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Reviews tagged femininity


French theorist Hélène Cixous first coined the term ècriture feminine in her 1975 essay “Laugh of the Medusa,” in which she wrote “Woman must write her self: must write about women and bring women to writing, from which they have been driven away as violently as from their bodies.” Within the essay, Cixous posited that women write their gender into their writing, that gender is embedded in the language women use.

The Subversive Stitch, Embroidery and the Making of the Feminine

In the world of contemporary art, using embroidery to express yourself is risky, and while I impart a subtle subversive message in those textile pieces, it is hard to overcome the initial impression that I am doing dainty women's work.

Iron Butterflies: Women Transforming Themselves and the World

In the eternal question of nature versus nurture, author and developmental psychologist Birute Regine leans comfortably towards nature. She embraces “feminine” qualities and calls for women the world over to do the same.

Healing Pandora: The Restoration of Hope and Abundance

The mythic Pandora has long been misunderstood as one who brought evil into the world. She was thought to be the first mortal woman created and sent to Earth by the gods. Her infamous box, once opened, leads to the escape of diseases and other ills, resulting in a lasting curse upon humankind. But this is not Pandora’s original story; in fact, the modern retelling of this myth is vastly different from Pandora’s true nature.

Kissing the Mask: Beauty, Understatement and Femininity in Japanese Noh Theater

Full disclosure: I am an avid fan of William T. Vollmann's work and was excited to read this book. Vollmann often has strange and interesting things to say about women and gender relations, and his notorious interest in prostitutes (who feature prominently in both his fiction and non-fiction) may almost be labeled as an obsession.

Red Lights: The Lives of Sex Workers in Postsocialist China

On one occasion, gangsters walked into the bar, grabbed me by the arm, and started dragging me up the stairs toward a private room intended for hostesses’ sexual encounters with clients. The women were also sometimes raped there by gangsters. I quickly realized what was going on—that I was in real danger... Whereas safety was a major issue, hygiene was another. Living in a filthy karaoke bar room without bathing facilities, I had lice in my hair and over my whole body.

Chiconomics 101: The Fun, Fabulous Girls’ Guide to Making Smart Money Moves

Chiconomics 101 is a pink-themed, Cosmo-drinking ladies-geared blog about basic money management seemingly written by and for the twenty-something set of singles with less money to burn now that they have “real world” bills to pay.

Aromaleigh Make-Up

When Bette Davis was entering her later years, she said something to the effect of, “I will not retire while I’ve still got my legs and my make-up box.” Bette, like a lot of us gals, knew the importance of quality make-up and what role it can play in our everyday lives. I savor my ten minute make-up sessions because it’s one of a few moments each day that I can actually be alone with my thoughts and prepare myself for what may come.

Drifting Flowers

In the film Drifting Flowers, director Zero Chou brings together three stories of lesbian love and camaraderie. In the first, the audience is presented with May, a young girl who is confronted with the need to guide her blind older sister, Jing, while envying her sister's relationship with Diego. The second story is a sharp turn from the youthful innocence of May to the addled mind of Lily.

AsiaPacifiQueer: Rethinking Genders and Sexualities

Aside from a women’s studies class I took as an undergraduate, of which I remember very little, thoughts on gender and sexuality typically have not taken up much of my time. AsiaPacifiQueer: Rethinking Genders and Sexualities totally changed my perception on these subjects. As a self-proclaimed tomboy, who happens not to be a lesbian, society is much more accepting of my “ways” than they would be if I were an effeminate man.

Magic and the Power of the Goddess: Initiation, Worship, and Ritual in the Western Mystery Tradition

The planet is in turmoil and, according to Magic and the Power of the Goddess by Gareth Knight, we can heal it by connecting with the Goddess - the feminine energy that runs though our world.

Wild Mercy

Wild Mercy is a compilation of poetry that is directly inspired by the art of Tarot. It is artfully written and beautifully paced. Those unfamiliar with Tarot reading will definitely have their interest sparked and will appreciate Cunningham's exquisite execution of the collection. Wild Mercy had me spellbound from start to finish, with every poem being a unique spiritual endeavor. The journey of the compilation is unique in itself.