V-Day 2009: Items for Sale

Looking for unique Valentine gifts? Purchase V-Day buttons, Chocolates, 2008 shirts and Walk a Mile shirts at these locations:

  • Monday, February 9, University Center, 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.
  • Tuesday, February 10, Women’s Center (105 Haag Hall), 1 – 5 p.m.
  • Wednesday, February 11, Women’s Center (105 Haag Hall), 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
  • Thursday, February 12, University Center, 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.
  • Friday, February 13, Women’s Center (105 Haag Hall), 1 – 5 p.m.

Proceeds from all activities benefit the UMKC Violence Prevention and Response Project and V-Day’s 2009 spotlight campaign, “Women and Girls of the Democratic Republic of Congo.”

And don’t forget to buy your tickets for V-Day 2009 performances. Purchase online at http://www.umkc.edu/womenc/vday2009.asp

More on the Recession

As you can tell, the economy’s on my mind these days (is there anyone out there who’s not thinking about it?). Today’s New York Times had a fascinating piece on how layoffs are affecting the percentage of women in the workforce, concluding that women’s workforce particpation may well surpass men’s if current trends in layoffs hold.


For me, though, the kicker was the discussion of the sexual division of labor in regard to housework. According to the Times:
“While women appear to be sole breadwinners in greater numbers, they are likely to remain responsible for most domestic responsibilities at home.

On average, employed women devote much more time to child care and housework than employed men do, according to recent data from the government’s American Time Use Survey analyzed by two economists, Alan B. Krueger and Andreas Mueller.

When women are unemployed and looking for a job, the time they spend daily taking care of children nearly doubles. Unemployed men’s child care duties, by contrast, are virtually identical to those of their working counterparts, and they instead spend more time sleeping, watching TV and looking for a job, along with other domestic activities.”

That just floored me — so women whose male partners are unemployed now not only have to shoulder the burden of being the sole breadwinner, they also have to continue to do the bulk of the housework (or more actually, as someone who’s home more often tends to dirty the house more). On what planet could that be considered fair? Readers, how do you deal with dividing household chores? If you’re in a relationship and one of you has been laid off, did you change the way you do things? Do you think your division is fair?

How Not to Use Facebook

From England comes word that a man posted news of his intention to divorce his wife to Facebook before informing her. What’s actually more amazing about this story, however, is the casual way in which the Mail informs its readers that the husband husband had also been brought to court for assaulting his wife. That barely gets a mention. It seems that violence against women is so normalized that it hardly merits comment — but posting word of your divorce on Facebook before informing your wife? That’s important. And notice also that the paper doesn’t point out that that’s emotionally abusive behavior and thus part of the pattern of abuse that appears to have been happening in this marriage.

I wonder when violence against women will stop being viewed so casually. Or, since it’s February, when V-Day will become V-World. Thoughts?

More on the Gendered Recession

As a follow-up to the post from earlier this week, below are links to two more great posts on the recession, women, and gender:

As they point out, the coverage so far on how women are truly being affected by the recession is lacking. Personally, I’d prefer to see more articles like the ones from The Guardian that Deborah mentions and less of the variety I described on Monday. What do you all think?

A Gendered Recession?

Regular readers of the New York Times may have noticed that the Times believes that there are currently two recessions going on — a women’s recession which leads to  support groups named things such as DABA (Dating a Banker Anonymous) and women who suffer vicariously from their boyfriends’ / husbands’ layoffs, and a men’s recession in which manly men’s masculinity is diminished by their job losses (“Why the Sting of Layoffs Can be Sharper for Men” and “Daddy’s Home and a Bit Lost“).

While I certainly agree that a conversation about how the recession is impacting men and women and what role gender is playing in that impact could be an interesting one, the pieces that the NYT has been publishing do not meet those criteria — instead, they simply gendered stereotypes and get us no closer to true understanding.
Luckily, we have feminist bloggers to fill the gap — for truly interesting discussions of the recession and gender, check out the following posts by Deborah Siegel:
http://girlwpen.com/?p=1478 (on the Times’ DABA article);
http://girlwpen.com/?p=1490 (on “Layoffs Sharper for Men”);
Finally, check out her post with a roundup of links to other articles/posts on gender and the recession. And then tell us what you think — is the recession affecting women and men differently? If so, how? What have you been observing?

How about we leave Jessica Simpson alone?

As I’m sure you know (unless you ignore the internet and TV), the current week has seen a spate of articles about the Jessica Simpson “controversy” (e.g., she’s gained some weight — the horror!). Check out the posts below for an understanding of all that’s wrong with what’s happening to Jessica in the media:
This is the kind of thing that makes me nuts and tends to lead to incoherent rage (just ask the Women’s Center staff) — but seriously, when will we stop caring so much about forcing women’s bodies into some impossible-to-maintain box and start worrying about the rest of them? Is that really too much to ask for?

New Administration = More Women in Science?

From the New York Times, an interesting piece speculating on whether the new administration wil translate into more women in science.

Given that this year’s Starr Symposium (coming up in October 2009 — check our website for updates beginning in March) will focus on the topic of women in math, engineering, technology and science, I certainly hope so!