Lyanna Stark

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About Lyanna Stark

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    My spite was sharp as broken glass
  • Birthday 07/02/1976

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  • Gender Female
  • Location IKEA Empire
  • Interests Just for the record, I would like to crush some rumours and state once and for all: no, I don't drink left over wine in the morning. At that time of day I prefer my alcohol clear.

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  1. Feminism - Distractingly Sexy Edition

    Indeed. While there are trends and lines of thought becoming more and more embraced, (intersectionality, oppositional sexism, discussions of internalised sexism, how women are depicted in digital media, etc) then others are certainly becoming far less popular, like for instance gender essentialism and the TERFs. (Sometimes loud, yes, but my distinct impression is that they are becoming louder because they are gradually becoming irrelevant, or marginalised.)   EDIT: Oh my, I found the source of all the whining yep. Someone has been reading Andrea Dworkin and angry second wave feminist stuff from the 70s and early 80s and are very upset. As we can all tell, women are now ruling the world with an iron fist, killing all men and living the doctrine of the SCUM manifesto and Andrea Dworkin at her most angry, yes indeed. I also like how it was based in truth that an angry administrator at a University once said something dumb and that is somehow proof feminism is Doomed and Wrong, because millions of women must be wrong if someone, somewhere, who claim to be a feminist said something that was dumb, or wrong, or *gasp* angry and vindictive!! I would also be hesitant to take all those quotes at face value, as there are no proper references in the text. Andrea Dworkin published a number of things, for instance. As have McKinnon, Steinem, Friedan, Greer et al of the second waves. As was also pointed out in one of the commentaries, these are all old things. There is also the rebuttal of the "all sex is rape" commentary, which can be useful to read. In general, a lot of books on feminism from the 70s and 80s are very coloured by their time, and the fact that they were written before Judith Butler's works means a lot of them, I think, are far more mired in fallacies of gender essentialism. I have mostly spent time reading Greer, but she has a lot of pretty dubious passages which I find are definitely lodged if not in it, then far too close to gender essentialism for me or most modern feminists, I would imagine. (The fact that she is also a TERF seems to lend credence to this.) Interestingly, Simone de Beauvoir's 1949 "The Second Sex" is far better at not falling into the essentialist trap than many of the 70s feminists.
  2. Feminism - Distractingly Sexy Edition

    Mandy asked me to write something about internalised sexism, but due to work and the board not being cooperative, it never really happened. Lately, we've had a couple of commentaries made by famous feminists and others highlighting why interalised sexism can be so nasty and cause people to say some really strange things, sometimes. First, some background on the functions of being the Second Sex, i.e. of being secondary to men. From de Beauviour, 1949:   Of course, not everything women do are feminist acts. We don't exist in a vacuum and our choices are coloured by our surroundings, our upbringing, our culture etc. In fact, *a lot of stuff* we do is learnt behaviour, stuff we didn't know when we were born (by the way, this is sorta  approaching what academics like Judith Butler is talking about when she is waffling on about "performing gender". We do lots of stuff in our daily lives that reinforces and repeats our gender. In a way, we keep on creating our gender, by our actions and our choices.) Making a conscious choice to stop doing these things carry social consequences. A lot of people who claim they are not feminists, or claim feminism is useless, or that we are already equal fit into the category of seeing themselves as neutrums, as non entities, or as totally without personal bias. Their position is the One and Only True neutral position in the Entire Universe (and everyone who can't see that is Wrong). Everyone has a bias, or a starting position that is not neutral. We all have learnt behaviours we may have to face. As you can tell, these things all fit together like pieces in a puzzle. One leads to the other which leads to the next, which leads back to the beginning.
  3. Masculinity

    What, specifically, in this thread made you lose faith in our species? I cannot tell if it's Wise Fool's posts, mine, or somebody else's.
  4. Masculinity

    First bolded: Femininity or masculinity are both terminology we add meaning to. So the "wrong, stupid ideas about gender" isn't something some people have internalised, they are are a part of our culture and society, deeply ingrained. Our perception of what constitutes masculine qualities is not something you can change overnight, or just shed, like a fur. Second bolded: Saying you are a feminist in itself means comparatively little. I've seen people who are against abortion and who want women who have abortions locked into asylums and tried for murder. While claiming to be feminists. What you say outside of the sentence "I identify as a feminist" matters. It matters a lot. Third bolded: Are you sure that you are right? I would perhaps be less sure unless a large body of academic research was on my side. While it's a nice thing to be principled, it's worth looking at how one communicates those principles, too.  
  5. Urban Fantasy / Paranormal Romance #2

    Yes! I am TeamDeath.   Given my elf hate, that should surprise absolutely nobody.
  6. Masculinity

    How so? Masculinity means you catch Ebola?
  7. U.S. Election - Onward to New Hampshire

    That depends on what perspective you take. Albright is clearly seeing Clinton as important due to representation. Same as a lot of African American people saw Obama as important because representation is powerful. It's not the *only* factor, obviously, but it bears weight. Ergo: for matters of representation, there is an argument that can be made that women should feel encouraged to vote for Clinton, yes. But again, obviously that is not the only thing to take into account when casting one's vote. So the answer to your question "is it not sexist to say women should vote for Sec. Clinton for no reason beyond the fact that she is female?" has a more complex answer than "yes" or "no". I might add that a. I don't get to choose and b. if I got to choose Sanders is far closer to my political identity, yet in this case I feel the issue is being treated in a somewhat simplistic fashion. Clinton is a good, solid choice for white middle-class feminists (which I imagine is where Steinem and Albright would be found), while Sanders has a better fit with intersectional and socialist feminism.
  8. U.S. Election - Onward to New Hampshire

    Hmm, I am not sure it's needed.You have to almost wilfully misunderstand Albright or be a click-bait searching jouirnalist to demand that. I found Steinem's comments far more eyebrow raising, to be honest. Albright is commenting on how women should stick together, which is a good thought. Steinem is accusing young women, and young feminists, of only supporting Sanders because they fawn over men. That is insanely insulting. Albright's commentary I see far more along the line of Tracker and Nestor, while Steinem is just offensive. Not that she's the first second waver to piss of the third wavers either. Germaine Greer has pioneered that particular line of thinking for some time.   EDIT: On the other hand, I saw some third wave feminist say something like "well, I don't care what Steinem says anyway, she was a playboy bunny" and then I just wanted to put my foot down as again, why put other women down with sexism as a response to them putting you down with sexism? Just as bad, imho. Also: bad feminism.   EDIT2: Just as a sidenote, it should surprise nobody that Albright is coming across as an avid support of Clinton since she is speaking at her rallies. Isn't that what she is there for? It's as if people are surprised she is pro-Clinton and thinks she is the best choice for women and for equality. She couldn't really say "Well, I am rather in favour of Clinton, but that other guy is also kinda good, you know." Or, well, she COULD, but it would be a bit misplaced in the current media climate.
  9. Urban Fantasy / Paranormal Romance #2

    Ya, that sorted out Firefox, or mostly does. Chrome is just fkn dead tho. Ah well.   I blame the elves. Sod those vicious bastards!
  10. U.S. Election - Onward to New Hampshire

    Scot, I agree with Tracker's interpretation.   Note here as well that this is the journalist saying "in a dig against the revolution" etc etc. Perhaps it was, perhaps it wasn't. Perhaps it was only Albright trying to highlight that when it comes to representation, electing a woman is truly revolutionary. And in that regard, it is. I think we also need to take into account that someone of Albright's age will have more likely suffered far more sexism and resistance through her career, and given that, the issue of representation, to prove that it is possible for a woman to get elected, is more important than economic politics.  Regarding what she says either, she is not wrong. Tracker's point on how women have an interest, as a group, of supporting other women is an important one. It runs even deeper than representation, too, since one unique woman (the "unique snowflake" woman, see also examples like Margaret Thatcher) can occasionally succeed, but she will be only one, until women as a group learn to support other women. The structures of internalised sexism dictate that the highest honour for a woman is to be counted among the men. I think you can see that there is a certain helping of self loathing involved in that process and it is unhealthy. This is what Albright is after, I think, even if it also comes off as a swing at Sanders. Of course, he would be revolutionary in different ways, just not by the virtue of being a woman.
  11. U.S. Election - Onward to New Hampshire

      I actually feel Albright is getting too much critique about this, since if you read the longer transcript, it's clear it's aimed at promoting a female president as a good thing. The headline is misleading, since she doesn't say there is a special place in hell for women who don't vote for Clinton. Besides, the "there's a special place in hell..." used in conjunction with some sort of construction like "for women who don't support other women" is not uncommon with feminists or in feminist commentary. I cannot say whether Albright knew or didn't know this, but generally the commentary is aimed at women who put other women down to get ahead, or who are Unique Snowflake Women (i.e. the only woman good enough to be counted among the men). At its basic level it is a criticism of internalised sexism.   EDIT: Actually, upon googling it, Albright has used that exact saying before, it seems. And in general, I agree with her on that.
  12. Masculinity

    While defending feminism is a worthwhile goal, it matters how it is done. For instance, Stego has long promoted women to get strong and fit, and nevermind the silly stereotypes that women shouldn't attempt things that makes them physically muscular, something which is traditionally "unfeminine". In that regard, I'd say he is acting in a feminist manner. But it depends what you classify as "feminist" and he may not personally agree with that label. Sidenote, perhaps, but it illustrates that feminism, just as the idea of masculinity, are complex subjects, and sometimes there is no black and white, either/or situation. When it comes to mocking or belittling men with language that implies effeminacy or feminisation, while being common, it relies on the feminine being a net negative. Let me clarify: The purpose of using phrases like "cry like a little girl" or "throw like a girl" or, in your case, use "have a good cry" is to imply that the people engaging in these activities are not masculine. They are effeminate or feminine in their expression and behaviour, and since this is used in a mocking or belittling way, it means the connotations are negative. Julia Serano lays this out really well in "Whipping Girl" where she describes how throw the fear of femininity and effeminacy ties into sexism, and often internalised sexism. In other words: we have a hard time seeing in ourselves when we have per-conceived notions regarding how we view, and above all, how we value different genders. As soon as we use phrases like "that is so gay", or "he throws like a girl" then we've engaged in it. This is the same source which gave us all the jokes about how women can't drive, about stupid blondes, about how pretty women are always dumb, etc. It puts a value on femininity, and that value is always lower than on masculinity, such as it is represented in our culture.*** This is nothing to be particularly ashamed or saddened about, since it's common, and most feminists have probably engaged in it as well, before realising what they were doing. However, for the second time this week, allow me to paraphrase Audre Lorde: The Master's tools cannot be used to dismantle the Master's house. If we wish to seriously fight against sexism and make our society more free of it, then we cannot utilise sexist language to put others down, nor can we defend a feminist cause while being unaware of our internalised devaluing of femininity. This is not playing the victim card either, it's pointing out inconsistency. It might cheer you up too that in this, you are not alone. Famous feminists like Gloria Steinem recently got caught using some pretty unpleasant sexist language to put people she disagreed with in place. *** and this sort of puts us back at the beginning, with the narrow definition of masculinity, and why it is perilous to fall outside the accepted model of masculinity. Outside it lurks femininity and effeminacy, and according to sexist norms, that is something to be feared. (And really, read Serano. She's clear, concise and a biologist.)     EDIT: grammar  
  13. Urban Fantasy / Paranormal Romance #2

    Please, please let her dump Falin 4 evah. #elfhate  I might pick this one up since they were nice enough urbans for a quick read. I quite liked her family issues as well as I am a sucker for good ole family drama. Bring on the complications of blood relations!   Mandy, I meant to reply to you about the internalised sexism thing, but the board is so borked I can't post from my phone or from home, and only with great difficulty from work via Firefox, which sometimes works. So I have to email myself replies and post during lunch break and stuff. Sucks.
  14. Fantasy lit that passes the Bechdel test?

    Hah well, this topic got derailed quickly. To the OP: If you are interested in novels with a female or even feminist perspective, then citing "Outlander" as a good example of what you are looking for is potentially very troublesome since it promotes non-consensual sex, normally known as "rape". Unfortunately. As for recommendations, Bujold's "Paladin of Souls" is excellent, passes the Bechdel test and has a female protagonist, plus interesting female minor characters. Her "Curse of Chalion" in the same universe is also amazing, but due to having a male protagonist, I am unsure if it passes the Bechdel test specifically. It does however deal with issues of female primogeniture, of women trying to grasp their own destiny, and the male lead is very non-traditional and overall doesn't fit the mold of how fantasy heroes are normally portrayed. In general, a lot of Bujold's male heroes are emasculated in some ways or other, including Lupe in "Curse". Yes, Abraham is always very good. Despite the Long Price Quartet having mostly male protagonists, it manages to have something as unusual as a female anti-hero who doesn't get to be punished by death. That alone is astonishing.
  15. Masculinity

    Which brings us to the Wang of Mighty Lovin, doesn't it? The myth of the ever super-sexual man and the Magical Capabilities contained in the purple love spear etc. Culturally, this really does exist tho, since we see that anyone who's brave "got balls", and people boasting of who's the better person online is comparing "e-peen". What is more fascinating is how people miss that this is happening, all the time! Bravery and accomplishment are, in fact, a penis in Western Society. And with that, we are back full circle at "what is masculinity". Kinda.