The Radical Notion

Encouraging women to leave their husbands, kill their children, practice witchcraft, destroy capitalism, and become lesbians

Facebook and Gender May 14, 2010

Filed under: Meta,Pop Culture,Uncategorized — theradicalnotion @ 10:56 am
Tags: , ,

So criticizing Facebook, especially its latest iteration,  is kind of like . But I couldn’t help but laugh when I saw their latest bit of WTF?!

The first block is covering a completely unambiguous "lady name", btw.I delisted my gender a while back, just to mess with them (same reason I delisted my sexual orientation; if it’s something you have a right to care about, you probably already know). Facebook was not so much of a fan of the non-gendered TRN, but eventually they stopped begging and shut up. Now most of my profile page is a sea of the third-person plural (“TRN waggled their scurvy tongue ’bout Alexander Hamilton’s recent tales”) or just sentences structured in a way that doesn’t require a pronoun at all, but apparently Facebook (or at least the Pirate English version) is unable to cope with all my activities in a gender-neutral manner. (more…)

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The Social Construction of Femininity March 24, 2009

I’ve been super-busy this semester, and so haven’t blogged in a while. I’m going to try to rectify this by writing several posts that have been kind of mulling around in my head for a while. So – onward!

I’ve thought a lot recently about the relative importance placed on the physical appearances of men and women. And this post isn’t about the male gaze, or the fact that women’s physical appearance is deemed much more important and “relevant” in whatever social context they happen to be in – at least, it’s not only about that. I think it’s impossible to fully extricate oneself from these interconnected positive feedback loops of social mores, but I’m going to try and discuss a separate but related issue: the artificiality of a woman’s expected appearance.

Hopefully this isn’t too TMI (it wouldn’t be in a patriarchy-free world, but I digress), but as I go to a women’s college and rarely wear clothes that don’t cover my entire lower half, I sometimes go for a very long time without shaving my legs. This really shouldn’t be a big deal – but it is. It really is. Regardless of the fact that this blog is (somewhat) anonymous, it took me a minute to get up the courage to type that. What if one of my not-very-close friends reads that, and then they know? What if somebody stumbles on this blog from a random Google search, realizes that I’m the author, and then they know? What if I become suddenly inundated with antifeminist trolls, who are already far too eager to accuse one of being a “hairy-legged feminazi”? Or worst of all – what if somebody I’m interested in dating finds or is told about this blog, and reads this post? (more…)