Ms. Magazine

The Private Life and Natural Feminism of Sally Ride

When astronaut/physicist Sally Ride passed away in 2012, her obituary revealed for the first time publicly that she was a lesbian. In the recently published biography, Sally Ride: America’s First Woman in Space, Lynn Sherr fills out the story of this American hero, who worked tirelessly during her lifetime to encourage girls and boys to stick with their interests in science and to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields. Ride also fiercely guarded her privacy, because she worried that coming out would jeopardize her ability to do good in the world.
Ms. Magazine

A New DIY Movement: #SmartFeministsofTwitter

Best-of lists are always controversy magnets. By definition, they elevate some at the expense of others. Earlier this week, when Fast Company published a list, compiled by Ann Charles, of “25 of the Smartest Women on Twitter” that failed to include a single woman of color, the Twittersphere responded immediately. Within a day, the hashtag #SmartBlackWomenofTwitter, created by @FeministaJones, trended, and additional hashtags sprung up in its wake.
Ms. Magazine

40 Years of PFLAG: Thank You, Jeanne Manford!

At LGBT Pride parades around the country, the queer community always puts on a show. Rainbows, glitter, big hair, fabulous costumes, leather, dykes on bikes and partial nudity—pretty much anything goes, as participants let their freak flags fly. But the most beloved contingent of Pride marchers is seldom flamboyant. In fact, they often stand out by looking so completely ordinary, like central casting’s view of middle America. Members of PFLAG (Parents, Families, and Friends of Lesbians and Gays), carry signs that say things like, “I Love My Lesbian Daughter” and “My Pride is My Gay Child.” When they march by, people along the parade route cheer, applaud and openly weep.
Ms. Magazine

Live from Netroots Nation 2012: All the Feminism That’s Fit To Stream

Progressive online journalists and politicians will gather this weekend in Providence, R.I., for the seventh annual Netroots Nation conference. With sessions on blogging, social networking and strategizing, Netroots is the politics geek’s equivalent of Comic-Con—minus the crazy costumes. Leftist luminaries are always in attendance; among this year’s main attractions are Paul Krugman, Elizabeth Warren and Van Jones.
Ms. Magazine

Lizz Winstead Takes Brainy Satire Beyond The Daily Show

Lizz Winstead is a household name for millions who’ve never even heard of her. At the end of each episode of The Daily Show, right after the “Moment of Zen” and at the conclusion of the credits, her name flashes by, like a subliminal advertisement for women’s genius: In her new book, Lizz Free or Die, Winstead recounts the beginnings of the show that Jon Stewart would make famous, telling how she found her calling as a political satirist in the 24-hour news/reality TV world of the 1990s and early 2000s
Ms. Magazine

We Heart: “Nerdy Misanthrope” Using His Art to Aid Cheerleader

If you’ve been following the case of Texas cheerleader Hillaire S., who was assaulted at a party by star athlete Rakheem Bolton and then kicked off the cheerleading squad for refusing to chant, “two, four, six, eight, ten, come on Rakheem, put it in” (see the Ms. Blog coverage of the case here, here, here, and here), then you’re probably outraged by the way this story evolved. After Hillaire’s parents lost the lawsuit they brought against the school for insisting that their daughter cheer for the man who assaulted her, they were ordered to pay $35,000 to the school to cover the legal expenses of the trial.
Ms. Magazine

10 Years of “Feminism is for Everybody”

At the dawn of this new millennium, bell hooks published Feminism is for Everybody: Passionate Politics, a slim, bright-yellow book with a powerful goal: to introduce feminist politics in an accessible format in order to reach the widest possible audience. She begins with a story of how proud she is to talk to everyone she meets about feminism and how surprised people are when they hear what it’s all about. “They are quick to tell me I am different,” she writes, “not like the ‘real’ feminists who hate men, who are angry.”
Ms. Magazine

Post-Prop. 8, A More Feminist World

The word “feminism” does not appear anywhere in Judge Vaughn Walker’s 136-page ruling that California’s ban on same-sex marriage, Proposition 8, is unconstitutional. However, this impressive document draws heavily upon feminism’s contributions to our society. Judge Walker’s sweeping condemnation of Prop. 8 relies on feminist ideas about the roles of men and women within marriage and, more broadly, about gender itself.
Ms. Magazine

A Pre-Father’s Day Welcome to Good Men Project Magazine

Shopping for Father’s Day cards this year, I was struck by the limited range of familiar stereotypes about Dad: fisherman, golfer, grill-master, handyman, beer-guzzler, remote-control hog, king of the castle, and, of course, the sentimental dear old Dad. As far as I could tell from my informal survey of this domain, the only thing that might distinguish the present-day offerings from those of a few decades ago is that now there are cards with guitars for Rocker Dad.
Ms. Magazine

“Day of Silence” Protests Anti-LGBT Bullying

Young people are always being told they should be seen and not heard. On April 16, hundreds of thousands will choose silence as a way to “speak out” for a good cause. Around the country, students from middle schools, junior highs, high schools, colleges and universities will take part in the 15th Annual Day of Silence, sponsored by the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN). By remaining silent for all or part of the day, participating students will symbolically call attention to to the silence surrounding anti-LGBT bullying and harassment in schools.
Ms. Magazine

Happy B-day, Rachel Maddow! You Put the “Ms.” in MSNBC

If you told me two years ago that I would soon be watching a cable news show hosted by an out butch lesbian, I would have expected you to follow up with “April Fool’s!” But today, the charismatic Rachel Maddow–whose birthday is April 1st, no fooling!–has become a fixture on the nighttime political commentary scene. Like the pundit herself, The Rachel Maddow Show is smart, witty, frequently geeky and unabashedly feminist–something virtually unheard of on mainstream TV.
Jezebel

How Queer Is Oprah?

While flipping through the latest issue of O: The Oprah Magazine, I had what I've come to think of as an "O double-take." That happens when the magazine comes up with an article that complicates stereotypical women's magazine offerings — such as "Why Women Are Leaving Men for Other Women" or "Comedian Carol Leifer's Midlife Surprise" (she fell in love with a woman, too). Am I really seeing this, and am I seeing it here? My latest O double-take was set off by the article "The One" by Allison Cooper—about her "falling in love with a transgender man." I checked the front cover (above). Yes, this was O, featuring an unexceptional women's mag theme: "Real Love: Are You with Your Soul Mate?" There was no other exclamatory headline to tip off readers–no "Ciswoman Falls for a Trans Man!" Nothing to hint that queer content would be folded in with the typically heterosexual/gender-normative fare.
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