October 5th, 2011

Recommended Reading #67: Questions and Examination



      “Devil’s Advocate: Can Feminists Ditch the Misogyny?” by Roland Hulme (Politics, Sex and Culture, Feminism, Humanity) 10/3/11

While I personally have tended to not take issue with particular words in and of themselves (“cunt,” for example, seems to me to mean what one interprets of it…it is a reference to a part of the female anatomy, and as such I do not find the word offensive. “Slut” similarly does not offend me at all, as I do not know of an actual definition of it, and if it is used as an attempt to judge my or someone else’s consensual sexual behavior, I find such judgment inappropriate and irrelevant such that the word holds no substance as an insult for me)—the point I interpret the author as making about the context, energy, or intent behind the use of the words in question seems to me well taken. I have noticed before instances when certain standards, such as those professed by the author to be cornerstones of feminism in having been customarily derided as perpetrated degradingly against women, have been overlooked, overturned, or disregarded if they are “used” upon a purported enemy. I too have found this unacceptable and disheartening, and as such I appreciate what I perceive to be the author’s contention. Most especially, slut-shaming because the individual is someone one dislikes or perceives to be on the “other side” of a given issue or spectrum strikes me as universally unjustified and abominable (and only hurting any cause of feminism or open appreciation of sexuality).

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      “Apple, labor, technology, consumer responsibility and The Agony and The Ecstasy of Steve Jobs” by Rachel Kramer Bussel (Non-sex-related, Global Economy, Technology, Labor Rights) 10/2/11

Two things I appreciate deeply about this post are 1) that it brings up a subject many of us probably have not considered or have preferred not to dwell on due to the discomfort or helplessness it brings up and 2) that it asks questions without purporting to have the answer(s) to them. I feel similarly about not knowing the answer(s), and I appreciate the reminder about this realm of existence in our modern economic and technological world. UPDATE: This was written and posted before the world learned of Steve Jobs’s death yesterday. Since this piece is related, I take the opportunity to offer reverence here and wish him a beautiful journey.

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      “An Evolving View of Natural Family Planning” by Mark Oppenheimer (Family Planning, Reproductive Rights, Public Policy) 7/8/11

Despite the content of this article revolving around issues in which I have taken considerable interest, what I find probably most striking and compelling about it is the degree to which the perspectives of the couple in question changed. Particularly since what is being discussed has often been seen as a controversial issue, to observe a turnabout in perspective and subsequent rescinding of something that was previously postulated seems an interesting phenomenon and experience to me separate from what the actual subject or respective perspectives are. In the case at hand, I admittedly appreciate the recognition of both individuals of the potential desirability and/or benefits of various methods of contraception and the rescinding by Mr. Torode, as evidenced in the quote that ends the article, of postulating that there is a single approach that everyone should be required to follow.

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Recommended Reading posted every Wednesday

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