World War II was only yesterday. So one might surmise, during the month of April, by flyers posted in Berlin. Largely focused on May Day, a near equal number tend to be dedicated to commemorating Russia’s victory over the Nazis a little over a week later. Celebrated every 9th of May, the event marks Germany’s May 8th 1945 surrender. More»
The British workplace must become more accommodating to Muslim women. So went the title of a Reyhana Patel op-ed piece, in Independent Voices. Pretty common sense, no? Nothing to disagree with there. Well, not to everyone. The article was in fact attracting considerable attention from the most dubious of quarters. The commentary was quite awful. More»
“Groundhog Day” is a real pile driver. The first track off of the new Corin Tucker Band LP, Kill My Blues, it’s the perfect context setter coming from the ex-frontwoman of a legendary riot grrrl band, nearing forty. Tucker paints herself as a “Rip Van Winkle in a denim mini skirt” who “took some time to be a mom” and is now distressed that the place of women hasn’t advanced: “We fight the same battle, over and over again.” More»
Susan Sontag created Susan Sontag. The first volume of her journals and notebooks, Reborn, made that clear. As her son and the journals’ editor David Rieff writes, the entries show a young person who “self-consciously and determinedly went about creating the self she wanted to be.” The recently published second volume, As Consciousness is Harnessed to Flesh, reinforces the notion that she – and, by extension, we – can consciously create our identities, or at least personas. More»
Perhaps it is not my place to comment on your über-feminist “Why Do They Hate US?” eureka moment, since it almost exclusively focuses on the Arab world. You have every right to roll your eyes and think: “there goes the Iranian again, crashing our party and sticking her nose where it doesn’t belong.” More»
“Not macho, not fascist!” “Feminists when needed.” Despite the feline-looking cartoon figure, the gender of these leftists is ambiguous. Male or female, they’re all on call against misogyny. Marais café men’s room, September 2009. More»
Contrary to popular belief, the Swiss right is not a single-issue constituency. In addition to its hostility towards immigrants, it is also profoundly misogynistic. Following the first annual international antifeminism meeting, I found myself in Zurich, where I encountered this sticker. I assume the two are related. The second anti-feminism conference was held this year. I wonder what other kind of protest art it generated.
Silvio Berlusconi can be faulted for many things. For using television to refashion Italian sensibilities. For buying votes. For making a mockery of an advanced, industrialized European country’s legal system. And, as many would insist, for reversing however far Italy may have traveled into the sexual revolution. More»
“Free to choose, free to dream.” One of the best neighborhoods in Italy for flyers and graffiti. Rewind: make that Europe. Quartiere San Lorenzo, Rome. November, 2009.