To Strive and Fail, by Voltairine de Cleyre

Abolish Work

(Nick’s Notes:

This is the second short sketch of Voltairine’s tha very much relates to the tyranny of work. You can find the first one here. And there will most likely be another one sometime in the near future.

As with The Sorrows of the Body Eugenia C. DeLamotte, author of Gates of Freedom: Voltairine de Cleyre and the Revolution of the Mind had something to say:

The connections among sex slavery, wage slavery, and ideologies thatdivide the soul from the body are made even clearer in “To Strive and Fail,” a sketch of a young woman’s exhausted efforts to play the zither late at night, after her grueling work is over for the day. She fails and quits, realizing that her life, like that of her father and grandmother and all the conquered, “silent generations” (450) beyond them has no room for her deepest passions. In a sense her wage slavery…

View original post 1,616 more words

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

They Couldn’t Have Been Friends

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Sudan’s Real Crisis Is the Disregard for Female Life


The world was shaken by the news Thursday that a pregnant woman was sentenced to death for apostasy. Meriam Yehya Ibrahim is eight months pregnant, and because she will not renounce her Christian faith, she will be hanged soon after she gives birth. In Sudan, children must be raised the religion of their father. The government claims that because Ibrahim’s father was a Muslim, she must remain so and her marriage to a Christian man is invalid.

Meriam Yehya Ibrahim’s story resonates with everything I’ve experienced in my 10 years of working in Sudan and South Sudan. Ibrahim’s story reminds me of a dear friend of mine, Mary Achai, whose Muslim slave master set her on fire, along with three of her children, because she ran away when she learned that he planned to sell her 10-year-old daughter as a virgin bride. Although Mary is permanently marred inside and out…

View original post 539 more words

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The View From Your Window

The Dish

image (1)

Santa Monica, California, 12.51 pm. “View from my dentist’s chair just now. We can smell the smoke from the San Diego fires.”

View original post

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Shaming of Monica: Why We Owe Her an Apology


Ask any child of the 1990s, and she remembers – vividly – when she first heard about the Monica Lewinsky scandal (as well as the particular sex acts involved).

I was 16, perched with a group of friends in the hallway of my high school, devouring the contents of the Starr report like a trashy romance novel. (He did what with a cigar?! ) None of us was old enough to truly comprehend the complexities – or power dynamics – of a 22-year-intern fellating the President of the United States. And yet we did know one thing: We didn’t like that raunchy Lewinsky girl. What kind of woman flashes her thong at the president, anyway?

Long before “slut-shaming” was a term, Monica Lewinsky was its original target. My teenage friends and I were among her critics, though the rest of the country too seemed to be acting like horny misogynist…

View original post 1,215 more words

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Why Do Bad Maternity Systems happen to Good People?


The truth is that just because there is a better way doesn’t mean that’s the way it’s done.  I had an “aha” moment about why crappy care prevails in health care—-in particular, why women are still being abused and traumatized when they come to hospital to give birth— when I listened to this podcast  on the “religious” CBC radio programme Tapestry.  In the podcast, Mary Hynes interviews Gretta Vosper, an ordained minister of the United Church of Canada. Gretta tells the story of a particularly bitter conflict which had emerged within her church community and the pain that conflict had caused her.  She questioned why it is that in so many church settings, the meanest voices seem to own the podium.  What is peculiar to our humanity that this happens so often?

The reason, Gretta said,  why the bullies often win is that they exploit a loophole in our…

View original post 727 more words

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The sky is falling because of feminist biology, Factual Feminist edition

Family Inequality

The other day I explained why, despite her mocking tone,  the “Factual Feminist” (Christina Sommers) doesn’t have the factual basis to undermine commonly-used statistics on rape. Now she has a video out on “feminist science.” No, it’s not a joke from The Simpsons, she says:

A new feminist biology program at the University of Wisconsin is all too real… Is feminist biology likely to contribute to our knowledge and understanding of the world? The Factual Feminist is skeptical.

The program in question is really just a post-doctoral fellowship. It looks like a privately-endowed fund to hire one postdoc. This is not a major curriculum intervention. The first postdoc in the program is Caroline VanSickle, a biological anthropologist from the University of Michigan who does work on ancient female pelvic bones and their implications for birth stuff. She was quoted by the right-wing Campus Reform (a project of the Leadership Institute

View original post 535 more words

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment