Friday Feminist – Cat Power aka Chan Marshall

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I first started listening to Cat Power in high school over 10 years ago.  I was drawn in instantly by the wisdom in her voice and lyrics.  On her most recent album Sun, I heard her song “Human Being” and got to wondering about whether she was a feminist as I heard lyrics proclaiming rights of voice, autonomy and living. The song had wonderful overtones of self-worth and potential (The quote above is from the song).

One of the reasons she’s my Friday feminist shout out is that she was the first woman to win the Short List Music Prize in 2006 for her album The Greatest. (Wikipedia)

Fortunately, Cat Power aka Chan Marshall is comfortable with associating herself with the feminist label as she states,

“A lot of times women don’t have the simple, casual dignities that men have as their birthright.” (Cat Power Opens Up)

“I’m called a feminist because I protect myself from someone else trying to get something from me.” (Cat Power Opens Up)

She lived her feminism out by producing her album Sun independently without her label directing and influencing her music. She bravely used her own life savings to produce the album in order to not have labels and producers messing with her message, voice and music.

Bacon Bourbon Chex Mix – Tuesday Tasting

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Tried out a recipe for bacon bourbon Chex mix tonight. It was amazing!

Also, it was almost idiot proof and super easy. I used maple syrup instead of corn syrup, maple bacon, and pecan pie pecans. It was a hit with my husband and I’m going to make it again for my friends bachelorette dirty derby party. The theme of the party is the Kentucky Derby!

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When did Christian feminists have to decide whether they’re conservative or liberal?

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Christian feminism is already a harrowing lonely narrow niche to be in, but lately I’ve seen more divisions requested of them. This need to be divided among the conservative Christian feminists and the liberal Christian feminists is frustrating and pits groups against one another. I’ve seen for the first time, conservative christian feminists attacking liberal christian feminists and I can only describe it as a side show to a circus. When did God have to pick a political party? Why are we so certain that only certain causes can matter and there’s no room for other causes?

Causes are like love in that they are not finite but exponential. Caring builds off of more caring not cutting people off and saying you can only care about these set causes.

To say I’m frustrated is an understatement. I understand people are passionate about their political agendas, but to cut other people off from the genuine revelations that are characteristic of Christian feminism just because of their political party is petty at the least, and at the worst, another way of barring someone from their own choices regarding their own relationship with God.

What I’m hearing is that you can’t be a Christian feminist if you don’t hate Obama and terrorism. Or you can’t be a Christian feminist and be pro birth control. All I have to say is, I’m tired and offended at being excluded from a label I previously found so comforting. Do we need different labels for conservative Christian feminists and liberal Christian feminists? I say no, since we’re already existing in such small numbers. To divide the already small fraction, doesn’t sound helpful. I just wish that Christian feminism did not have to be divided and could consent to the fact that causes are exponential and one cause doesn’t always take precedent over the other. Love and caring are exponential, cutting people out of groups is not. Then we’re left powerless and voiceless.

This Insults Women – Sexist Advertisements and Street Activism

This Insults Women, Feminist Sticker Pack 6pc

https://www.etsy.com/listing/192176721/this-insults-women-feminist-sticker-pack?ref=sr_gallery_2&ga_search_query=THis+insults+women&ga_search_type=all&ga_view_type=gallery

I found this little nugget yesterday on Etsy and I am so glad someone has thought of this!  I get upset or annoyed so often by sexist advertisements or abusive elements in media.  Now I have cool fun stickers so I can send feedback out into the world instead of keeping it bottled up which will probably be good for my health.  I will try to document my usage of them and keep you posted.

The creator Kelly Elizabeth says “Have you ever encountered a piece of sexist advertising or imagery in your travels and wished you the means to call it out for what it is? Now you can! Keep this pack handy and at the ready for a little street activism whenever the need arises.”

https://www.etsy.com/shop/CandyPunkCo?ref=l2-shopheader-name

Friday

Benevolent Sexism in the 1800’s – Heathen Slaves and Christian Rulers

Heathen Slaves and Christian Rulers

As good as God’s Word to Women was by Katherine Bushnell,  I was pleased to find an online copy of the creative and ironically titled Heathen Slaves and Christian Rulers written in 1907 by Katherine Bushnell and Elizabeth Wheeler Andrew on http://www.godswordtowomen.org/Heathen_Slaves_and_Christian_Rulers.pdf . I just finished chapter one which introduces the British men coming to Singapore and Hong Kong in the 1800’s and how it progressed to such a state of brothels and the sexual commodification of local women. The chapter ends with a glorious classical narrative on benevolent sexism and the infamous problematic word “protector”.  On page 12, Andrew and Bushnell write:

What charm this word ‘protection,’and the title ‘Protector’ has held for certain persons, as applied to the male sex! ‘Man, the natural protector of woman.’ Forsooth, to protect her from what? Rattlesnakes, buffalo, lions, wildcats no more overrun the country, and why is this relation of ‘protector’ still claimed? Why, to protect woman from rudeness, and insult and sometimes even worse. But from whence comes that danger of rudeness and insult or worse from which man is to protect woman? From man, of course. Man is, then, woman’s natural protector to protect her from man, her natural protector. He is to set himself the task of defending her from his injury of her, and he is charmed with the avocation. He will protect her as Abraham protected Sarah when he took her into Egypt. ‘Do so-and-so,’ said Abraham to Sarah, ‘that it may be well with me,–for thy sake.’ The history of the Chinese slave woman as she came in contact with the foreigner at Hong Kong and at Singapore proceeds all along a pathway labelled ‘protection,’ down to the last ditch of human degradation. ‘Well with me,’ was the motive in the mind of the ‘protector.’ ‘For thy sake,’ the argument for the thing as put before the woman and before the world.”

Bushnell was a beacon well before her time. She leaves me speechless sometimes. To paraphrase it bluntly and much less eloquently, societies need to wake up and see how this word “protector” so often devolves into pimps protecting whores.  Some kind of magical protection rhetoric can sneakily lead a culture down the pathway to accepting of “protectors” making decisions that do little to protect the souls, voices and worth of women.  To truly “protect” women there must be a firmly established precedent of equality guarding against a privileged class disguising their own interests as “protection” while in turn harming or devaluing said protected party. Cut through the bullshit and you’ll see often times, “protectors”, “decisions makers”, “job providers” can become misleading rhetoric to disguise systems of privilege to further promote themselves while degrading others all under the self-deluded guise of benevolence.  

What do you think is worse, benevolent or overt sexism?  I know benevolent sexism/racism gets much deeper under my skin.  Intuition is one of the most effective tools we have in identifying and correcting some of the harmful insidious impacts of benevolent sexism.   What can you do to exercise and expand your intuition? Imagination, daydreaming, improvisation, journaling, dreaming/sleeping, reading, trusting your instincts more, letting your instincts talk and connect ideas, foster all the connections in your head that seem unconnected but really are, open your mind, imagine a better world. When things feel like they are imposing or insulting your imagination of a better world try to speak up and explain why because it is important. Give your intuition a voice and let the outside criticisms of going against the grain of culture roll off your back as sweet victory beacons announcing that your intuition is no longer hidden and buried but prized and thriving.

P.S. I did just watch The Invisible War on Netflix which is about the hidden and unprosecuted rape and sexual assault occurring in America’s military ranks. I highly recommend it. This is another perfect example of the “defender” and “protector” ideologies being turned on their head to show a susceptible to corruption power play war.

Santigold – Friday Feminist – Modern Feminism and Prized Intuition

20140715-004903-2943872.jpgSantigold Interview

Another one of my favorite musicians is Santigold. She’s fearless, creative and independent like M.I.A. but also very melodic. If you look at the interview I linked she explains her thoughts on how our imagination connects with our intuition and how much our intuition can help us in life. She also explains how little we value intuition as a society. One of the characteristics I have seen and like to see in modern feminism is how much it’s driven and articulated by powerful calculated intuition. My hope is that with the use of intuition and cultivating the capacity of imagining a better world we can start to make further progress in gender as well as all forms of discrimination. One of the best things about Santigold is her intersectionality as she studied African-American studies and develops deep commentary on inequality. Also, if you’ve ever heard Santigold’s “I’m a lady” I think you’d agree she has strong feminist undertones:

“I like to watch the way the wind blows
What does it know that I don’t yet?
Oh oh, look so pretty now, you’re just so sweet
But see how far you can get
See just how far you can get
She’s so fine

And I like sometimes to wave it high
Up where everyone can see
I’m a lady
Got my mind made up”

http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/santigold/imalady.html