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Posts Tagged ‘sex’

The newest line of attack in abstinence education is…sex! Check out this tank top.Where to even begin? Well, as the blog Sociological Images points out, there are no male versions–the “you” is always male and the female is always the one responsible for control. And of course, there’s no mention of birth control as an option. But really there are two intertwined points about this really caught my attention–today, everything is for sale and sex is the default method of selling everything.

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In a completely unrelated forum, a poster posed the question “Can an opinion ever be wrong?” arguing that opinions are personal beliefs rather than facts. Well, I think the “opinion” piece in the Wall Street Journal by Robert P. George (thanks to Dana Rudolph of Mombian for sending us the link), titled, “Gay Marriage, Democracy, and the Courts” is the definitive demonstration that yes, an opinion can be wrong. Very, very very very very very very very very very very very wrong.

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I wasn’t going to post any more on marriage and love, at least for a while, but then I saw this Newsweek article on polyamory. Polyamory (many loves) is a type of open relationship–the article defines it as “loving, intimate relationships with more than one person.” And if I can quote Wikipedia without having my PhD revoked, polyamory also involves “the full knowledge and free consent of everyone involved.” I found this and other articles interesting for several reasons. First, without deliberately doing so, they seemed to answer all the issues raised by the “traditional marriage is dooooomed!” articles I’ve seen recently. Second are the comments left by readers, and the gender anxieties they reveal.  Finally the ways in which polyamory is or might be used against the fight to legalize gay marriage

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This is a feminist blog.  We base many of our posts on a few key assumptions that might be worth stating here, before we all get too involved:

1)    Gender is culturally constructed – biological sex (male/female) is largely fixed, but gender (masculine/feminine) is constructed by the societies in which we are inculturated.  Myriad examples exist of “opposite-gender” traits being normative in other contemporary cultures and in cultures throughout history.  Thus, analysis of gender should be analysis of the way in which gender is constructed.  We assume no innately masculine or feminine characteristics.

2)    Creating a more gender-neutral society is a worthy goal – in order to work toward gender equality, we must deconstruct the ways in which gender binarism operates in our society.  Often, gender-normative roles are reinforced in subtle, seemingly innocuous ways.  Popular culture is rife with examples of this “subliminal” gender-coding.  Moreover, popular culture’s dichotomous ubiquity and seeming-triviality make it a remarkably powerful propaganda system.

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