In the latest issue of Bitch, Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore asks, "What if the real problem isn't flamboyance or cocksucking or limp wrists, but a straight world that rejects gay people and a gay world that seeks legitimacy only for those willing to conform to a straight society?" ("Homo Work," interview by Jessica Hoffmann). Writer, editor, activist, artist, filmmaker, critic, and troublemaker, Mattilda stopped by the Bitch Media offices this weekend to do a Popaganda session with me, Kelsey, and Andi. In this podcast episode, we'll talk about her new anthology Why Are Faggots So Afraid of Faggots?, language and reclamation, the recent movie Weekend, and more!
In this episode of Bitch Radio, you'll hear from s.e. smith and Anna Hamilton, who you may know from various sites around the internet, including Tiger Beatdown, FWD: Feminists With Disabilities for a Way Forward, The Transcontinental Disability Choir at Bitch, as well as their personal sites, Annaham.net and sesmith.info. They also co-authored a piece (with illustrations by Annaham!) in the new issue of Bitch titled "Access & Praxis: Disability at the Digital Frontier." This week, you'll hear more about disability organizing online and how feminist spaces online can do a better job of being more inclusive. Transcript and more after the jump!
For this week's podcast, we screened the new documentary Pink Ribbons, Inc., directed by Léa Pool and produced by Ravida Din. Based on Samantha King's book Pink Ribbons, Inc: Breast Cancer and the Politics of Philanthropy, the film takes you from Walks for the Cure to an stage IV breast cancer support group, and features input from Nancy G. Brinker (CEO and founder of the Susan G. Komen Foundation), Barbara Ehrenreich (author of Blindsided), and Barbara Brenner (Breast Cancer Action) as well as tackling pink ribbon campaigns and questioning why we still haven't found a cure for breast cancer. Julie, Ashley, Rachel and I talked about what we thought of the movie, who should see it, and what could have been improved. Trailer and more after the jump!
For this week's podcast, you'll hear three short previews from the upcoming issue of Bitch magazine—the Frontier issue! From the Love It/Shove It section, you'll get one "Love It"—"Jailbreak the Patriarchy: Flipping the (Java)Script" by Katie Haegele, on the web plug-in Jailbreak the Patriarchy, and one "Shove It" —"Jesus Take the Heels: One Woman's Crusade to Save Streetwalker's Souls" by Meredith Holland Fortner critiquing the Vegas-based Hookers for Jesus, and a review of The Guy's Guide to Feminism by Ashley McAllister (But read by me! With a stuffy nose!) Plus, music from the new Nite Jewel album!
A few months ago, I had the chance to attend a presentation at the Roots of Change conference called "Hip Hop and its Exploitation of Communities of Color" by Tracy Wright from the North Carolina Coalition Against Sexual Assault and Althea Hart from the Mississippi Coalition Against Sexual Assault. The way Tracy and Althea used hip hop to address sexual and domestic violence issues was engaging, entertaining, and left me wanting to hear more from this dynamic duo. Lucky for me (and you!) they agreed to record a Bitch Radio podcast about their work. Listen in as they discuss Jay-Z's "Glory," the history of female emcees, and strategies for using hip hop and pop culture in conversations about sexual and domestic violence.
"Pathologized, terrorized, and confined, trans/gender-non-conforming and queer folks have always struggled against the enormity of the prison industrial complex." The anthology Captive Genders: Trans Embodiment and the Prison Industrial Complex, which came out this summer from AK Press, addresses trans and queer identity and prison industrial complex. From the disproportionate incarceration of trans people, to the politics of immigration, to imagining a world where we don't rely on prisons and the state for safety using a queer/trans analysis, this anthology is a must-read for anyone who cares about gender rights and justice. Its contributors include people formerly and currently incarcerated, activists, and academics approaching the topic with a diverse range of perspectives on different aspects of the PIC inside and out.
Eric Stanley, co-editor of the book, Ralowe T. Ampu, a contributor, and Toshio Meronek are currently doing a book tour for Captive Genders, and I got to sit down with them while they were in Portland to further discuss the PIC, why gender and gay rights activists should care about prison abolition, and how pop culture and media re-inforce harmful narratives about quote-unquote criminals.
Stream below, more after the jump!
For this week's podcast, Kelsey, Jyoti, Ashley and I talk about the movie Pariah, the feature-length film by Dee Rees that's already garnered lots of critical praise. The movie follows Alike (pronounced Ah-lee-kay, and played by Adepero Oduye), a young black lesbian living in Brooklyn, who deals with the trappings that come with being a teenager: crushes, annoying parents, drama with friends, and trying to fit in. You can watch the official trailer here (which we excerpt in the podcast), and watch the interview with the director we mention here.
Portlandia season two premieres next week on IFC. To tide you over until then, today's episode of Bitch Radio features Carrie Brownstein, Fred Armisen, show creator Jonathan Krisel, and show producer Andrew Singer answering pressing Portlandia questions. Wondering which scenes were the hardest to shoot, or what to expect from season two? Tune in and find out! (Be warned: This Q&A happened at a press luncheon, which means lots of fork clanging in the background.)
If my two gift guides (Music Lover's Edition, Part I, Music Lover's Edition Part II) and Bitchtapes aren't enough for you, here's some more music selections from 2011, including a teen rockband from Norway, a 17-piece disco orchestra, and Jean Grae's take on a Kanye West song. (Warning: In my attempt to avoid using the word "awesome" to describe everything, I ended up using the word "amazing" approximately a billion times instead.) A full playlist after the jump.