Professor Arrested for Complaint Against Campus Display Comparing Abortion to Genocide

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Last Monday, State University of New York at Buffalo adjunct professor Laura Curry was arrested for what the Huffington Post has flippantly called a “profanity-laced tirade over a pro-life display on campus.” The display, installed by the so-called Genocide Awareness Project (GAP) in front of the highly trafficked Student Union, assaults unwitting students and faculty […]

2012′s Best Books of Poetry by Women

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2012 was great year for poetry, and an even better year for poetry by women. Here’s my impossibly non-comprehensive list of the best poetry picks for 2012, in no particular order: I’ll Drown My Book: Conceptual Writing by Women, edited by Caroline Bergvall, Laynie Browne, Teresa Carmody and Vanessa Place (Les Figues Press) This anthology […]

Future of Feminism: 50 Global Solutions for Women and Girls

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Just in time to honor International Women’s Day, the nonprofit Women Deliver announced its 50 top ideas and solutions for women and girls. While the list–which began with more than 500 nominations from 103 countries and ended with over 6,000 online votes–does include some already well-known (and oft challenged) global institutions such as the UN, […]

Obama Sends Troops to East Africa; Women and Girls Deserve More

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Last week, the Associated Press announced that the U.S. would be “venturing into one of Africa’s bloodiest conflicts.” That’s a theatrical way of saying that Obama is sending 100 U.S. military advisers to East Africa to counsel the Ugandan government in its fight against the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), a rebel group that has evaded national […]

High Dropout Rates, No Simple Answers, for Northern Uganda’s Girls

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On the brick wall outside Oloo Primary School in northern Uganda, a small chalkboard displays the “attendance record” for students by gender. From first to seventh grade, the number of girls enrolled sinks drastically, from 51 to 4. The dwindling number of girls in school is the product of many factors, some of which go […]

Crotchless-Pants-and-a-Machine-Gun Feminism

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What is “crotchless-pants-and-a-machine-gun” feminism? The term is inaugurated in Juliana Spahr and Stephanie Young‘s new book, A Megaphone, which is a collection of three works by the avant-garde poetic duo. A Megaphone highlights the work Spahr and Young have done recently in the avant-garde poetry world–which the authors describe as “weirdly aggressive towards anything that even […]

When Mom Goes Missing

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“It’s been one week since Mom went missing.” So begins Kyung-sook Shin’s best-selling Korean novel Please Look After Mom, a haunting and deceptively simple book about a mother’s sudden disappearance. After losing his wife at a Seoul train station, a father tries to piece together her slow, ambiguous dissociation and his part in her depression. […]

Tiger, Tiger: Exploring The Pedophilic Fantasy

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If we aren’t reading as voyeurs, why are we reading?  Margaux Fragoso’s debut memoir Tiger, Tiger reminds us that what we are after is understanding, in all its abject, contradictory and labyrinthine intricacy. I recently attended a talk in Los Angeles given by Gayatri Spivak. Spivak argued, among other things, that reading should be the […]

Powerful, Pithy, Political Poetry

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“Poetry is for crap since there’s no money or fast cars in it/ But in the thighs … I feel it.” –from “Preface 1” by Chelsey Minnis, whose work inspired the term “Gurlesque” Gurlesque: The New Grrly, Grotesque, Burlesque Poetics “assaults the norms of acceptable female behavior by deploying gender stereotypes to subversive ends,” writes […]

Gaga’s Meaty Protest

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It didn’t take long for fashion and food columnists alike to churn out their reactions to what may be Lady’s Gaga most infamous fashion choice yet: an outfit made entirely of raw meat. Gaga accepted her Video of the Year award at the recent Video Music Awards dressed head to toe in 50 pounds of […]