*This talk has its loose origins in my doctoral thesis “Social Construction of a Bad Woman” from 2014 and has been presented at the conference “Engendering Difference: Sexism, Power and Politics“, that took place on 12-13 May 2017 in Maribor at the Faculty of Fine Arts, University of Maribor, Slovenia.*
Social media allows us to self-create a better version of ourselves, an ideal/ized life, much bigger and glossier than the “real” experience, but to achieve this level of perfection or seamlessness, it needs to be tailored into an almost a fantasy-like living, where there are no mistakes, no (self)doubts and no failures.
“Men are afraid that women will laugh at them, women are afraid that men will kill them”. – Margaret Atwood
Zgornji citat povzame kulturno klimo, ki smo ji osebe ženskega* spola izpostavljene celo življenje, saj je – statistično gledano – intimno-partnerski umor (IPU v nadaljevanju) najpogostejši razlog za nasilno žensko smrt po svetu. Prizadene ženske vseh starosti, razredov in etničnosti/rase in v Sloveniji, kjer so umori redki, je najpogostejši način pokončanja žensk. Če bo ženska v Sloveniji umorjena, jo bo najverjetneje umoril zdajšnji ali bivši partner, saj je najnevarnejši prostor za žensko prav dom.
Sodobna mitologija o materinstvu zajema tri temeljna načela: (1) vse ženske so bodoče matere, (2) ne-matere so nesrečne in nezadovlj(e)ne in (3) otroci so na prvem mestu. Ko se ženska odloči iz bioloških ali družbenih razlogov, da ne bo mati (tj. ‘postane ne-mati’), tako odločitev žensk – kljub postmoderni metodi o izogibanju konfliktov – nenehno spremlja nehoteno ali celo dobrohotno ideološko vsiljevanje t.i. ‘materinskega mandata‘. Materinski mandat prepričuje žensko, da je materinstvo nujna življenjska izkušnja, ki predvideva, da je ženska ‘naravno’ voljna, da prevzame bodoče materinske obveznosti kljub temu, da mora prekiniti svoj utečeni potek življenja.
Stranger shaming is an act of (secretly) taking pictures of strangers in public spaces and posting them to social media sites later. They are taken without permission of people being photographed to document their activity or appearance which is neither illegal, nor offensive but to the photographer, they seem socially inappropriate, morally wrong or just a way to mock someone publicly. Strangers do something that the photographer – who feels superior to them or their behaviour – disapproves of.
The ‘F-rating’ system, invented by Holly Tarquini, Bath Film Festival director in 2014, gives “F” (or feminist) rates to films that are directed, written or feature women as main characters with their own narrative. It’s been also adopted by IMDb.
To be awarded with one, two or three F’s a film must be: (1) directed by a woman, (2) written by a woman and/or (3) have significant women on screen in their own right. So, when a film is directed, written and has a woman’s narrative as a central premise, it gets 3F. Getting 2F rates means that a film is either directed and written by a woman, or written by a woman about a woman’s story, or a woman is directing a woman’s story. A film gets 1F, if it’s directed or written or revolves around a woman’s narrative. For other films, zero F—s.
In gymnastics, a somersault is a 360° flip in the air or – when done on the ground – a roll. The starting position resembles the final; however, because of the distance made from the point A to the point B finish is never start. Or to paraphrase Heraclius: “No woman ever steps on the same ground twice, for it’s not the same ground and she’s not the same woman.” In Somersault (2004), a film written and directed by an Australian filmmaker Cate Shortland, the teenage protagonist Heidi does a geographic somersault – she runs away from home after fallout with her mother but eventually returns. Yet it’s not her escape that I’m interested in, but the unconventional use of the one woman’s touch as an essential tool to perceive and bond with the world.
Ivanka in Melanija postajata bolj in bolj prepoznavni širšemu svetu, saj poosebljata žensko inačico ameriških sanj o uspehu – ena je ameriškega predsednika hči, druga njega žena. Obe sta polni privilegijev, ki omogočajo dobro življenje: belopolti, na vrhu socioekonomske hierarhije, heteroseksualni in dovolj religiozni. A za tradicionalno volilno telo je najpomembneje to, da zadovoljujeta estetske standarde popularne ženskosti, ker sta grajeni kot manekenki, brezhibno urejeni in ultra feminilni. Kljub tem skupnim imenovalcem pa predstavljata nasprotujoči si podobi sodobne ameriške ženskosti, ki delujeta kot da ne razumeta v celoti druga druge in ne drugi njiju.
The dominant definition via Urban Dictionary, an Internet platform that creates many cultural stereotypes and debunks them at the same time, describes crazy cat lady as “an elderly suburban widow who lives alone and keeps dozens or more pet cats, usually many more than municipal code allows, in a small house, and refuses to give away or sell them even for the sake of the safety of the cats or herself”, “a woman, usually middle-aged or older, who lives alone with no husband or boyfriend, and fills the empty lonely void in her life with as many cats as she can collect in one place. Said homes are usually very stinky and the aforementioned woman may also very likely be white trash”, “a woman who loves her cats more than people”, “that old lady that lives down the street from you that has over a dozen cats named after each of her ex-boyfriends that have done her wrong”.
*This is a guest post by Petra Anders, Ph.D.*
Michael Akers’ drama Morgan (2012) deals with a young man named Morgan who used to be an enthusiastic cyclist. He had won a lot of medals and awards but after having had a severe accident Morgan sees himself confronted with paraplegia. His mother, his friend Lane and Dean, his new love(r), become important people on his way back to everyday life.