roosevelt before and knew the basis of what she had
accomplished in her life. However, I was unaware of how she got to where she was when she
died. I never knew her life story, how her grandmother raised her, where she got her schooling
or how she met and married her husband and many other facts in between. I think that she is a
women that has a made an impact in our society and her legacy will forever be around.

I choice to do Eleanor Roosevelt mainly because I was in Disney World this past summer
and I thought that it was intereating because the Hall of Presidents had mentioned her and her
accomplishments during the show. Therefore, I learned some of the basis about her from that

Denise Haggerty; Carol Leigh aka Scarlet Harlot

Scarlet Harlot

Carol Leigh aka Scarlet Harlot was a huge activist for prostitutes rights and the rights of all types of women’s groups. There was not much information available for Leigh before she arose as an activist in the late seventies. However I did find that she devoted her life to her works, fighting for the rights of sex workers and other women’s and minority groups. She lives in the San Francisco, CA Bay Area and this is also were she does most of her work.
She had many major accomplishments in the media and in her activist works. She was one of the leaders of the sex workers rights movement and even coined the term “sex worker”. She used her role in the sex worker activist act to get prostitutes tested for HIV and volunteered at an HIV prevention center. Leigh also worked to create awareness about AIDs in the Bay Area of San Francisco (bayswan.org). Leigh was a part of many documentaries that showed how sex workers around the world had the rights violated and helped in the organization of many groups like the Bay- SWAN, a group that’s aim was to produce awareness about sex workers and fight for their rights.
She’s had a large role in media awareness over the past 20 years including her weekly public access show that she had on the air for 10 years. She created documentaries of sex workers and also to raise awareness concerning gay and lesbian issues. She wrote a book called “The adventures of Scarlet Harlot”, and also co-directed Annie Sprinkles Herstory of Porn (bayswan.org). Leigh also brought her skills into the teaching arena, she teaches digital art at various schools all over the San Francisco bay area.
Her role in the feminist movement are clear, though her media coverage she raised issue’s of women’s rights, because of her works there are people out there with a new outlook on life. For me reading about all the things that she has done so far in her life was inspirational for me to get out there, to start building awareness for the things that women in my day and age are suffering from and to continue the fight for women’s rights.
It was hard for me to find a lot of sources of information on Carol Leigh the activist, the sources that I felt was most helpful was a site called bayswan (www.bayswan.org/Scarlot_Resume.html). Another source that was slightly helpful was the wikepedia website however this website did not provide very much information about Leigh’s works.

Denise Haggerty
Women’s Studies 200
Blog post 2

bell hooks Biogaphy by Heather Holley

Gloria Jean Watkins, better known as “bell hooks” is an African American woman who was born in Hopkinsville, Kentucky on September 26, 1952. Her face was a custodian and her mother was a homemaker, making them a working class family that held seven children. She grew up in schools that were segregated and many of her writing were about the trouble that came from the integration of the school systems. Her secondary school was far from mediocre, she graduated from Stanford University with a B.A. in English and received he M.A. in English from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, finally receiving her doctorate from the University of California in Santa Cruz.
bell hooks has published over thirty books and continues to be very active in speaking about oppression. Her topics include: racism, social classes and gender identity. Her first work that was written while she was still and undergraduate, is still seen today as an influential feminist book. Her book Ain’t I a Woman discusses black women in history; sexism and racism to media and education ideals on black women. Here books have a wide range of all categories of stereotyping; oppression, sexuality in feminism, and many more. Recently she has devoted her writing to the ability of supportive communities to help stop all oppression. She believes that the ability to understand and use language, and the ability to think are the backbone to making societies that are not defined by things that appear only physically. Her ideas that communities can create a better haven for people that do not meet the “norms” of what society states. That a community that can love blindly and not base opinions on looks but rather the influence that person has is greatly needed in our society. When a community, even as small as a tiny city, can learn to ignore stereotypes and opinions based on things that are uncontrollable by that person, then that idea can grow, it can be passed on and soon it can be a wide held belief.
She has also taken parts in may group discussions and many presentations. In Berea College she joined forces to do a weekly feminist group called “Monday Night Feminism”. She also took part in a lunch lecture called “Peanut Butter and Gender”. Lastly she hosted a seminar titled, “Building Beloved Community: The Practice of Impartial Love”. Her ability to help communities and willingness to get in the nitty gritty and do the work has made hooks a popular appearance.
bell hooks was not a name I knew of in and of my schooling however during my Women Studies class we were assigned to read her book Feminism is for Everybody. After reading her book I found myself enlightened on a few topics of feminism and the history that surrounded her partake in feminism. I think that her ability to overcome segregation and ridicule to become an incredibly intellectual woman that has no fear of speaking the truth about what life is really like makes her invaluable to society. Mainly because we try to sugar coat things and pretend that the evils in this world don’t exist. Her writing is intriguing as well as knowledgeable. However, I do warn that her writing does get some very-not-so-nice criticism. So it should be taken into account that she may offend or push a button. All in all she is a wonderful writer who brings to light many things that have been hiding in the shadows of history.
She has a long list of books available below I will show a list of books, and a few movies she has graced. Happy reading!

Talking Back: Thinking Feminist, Thinking Black
Teaching to Transgress: Education As the Practice of Freedom
Outlaw Culture: Resisting Representations
Reel to Real: Race, Sex and Class at the Movies
Happy to be Nappy
All About Love: New Visions
Communion: The Female search for Love
The Will to Change: Men, Masculinity, and Love

Happy to Be Nappy and Other Stories of Me
Baadasss Cinema
Give a Damn Again
My Feminism
Is Feminism Dead

If you would like more information on bell hooks here are a few websites:


Wilma Mankiller by Ian Moy

Wilma Mankiller was born on November 18th, 1945 in Tahlequah, Oklahoma. She came from a "poor family" but not "desperately so" according to her autobiography Wilma Mankiller : A Chief and her Peopl. Her family was then relocated from their Native lands in 1959 due to the Federal Iendian Relocation Act. Mankiller's family moved to San Francisco. She was part of a Indian womens movement that did a protest on Alcatraz Island . In the late 1970's she went back to her people and started working for the Cherokee Nation. In 1983 Mankiller won a position titled deputy chief of the Cherokee Nation. In 1985 their Chief resigned and in 1987 she was elected as Chief. Proceeding elections were landslides in her favor. During her three terms as Chief of the Cherokee Nation Wilma mankiller instituted the practice of Gadukgi, where the women and men work equally and collectively together. Her push towards a gender quilibrium was due to a male dominance of leadership in the tribe when she took her position of Chief. Another thing that she did was helped member s of the tribe to get out of debt and welfare. Another accomplish while being Chief of the Cherokee Nation the population rose from 55,000 to 156,000. She is also credited heavily for the Cherokee nation for being one of the few self sufficient tribes still in the United States. From 1979 to 1980 were years marred with sickness and injury. In 1979 while in the car with a friend they were in a head on collision that was nearly fatal. The nin 1980 she was diagnosed with myasthenia gravis,"grave muscular weakness." The most common form of MG is a chronic autoimmune neuromuscular disorder that is characterized by fluctuating weakness of the voluntary muscle groups. She then went in and had to have a kidney transplant in 1987 where her brother was the donor. Also in 1987 she was Ms Magazines Women of the year.

I have heard of Chief Wilma Mankiller before, i took a course with Dr. Lynda Dixon, and one of her books was our reading selection for that course. I think that with her election as the first female chief of a native American tribe. Also how she reincorporated a lost equality into their culture, gives a lesson to everyone. She still work vigorously to this day fighting for Native American and Womens rights withing the Cherokee Nation. I think we can learn much from Wilma Mankiller in her efficiency in progressing the Cherokee Nation as well as pushing a better sense of equality onto her people.





Annie Sprinkle Bio. by Erin Hoyt

(Womens Studies 200-Erin Hoyt.)

Annie Sprinkle was originally born Ellen F. Steinberg on July 23, 1954 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She decided to change her name to Annie Sprinkle to better fit her personality. Annie Sprinkle has a variety of occupations. She is “a prostitute, stripper, porn film star, cable television host, porn magazine editor and writer, performance artist and sex educator. She describes herself as a "Post-Porn Modernist" and an open bisexual.” I’m sure many people are wondering how this one woman could have made a difference in the world of feminism. I mean, how can a prostitute and a stripper truly offer something to fight for women’s rights and equality, right? Wrong. Sexuality is a large part of everyday life whether people want to admit to it or not, and it’s not quite a major subject for feminists and rights. Annie Sprinkle would have to be the first woman to say “why the hell not?!”. Annie Sprinkle embraces human sexuality and the woman body as an extraordinary gift to be enjoyed, respected, and learned. A major accomplishment of Annie’s was when she was involved in a performance titled The Second Coming, along with the feminist group Carnival Knowledge. In this performance, women who were in there sex industry were dressed in everyday clothes and showed that yes they were indeed in the sex industry but they also had separate lives as mothers, daughters, etc. They showed the audience that preconceptions of women with stereotypical roles and jobs should be crushed, because they also have feelings, compassions, goals, concerns, etc.
It is surprising to me that I have never heard of Annie Sprinkle before now. I only say this because she seems to be a very active feminist, and has had much praise and controversy for all of her work. Annie obtained her PHD in human Sexuality from the Institute for Advanced Study of Human Sexuality, in San Francisco to further her knowledge of precisely that; human sexuality. She is now said to be “considered a role model for a new generation of feminists, she challenges old conceptions and established role models of sexuality.” How many feminists do you know that have pushed the limits of sexuality to show that it is a part of nature and women should be able to express them any way they would like to sexually. Our society has this conception that men who are promiscuous are to be praised while women are “sluts”. I think that Annie Sprinkle is on to something with her sexuality studies, and I can actually say I admire her for going after what she wants and believes in, and even though to many she may not seem to be accomplishing anything for feminism, there are others who know different. If you are interested in learning more about Annie Sprinkle and projects she is currently working on and have worked on, I encourage you to visit her website at www.anniesprinkle.org.

Sojourner Truth - Casey Page

Sojourner Truth
Casey Page
Blog 2

Sojourner Truth (1767-1883)was born in 1797 with the given name of Isabella Baumfree. During that time she was born into slavery in Swartekill, New York. The neat thing about Sojourner was when she was a child she only spoke dutch, because that was all her owners spoke. Eventually she was sold off to another family, unfortunatley was brutalized because she couldn't understand orders due to not speaking english. In 1816 at the third family she work with she got married to another slave named Tom. They had 5 children together, but really never had an attachment to each other. In 1799 New York adopted a law that would gradually abolish slavery away. It wasn't until July 4, 1827 that all slaves in New York were freed. Sojourner Truth's owner was actually going to free them a year earlier, but reneged on his word, saying she still owened him work. In fall 1826 she fled and found shelter with a Quaker family who taught her any education she ever received. She later found out one of her sons was sold illegally to another owner down in Alabama by her previous owner. The Quaker family actually helped her take the situation to court and she won, her son was free. In 1843 she changed her name to Sojouner Truth and started traveling and preaching about abolition and getting into religion.

She started getting into women's rights when she joined the Northampton Association of Education and Industry in Massachusetts. In May of 1851 she joined other feminists in Akron, Ohio and gave her infamous speech "Ain't I a Woman." After that throughout the 1850's she continued to deliver speeches about anti-slavery. She also helped newly freed slaves after the civil war. From 1867 till her death she gave speeches about black and women suffrage. On November 2, 1883 she passed away in her home.

I believe some of her major accomplishments were speaking at the Women's Convention in Akron and helping slaves that were newly freed. She would help them get settled and try and get grants through the government to help them get land, so they can be on their own for the first time. She knew she had to keep speaking about slavery and black and women rights or nothing would be done.

The "Ain't I a Woman" speech basically says that us females don't need males to help us. The males at that time believed we needed their help to lift things and help us get out of carriages. In the speech she also touched on the fact that negro/women can be just as smart as males. They can have the same intellect. It all comes down to the fact that women and males are the same. She basically wanted to point out, if it wasn't for females, the males wouldn't be here.

I have only heard of Sojourner Truth when its related to slavery, and all the work she did with slavery. I have never heard of her with the concept of Women's rights. I do believe her works and ideas are stil present today. She wants everybody to be equal and be free and males shouldn't feel superior to women. Women can be theirselves and don't need males.


Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Billy Jean Moffitt

Brittany Westerbeck
Blog #2
WS 200 - Joelle Ruby Ryan

Billy Jean Moffitt King was born on November 22, 1943 in Long Beach, California. She had a brother, Randy, that grew up to be a major league baseball pitcher. She married Lawrence King in 1965. Six years later, her affair with her secretary leaked to the press, and she admitted her gay relationship. It was this confusion of sexual preference that was her toughest struggle throughout her life. King is most notably known for her career as a famous United States tennis player. In fact, she is considered one of the best female tennis players as well as athletes. She got her start playing on public courts in Long Beach. She gained international fame when, at the mere age of 17, she won the women’s doubles title at Wimbledon. King ended up winning a total of six singles championships there.

Along with her fight to win championships in tennis, King also fought to create equality between men and women. She worked diligently to make prize moneys equal between men and women. She actually threatened not to play unless the prizes became even between the sexes, and in the following year, the US Open provided just that.

What King is most famous for, however is her defeat of Bobby Riggs, a man that once said, “the women's game was so inferior to the men's game that even a 55-year-old like himself could beat the current top female players” (Wikipedia). Riggs challenged King several times, but it wasn’t until he defeated fellow female tennis player Margaret Court that King decided to accept the challenge. The game was really close, but King came out on top. Of her reasoning for not originally accepting the challenge, she said, “I thought it would set us back 50 years if I didn't win that match. It would ruin the women's [tennis] tour and affect all women's self-esteem” (Wikipedia). Thankfully, though, she defeated Riggs, creating a major step forward for feminists everywhere.

I had heard of her name before, and knew that she was a tennis player, but I was unaware of her struggles as a woman in tennis and how she overcame them. I think it is amazing that she stood up against an arrogant man with the risk of losing some of the progress feminists had made at that time. It is clear that she was both an amazing athlete as well as person. It is very inspiring that she took a stand on what she believed in and made it clear to the world that women can perform just as well, if not better, than men.

RESOURCES to look up:
Wikipedia article: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Billie_Jean_King

Schwartz, Larry. Billy Jean won for all women. ESPN.com article found at: http://espn.go.com/sportscentury/features/00016060.html

Made for TV Movie When Billie Beat Bobby Film Review from IMDb: http://espn.go.com/sportscentury/features/00016060.html

Biography from Women’s Tennis Association: http://www.sonyericssonwtatour.com/2/players/playerprofiles/Playerbio.asp?PlayerID=110100

Helen Keller- Jacqui Duthie

Helen Keller was born on June 27th, 1880 and died June 1st, 1968. She lived a long and very active life. She was an activist and an author. What makes Helen Keller rememberable was that she was the first deafblind person to graduate from college. When she was 19 months old, she came down with an illness that was either scarlet fever or meningitis. When the illness subsided, it left her deaf and blind. She was able to learn 60 home signs to speak with her family. Later in life, Helen Keller contribute to feminism by supporting birth control and she supported civil rights. She also supported the working-class by joining the Socialist party.

To be honest, I did not remember much about Helen Keller before this assignment. I remember hearing her name but did not know the history. What I can learn from her that being both deaf and blind, she was still able to communicate with her family and society when she was older. She did not let that stop her from helping others and making amazing friends like Alexander Graham Bell, Mark Twain, Charlie Chaplin, and the Presidents of the United States. She was a role model to everyone


Monday, October 8, 2007

Dr. Pat Washingto-by Mitch Bruss

Dr. Pat Washington is a contemporary and highly verbal women’s studies scholar and an active participate for the advancement of eradicating social inequalities across the United States. Dr. Washington is a rather unique feminist because of the vantage point that she takes to approaching women’s rights. Moreover, Dr. Washington to renowned and known for taking a “gender specific” viewpoint to examine the social separation in the United States, and across the world. She has published an ecliptic group of publications that included such varied topics as: social location on the nature and quality of services available to survivors of sexual violence; within-group oppression in communities of color and in mainstream lesbian and gay communities; and resistance/social justice strategies—most notably the utility of community-based service learning in advancing academic scholarship and social activism.
The unfortunate series of events that put Dr. Washington the public eye began at San Diego State University. In 1996, Dr. Pat Washington was hired as a tenure-track Assistant Professor in the Department of Women's Studies at San Diego State University. She was the first lesbian, black professor in the Women’s Studies program at San Diego State University. Problems began in May of 2003 when Dr. Washington was denied tenure despite going above and beyond what San Diego State University expected from her as a professor. Moreover, Dr Washington came out with numerous publications and was award the “outstanding faculty” award three times. Dr. Washington was later fired for undisclosed reasons.
Since being fired and denied tenure, Dr Washington has focused her efforts on the protection of gay women minorities. She has concentrated her efforts into helping gay women minorities in the forms of: helping them find jobs, protecting their place in society, trying to pass anti-discriminatory legislation in California, and supporting the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
Lastly, before researching this woman for this project, I had never heard of her. However, after the completion of this project I have realized that in order to be successful in life you must come to grips, as sad as it may sound, that the contemporary U.S. culture is not colorblind. There are still older generations that are sexist, racist, and homophobic, as seen in Dr. Washington’s case. So, in order to be successful, you must realize that these older generations are still capable of discriminatory acts, and therefore you must be prepared to encounter such situations, deal with them in a professional manner, and eventually overcome them for the future advancements of America’s people.

- www.patwashington.org
- www.patwashington.org/news_20050208.shtml
- sandiego.indymedia.org/en/2004/08/105525.shtml
- sandiego.indymedia.org/en/2006/03/114308.shtml

Mary Daly

Pamela Fletcher
October 4, 2007
Joelle Ryan
Blog Entry #2
Mary Daly

Mary Daly is a self-described “Radical Elemental Feminist” born in 1928 in New York.
She is a relatively controversial Feminist who refused to allow men into some of her classes of Feminist Ethics, Patriarchy and Theology which she served as an instructor at Boston College for 33 years, from 1967-1999. She believed that the presence of men inhibited class discussions. This has dubbed her by some as a 2nd Wave Feminist because of her support and insistence on “Women’s Only” groups.

Starting in 1968 and going into the early 70’s, she wrote a couple of groundbreaking books (The Church and the Second Sex, 1968 and Beyond God the Father, 1973) speaking out on patriarchy and the church (specifically the Catholic Church) which she felt was oppressive to women. Her aggressiveness and discrimination of men in her class were the key factors in her “forced” early retirement from Boston College in 1999. Her book Amazon Grace, 2006 details the events and legal proceedings of her out of court settlement with Boston University.

She has lectured at over 300 colleges and universities in the United States and Canada during the past 36 years and she continues to be available for speaking engagements.
Although I had never heard of her, she is such a monumental presence in the feminist world. She clearly has dedicated her entire life, and many would say crossing many lines, in order to free all women from oppression. She continues to do so, even now, despite her age. I feel she has taught me that even an uphill battle is worth the fight, and although I may suffer for my views, if it will help others in the long run than it is a challenge worth taking.

There are many different resources available to learn more of Mary Daly, such as:

http://www.archive.org/details/KDVS_The_Fringe_4-5-06 (audio interview)

Also, she has written the following books which give insight on her beliefs:
The Church and the Second Sex
Beyond God the Father: Toward a Philosophy of Women's Liberation
Gyn/Ecology: The Metaethics of Radical Feminism
Pure Lust: Elemental Feminist Philosophy
Websters' First New Intergalactic Wickedary of the English Language Conjured in Cahoots with Jane Caputi.
Outercourse: The Be-Dazzling Voyage
Quintessence... Realizing the Archiac Future: A Radical Elemental Feminist Manifesto
Amazon Grace: Re-Calling the Courage to Sin Big

Blog Entry 2 - Emma Goldman - Jenny Walton

Jenny Walton
Blog Entry 2: Emma Goldman

Emma Goldman, (1869-1940), was an extremely controversial figure in American history, particularly when it came to rights for women, the right to free speech and opposition to all forms of government.
Emma was born in the midst of major political unrest in Russia, or what is known today as Lithuania. In her childhood, Emma grew up in a Jewish ghetto and was used to the culture of uneasiness and discontent in Russia not to mention the oppression of Jews. Emma was no religious but her determination to be free from domination was life long. She took this radical thinking to America with her sister at age 16 and began working in a garment factory. She soon became outspoken for workers rights and advocated for unions and eight-hour workdays.
Emma was very outspoken on many unpopular ideas such as birth control, sexual freedom, women’s equality and independence. She had many enemies with her writings and speeches on anarchism, which is the opposition of all forms of government and the freedoms of thought and expression. Out of her work with the first Free Speech League, the American Civil Liberties Union was formed. Emma served jail time for her beliefs and giving air to them as well as in her writings, which were generally banned in America. She was considered dangerous for her anarchist thinking and was arrested frequently. Goldman also served a two-year prison term for speaking out against mandatory drafting of men into World War 1. Her U.S. citizenship was denied and she was deported. Emma later married a man from Wales and spent her days traveling Europe, lecturing as she had done so in America.
I had never heard of Emma Goldman before WS 200. I am amazed at her tenacity and her spirit. Even though she was not appreciated for her outspokenness and blatant thinking on sexuality and other taboo subjects, Emma did contribute a great deal to America, with the right to freedom of speech, workers rights, birth control and equality for women, to name a few.
Emma's intensity is emphasized in the following quote: "I want freedom, the right to self-expression,everybody's right to beautiful, radiant things."

Information on Emma Goldman can be found at:

http://jwa.org (Jewish Women's Archive)

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Simone de Beauvoir - Tyler Van Drei - WS 200

Simone de Beauvoir was born on January 9th, 1908 in Paris, France. She lived a long life and also died in Paris on April 14th, 1986. She spent her childhood in Paris with her younger sister and parents. She attended different universities and studied mathematics, literature/languages, and also philosophy later. One of her major academic accomplishments was in 1929 when she became the youngest person ever to obtain an agregation in philosophy.

Beauvoir chose to be a novelist and her first novel was titled She Came To Stay. She Came To Stay was a fictional novel about her childhood friend Sarte and students from her years of teaching at universities. The Mandarins was probably Beauvoir's most famous and awarded novel. The Mandarins won France's highest literary prize, the Prix Goncourt.

In regards to feminism, Beauvoir became famous because of her work with Existentialist Feminism. Her essay Woman: Myth and Reality was a standing ground that was based on the mistreat of women by men. By making women what Beauvoir calls the "Others" men make it so they do not have to listen or understand womens' problems and subjugating those problems. The main point that supported the feminist theory was that the men, who were higher on the societal hierarchy, made the lower group the "other" that came with, what Beauvoir called, the false aura of mystery that led to the patriarchal society. By being one of the beginners of existential feminism it helped other women by raising awareness to the problem that was

Prior to researching this topic I had only heard the name of Simone de Beauvoir. I had known that she was an author but I was not aware of her many accomplishments and popularity. I think she can teach me, like many other feminists, that women deserve the same rights as men. From her it can be learned that feminism is the best interest of all people, women and men. In regards to those interested in further studying Beauvoir's life achievements and thoughts many of her books can be found, in English, at bookstores. Also, Wikipedia has a nice section concerning her achievements and a list of books that she has written. Many biographies have also been written concerning her life, even a song was written to commemorate her.

-Tyler Van Drei-

Elena Funk ~ Emi Koyama in Feminism

Blog Entry # 2: Emi Koyama in Feminism

In 1975 a future third-wave feminist was born: Emi Koyama. Living twelve years of her life as a boy, and then another twelve as a girl she has since dedicated her work to being an activist, author, and an academic. Issues she covers in particular are intersex, sex workers’ rights, queer domestic violence, genderqueer, and anti-racism. Emi currently lives in Portland, Oregon where she directs Intersex Initiative, an intersex advocacy and activist group she founded in January 2003. Her website, eminism.org, bears the slogan, “Putting the Emi back in Feminism since 1975.” Her publications include nine articles in both English and Japanese. During Spring 2002 and Summer 2003 she taught a class at Portland State University called “Intersexuality: An Interdisciplinary Exploration.”

Teaching classes is but one of the many ways Emi contributes to today’s feminism. She travels (sometimes) to universities presenting lectures on intersex, domestic violence, disability theory, and the sex workers’ movement. She also volunteers for Danzine, an advocacy organization for and by sex workers. One of her more intense advocacy efforts was to include intersex in V-day, which was accomplished one year before the creation of Intersex Initiative.

Some of Emi’s major accomplishments date back to 1999 when she joined Survivor Project. There she helped put a new spin on intersex presentations the organization made. Later she began work at Intersex Society of North America from 2001 to 2002. Using her experience gained from intern and staff activist positions Emi created Intersex Initiative. This site provides a place of information and support for people with intersex conditions. A year earlier, with the help of friends, she founded Confluere.com, a network of independent artists and activists for social change. These many accomplishments and contributions to feminism have helped women better understand and be comfortable with issues others may not: intersex and sex workers, for example. Each of the online communities she has created and presentations she gives empowers people to re-evaluate their thoughts on controversial issues.

Until this fall I had never heard of Emi Koyama, which is why I chose to learn more about her. I enjoy learning new things and researching Emi Koyama and her work has helped me accomplish that. Of the messages Emi preaches and articles she has written, I feel most moved by a poem she wrote in 2002 called “Refusing to be Safe,” which can be viewed on her website. The poem describes some of what I would guess to be Emi’s life and goes on to talk about what it is like to be a woman, particularly a slut, in the “u.s of fucking a.” I felt her pain as I read this and it moved me towards a better understanding of what some women face in society. With this knowledge I can prevent myself from falling victim to discrimination and interact with all other human beings harmoniously.

Online resources:

http://www.eminism.org; http://www.survivorproject.org/services.html; http://www.isna.org/about/emeritus?from=10; http://www.intersexintitiative.org/vday/index.html; http://www.confluence.com/speaker/emikoyama.html.

Published articles:

  • 2006. "Higeki no imi wo surikaeru jendaa tataki seiryoku." (Backlash and the distortion of a tragedy)Shukan Kin'youbi. Sept. 22. [in Japanese]
  • 2006. "Disloyal to feminism: Abuse of survivors within the domestic violence shelter system." in Smith A, Richie BE, Sudbury J, eds. The Color of Violence: INCITE! Anthology. Cambridge, Mass.: South End Press.
  • 2006. "'Burenda to yobareta shounen' to bakkurasshu gensetsu no meisou." ("As Nature Made Him and the confused rhetoric of the anti-feminist backlash.") in Ueno C, Miyadai S, et al. Bakkurasshu! Naze jendaa furiiwa tatakaretanoka?. (Backlash!: Gender Equality Under Attack.) Tokyo: Sofusha. [in Japanese]
  • 2006. "Whose feminism is it anyway? The unspoken racism of the trans inclusion debate." in Stryker S, Whittle S, eds. The Transgender Studies Reader. New York: Routledge.
  • 2005. "A new fat-positive feminism: Why the old fat-positive feminism (often) sucks and how to re-invent it." in Heywood LL, ed. The Women's Movement Today: An Encyclopedia of Third-Wave Feminism. Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press.
  • 2004. "Douseikon wo meguru beikoku LGBT komyunitii no poritikusu." ("The politics over same-sex marriages within LGBT communities.") in Akasugi Y, Tsuchiya Y, Tsutsui M, eds. Dousei paatonaa: Douseikon DP-hou wo shiru tameni. (Same-sex partnerships: Understanding same-sex marriage and domestic partnership registry.) [in Japanese]
  • 2004. Feminizumu heno fuchuu: DV sherutaa ni okeru sabaibaa heno gyakutai. (Disloyal to feminism: Abuse of survivors within domestic violence shelter system.) Osaka: Aurora. [Translated to Japanese by Irie K, Wada J.]
  • 2003. "The transfeminist manifesto." in Dicker R, Piepmeier A, eds. Catching A Wave: Reclaiming Feminism for the 21st Century. Boston: Northeastern University Press.
  • 2002. "From social construction to social justice: Transforming how we teach about intersexuality." Co-authored with Weasel L. Women's Studies Quarterly. Fall/Winer.

Published Books:

Introduction to Intersex Activism
Teaching Intersex Issues
A Speaker’s Handbook for Intersex Activists and Allies

IntersexCritiques: Notes on Intersex, Disability and Biomedical Ethics
IntersexCritiques II: Medicine, Media and Intersex Movement

Friday, October 5, 2007

Anna Eleanor Roosevelt

Anna Eleanor Roosevelt was born October 11, 1884 in New York City, New York to Elliot and Anna Hall Roosevelt. Before Eleanor(which is what she preferred to be called) was 10 her mother and father had both died. Eleanor was sent to live with relatives and when she was 15 her aunt Bamie Cowles decided she needed to attend Allenswood Academy in England which was a finishing school. This is where Eleanor met Marie Souvestre, the headmistress, who was also a feminist educator that encouraged women to have independent minds.

When Eleanor was 18 she returned to New York and soon a relationship began with Franklin Roosevelt, who was her father Elliott Roosevelt's fifth cousin. Eleanor's uncle Theodore Roosevelt was President at the time Franklin started courting Eleanor in 1903. They were married March 17, 1905. Eleanor's uncle, President Theodore Roosevelt gave the bride away at the wedding. Eleanor is the only First Lady who did not change her name after getting married. She was also the only First Lady to be the wife as well as cousin of one U.S. President and niece of another!

Between 1906 and 1916 Eleanor and Franklin had 6 children, Anna Eleanor, James, Franklin Jr., who died in infancy, Elliott, a second Franklin Jr., and John.

During World War I Eleanor became a volunteer for the Red Cross and worked in Navy hospitals. She was also an active member of the suffrage movement. When Franklin was paralyzed by polio in 1921 Eleanor became even more active in politics and asserted her own personality and goals. She was active for the League of Women Voters and joined the Women's Trade Union League. Eleanor also worked for the Women's Division of the New York State Democratic Committee and in the early 1930's opened the Val-Kill furniture factory in New York to help provide jobs to the unemployed. She was also part owner and teacher of Todhunter, an all girls private school in New York City.

After Franklin Delano Roosevelt was elected President and Eleanor became First Lady she went on national lecture tours. She held over 350 press conferences for women reporters only! She wrote a daily newspaper column called My Day and wrote articles for several magazines. Eleanor donated her hefty speaker's fees to charities that helped women.

As if that weren't enough, Eleanor traveled around the nation, visiting relief projects, and surveying working and living conditions. She was quite vocal in supporting the African American Civil Rights Movement. In 1939 when a black singer, Marian Anderson, was blocked by the Daughters of the American Revolution to have access to the Washington Constitution Hall, Eleanor arranged a concert on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial and then promptly resigned from the Daughters of the American Revolution. Eleanor was important to the African Americans during the segregation era.

During World War II, Eleanor helped to establish Freedom House, co-chaired a national committee on civil defense and often visited civilian and military centers. She was very supportive of more opportunities for women and African Americans. Eleanor was noted for The Tuskeegee Airmen to successfully become the first black combat pilots. When she flew with the black pilot, C. Alfred "Chief" Anderson, she brought more attention to the Tuskeegee's pilot programs.

In 1946 Eleanor was named a U.S. delegate to the United Nations General Assembly by President Harry S. Truman. Eleanor, along with others, were credited with drafting the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights that was adopted in December 1948. This was largely Eleanor's work and the delegates rose in a standing ovation to acknowledge her.

In 1961 John F Kennedy appointed Eleanor to chair a new "President's Commission on the Status of Women." This was a large study that was to "restate a decades old stance that female equality was best achieved by recognition of gender differences and needs and not by an Equal Rights Amendment." Eleanor died before the commission issued its final report.

Eleanor received 35 honorary degrees. Her first was a Doctor of Human Letters or D.H.L. in 1929, this was also the first honorary degree awarded by Russell Sage College in Troy, New York. Her last was a Doctor of Laws, L.L.D. degree from what is now Clark Atlanta University in 1962.

Eleanor was injured when struck by a car in New York City in 1960 at the age of 76. She was then diagnosed with aplastic anemia. She also developed bone marrow tuberculosis that stemmed from an infection in 1919. She died November 7, 1962 in her Manhatten apartment. She was 78 years old. Adlai Stevenson spoke at her memorial service and said "What other single human being has touched and transformed the existence of so many?" He also said Eleanor was "one who would rather light a candle than curse the darkness." Eleanor's favorite word was hope.
Eleanor had many famous quotes some of which are:

"A woman is like a teabag--you never know how strong she is until she gets in hot water."

"Beautiful young people are accidents of nature, but beautiful old people are works of art."

"Great minds discuss ideas; Average minds discuss events; Small minds discuss people."

"If someone betrays you once, it is their fault; if they betray you twice, it is your fault."

"It is not fair to ask of others what you are unwilling to do yourself."

"Learn from the mistakes of others. You can't live long enough to make them all yourself."

"Life was meant to be lived, and curiosity must be kept alive. One must never, for whatever reason, turn his back on life."

"The purpose of life is to live it, to taste the experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience."

"No one can make you feel inferior without your consent."

"People grow through experience if they meet life honestly and courageously. This is how character is built."

Eleanor wrote four books; This is My Story in 1937, This I Remember in 1950, On My Own in 1958 and Tomorrow is Now, published after her death in 1963. There is a documentary thru PBS about her life also. To find out more you can look in Wikipedia.