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Gender block: I’m not a real feminist

“Don’t worry,” they often tell me. “You’re a real feminist.” In earlier days I was alright with this statement. “OK,” I’d think, “They’re taking me seriously and are willing to listen.” But really, what they mean is that since I’m not wearing army boots and wishing death upon men, I’m a feminist unicorn. In other words,… More »

Gender Block: victim blaming

Lately, it seems anytime feminism is mentioned there are many people ready to point out how unnecessary it is: You know, that if women wanted to work they would, but they choose to have families; that if women didn’t want predatory sexual advances they wouldn’t welcome them through their behaviour and clothing; that if a… More »

Sens fan Katie Kerrick was assaulted at Friday's game. Prior to this she met Ottawa player Bobby Ryan.Photo from Kerrick's Facebook page.

Gender block: Canada’s national masculinity

Popular opinion says that when Montreal Canadiens fans at the Bell centre harassed two Ottawa Senators fans during Friday night’s game, it was wrong. Social media saw comments on how this is typical behaviour for Montreal fans or how Montreal fans were embarrassed on behalf of the Canadiens and their fandom. Less popular topic of… More »

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Gender Block: Patricia Arquette, gender equity and intersectionality

Unless you don’t use social media (which you totally do and probably have at least once since clicking this link) you have heard about Patricia Arquette’s that-went-downhill-fast Oscars moment. During her acceptance speech, after winning Best Supporting Actress for her role in Boyhood, she spoke about gender equality, “To every woman who gave birth to… More »

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Gender Block: online harassment is a real concern

Late last January a man in Winnipeg tweeted that the bar he was at was displaying a sexist poster. The bar agreed, and thanked him for calling it out. This constructive back-and-forth did not, however, stop the onslaught of tweets calling the man, Ben Wickstrom, a “pussy” and other predictably homophobic slurs. Despite the online… More »

Oh, The Horror: WoC in Horror

In this Oh, The Horror, I share some excellent, and undeniably scary, horror films with women of colour in the lead. This was, by far, the most challenging Oh, The Horror post I’ve ever written. The truth is, finding notable mainstream Western horror films for this list wasn’t easy. Several films that popped up in… 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 »

Oh, The Horror: Problematic horror

While most horror movies have problematic elements, the ones below are the worst. Unlike others, there’s simply no merit in them to overpower the awful parts of the film. 1. Hostel (2005): The Hostel franchise is problematic for a variety of reasons. First and foremost it’s part of the torture porn or “gorno” subgenre and… More »

Oh, The Horror: Filming Physical Disabilities

Grotesque deformities and burlap sack masks: these are the faces of physical disabilities in horror. Horror does not do disability well. Most “good” characters are able-bodied, whereas many villains in horror wear masks to cover birth defects, which the audience is supposed to find frightening. We’re supposed to learn that these faces are ones we… More »

Oh, The Horror: The Purge

The Purge franchise has been a big success—not so much in terms of its critical success, but in audience reaction. On social media there was a constant buzz about it (so much so that use of the word “purge” automatically drew people to think of the film). Building on that success filmmakers debuted a sequel… More »