We didn’t think we could love Ryan Thomas Gosling more than we already do here at the Ms. Blog. He’s so talented, so darn good-looking, so noble–and so willing to call out the patriarchy! I mean, the guy is quoted as saying,
It’s misogynistic in nature to try and control a woman’s sexual presentation of self.
What’s not to love? But now we have yet another reason to heart Ryan: He’s talking feminist theory, and in the most romantic way possible. Consider this quote from Feminist Ryan Gosling:
My perfect Saturday is a hot cup of tea at sunrise, a trip to the Farmer’s Market, and curling up on the couch to figure out bell hooks’ theory that feminism is a struggle to eradicate the ideology of domination that permeates Western culture with you.
Sweet! At another moment, Ryan’s thinking about marriage:
Sometimes I think about Foucault‘s theory of marriage as a governmentally developed tool that interferes with the appropriation of land rights, normalizes heterosexuality and subjugates a woman’s sexuality and it makes me want to cry with you.
Ryan even realizes that some feminists resent being addressed by a pet name that somehow infantilizes them, as in this post:
I mean …. WOMAN.
And here’s Ryan’s most recent post:
OK, maybe it’s dawned on you that this Ryan Gosling is just an internet meme, not the real dude, and maybe you even know that it was inspired by a previous internet meme called Fuck Yeah!Ryan Gosling. In fact, Feminist Ryan Gosling is sort of a cross between Feminist Hulk and Feminist Bieber, but he’s got more cyberspace to make his point because he’s on the less-micro microblog Tumblr rather than on 140-characters Twitter. We’re not even surprised to find out that Feminist Ryan Gosling is a female woman’s studies grad student who’s all about intersectionality (you’re so cool, Danielle Henderson!).
It all sounds like a lot of internet silliness until we realize that we may be learning something from these imagined feminist men (well, Ryan’s a real feminist, considering his actual quote at the top of this piece, ). Read a tweet from Hulk about Judith Butler or a tumblr post from Gosling on Luce Irigaray and suddenly you want to check out these theorists yourself and learn more. A lot of this theory has been locked up in the academy too long; our internet meme-meisters are bringing it down from the tower and onto our Facebook pages.
I, for one, really appreciate it. As an old-school Second Waver, I’ve been wanting for some time to catch up on my feminist theory, but I’ve fallen behind. I like knowing that the young women behind the masks of Hulk and Gosling are taking their smarts to the cyber-street, and whetting people’s appetites for some heady reading.
Any ideas for feminist theorists that Feminist Ryan Gosling–or the rest of us–should be reading? Any favorite essays to recommend?