“A man could, feasibly, sacrifice his coffee break raping a woman. That woman would then spend her entire life dealing with it. So would her daughters. So would theirs. This distribution of power is not acceptable.” -- Inga Muscio, Cunt: A Declaration of Independence I think about my mother’s mother. First married at 18 to … Continue reading How Many Generations Does It Take to Escape Abuse?
In Kathleen McHugh and Lisa Duggan’s 1996 Femme-inist Manifesto, they wrote: “Fem(me) science questions the dignity and wisdom of anyone who would wear pink without irony, or a floral print without murderous or seditious designs.” Of course, some of us unironically wear pink and/or floral — an arguably “soft” aesthetic. Does this mean we are … Continue reading Is Softness a Critical (per)Form(ance) of Femininity?
Sometimes when I talk about softness, emotions, earnestness, and vulnerability I’m talking about them as a reaction to what I see as the privileging of hardness, irony, and lack of emotion. Softness is part of femme for me, so sometimes I talk about soft femme in relation to hard femme. I have been asked if … Continue reading The Future is Soft: On Soft Femme, Hard Femme, and Femme Theory
When I talk about softness I’m talking about vulnerability, openness, and flexibility. I mean soft like breathable fabric in summer. I mean soft like ripples on the lake. I mean noticing your reaction, how you feel. I mean acknowledging emotions. I mean admitting when you are hurt and that things hurt you. I mean using … Continue reading What I Mean When I Talk About Softness
"Tonight we’re going to a party, and by ‘we’ I mean everyone. I know because I’ve been tracking the Facebook guest list. And maybe a few individual profiles. It’s going to be fun, I silently assure myself that night, when I’m back in front of the mirror applying my make-up. I wonder what boring hipster … Continue reading Broken Pencil Death Match: Louisa
**The following is a longer version of a femme flagging article I wrote for Shameless magazine. Check out the Shameless version, "Flag 'Em Down" (and another story of mine!) in the Alternative Beauty issue, Winter 2015.** Through history, queer folks have had come up with creative ways to communicate their desires. In the 1970s, gay … Continue reading Colour Coding: Creating Queer Bonds with Nail Art
I remember walking through the mall with my dad (age 55) and he made some comment to me about a girl in short shorts. The girl must have been about 17 and yet my dad saw no problem with his leering at her legs (and making a sexual comment about them to me, his daughter … Continue reading Disposable Women: Some Thoughts on Bowie, My Dad, and Sexualizing Young Girls