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gender



  • How Domestic Labor Became Infrastructure

    Writer Moira Donegan argues that including funding for care workers in the infrastructure bill is eminently reasonable; feminist intellectuals for decades have argued that this work is essential to the broader economy, so funding it and supporting it makes sense economically and to recognize the labor of women. 



  • Baylor Professor Argues 'Biblical Womanhood' More Cultural Than Biblical

    Beth Allison Barr argues that contemporary Christianity's doctrines on gender roles in the family are influenced more by the historical claim to power by men than by clear scriptural dictate, and that there are numerous historical examples of differently-ordered gender roles in Christianity. 



  • Toys are Ditching Genders for the Same Reason they First Took them On

    by Paul Ringel

    While social conservatives may bemoan the rise of gender-neutral toys as an attack on traditional values, the history of marketing to children suggests that the impetus for the change isn't coming from the "woke" but from the market. 



  • When Men Started to Obsess Over Six-Packs

    by Conor Heffernan

    Today's culture of Instagrammed abdominal muscles traces back to the time when nineteenth-century physical culture movements converged with the archaeological discovery of ancient Greek statuary (bodybuilders then used the new technology of photography in ways we'd recognize). 



  • The Fantasy that Changed Female Friendship Forever

    by Nicole Hemmer

    If the 1980s phenomenon of the male Chippendales show benefitted women's empowerment, it was not (only) by making men the objects of lust, but by normalizing rituals of female friendship. 



  • The Lockdown Showed How the Economy Exploits Women. She Already Knew

    Silvia Federici's critique of the exploitatitve nature of domestic labor as the backbone of capitalist economies is beginning to gain traction as homes are converted to schools and (paid) workplaces, compounding gendered burdens borne mostly by women in America. 



  • Collars, Cuffs, and History Collaborations

    Nicole Hemmer, Natalia Mehlman Petrzela and Neil J. Young are the producers of the "Past/Present" podcast. Their new project "Welcome to Your Fantasy" looks at feminism and the sexual revolution through the cultural phenomenon of the Chippendales Dancers. Claire Potter interviews the trio about it.



  • White Americans have Weaponized the Idea of Girlhood

    by Crystal Webster

    The concept of childhood has elastic boundaries; in a racist society, those boundaries stretch to portray whites as innocents deserving protection and Black youth as dangerous and susceptible to punishment. 



  • Working With Death: The Experience of Feeling in the Archive

    by Ruth Lawlor

    A researcher of sexual assault against women by American troops in World War II confronted the problem that the archive captures only a traumatic event and leaves the human being affected in the shadows. 



  • Musing on Gender Integration in the Military with Simone de Beauvoir

    by Bill Bray

    For those engaged in the military gender integration debate today, de Beauvoir’s writing offers an additional reminder — those arguing against more integration may be no less intelligent and sincere than those championing change. But they still may be wrong.


  • The Queen's Two Bodies

    by Ed Simon

    Queen Elizabeth's speech to English soliders in anticipation of the Spanish invasion of 1588 rallied the troops for a battle that never happened. But it anticipated today's cultural battle over the stability of gender categories. 


  • Fear of the "Pussification" of America: A Short Cultural History

    by Gregory A. Daddis

    The bizarre idea that COVID-19 can be defeated through manliness is one of the stranger cultural themes of our time, but it connects to a long history of anxiety about masculinity in a changing America that encourages violent and even self-destructive actions in the name of proving virility.



  • A Forgotten Campaign To Support ‘Displaced Homemakers’ May Help Women Today

    by Suzanne Kahn

    A 1970s initiative by feminist Tish Sommers for legislation to help women who had worked at home as caregivers to more easily reenter the paid workforce. Her preferred term "displaced homemaker" emphasized the economic importance of domestic care work most often performed by women and women's vulnerability to economic disruption and provides a useful way to think about solutions to the problems caused by COVID today.



  • Whose Anger Counts?

    by Whitney Phillips

    Many complaints about "cancel culture" depend on a false equivalency between left and right forms of internet argument that ignores the nature of far-right online harassment as a tool of power.