Also.Also.Also: Let’s Learn About Women Who Made Wilderness History and Other Stories You’ll Love

Hello this is how I feel today:

1969 Pippi Langstrump - Pippi Longstocking (ale) (lc) 04


Queer as in F*ck You

+ Would you like to enjoy 10 Episodes of The L Word That Put Its Importance Before Its Imperfections? Because Kayla Kumari Upadhyaya has put that together for you.

+ Kiersten Holden-Ada brings you Mommy/Daddy.

Growing up, I often felt somehow not quite girl enough. But also not quite boy enough. It wasn’t until adulthood that, thankfully, queer community and discourse broadened my understanding of gender and moved my allegiances beyond the stable binary of boy or girl; I could conceptualize other options. Yet it wasn’t until after having children that I was ready and willing to explore how some of those options might harbour space for myself.

The cocktail of hormones that ruled over me during my two pregnancies, in concert with my fulfillment of roles prescribed as essentially “female” (pregnancy/birthing), caused me to settle into some aspect of my femininity. During those periods of time, I didn’t feel so divided or unsure —it was as though my gender was suddenly on solid ground. A calm contentment, the likes of which I was unaccustomed, settled in on the landscape of my gender identity. There was a marked difference: some of the questioning quieted. This noiselessness was not something I had expected or necessarily imagined, just something I noticed. It felt, admittedly, like a relief; I relaxed into it. But it didn’t last. As my babies slowly grew and became less dependent on my body, as I grew back into my own physicality and independence, my old way of being and feeling unsettled returned. With it, a familiar and disquieting dysphoria.

+ Sabine Rear has Six Queer Lady Comedians I Now Know and Love and now you can also know and love them, so what a fabulous day you are having!

+ Read Mia McKenzie interview Cherrell Brown and love the hell out of it.

+ Mary Emily O’Hara on How Utah’s Schools Went From Homophobic War Zones to Crowning a Trans Prom Queen.

+ Bullied Teen Dies By Suicide, Mom Says School’s Attitude Was ‘Toughen Up’. Well fuck everything.


Doll Parts

+ This is all I want to read about for the rest of the month, I think: 11 Women Who Made Wilderness History.

+ Oh wait, also this. The Antarctic Book of Cooking and Cleaning: The Extraordinary Edible Record of Two Women Explorers’ Journey to the End of the World on Brain Pickings.

+ Danielle C. Belton has this gift for you, You Are Not Your Disease: How self-acceptance helped me get control over bipolar disorder.

+ The Many Faces of Single Motherhood on Jane the Virgin by Libby Hill.

+ Five Reasons Natural Disasters Are Worse For Women by Beenish Ahmed.

+ Leigh Cuen on Feminista Jones‘ hashtag campaign: By Calling Out Street Harassment, #YouOkSis Affects Change.

For example, last week’s much-publicized case of an NYC Uber driver, who allegedly assaulted a woman in his car, was only uncovered because women used the #YouOkSis hashtag to spread word of the incident. From Twitter, the victim’s story was posted to Tumblr, where it received over 20,000 notes (re-blogs and likes) within 48 hours. The case eventually garnered so much attention that Uber revoked the driver’s membership.

+ Choice Feminism: It’s Time to ‘Choose’ Another Argument by Katherine Cross, in which I’d like to blockquote the whole damn article but instead I’ll just share this lil’ part and trust you to read the rest.

Our choices in this society are all mediated. Every single one. We find it easier to make certain personal choices because of how the panoply of possibilities are constrained for us. A woman who quits her job after bearing a child, for example, may be “making her own choice,” but a society where there is no guarantee of parental leave, where workplaces remain hostile to pregnant women and new mothers, and where our conception of the ideal worker is still inherited from a 1950’s male breadwinner model all make that choice considerably easier for her to make.

+ Then read this, from the blog A Glasgow Sex Worker. Against “Choice Feminism”: four new suggested topics.

+ Showing Up For Racial Justice in partnership with Raising Race-Conscious Children has put together a Mother’s Day Action Toolkit and it’s important all year round.

+ Get to know Ainissa Ramirez in The Making of a Science Evangelist.

+ A Feminist Wedding Magazine, Catalyst, is Finally Here. Pretty pictures!


Saw This, Thought of You

+ Are There Profits in YouTube Stars? Hey there’s Kristin Russo and Dannielle Owens-Reid, stars of advice and screen and our hearts!

+ Protecting Juvenile Offenders From Adult Inmates, and From Themselves by Lauren Kirchner.

+ Hungry Planet: How the World Eats, Or Doesn’t.


Local Autostraddle Meet-Ups

Nothing to report this week. I assume you’re all taking tests or spring cleaning or getting lost in the woods, which are noble endeavors but maybe you could plan a party when you’re finished? Just a little local get-together for you and some strangers who read this website and like to eat snacks. Idk think about it.


And Finally

What Does Your Favorite Breakfast Cereal Say About You? Mine apparently says that my fave show is Doctor Who and I spend a lot of time on Reddit which is UNTRUE. My favorite TV show is Alaska: The Last Frontier and like any normal person, I am completely confused by Reddit, so hmph.

Laneia is the Executive Editor and founding member of Autostraddle, and you're the reason she's here. She's 37, has two kids, two dogs, one cat, one Megan, and some personal essays.

Laneia has written 883 articles for us.

17 Comments

  1. Laneia you are wonderful but your cereal choice baffles me because whenever I look at Frosted Mini Wheats all I can see are tiny bales of blond pubic hair that got left outside in the snow.

    • all i can think to reply is, who would bale up their pubic hair? blonde ones, even! so rare! just what kind of life must a person be living that they can bale up their blonde pubic hairs? i bet it’s a charmed one. and to live where it snows, too! jane it almost makes me like frosted mini wheats more.

    • but jane pressing question for you: what if my favorite cereal is and always will be fruit wheats circa 1989? is this choice similarly disturbing to you or is it ok because they are unfrosted? like is your real issue here that someone would go to all that trouble of baling their blonde pubic hair and then just abandon the bales out it the snow? or is it that you think wheat just looks like pubic hair? either way i am v curious.

      my second favorite cereal (i have been forced to move on with my life since those monsters at nabisco dont make fruit wheats anymore) is golden grahams and that is not on the list and now i dont know what kind of personality i have so i am really just struggling to make sense of everything.

  2. It wasn’t until I moved to Alaska this year that I learned there are a million TV shows about Alaska. When did this happen?? Like, people fish & live in the wilderness & look for gems/minerals/resources all over the world–what’s with the reality TV fascination with Alaska?!

  3. the “choice feminism” article was interesting but I was bother by how she grouped radical and queer feminists together, because they’re not one and the same, but even so, I enjoyed it.

  4. Oh my God, this article was everything I needed to read. When she said, “The cocktail of hormones that ruled over me during my two pregnancies, in concert with my fulfillment of roles prescribed as essentially “female” (pregnancy/birthing), caused me to settle into some aspect of my femininity. During those periods of time, I didn’t feel so divided or unsure —it was as though my gender was suddenly on solid ground. A calm contentment, the likes of which I was unaccustomed, settled in on the landscape of my gender identity. There was a marked difference: some of the questioning quieted. This noiselessness was not something I had expected or necessarily imagined, just something I noticed. It felt, admittedly, like a relief; I relaxed into it. But it didn’t last.”

    Being pregnant and the first 2.5 years postpartum I felt the most settled and grounded in my femininity despite the fact that I feel like my soul is ultimately androgynous. I loved everything about this article. Thanks for including it.

  5. I loved the articles about the wilderness women and antarctic explorer women! I remember watching a movie on Shackleton’s Endurance voyage as a teen and hearing about Peggy Pergrine (and Shackleton’s terse rejection). I remember being pissed off at it.

    On a different note, I am really craving cereal now!

  6. I found the “choice feminism” articles to be illuminating; I’d known about the internal fight over subjects like porn or sex work, but never had a word to describe feminists who held individual choice as the standard-bearer. Cross’ article linked Meagan Tyler’s https://theconversation.com/no-feminism-is-not-about-choice-40896 was especially helpful.

    Porn, sex work, make-up, and Beyonce were all mentioned but all three stopped short of discussing what is, for me, the most distressing “choice” issue affecting the women that I know, and that’s the role of women in Islam and the “choice” of whether or not to wear hijab.

    I personally reject that choice on principle* – and I refuse to travel to any country, province, building or social event that takes away my right to make that choice. But that choice is comparatively easy for me to make, since neither I nor my family are Muslim and don’t live in a Muslim-dominated area.

    I wonder if it is a deliberate CHOICE for critics of choice feminism to gloss over women in Islam and Islamic cultures.

    *the principle of holding men and women to different standards

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