The 2010 midterm elections are over. Well, for the most part. It may be a while before all of the ballots are sorted out in the Alaska Senate race, and there's a recount in North Carolina for a House seat, making nine as yet undecided races in that legislative body. And while Washington, DC may be getting prepared to do the staffer's office shuffle, there is still a lame duck session or two for Congress, a host of court cases coming to the Supreme Court, from which new Justice Kagan will frequently have to recuse herself, and some unfinished business on the Don't Ask Don't Tell front, otherwise known as the Clinton legacy that won't go away. I mean, the other unforgettable legacy of his.
In Make Your Place: Affordable, Sustainable Nesting Skills, Raleigh Briggs writes about how DIY activities that take place in the domestic sphere don't seem as legitimate as, say, bike repair. But after teaching a class on herbal first aid and natural housekeeping, she came to realize how important it is that natural housekeeping is taken seriously within the DIY community.
On my way to the office I saw an honest-to-God hummingbird darting around a Northeast Portland front yard. In early November! It was all-too-apropos for this week's Bitchtapes playlist, which features ten songs about our fine feathered friends. Tracklist after the jump!
As always, it's been a pleasure blogging here at Bitch, but my time entertaining you with excessively wordy opinions on feminism and television has come to an end. There are some ways in which the end of this gig will mean an increase in my quality of life. Being a TV nerd, even being paid to be a TV nerd, has its personal costs: the cable bill, abnormally high wear-and-tear on the couch and one's sweatpants, the wiggling out of social encounters because you "really have to keep up with" Teen Mom. The endless watching of all the crappy new shows in hopes one of them will provide fodder for a blog post.
(For example: I'm never getting back the time I spent on Running Wilde or Outlaw, or pondering how to spin the Demi Lovato rehab story into a commentary on television. Those posts will just have to remain unwritten.)
Today's entry is the first in the series to focus on the work of a female director. In the coming weeks, we'll discuss contributions from filmmakers like Jane Campion, Catherine Breillat, Deepa Mehta, Rachel Raimist, G.B. Jones, Lynne Ramsay, Julie Dash, and Courtney Hunt, among others. But Argentinian writer-director Lucrecia Martel more than deserves her place in that list of auspicious talent, as she demonstrates with 2008's haunting La mujer sin cabeza.
A record number of women—262, in all—ran campaigns for the House in the 2010 midterm elections. Despite this wave of women, fewer will be in the House once the 112th Congress begins than were in the 111th. 75 women will take their seats in the voting body, many of them for the first time. Here is a look at several first-year Representatives. On the Senate side, 36 women ran campaigns—also a record—and four were elected, keeping the total for women in the Senate at 17. There will be, notably, no African-American Senators when the new Congress begins in January. What issues will the newest female members of Congress bring with them and what might it mean for feminist political strategists and women?
A few months ago, I read a lovely post on country music by Garland Grey over at Tiger Beatdown, and I was quite enjoying myself until he included Johnny Cash as a "toxic model for masculinity" and I hit the roof internally*.
Because Johnny Cash may be the only model for masculinity I turn to. (Well, aside from Springsteen, about whom more later!)
And now again, as the U.S. writhes under the weight of its own myths, I go back to Cash as well.
It's Dia de los Douches here at Bitch HQ, and Clint McCance, anti-gay bigot and former school board member in Arkansas, is our Master of Ceremonies this afternoon. McCance posted the following on his facebook page in response to Spirit Day at the end of October (TRIGGER warning- warped thinking AND warped grammar)...
My life has been unusually stressful lately, for a variety of reasons, and my personal strategy to get through such times has always been to devour certain television shows as though they were comfort food. The advent of the show-on-DVD has been a great comfort to me in that respect, because when I'm down and needing to spend some quality time with my cat and my couch, I can get lost in these stories for days. I am one of those people who is sad that movies are only two hours long: I like my narratives long and intricate, nineteenth-century style, which that explains why I'm such a nerd for any show best viewed as a DVD box set. (And, umm, the completely sad amount of money I've spent on acquiring them.)
All of that by way of saying I've been watching a lot of Six Feet Under, lately. Sometimes television snobs laugh at me when I tell them that Six Feet Under is by far my favorite of the high-end cable shows of the last few years. Though the show was always critically acclaimed in its own way, of course, it somehow never got the kind of artistic street cred that either The Wire or The Sopranos did. I have my theories about this, many of which are related to ideas I also have about people's evaluations of worth in literature.