Pro-War Rhetoric Around Ukraine Perpetuates the Patriarchy and Plays Right Into Putin’s Hands

Watching cable news coverage of the tragic events in Ukraine, I hear again and again how brave the Ukrainian men who are staying to fight are. But we should be very careful about who we worship because fetishizing the masculinist and militarist response of war will hurt women and LGBTQ people for decades to come.

Putin is a madman, but his regime depends on these century-old notions of binary gender and “normal” sexuality. The way the U.S. mainstream media is covering the illegal invasion of Ukraine is doing similar cultural work.

Justice and the Meaning of the Tubman $20

A white supremacist and sexist society has consistently relegated Black women to the bottom of the socioeconomic ladder. Harriet Tubman, dubbed “the Moses of her people,” was no exception. She gave so much to the nation, yet in the years following the Civil War, Tubman struggled financially.

From persistent economic and housing insecurity to the highest infant mortality rates in the nation, Black women shoulder many of the same challenges Tubman endured in her lifetime. Let us work towards making these injustices a priority by the time Tubman appears on the redesigned $20.

Paid Family Leave Act: Get Real on Gender Gaps in Academia Now

There is significant gender inequity in higher education that serves to disparage women’s role and contribution in academia. While women outnumber men in university attendance, they are less represented in faculty and continually paid less than their counterparts.

Many attribute these inequities to starting a family, as the benefits many professors attribute to parenthood, are overshadowed by the challenges to research, funding and tenure recognized by faculty and institutions. Improved paid family leave policies would help overcome these barriers and make strides towards greater equity in academia.

Sundance 2022: “Brainwashed: Sex-Camera-Power” Is an Edifying, If Familiar, Look at Film Language and the Male Gaze

Nina Menkes’s documentary Brainwashed: Sex-Camera-Power is based on a lecture Menkes, a filmmaker herself, began giving about the representation of women in film. Brainwashed has a clear thesis: The visual language of film (and its “male gaze”) objectifies women characters, a phenomenon that is further linked to employment discrimination and sexual harassment in Hollywood and beyond. (Of course, media studies and gender studies programs have been actively attempting to challenge these long-held patriarchal structures for decades.)

It’s Mourning in America: Feminists Reflect on the Incredible Loss of Our Sista bell hooks

The National Women’s Studies Association mourns the passing of Dr. Gloria Jean Watkins, Ph.D./bell hooks—genius, scholar, cultural critic, author, professor, truth speaker, a lover of words and of us. She challenged us, taught us, spoke to and sometimes for us. She gave us the words to say and the courage to say them. bell hooks never gave up. She never gave in. She was more than we could have asked for and gave us more than we could have ever imagined. As someone said, our heroes are dying, and our enemies are in power.

As NWSA marks this moment, I reached out and asked some of our former presidents to join with me and share their reflections and stories to add their voices to our collective of love.