Culture

The South Asian daughter stereotype

I frequent a lot of progressive feminist spaces. I also love pop-culture. If I were to make a Venn diagram the two would overlap easily, and in that overlap would also lay a stereotype—that of the “oppressed South Asian daughter”—which has affected me multiple times. I used to laugh it off, or even make jokes… More »

OITNB#1

The women of Rolling Stone

If you’ve been busy binge watching season three of Orange Is the New Black (and you really should be) you might have missed the latest issue of Rolling Stone with OITNB stars Taylor Schilling and Laura Prepon on the cover. The magazine’s cover story devotes significant column inches to talking about how historic OITNB is…. More »

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Women: Not coming soon to a theatre near you

An in-depth review of Hollywood’s problem with women “You could try to hold your camera like this… but your breasts would probably get in the way.” “Women do not belong on set unless they are in hair and makeup.” “Your main job is basically to be my work wife. You need to anticipate my needs…. More »

Gender block: western supremacy, because nothing to see in our backyard

Many a conversation regarding anything of a progressive nature leads to someone making a snide so-called “first-world problem” comment. For instance: who cares about women being raped here, because more women are being raped “there” (wherever “there” is—i.e., everywhere else—it is, apparently, run by barbarians). Not only are these conversations eye-roll inducing, they rely on… More »

Gender Block: She Asked For It

I decided I need to become better at public speaking so I’ve started subjecting myself to the horror of, well, public speaking. I started as a guest speaker at a Durham Rape Crisis Centre volunteer training session, my second and most recent attempt was a literary reading at Oshawa, Ont.’s The LivingRoom Community Art Studio…. More »

Gender Block: Body shame doesn’t cancel itself out

Is dissecting a woman’s picture to prove it has been Photoshopped really body positive? Media is a big message transmitter and dictates feelings, philosophies, morals, values—pretty much everything that makes up society rules. No matter how critical the viewer, we are still subjected to ads in subway stations and on buses, on billboards and in… More »

Gender Block: the devil’s advocate

I get a lot of pretty hateful messages through e-mail and social media. No matter how much time I’ve devoted to educating myself on gender issues—including re-learning and exploring uncomfortable concepts, like my own privileges—there will always be that person who approaches me with the very misogynistic messaging our society is built on (thus already perpetuated… More »

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Gender Block: Bye Felipe, hello a safer online

Just this morning I was reading Lee Maracle’s Ravensong. In it, there’s a part where a 17-year-old indigenous girl wasn’t sure how to tell a white boy she wasn’t interested: “White boys always have a response which is designed to save their pride by assaulting yours.” And then I found Bye Felipe. Started by former… More »

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Gender Block: on taking up space

Footsteps quicken behind you, a large physical presence gets closer, sending shivers up your spine. You walk faster, they keep up. Then all of a sudden they pass you, or push you slightly out of the way. Maybe you are scared because a scenario like this has ended a more violent way, or maybe this… More »

Oh, The Horror: Hetero Horror

Where are all the gay people in horror? There are wide arrays of hellish creatures, no shortage of ideas on how to creatively murder someone for the big screen, and more nonsensical plot twists than I can count. Yet, in this huge vastness of horror ideas, one thing remains ever constant: horror is heteronormative. Almost… More »