The findings of an art history student with a love of art, feminism, equality, opera, music in general, religion, mythology, sociology, medieval manuscripts, books, the body, and human love of all sorts.
[F]or the first several years the SAT was offered, males scored higher than females on the Math section but females achieved higher scores on the Verbal section. ETS policy-makers determined that the Verbal test needed to be “balanced” more in favor of males, and added questions pertaining to politics, business and sports to the Verbal portion. Since that time, males have outscored females on both the Math and Verbal sections. Dwyer notes that no similar effort has been made to “balance” the Math section, and concludes that, “It could be done, but it has not been, and I believe that probably an unconscious form of sexism underlies this pattern. When females show the superior performance, ‘balancing’ is required; when males show the superior performance, no adjustments are necessary.”
“Gender Bias in College Admissions Tests”, FairTest.org
And then people urge me everything is fine, of course it is, when you’re ignoring statistics that is.
This makes me all kinds of angry.
According to their research, pickup artist techniques are strongly linked to “men who have negative attitudes toward women and believe women are a threat to male dominance,” guys who get off on “putting women in their place.” As it turns out, women who respond positively to these attitudes tend to hate women, too. “Women who have negative attitudes about members of their own gender find men who treat them in a dominant way during courtship more desirable because it is consistent with their sexist ideology,” Hall and Canterberry found. Apparently both “men and women who believe women can be isolated and teased into sex have a low regard for women in general.”
“I’m not like those girls. I’m cool. Fuck feminism! Now where are my birth control pills?”
Portrait de Charles de Rochefort, Sonia Delaunay-Terk (Jewish-French), 1908, oil on canvas 61 x 49.5 cm, private collection
So back in the day, the day being almost all of remembered Western history, the language of art criticism simply disqualified women from being at the fore in artistic innovation. In the early 20th century, one must have been able to channel a savage, instinctual creative force with intellectual profundity to create avant-garde art. Women were considered delicate creatures, and incapable of the necessary depth of thought to make great art (and in some ways too wild to actually make art), so while Fauvism as a movement was making great strides in upturning the visual language, women were only allowed to be associated with the movement, at most fauvettes (as poet Guillaume Appolinaire once called painter Marie Laurencin- it’s a type of song bird). To Émilie Charmy, one critic gave this backhanded praise: “[she] sees like a woman and paints like a man”.
Despite the fact that early 20th century art discourse denigrated or at best ignored the accomplishments and skill of women (can’t say we’re doing too much better today, to be honest), the idea that they weren’t at the fore, kicking ass and taking names, is utter bullshit. Take for instance this work by the young Sonia Delaunay-Terk. “Aw, that’s just a knock off of Matisse or Gauguin” you might say, but look how flattened the pictorial space is- M. de Rochefort blends almost seamlessly with the decorative background- and notice the harmony of color and the rhythm of the interlocking floral design. At this point Sonia has been painting in this way for about a year- Matisse is just starting to produce works with so much attention to the harmonious composition of color and form (though the linked work is formally even more progressive). The expressiveness of de Rochefort’s angular face, emphasized by his triangle of collar and cravate standing out against the dark background, too is progressive, anticipating later work by members of Die Brücke and Der Blaue Reiter. Three years later, this bamf of a woman would go on to co-found Orphic Cubism, a strain of cubism much more abstracted and colorful than most of the other varieties (certainly more so than that of Braque and Picasso), and would continue to make art in a variety of media up until her death in 1979.
Feminist Frequency has started a miniseries for Bitch Magazine about sexist tropes in film. This is obviously awesome! Here’s the first one.
Always be prepared to demonstrate sexual interest in women that you meet, so it is impossible for any woman to get the wrong idea about you. In this sense, homophobia, the fear of being perceived as gay, as not a real man, keeps men exaggerating all the traditional rules of masculinity, including sexual predation with women. Homophobia and sexism go hand in hand.
Michael S. Kimmel, Masculinity as Homophobia (via dr-clear-heels)
My best friend and I were definitely talking about this recently, regarding a few of our friends…
Glee, GQ and sexualized images of young people.