Also.Also.Also: Stud4Stud, Pronouns, West Hollywood’s Bi Pride Party and Other Stories From Your Week

HEY are you taking care of yourself? You have to take care of yourself. Get some water before you read this. Skip most of the Saw This section if you can’t handle anymore takes on high school sexual assault (tbh I was only able to read the headlines and just trusted that I should include them here based on some reactions and quotes I saw on Twitter, bc I can’t take much more right now). Eat one fruit today! Which one will it be? I’m covered in bananas but all I really want is a plum. I used to have a row of plum bushes by my house growing up and I’d do all kinds of untoward things to get my hands on a pile of those plums right now.

What books are y’all reading? I just started Buttermilk Graffiti! I’m reasonably sure it won’t make me cry, but honestly who can predict these things anymore? Not me.

Queer as in F*ck You

West Hollywood Will Host the US’ First City-Wide Bisexual Pride.

Trump Officials ‘Did Not Want’ Census Survey To Ask About Sexual Orientation.

Pay WNBA Players What They Deserve.

Hong Kong Recognizes Same-Sex Marriages for Foreigners.

Here Was a Plague.

Lesbians Punched and Kicked in Unprovoked Homophobic Attack in England.

Why Asking Students Their Preferred Pronoun Is Not a Good Idea.

Canada ‘Refuses Lesbian Citizenship Because Her Partner’s Sister Dumped Billionaire for k.d. lang’.

The Radical Friendship Of Lorraine Hansberry And James Baldwin.

Janelle Monáe Tells Us What Love Is In Her New Documentary.

Local Man Unsure If Woman Type Of Lesbian Who Only Dates Women.

Cher made this gift for you:

Are you masc4masc or stud4stud? Maybe take this survey!!


Saw This, Thought of You

Everything You Know About Obesity Is Wrong.

What Do We Owe Her?: “Twelve years ago, Amber Wyatt reported her rape. Few believed her. Her hometown turned against her. The authorities failed her.”

We Prioritize Boys’ Suffering At Girls’ Expense.

Between Brock Turner and Brett Kavanaugh, When Do Girls Matter?

How Can We Trust Brett Kavanaugh?

#MeToo Is Working.

#MeToo is also expanding and would like for you to take this survey: National Resource Collection for Healing & Community Action!

Can the People Who Almost Brought Down the News Business Save It?

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 841 articles for us.

15 Comments

  1. I have to disagree with the pronoun thing. I get where the author is coming from but it’s not going to be normalized unless it’s practiced everywhere with everyone. Sure, if you’re the only one getting asked your pronouns it can be shitty. I know this from experience. But making it common practice normalizes trans existence and makes the world a tiny bit safer.

    • My queer Christian group uses name tags that have a space for name and one for pronouns. I especially like the ones that leave a blank space for the person to fill in their pronouns if they want for the reasons outlined in the article. Plus it’s just easier if you have a gender imbalance in you group. (as opposed to a pack of name tags with a certain number of she/hers, a certain number of they/them, etc already printed on them)

  2. I asked students for pronouns in introductions for a class I taught last year and then later learned that it had made a newly out genderqueer student feel exposed and vulnerable. The students were at the beginning of their 1st year, primarily ~18. I had some people suggest saying “share your pronouns as you’re comfortable.” I’m not sure how much difference that would make, though. I had contemplated going the route of stickers for their name tents in the classroom, but I wasn’t able to make or find something satisfactory in time.

  3. I’m not exactly taking care of myself today, but you know what I DO have an orange already peeled and ready to eat sitting in my fridge once I get home, because I baked a thing with orange zest last night and didnt want to eat it then. So I’m gonna go home and eat that orange! Then read some good old Trauma stuff in The Body Keeps The Score. (Also purposely not read news stuff anymore today)

  4. I also really disagree with the pronoun article. I am a trans graduate student TA at a school that doesn’t allow students to change their name on emails, so all my students get emails from a name and title that I don’t use. I’m not sure how I would have a conversation with my students about how it is important to call people the name they want to be called, without also asking for their names and pronouns? It just wouldn’t work? How does the author propose trans TA’s and professors bring up their own pronouns without asking for students? Obviously don’t force anyone to give their pronouns, but simply asking is not that

    • I feel like asking privately (in an e-mail or what have you) might work better for some people? Or it might even be as simple as “please go around and tell us your name, and your pronouns if you’d like to share them.” I don’t know what my pronouns are ATM and it’s a bit awkward if everyone in a room shares theirs and I don’t. I’d appreciate the opportunity to pass on announcing that without being conspicuous.

      • I agree, there are better and worse ways to ask for pronouns, but I don’t think, as a trans instructor, I can tell my students to use they/them pronouns for me and not ask my students for their pronouns in some form. To me, the article seemed to argue we should not ask about pronouns at all and I don’t think that’s the answer

  5. One of the reasons for asking people’s pronouns is to communicate the idea that gender and pronouns can’t be assumed. This is a lesson mainly aimed at cis people. From that perspective, I don’t how how successful it is–I’ve seen cis people play it out as comedy, which, even if it is an early stage of learning for them, doesn’t do much to create a safer space. On the other hand, I’ve been in workshops where it wasn’t asked, and people were misgendered, which also sucks.

    People who are feeling troubled or unsure of their gender are unavoidably going to be affected most by this, as we would by any discussions around gender identity really. It’s scary to be asked, and it’s familiar but also awful not to be.

    I like the idea of giving people the option, not putting anyone on the spot…but I wonder whether cis folk would just take this as another opportunity to let themselves default to the norm, unquestioned, unidentified and undefined, just “normal, duh.”

  6. I’m really of two minds about pronoun go-rounds. I am part of a volunteer group that uses “what’s your preferred pronoun” as a regular part of introductions. But it’s a heavily queer community, and so A) the cis people tend to operate in good faith & understand trans issues and B) I’m typically not the only person who uses they/them. I think if I had to introduce myself with my pronouns in a heavily cis setting, i.e., my job, it would be stressful. I’d basically be having to other myself a lot – and tolerating the more cynical cis people who might roll their eyes or make jokes about having to state pronouns.

    It was also hard having to give pronouns when I was questioning my gender. The writer of the article mentions a student bursting into tears about not knowing how to identify themselves, and I relate to that hard. It’s tough to be in that place and be put on the spot.

  7. My problem with the pronoun ritual is that I don’t address my students in the third person. When I’m talking to them it’s “you,” and only when I’m talking about them to someone else does the pronoun come up. So it seems to me, as others have said here, that asking about pronouns in class is primarily a tool to sensitize cis people.

  8. Re:pronouns in the classroom I’ve started sharing my pronouns everywhere (staff webpage, Twitter, short bios etc) and when I introduce myself in class, as a way to normalise the practice and to gently signal to students that if they want to send me a message to tell me their pronouns that’s totally ok!

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