Filed under: Announcements, Fiction, Poetry, Post by: Sheila M, Starring Local Feminists, Women's Health
Tonight, at the Black Squirrel in Adams Morgan (2427 18th Street NW Washington D.C.),we will host our second annual Will Read For Women Donation Drive to benefit the Bethany House women’s shelter of Northern Virginia.
Starting at 8:00 PM guests are asked to bring toiletry items and other pantry necessities as “price of admission.” Suggested items include: Baby wipes, Adult wipes, Lotion, Shampoo, Conditioner, Combs, Bleach, Dish detergents, Dishwasher detergents, Razors, Tweezers, Lip balm/Lip gloss, Vaseline, Brushes, Toothpaste, Toothbrushes, Mouthwash, Bath soaps, Laundry detergents, Toilet paper, Paper towels, Napkins, Diapers (size 3-6), Pull-ups (size 2T-5T).
Our performers for the evening will include Kim Roberts, Kyle Dargan, Nicole Idar, Jill Leininger, and Mel Nichols.
Looking forward to seeing you there!
So to Speak had such a fun month! We traveled to Boston for AWP, met new friends and reunited with old! Our Favorite Feminist Reading at Sonsie with Danielle Pafunda, Lara Glenum, Julie Marie Wade, and Moira Egan was fantastic and we partied hard! Our submissions period closed on the 15th and we are all nose deep in tremendous feminist writing and art! We look forward to sharing our final selections with you in the next few months!
Look forward to our annual Will Read For Women event at the Black Squirrel in Washington D.C. on April 12th starting at 8:00pm with readings from Kyle Dargan, Jill Leininger, Mel Nichols, and Kim Roberts and Nicole Idar. Price of entry is a pantry neccessity or tiolettry to donate to the Bethany House Women’s Shelter.
Check out what else happened this month at StS by following these links!
Former StS editor, Alyse Knorr, review’s contributor Paul David Atkin’s book The Upside Down House
We recapped and expanded our understandings of men and feminism, both separate and together.
Curious about what is it to be a man AND a feminist? Do you sometimes wonder if it is actually possible? Well, we’re here to tell you that it IS possible to be both a self-identifying man and feminist! Not only is it possible, but it is normal and exciting and makes for a better world. And good news— there are so many wonderful examples of male feminists right now on this site! Our men are talking everything from politics, generational gaps and misgivings, the brewing industry, translation and learning about pregnancy, matrilineal inheritance, privilege, even pornography, to seeking advice on how to be the best person one (man or woman) can be.
- Generation Y and Feminism by John Dywer
- “A Woman Writing Thinks Back Through Her Mothers”: Todd Fredson and the Feminine Line by Todd Fredson
- What Is A Male Feminist? By Mike Kern
- Some Thoughts on Cuomo’s State of the State Address by Luke Huffman
- Feminist Pornography and the Stakes of Sex by Warren Ciabattoni
- Matthew Brennan On the Personal Nature of Translation by Matthew Brennan
- Women in Beer By Mike Stein
- Strikes, Unions, and Supporting Our Daughters by Paul David Adkins
What a whirlwind of an AWP weekend! For all of you who made it to Boston, we hope you had the most amazing time, met your favorite writers, met new favorite writers, and lost yourself in beautiful, beautiful printed wor(l)ds!
So to Speak had a tremendous time! Thank you to everyone who stopped by our table to introduce yourself! We loved meeting you so much and sharing our feminist mission!
Our offsite reading was a huge success and total blast! Moira Egan read from her book Spin. Julie Marie Wade, introduced by our nonfiction editor Chrissy Widmayer, read from her surreal memoir Small Fires. I (Sheila, poetry editor) introduced the fabulous Danielle Pafunda. She read “Mommy V” poems from her newest, Manhater, new poems, and one titled “I Can’t Publish This.” The magical Lara Glenum, introduced by our assistant nonfiction editor Jess Szalay, read from her newest book Pop Corpse, a contemporary retelling of Little Mermaid fable with vernacular swing and swoosh.
Feel like you where there with us with these lovely photos!
P.S. Remember we are open for fiction, nonfiction, and poetry submissions until this Friday, March 15th, midnight Eastern Standard Time. Our first and most exciting visual art contest will be open for submissions through April 15th. Download the Hybrid Book Arts competition call here.
Filed under: Interview, Poetry, Post by: Sarah M, Post by: Sheila M, Reviews
Sheila: Why is feminism important to you? What does it mean to you?
Sarah: Feminism is responsibility. I believe that I am responsible for being an effective advocate. Like Steinem, I think that a “feminist is anyone who recognizes the equality and full humanity of women and men.” Being a feminist means subverting an accepted culture of silence. As such, feminism is vital to creating civic-minded, educated humans and consumers. I spend a great deal of time thinking about ways to win hearts and minds. I lesson plan and write and start conversations and show my face in my community. I support other feminists— I think we have a duty to be role models for young women and men. I am painfully aware of my words and actions and how they impact those around me. I am overwhelmed by the cultural backlash to feminism that surrounds us on a daily basis: reality television, violent and degrading (always present) pornography, the Republican’s war on reproductive freedom, etc. It is important for me to remember that I am (we are) the example. People are always watching us. We are educators and guides, and being a feminist means having integrity. It means being in healthy relationships. It means modeling how to be with a respectful partner. Having self worth and refusing to wallow in self-pity. It means not looking in that bathroom mirror, hallway mirror, car window, etc. and saying, “I look disgusting,” because I never know who’s watching me. A student? A child? A friend? It means not judging someone’s clothing or lack thereof. Today, I am accountable for giving what I never had.
Being a feminist in today’s academic culture means publishing my students, teaching equality in the classroom, and talking about gender identity and sexual violence even when it’s uncomfortable—even when no one wants me to have the conversation. During college I was a sexual assault/rape crisis counselor and victim advocate for Butler County, Ohio. Being a feminist means positively impacting our communities. Gloria Steinem has always been my hero because she represents fearlessness. She revolutionized the presentation of our emotional lives. She represented the uninhibited. She was apt to unwomanly assertion, passion, and individualism. Through her example and the example of so many others, (Adrienne Rich, Elaine Showalter, Eve Ensler, Betty Friedan, Susan Brownmiller) I learned that being brave and strong doesn’t mean that you don’t have a difficult time or make mistakes, but that you walk through them with dignity and grace. I learned to embrace femininity. I think that forgiveness (true forgiveness conquers the dutiful martyr) is principally feminine.
Today, I feel this communal attitude that we are only allowed to publicly call ourselves feminists within certain limits. We are not supposed to be aggressive or appear angry. We should know how to communicate and operate and advocate for change within the realm of our context—within what the current patriarchal hierarchy has deemed acceptable—what they feel comfortable with. This model feels submissive and repressed and ironic to me. Sexual and angry—we are threatening; we are dangerous. I think that our discipline is self enforced and kept in check by society’s incessant scrutiny.
I do not pretend to speak for or represent an entire movement or even a small part of a movement. I’m not sure that I would even feel comfortable aligning myself with a particular wave of feminism. Although, I do have a soft spot for second wave hardliners… I am a feminist operating within a tradition of trailblazers. I am also a feminist who loves and appreciates chivalry (I have received unfortunate, collective gasps for this statement). I hate that some people would like to kick me out of the club for this. Yes, please open my car door and do kind things. I do not expect this, but I certainly cherish it. I respect it. It’s not because I don’t know how to open my own door. It’s not because I need a man (or anyone else) to help me. I value the concept because it’s caring, because it epitomizes the idea that we should be of maximum service to our fellows. It was a beautiful day in my life when I realized that I was finally becoming the kind of man that I was told I should marry (Steinem’s description of self-actualization).
A: In the 7th grade, Mr. Simeone told our class that patience plus perseverance equals survival. This is a math equation that makes sense to me. I hope BACKCOUNTRY inspires us to be ferocious. I am arguing that the act of entering someone or something (a landscape) physically and emotionally is a type of violence. It’s violence even when it’s beautiful. This is a violence because some boundary, some border, has been irreversible crossed. A barrier is broken. I think love is a type of violence. People describe themselves as love-sick (so the body experiences a violence). Perhaps these instances should be called small violences. Everything about our human nature is voyeuristic, intense, and wild. When you enter someone, you must also at some point leave them. (This is a violence.)