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gender equality

  1. Sympathetic Characters: Gender Bias, Villains, & Orphan Black


    [Editor's Note: There are no spoilers for BBC America's Orphan Black in this post, some adult language, and lots of good points.] Recently, my husband and I burned through S1 of Orphan Black, which, as promised by virtually the entire internet, was awesome. But in all the praise I’d seen for it, a line from one review in particular stuck in my mind. The reviewer noted that, although the protagonist, Sarah, is an unlikeable character, her grifter skills make her perfectly suited to unravelling the mystery in which she finds herself. And as this was a positive review, I kept that quote in mind when we started watching, sort of by way of prewarning myself: you maybe won’t like Sarah, but that’s OK. But here’s the thing: I fucking loved Sarah. I mean, I get what the reviewer was trying to say, in that she’s not always a sympathetic character, but that’s not the same as her actually being unlikeable. And the more I watched, the more I found myself thinking: why is this quality, the idea of likeability, considered so important for women, but so optional for men – not just in real life, but in narrative?

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  2. New Class of NASA Astronauts is 50% Women for the First Time Ever

    We're all for more women in space, because more people should go into space in general, but also because gender equality is nice.

    Great news for gender and race equality! The new class of NASA astronauts is 50% female for the first time in history. The class of eight astronauts are an equal mix of men and women, but is also made up of a variety of racial backgrounds making it the most diverse astronaut class in history. Let's take a look at the new astronauts.

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  3. Nadia Diaz Strikes Out 19 Boys In Six-Inning Little League Championship Game

    Girls Just Wanna Have Fun

    Playing sports is a very gendered experience. After all, teams are often single-gender, and sometimes the game itself is modified depending on who's playing. Softball, with its bigger ball and overhand throw, is culturally regulated to girls, even though it started as an all men's sport, while games like baseball and football are thought of as the realm of men and boys. For 11-year-old Nadia Diaz, however, softball just isn't for her: it's "too girly" and frankly, she can hold her own on the baseball field. Where else could she find an opportunity to strike 19 boys out while pitching a Little League championship-winning game?

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  4. And Then There Was One: Facebook Appoints Sheryl Sandberg to Its Executive Board

    Mutatis Mutandis

    Following months, perhaps years, of complaints about how the "highest-ups" at Facebook are all men, Sheryl Sandberg, the company's COO since 2008, has finally become the first woman appointed to the board of directors. It won't be the first board she's been on, but it's probably fair to say that it's about darn time Facebook made this change. We'll go ahead and say it: The Mary Sue "likes" this.

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  5. Military Women and Men Share Bathrooms In Submarine, World Doesn’t End

    Today in Awesome

    Even after making considerable gains in gender equality by opening up military positions to women, the U.S. Navy had long kept nuclear submarine posts as men-only, citing difficulties creating comfortable living spaces for both genders in such cramped quarters. However, the ban on women serving in submarines has since been overturned, and now the Navy's first women nuclear submariners have gone on patrol and are doing just fine.

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  6. Tonks Chooses Interesting Language To Discuss Female Vs. Male Nudity On Game Of Thrones

    The Boob Tube

    I understand the job of an actor is to dive into each role wholeheartedly and bring the character to life but there are times when an individual you've come to know in one sense takes on a role on the opposite side of the spectrum. For instance, Natalia Tena. She's done a lot of work in her time but my first time seeing her was in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix playing Nymphadora Tonks. The next role I saw her in? As the wildling Osha in HBO's Game of Thrones. She does a fantastic job on GoT but she's had to do a few things that made me never be able to look at Tonks the same way again. Without getting too specific before the jump, the actress doesn't have a problem doing what the role calls for, she just wishes male actors had to do the same more often. [Warning: coarse language about the human body.] 

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  7. Meryl Streep, You Raise a Valid Question: “Doesn’t Hollywood Want Women’s Money?”

    Today In Obvious

    As we know, there is a dearth of women working behind the scenes in Hollywood, even if we have seen a slight improvement since the 1990s. But when I say "improvement," don't get too excited. Using the numbers from the LA Times, women working high-level jobs in non-acting jobs in film -- directors, producers, etc. -- accounted for 18 percent of the whole lot, up from 17 percent 14 years ago. "Improvement" over the course of 14 years amounts to one percent. In politics, that's within the margin of error, so it might not even be that accurate. This means less movies that are geared directly to women. And now, one of the women who usually appears in front of the camera, Meryl Streep, is using all that attention we pay to her to ask a very important question: "Why? Why? Why? Don't they want the money?"

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  8. Ladies, Let’s Talk About What a Sexy Woman That Stephen Colbert Is

    If we got angry about this kind of thing we'd be angry all the time

    After winning a massive write-in campaign, Stephen Colbert has found himself on Maxim's "Definitive List of the World's Most Beautiful Women," the Hot 100. You might be asking yourself why Colbert, who is part of the male species, and, therefore, not a woman, is being listed on such a list. Well, you have to ask yourself something else: When you look at Stephen Colbert, is his gender all you see? Is your mind that closed?

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  9. Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg Says Women Would Benefit From Marrying Other Women

    A Series of Fallopian Tubes

    Feel free to put this down in the column of things you don't normally hear every day. Facebook's chief operating officer, Sheryl Sandberg, recently stated in an interview that women would probably be better off if they married other women instead of men. Read on for her thought process and her advice for female geeks. 

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  10. Study Shows Big Disparity Between Genders When It Comes to Public Transportation

    i'll just leave this here

    A study by Stanford University has shown that in 15 European countries, women depend on public transportation much more than men do, and it might have something to do with the kinds of jobs they have. Specifically, women with careers in the "care industry" (which depends more on public transportation in general) are more likely to use public transportation than their male counterparts as well as men in other lines of work. Over here in the U.S., women with children under the age of five also use public transportation more than men do. So, what exactly does it mean, then, when cuts are made to public transportation? Is this a new issue for gender equality?

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