Elayne Riggs' Journal (for Leah)

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Estrogen Month - Day 10

It's always a treat when Karen Healey's RSS feed starts working again. I've now been through her last two months' worth of posts, and feel like every single one is a gem. I particularly recommend Every Time I Move, her Blogging Against Sexism post; Black As Hell, Sweet As Sin, ostensibly about Fetching Him His Coffee; and the hilarious Misfit Reads Your Mail. Brava, Karen!

And via the comments on her message board, Karen has also led me to lots of new women pop-culture bloggers, whose blogs have now been added (along with some links I'm grabbing from the indispensable When Fangirls Attack) to the "Where the Women Are 2 - Kultcha+Otha" section of my Bloglines subs for your (and my) perusal during this Estrogen Month: Pop Culture Edition.

Another lead I got from Karen is her new co-blogger on the Girl Wonder site, Rachel Edidin, an assistant editor at Dark Horse whose blog is called Inside Out. Like Karen, Rachel is an unapologetic feminist with bold opinions and her writing shot right out of the gate at full speed. She only has a few posts up so far so catching up will take you no time at all, and I highly recommend doing so. I quite liked her most recent two: Be Vewwy, Vewwy Quiet–We’re Hunting Wimmins! about, yes, the old trope of Capturing Female Readers (has it really been ten years since the Friends of Lulu retailer handbook?); and Ma, Can I Be a Feminist and Still Like Men? about Miles, her significant other and geek-partner (awwww, just really, awwww). A great addition to the Girl Wonder pantheon!

Elsewhere, it's still one step forward, two steps back as Paul Dini rips into Geena Davis and her See Jane organization, which "seeks to engage professionals and parents in a call to dramatically increase the percentages of female characters -- and to reduce gender stereotyping -- in media made for children 11 and under," for being a busybody do-gooder and not knowing anything about animation and gender stereotyping. Now granted, animation isn't necessarily "children's media" any more than comics is, and Davis (or her speechwriter) is quite likely cherry-picking examples to fit her point whilst ignoring lots of positive portrayals of girls in cartoons, some of which Dini lists. On the other hand, Dini (the head writer on DC's upcoming weekly series Countdown) is a member of the Default group of white men and perhaps hasn't noticed that "male characters still dominate television, movies, and other media for young children" as See Jane points out, because media is geared toward the Default. I think it's important when nitpicking not to lose sight of the big picture.

The guidelines for nominating and voting for feminist pop-culture bloggers during Estrogen Month are outlined here. I'm also hosting the 12th Carnival of Feminist Science Fiction and Fantasy Fans on March 31. The deadline for submissions is March 29, and guidelines are outlined here (please send links via email or use this submission form).