The Shouty Woman

February 22, 2007


Filed under: Feminism — by Lucy @ 5:11 pm

Now this is the best news I’ve heard in a long while. About bloody time too.


February 15, 2007

Talking Foetuses

Filed under: Feminism — by Lucy @ 10:59 pm

Below is the text of a letter I have just sent to Channel 4 to complain about this programme

“Dear Sir/ Madam,

I am writing to complain about the programme ‘Miracles In The Womb’, which was shown tonight (15th Feb) on Channel 4. While the footage used in the programme was fascinating, the voice-over was misleading in its descriptions of the foetuses as ‘fighting’, ‘kissing’ and ‘playing’ with each other. Foetuses at the stage of development shown do not have the mental capacity knowingly to interact in these ways, and the programme did not make this clear.

The sentimentalisation of the gestation process was made worse by the appalling poetry, which seemed to imply that foetuses have thoughts, feelings and personalities, and resembled the propaganda put out by the ‘pro-life’ movement. Although it was not intended to be entirely serious, the portrayal of unborn babies as fully conscious, thinking beings simply gives ammunition to those who want to restrict women’s right to abortion. How many women facing the difficult decision to terminate a pregnancy will have been confused and distressed by this programme?

The gestation and birth of babies is fascinating enough without the addition of this disingenuous and misleading rubbish.

Yours faithfully…”

What could have been a fascinating piece of television ( it followed the conception and gestation of multiple pregnancies) was ruined by the portrayal of foetuses as miniature people, complete with behaviour such as fighting and kissing. At no point did the voiceover explain that you can’t kiss without feeling affection, and that a foetus of five months’ gestation is not capable of emotions. Even worse was the ‘poetry’ – as a poetry lover, I hesitate to use the term – depicting the foetuses as having actual personalities. It was disturbingly reminiscent of those pro-life propaganda pieces written from the point of view of an unborn ‘baby’.

Channel 4 likes to portray itself as progressive and liberal, so I don’t know what it was thinking when it commissioned this crap. I await their response with interest.


Filed under: Random — by Lucy @ 3:14 pm

Foetus Pictures Case Plea Fails.

Anyone Know…

Filed under: Feminism — by Lucy @ 10:22 am

what’s happened to Gendergeek? They haven’t updated the site since June, and now it seems to have disappeared.

February 14, 2007


Filed under: Feminism — by Lucy @ 12:04 pm

This is not a good time to be a feminist in the UK (mind you, when is it ever?). Two stories in particular are causing my current pessimism:

Rape is trivialised for entertainment purposes in this BBC ‘reality’ TV show

The owners of Harley Street in London has banned abortion clinics from its premises

It just never stops.

Witchy and Johann Hari both watched ‘The Verdict’ so I didn’t have to, and their accounts confirm what I suspected. The ‘celebrities’ involved (as a jury on a fictional rape case) display all the ignorance and prejudice of the general public on this topic.  They questioned the victim’s behaviour, claimed she was ‘asking for it’, and bought wholesale the stereotype of the rapist as evil stranger (‘but they seem such nice boys!’ whined Patsy Palmer. Yes, because all rapists are ugly, mouth-breathing men who lurk in alleyways).

I don’t know what the BBC were trying to achieve with this programme, but they’ve clearly failed spectacularly. Rape trials are a joke anyway – why not just broadcast a real one for the entertainment of the masses?

As for the abortion story, it just makes me weary, to be honest:

Clinics offering abortions and cosmetic surgery have been banned from opening in the UK’s most famous medical district. The move has been made by Howard de Walden Estate, which owns many of the properties in London’s Harley Street. Officials said they were trying to move away from “lifestyle procedures” to become a centre of medical excellence”

I’m sick of the pro-forced-birth movement clawing to gain the moral high ground. How dare they dismiss abortion as a ‘lifestyle procedure’ along with cosmetic surgery? Do they honestly think women have abortions on a whim, the way they might decide to try botox? Do they have any idea how offensive that is?

Why do we have to keep having the same arguments again and again? Once more with feeling: your religion does not give you the right to impose your morals on me or anyone else. Believe whatever wacky thing you want – sky daddy, virgin birth, infallible pope, whatthefuckever – but don’t think for a minute that your beliefs make you morally superior.

So, I’m not feeling too positive about UK women’s rights just now. There’s better news in Portugal though, where the government has just pledged to legalise abortion in the first 10 weeks of pregnancy. At least Portugese feminists have something to celebrate.

EDIT: I was angry when I wrote this. I feel I should clarify that I don’t include all religious people in my rant above – I realise that plenty of them are not out to impose their morals on other people. Hope that’s clear.

February 2, 2007

Sitemeter Weirdness

Filed under: Random — by Lucy @ 9:16 pm

Someone got here using the term ‘vaginal rejuvenation laser post-op’. What in the name of arse is a ‘vaginal rejuvenation laser’? No, actually I don’t want to know.

In other worrying news, it’s 9pm on a Friday evening and I’m currently watching American Idol while wearing pyjamas and fluffy slippers. I have no life.

February 1, 2007

Give Me Strength

Filed under: Feminism — by Lucy @ 2:02 pm

Kelis has been interviewed in the Guardian. One of the questions: Do you consider yourself a feminist?

 “KELIS: No… There’s a really negative connotation with the word feminist. I have no penis envy. I love being a woman, I love women. I think we are special and spectacular in so many different ways, but the connotation behind feminism is generally that we hate men; you know, we don’t shave our legs. But if the word feminist just means a female who is comfortable in her own skin and doesn’t apologise for it, then yes. I don’t apologise for being a woman or being who I am.”

Remind me to delete her album from my iPod. Oh, and get myself a penis, seeing as I’m apparently so envious of those who have them…

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