Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Feminist WINS

You said:
  • My friends Maggie and Andrea, who will be or who are priests, who are smart capable and completely together women whose liturgical, political, and social work is about the radical need for equality in the spirit of Christ. Having a woman at the altar puts the lie to 2000 years of church misogyny about what women can do and what women cannot.
  • Not that it was covered that way, but the article in the G&M about Ontario vet school is, in some ways, a win. (What's not a win: that this seems to be a cause for panic rather than an opportunity to talk about how women are meeting the excellence criteria.)
  • I know a bunch of women deans, full professors etc. Many of these are also out feminists (i.e., it's not just "safe" women who are getting into these positions).
  • Back when I was doing my MSc, I was in a car with my supervisor and his two other grad students (both male), going to a seminar or something. The topic of his upcoming sabbatical came up, and he mentioned that he was staying nearby, working at a well-known institute in the same city where his wife lived and worked. One of the other grad students made a comment that if it were him, he'd go somewhere far away, like Japan, "to, you know, get away from your wife for a bit." Without hesitation, my supervisor icily said, "If you're looking to get away from your wife, perhaps you should reconsider being married," which shut the grad student up. It's far from the only time he'd shot down stupid comments from that grad student, and as the only woman in the research group, I was heartened by his consistent lack of tolerance for intolerable comments.
  • The Old Girls Network. It works. We may chose to call it 'feminist networking' because it sounds better but it's the same thing: women in positions of power supporting and promoting junior women. I got a job because my boss picked up the phone and called my supervisor, a trick the old boys have been using for decades to keep women out, but in this case both of those boys were girls. And feminists. Let's take over the academy one phone call at a time.
  • Universities with an optional 'stop the tenure clock' policy for faculty who take maternity and parental leave.
  • This year the CBU Boardmore Theatre, co-founded by Elizabeth Boardmore, celebrates its 40th season. Among the shows being produced is The Rover, written by a woman (Aphra Behn) and directed by a woman (me! - Sheila Christie). This production culminates a legacy of feminist wins, including an annual one-act play festival that Elizabeth started which provides young playwrights, including  many female writers, an opportunity to have their voices heard. Given how difficult it can be for female playwrights to get their plays produced, the Boardmore Theatre deserves a feminist win.
Have a great break, everybody! And thanks for being such loyal, smart and active readers. See you in January.
- Heather, Erin and Aimee (in reverse alphabetical order!)

      2 comments:

      1. Hear, hear! What a great post to end the year on!

        Here's another win: when I had just returned to work after my mat leave, and was still exclusively breastfeeding my daughter, my department sent me on a recruiting trip. What's great is that they sayid they wanted me to be the one to do it, and that they wanted to give me the option of saying yes or no before making assumptions about who I was going to be post-baby. Also great? They paid for my husband and daughter to accompany me (we stayed with relatives, so cut costs that way) so that I could breastfeed, uninterrupted. Fantastic.

        ReplyDelete
      2. Yes!! Fantastic way to end the year.

        Here's one: To our amazing readers! You've read, thought, shared, and responded! I can't wait to see what we talk about next. Thank you!

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