Log in

No account? Create an account
This might be your mother's feminism [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
This might be your mother's feminism

[ userinfo | livejournal userinfo ]
[ archive | journal archive ]

Gendered clothes and toys [Nov. 27th, 2007|01:18 am]
This might be your mother's feminism

Hello, motherists. I've just posted a long and scrappy rant about the frustrations of shopping for baby clothes and small-child toys. Some of you might be interested.
linkpost comment

Work and Maternity Benefit [Sep. 4th, 2007|01:09 pm]
This might be your mother's feminism

[Cross-posted from my journal]

From the Irish Citizens Information website
(Maternity Benefit page)
You will be disqualified (or banned) from receiving Maternity Benefit if during the time for which your Benefit is payable you engage in any employement [sic] or work other than domestic activities in your own home.

Ahahahaha! I'm not even going to touch that one. I'm just putting it out there, in all its pristine glory.
linkpost comment

Go Easyjet (not a statement I usually make) [Aug. 29th, 2007|06:49 pm]
This might be your mother's feminism

[mood |impressedimpressed]

I hate Easyjet, but my partner aitkendrum reports that they were positive about breastfeeding when two people in the Glasgow departure lounge this morning complained about a woman breastfeeding her infant. The gate people politely told the complainers to shut up (without actually saying 'shut up'), then let the woman board first, gave her the best seat on the plane (lots of legroom), and ensured the baby had its own seat as it wasn't a full flight.

If AD posts any interesting details about it I'll add them here.
linkpost comment

Interested in being inteviewed for a follow up to Hirshman's article? [Jun. 5th, 2007|11:51 am]
This might be your mother's feminism

[mood |active]

I know a writer at the Washington Post (Mary Ellyn Slater) who writes career advice columns for young people. I was asking her what she thought about Hirshman's article.

She is thinking about doing a counterpoint outlook piece to Dr Hirshman's, basically saying that Hirshman is thinking like a boomer and not like Gen X and Gen Y women - that our goals and desires are fundamentally different.

Mary Ellyn wanted to know if anyone would be willing to talk with her about their thoughts on Hirshman's "advice" - based on their own career trajectories, choices, etc.

Let me know if you are interested and I'll put you in contact.
link5 comments|post comment

Wow: Linda Hirshman on the wage gap [Jun. 4th, 2007|01:27 pm]
This might be your mother's feminism

[mood |annoyedannoyed]

Wow, I am not sure exactly where to start with her analysis, other than yet again, the fault for gender discrimination, according to her, is laid at women's feet.


You're Not Earning as Much as the Guys? Here's Why.

By Linda Hirshman
Sunday, June 3, 2007; Page B01

Ah, graduation -- that time of optimism, of looking to the future and its possibilities. Of dreaming big.
For girls now finishing high school, the future has never looked brighter. Many will go on to college; women comprised 55 percent of college students in 2005. They'll be equal to the men at their schools, paying the same tuition and taking the same classes. They'll be the student equivalents of stem cells, capable of becoming anything. That's certainly what Pace University sophomore Liz Funk believes. The 20-year-old already has a contract from a major publisher for a book about overachieving girls, and she can't imagine that she'll ever earn less than a future husband will.

But unless today's women make some changes, that's exactly what may happen. This goes beyond that conventional salary-disparity culprit, workplace discrimination, that was the subject of a Supreme Court ruling last week. If Funk and her female classmates don't prosper as much as their male colleagues do, it will probably be because they didn't dream rich enough dreams in choosing their major.

(rest of article)
link23 comments|post comment

(no subject) [Jun. 4th, 2007|11:17 am]
This might be your mother's feminism

Hello motherists.

Here's something I've been thinking about since my son was born nearly 8 weeks ago: what is the task of being the feminist mother of a boy? How is it different from being the feminist mother of a girl?

While what the world has in store for my daughter scares the shit out of me, I feel like I understand it, and I feel like I have some clue what to do to counteract its badnesses: I want to make her strong and confident in her personality, intellect and body. I want to teach her how to keep herself safe while not living in fear. I want her to know she's gorgeous both as a person and as a girl.

My son, though - obviously most of my job as his mother is just the same: to love and care for him, give him opportunities and help him to grow as and into a happy, strong person. But how do I teach him to love himself as a boy and also to know that boys and men have been and are oppressive, as a class*, and encourage him to be part of the solution?

It's sort of like my view of feminism, I think: yes, it's about gender liberation for everyone, but it's also specifically about women and providing resources for women to free themselves of the things that patriarchy has done and goes on doing. So that makes sense in feminist mothering a girl. But how do I teach my boy to be free, as well? How do I love him and the boy-ness of him alongside that?

*Yes, women carry out gender oppression too, but I expect most people here will understand the distinction I mean.
link15 comments|post comment

Mompreneurs [Mar. 5th, 2007|12:34 pm]
This might be your mother's feminism

[Current Location |home]
[mood |annoyedannoyed]
[music |Taylor Hicks]

I am reading a book called "how she does it" about women entrepreneurs. A bit "rah rah" but the book is very good at describing how successful women businesses are (twice as likely to still be in business than male owned businesses, and minority female owned businesses are four times as likely...) and how because they don't fit stereotypical models of entrepreneurs (i.e. geeky 20something boys eating pizza out of their garage based business), they often are ignored or under valued.

Women-owned businesses are the fastest growing types of business in the US, despite getting less than 7% of the financial loans from SBA and other sources. But women are tagged as "unambitious" and their work is often derided as "lifestyle businesses" or "hobbies".

On MDC forums, in the working mother board, we recently had a fascinating discussion about the challenges of mothers owning/running their own businesses. It was so interesting I tried to find any other resources on this specific topic.

I found the following site when googling - http://www.entrepreneur.com/mompreneur/index.html

The section is called "mompreneurs". Okay, maybe it is me, but isn't this name and the entire section of the site a tad, well, patronizing? Basically it puts the MOTHER part of my identity before the ENTREPRENEUR part. Let's switch it around - Dadpreneurs -dads who are entrepreneurs too! Doesn't make sense.

Maybe I am too sensitive. But frankly, I am tired of being treated like a "special little girl" because I *gasp* have a business AND have kids.

It is astonishing how much more respect my business has gotten when my husband quit his dayjob to work for it. And it is astonishing how many people automatically assume that he runs it. Nope, I do all the business development to date. I write all the contracts. I manage all the projects. Really, when it comes to who says who is doing what, he works for me.

Feeling grumpy today.
link1 comment|post comment

Musings on mothering [Feb. 14th, 2007|10:19 am]
This might be your mother's feminism

[mood |contemplativecontemplative]

More musings on some of the issues facing mothers in this society.

On other lists I am on, there seems to be a lot of discussion about the line between caring for your kids vs caring for yourself. Most everything seems to be taken as a conflict between mom and kid, especially in the work world.

This bugs me because it doesn't have to be this way. It is only this way because we in the US (and other parts of the world too - Japan is supposedly like this too) have this artificial dividing line between adult world and child world. While most of the time children are not out and out banned from adult world, they are expected to act like adults while in adult world. But this takes a TREMENDOUS amount of energy on the part of the parents to enforce this behavior - if it is even possible. God forbid you have a child with developmental disability or multiples.

And who pays? Well, everyone. We are so isolated from children that we forget what they are like and we miss the insights we can gain from being around young people. Children are isolated from the rest of the world (often justified to "protect them") so they lose vital learning opportunities. Mothers are the worst affected - combining childcare and adult world is very hard, stressful and frankly unpopular. So mothers either leave their children to go into adult world or they are stuck in child world, alone save for other mothers or the professionals who cater exclusively to child world.

The NIP debates, in my mind, are the perfect example of this. Those offended by NIP generally will agree that "breast is best" - mainly because they often just don't care about feeding choices but they have heard the PSAs. But they DO care that something they see as personal, private - i.e. child care - is invading adult world. These are often the same types of people who complain about toddlers at restaurants or school kids coming with mom to the office during school holidays. "Not appropriate", "disruptive", or "unprofessional" are used to basically say that children and their care should be kept in child world, away from the "real" world.

These two spheres can also be called "public" and "private" or "outside" and "home". This mirrors many of the victorian ideas about division of labor/influence in the family - father was responsible for the outside interactions, and mother for inside the home. Children are part of "home". Interestingly, this is also the case in many arabic cultures that I have been exposed to.

So much of this has to do with our own expectations of what is normal. I have lived in places where children are just part of every day life - there is no physical separation, though there is very real role and responsibility separation.

It is funny, a few years back, a colleague with a 4 month old nursed her baby in front of a male client from Benin, West Africa - a senior guy in ECOWAS (i.e. highly educated professional). Another colleague at the meeting was appalled and complained loudly after the fact to anyone who would listen about how unprofessional it was to breastfeed a baby in front of a client, etc etc. I actually asked our client casually what he thought about S nursing in front of him. He said "What is the problem? Nursing is how you keep a baby quiet. What else was she meant to do? Anyway, I like babies. S seems like such a great mother. "

I thought it fascinating that his expectations were so completely different from ours about the professionalism of nursing a baby at a business meeting (well, especially since the meeting was about supporting nutrition based child survival programs - which includes extended breastfeeding - in West africa). It was also remarkable that he was able to expand his view of S - a woman he had worked with for many years - into the role of mother without even questioning her ability to do her work.

Just some musings.
link11 comments|post comment

I don't have time to think about this right now but, [Dec. 11th, 2006|10:40 am]
This might be your mother's feminism


what i've manged to read before rushing out to stock up on some nutritious vegetables is unsurprising, I guess.

and another thing, i really must get a veg box delivery organised. that would give me back some time, wouldn't it?
linkpost comment

Words matter [Dec. 3rd, 2006|10:45 pm]
This might be your mother's feminism

While watching some bad telly last night, I got to thinking about how negative thoughts about breastfeeding are in embedded in our language. I have no grand theory, only examples, but if people have thoughts I'd love to hear them.

So, the boob tube (televison) is bad, as is the electric nipple. Sucking off the system's teat is something we should avoid.

Then, weaning is good - we wean ourselves off drugs and bad habits - it's not a developmental thing where something that has been good is no longer needed, it's stopping something bad.

Is this just general women's fluids are icky or is there something else going on?
link2 comments|post comment

[ viewing | 10 entries back ]
[ go | earlier/later ]