Four Swedish film organizations are banding together to fight sexism by applying a letter-grade rating to new releases, the Independent reports. That’s awesome news in and of itself, but the idea is even cooler because it’s based on criteria that come from a comic strip by cartoonist Alison Bechdel.
CHICAGO — There is a set of culturally acceptable ways for mothers to be and behave in the world. Mothers aren’t allowed to have their own lives or be sexual; in essence, they’re not allowed to be human beings. When an artist who’s also a mother crosses these lines, people often react in ways that are predictable yet simultaneously a grim reflection on where we still stand culturally in regards to women and feminism.
BERLIN — A week ago, Vice magazine gambled on a potentially-sexist-but-potentially-thought-provoking fashion spread — and lost. “Last Words” featured fictionalized portraits of female authors looking unaccountably sexy moments before or after their suicides: a slender Sylvia Plath poised before an open oven, an immaculately made-up Virginia Wolf wading in a picturesque river. Predictably enough, the spread provoked vitriolic backlash in the world of feminist journalism.
Let’s start at the beginning. Vice magazine recently published a fashion spread from its new Women in Fiction issue. Titled “Last Words,” it features seven models posed as female writers who committed suicide (or in one case, attempted to) at the moment of their deaths.
Women, ladies, girls, however you identify — if you’ve got two X chromosomes, I’m talking to you, and I have an unfortunate announcement: You can’t paint. At least not well. So if you’re thinking about becoming a painter, don’t do it; you’ll never be any good. If you already are one, I’m sorry; you should probably take up knitting instead.
As soon as we published Samantha Villenave’s essay “Kate Middleton Portrait Buzz: Art Criticism, Sexism, or Something Else?” (01/11/13), we immediately saw readers respond, particularly on Facebook.
VALENCE, France — The internet has its royal panties in a bustle, once again. Today’s unveiling of the portrait of Kate Middleton, or rather the British Duchess of Cambridge, met with gasps of horror, followed by a cascade of sarcastic media and Twitter wit. The subject of much of the outrage and verbal discourse being the pressing matter of whether artist Paul Emsley portrayed the future queen as being pretty enough.