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Sep 08 2006

Friday Patriarchy Check

Here’s something extraordinary that just dawned on me: although I’ve googled women, I’ve never Googled ‘women’. So this morning I gave it a whirl. Behold my findings.

Item the first: NewSexBuddy dot com. How to score a one-night stand.

Second is “1000s of sexy women.” Great news! They all want to suck your cock!

Next there are three ‘news’ items. The news isn’t looking so good for women today. This morning’s top women-related headlines were “New proposal would ban women from key Mecca site,” “Women’s lap dancing club to open,” and “Oregon ranks low in growth of women-owned businesses.”

The next item is iVillage, a website offering ‘information’ for women in the shape of ‘tips’ on how to more successfully assimilate the superficiality of the feminine directive by buying stuff. For your vomiting pleasure, I present an excerpt from an iVillage blurb on a ‘beauty’ product called ‘Nvey,’ a viscous flesh-colored liquid intended to cover the face as, I suppose, an expression of today’s liberated woman’s sense of fun, creativity, choice, sexiness, and individuality:

As beauty goes, you can’t get more natural than this organic blend of chamomile, cucumber and calendula — not to mention rose absolute — to help moisturize and calm the skin. It goes on kissably smooth, and we like that it leaves the face glowing, naturally.

One ounce of Nvey costs 45 bucks. Naturally.

Not until the fifth item do we encounter a website interested in anything other than women’s fuckability. Biographies of Women Mathematicians is a compendium of North American female nerds through the ages. So, that’s good, right? I guess so, if you define ‘good’ as ‘dull as dirt’.
Man, that’s all a spinster aunt can take on an empty stomach. I’m off to Foodheads for a squash sandwich.

86 comments

3 pings

  1. Hawise

    As my family is always on the search for new things to do with squash, how do you make a squash sandwich?

  2. Mandos

    That’s just your prejudice against math nerds talking.

  3. teffie-phd

    Use your MS Word thesaurus to look up women–that’s a whole of nauseating fun too.

    I guess we bloggers need to put the word woman somewhere prominent in the blog to get the rankings changed.

  4. greg

    Wow, how quickly things can change on Google! When I Google “women” (and ignoring the sponsored links – porn apparently pays better than feminism), the top 5 links in order are:

    Women Mathematicians

    Women’s Biographies: Distinguished Women of the Past and Present

    National Organization for Women

    Internet Women’s History Sourcebook

    WomenWatch: UN Information and Resources on Gender Equality and….

    When I do the same for “men” I get

    Men’s Health – Men’s Guide to Fitness, Health, Weight Loss …

    AskMen.com – Free Men’s Online Magazine

    Men’s Fitness

    Men’s Wearhouse

    Manchester Evening News Arena – The Blue Planet

    So, apparently women are concerned with history, mathematics, and global issues, while men are concerned with how they look. What was your point, exactly?

  5. Pony

    So we ignore the sponsored links, and the links that are for DEAD women (lots of reverence there yup) then we’re left with 2 links for women.

    Because you see women aren’t on the patriarchal radar, unless we’re dead. Now you google “girls”…

    You should see what I got when I googled dickhead.

  6. Shy Girl

    Things certainly do change quickly on google Greg. Here are my search results for ‘women’

    -LiveLinks.com/Singles
    -NewSexBuddy.com
    -ivillage Information for women, including women’s health issues, beauty tips, fitness tips and parenting advice
    -Women Mathematics On-going project by students in mathematics classes at Agnes Scott College in Atlanta, Georgia, United States.
    -Wikepedia

    However after I made the unfortunate choice to google the word ‘girls’ I was submitted to the following:

    -Desktop girls –Sexy Supermodels, Babes, Celebrities, Wallpapers
    -Girls Gone Wild!
    -SuicideGirls > SG Pin Up Girls, Tattooed, Goth, Punk, Alt, Emo Video Podcast
    -Girls Inc. Promotes a girls right to be herself. Offers articles, club news, games, advice, and information.
    -Kindgirls, clean pictures, galleries of nude girls

    ‘Men’:

    -AskMen.com
    -Men’s Health
    -Men’s Fitness
    -Amazon.com; Men’s apparel
    -Wikipedia

    Okay, for ‘boys’:

    -Break.com – Funny Pics, Hot Chicks, & Cool Flicks
    -Trailer Park Boys ~ Season 5
    -Backstreet Boys Official Web Site
    -JUNIOR BOYS (band)
    -BeastieBoys.com: Official Beastie Boys Web Site

    Women are sex toys, concerned about being beautiful parents (or settling for being mathematicians), Men are concerned about their health, or are asked important questions about “sex tips”, and the “top 99 most desirable women”.

    Basically, boys are offered “Funny Pics, Hot Chicks, & Cool Flicks” and the opportunity to be in either television shows or bands, while girls (with one exception) must be photographed naked for the pleasure of boys.

    Notice how it is women and girls who are commodities?

    How could you have possibly missed this?

    We all know what to blame.

  7. Ron O

    Arithmatic (which is what most people consider math) : (real) math :: raw pork : the most delicious carnitas taco. Robust and filling. yum!

    My google results were similar, but I got p*rn, personals ads, then bad news for women in Afghanistan, bad news in africa, a medly of links to women’s mags like Coschmo, then the women mathematicians.

    Hoorah for women mathematicians! My first love became one *sigh*. Wow, she was smart! I mean IS smart. She’s not dead yet. She’s also a good musician (cello) & dancer (ballroom).

    *staring off intp space*

    Oops. back again

    Another good one to google is Patriarchy. Second site’s description is “Information that attempts to refuting feminist claims and ideas.” The fifth is YOU.

  8. Pony

    DEAD mathematicians, Shy Girl. DEAD.

  9. langsuyar

    Well, it makes perfect sense that the top links would be by men for men objectifying women, and women objectifying themselves. After all, we all know only men know how to huge a computer, which they only use to find things to masturbate to and if a woman figures out how to get on the internets, she does so to go shopping! Silly, its so reasonable and has nothing to do with patriarchy!

    And btw, I absolutely love your description of “‘Nvey,’ a viscous flesh-colored liquid intended to cover the face”. Liquid foundation as just another veil? Effing brilliant, and true to boot.

  10. langsuyar

    Hahaha.. I said “huge a computer”. I meant “use”. What the hell was I thinking about?

  11. vera

    Greg, no offense, but I have a question that might be of interest to you if you’re young:

    Are parental controls turned on for your computer, browser, or both?

    Google results do vary, but the results you got are so different from everyone else’s (including mine) that it makes me wonder if Someone In Charge is watching over your browsing habits.

  12. Joanna

    Virginia Woolf looked up “women” in the British Museum and found a lot of books by men about women:

    “All that I had retrieved from that morning’s work had been the one fact of anger. The professors—I lumped them together thus—were angry. But why, I asked myself, having returned the books, Why, I repeated, standing under the colonnade among the pigeons and the prehistoric canoes, why are they angry? And, asking myself this question, I strolled off to find a place for luncheon.”

    On the one hand, some things haven’t changed. On the other, “women count” ha ha, and I love it that the women mathematicians are so high up on the list!

    If you haven’t read A Room of One’s Own, or want to reread it on line, you can find it here:
    http://etext.library.adelaide.edu.au/w/woolf/virginia/w91r/

  13. Pony

    oh good one vera

  14. j

    Well, a superficial solution would be a Google bomb. But until attitudes actually change…

  15. rootlesscosmo

    Nvey iz mir!

  16. Violet Socks

    Vera, that sounds right.

    Here’s an interesting experiment: turn your search filters to off, then do a search for ‘women’ and then a search for ‘men’. When I search for women, all the sponsored links are for pornography and some kind of phone sex/prostitution/whatever (I’m not sure what it is). When I search for men there is none of that. What a surprise.

  17. Dr. Free-Ride

    Given the entire industry that worships dead male nerds, I should think that the opportunity to honor dead female nerds would be a step in the right direction (indeed, possibly even enhancing the possibility of nurturing *live* female nerds).

    I realize, however, that nerds are not everyone’s cup of tea — but the very recognition of female nerds is surely not an act of complicity in our subjugation, is it?

  18. Pony

    There’s always been recognition for women who do what men do, as long as there aren’t more than a few, she will be held up and praised as an example of how great the patriarchy is, and how it is too possible for women to be equal. But let more than three get in there, and the profession or whatever loses it’s grandeur and men start running from it. It then becomes a women’s thing, and loses status. As for attracting more? I dunno, I recall during the larry fiasco reading stats that said in spite of more going in, they go nowhere. Gee I wonder how that could be? Then there’s always those who say women will go so far in maths but no further, or women will go into maths sure but not hard sciences like physics, for which their brains aren’t suited. All that estrogen apparently. In fact, one *can* change women’s capability with math by manipulating estrogen, so maybe larry was right after all. Anyway, the dead maths women’s site is the efforts of some women, and does indeed include live mathematicians. But then like I said, maths is considered more an art than a hard science so it’s ok then if we let a few more than three into the lower echelons.

  19. Mandos

    I was generally under the impression that it was easier for women to make a dent in sciences other than mathematics, historically, as mathematicians were the more macho bunch, but I could be wrong. I mean, we have a woman among the famous foundational modern physicists, Marie Curie. We have Ada Lovelace for computation—and that’s borderline, because the only place people most people would have heard of her is on the “Certificate of Authenticity” that comes with MS products. But for Pure Mathematics? The only name that comes to mind, at least among quasi-modern mathematicians, is Emily Noether. And she *definitely* hasn’t diffused into popular culture even among educated people.

  20. Sara

    Thank you for that lovely parallel, Joanna. One could do worse than to walk in the virtual footsteps of Virginia Woolf.

    I sure hope you post a picture of that sandwich, though, Twisty. It might ameliorate my heartburn, for which of course IBTP.

  21. Twisty

    Hey, don’t get me wrong about the women nerds. I’m all for’em. I’m a woman nerd (albeit a mere amateur) myself. As a matter of fact, I’m watching Star Trek TOS this minute (Kirk sez “Bones, she’s a handsome woman, yes, but hardly 25. Quit thinking with your glands!”). I take non-ironic pictures of bugs, own a microscope, and subscribe to Science AND Nature.

    But look, there’s no denying that the website dedicated to the mathematicians lacks, shall we say, a certain je ne sais quoi. My ‘point’, to answer the impertinent Greg’s question, is merely that ‘women’ as a concept is not very accurately represented in the top Google results.

  22. CafeSiren

    I couldn’t resist: I went to the “domain of patriarchy” website. Lots of attacks on strawfeminists (for example, I don’t know of a single university-level women’s studies scholar who teaches that historical matriarchies were the norm, a la Eve Ensler, yet the web page creator seems to think we all do). But buried at the bottom of the last page is a revealling set of links, under the following heading:

    “If you have always been one of those “nice guys” who women always want to be “just friends” with instead of taking to bed, here are some resources to help you understand the complicated dynamics of what it takes to have women see you as a potential “hot-sex partner” instead of just the average, self-neutered, politically-correct chump.”

    Damned feminists — they just won’t fuck this guy.

  23. Mandos

    “My ‘point’, to answer the impertinent Greg’s question, is merely that ‘women’ as a concept is not very accurately represented in the top Google results.”

    Au contraire: if concepts are a democracy, and Google is tabulating the votes (it is, in a sense), then [trails off meaningfully]

    [trails back on] it’s reflecting our cultural concept of women, no? I thought that was why you blame the patriarchy.

  24. Twisty

    Well, kinda. Or, more precisely, it reflects is what moron dudes with internet access think women are.

  25. j

    I went to the Domain of Patriarchy site also. I almost vomited. I just wasn’t feeling masochistic enough to continue browsing the site. So I didn’t.

  26. Jezebella

    oh hell, nerd reporting in. I know exactly which episode of ST:TOS Twisty is watching, though I don’t recall the episode title.

    Sigh.

  27. Twisty

    ‘The Man Trap’. McCoy’s old flame Nancy Crater turns out to be the last of a species of creatures that go around sucking all the salt out of Starfleet officers, much to their (the Starfleet officers’) detriiment. The first ever Star Trek episode, aside from the pilot.

  28. KTal

    Google and blogging are the procrastinator’s best friend. By googling women, one learns that they area creature that has an insatiable desire to please men and other women sexually and that they seem unable to make their own decisions regarding child rearing, marriage, dating, appearance and health.

    I think Greg mentioned that he skipped over the porn sites? Not a surprise, since women in porn aren’t real women anyway right?

  29. mrs_enid

    I Googled women, just to give it a try and my top 5 links were:

    1. Craptastic iVillage

    2. The mathmeticians

    3. Women’s biographies- distinguished women

    4. The National Organization for Women

    5. the Internet Women’s History Sourcebook

    On the right side of the page, some of advertisements were porn and dating crap. However, the links generated by the search engine and Google’s nifty algorithms were all the ones I listed above. And, trust me, there is no net nanny software on my computer. Unless the dog hgappened to install it while I was out at work.

  30. Joanna

    You doesn’t have to be nanny software to have a filter working with Google. Go to the Google homepage. To the right of the search box, click preferencesl Then look down to where it says “safe settings.” There are three levels, and the default setting is “moderate.” As an experiment, try doing the search with all three levels of setting and see what comes up.

  31. Pony

    TOS?

  32. Dr. Free-Ride

    TOS = The Original Series

    And it was always my feeling that some of those Starfleet Red-Shirts needed the salt sucked outta them.

  33. impulsivecompulsive

    Here’s an interesting little tidbit:

    If you go to that number four site (five now? eight? three?) that is Distinguished Women of Passed and Present, and then check out the women under Social Service/Activism, you’ll find that Abigail Adams is the second woman listed. They then link to biographies of said Adams, and things get a little hewey in the blogosphere.

    See, link number one gets you to the Official! White! House! version of Abigail’s life, in which she took on such daunting tasks as, continu[ing] a formal pattern of entertaining–even in the primitive conditions she found at the new capital and fill[ing] the difficult role of wife, after which she, well, entertains some more.

    Well heck, said I, where’s the activism in that?

    Check the second link: Adams asserted herself as one of the country’s first advocates for women’s rights. Oh yeah, that. Whitehouse kinda forgot about that part. Or the part where Adams also championed the abolition of slavery with the same argument about declaring independence for some while withholding it from others.

    Okeydokey. So a slight difference on what constitutes important here. For some, it would be that she was an activist fighting for equality, for those who made that ol’ gov’t webpage, it’s that she put out a real clean table cloth.

    Nice.

  34. Blamerella

    Virginia Woolf looked up “women” in the British Museum and found a lot of books by men about women:

    “All that I had retrieved from that morning’s work had been the one fact of anger. The professors—I lumped them together thus—were angry. But why, I asked myself, having returned the books, Why, I repeated, standing under the colonnade among the pigeons and the prehistoric canoes, why are they angry? And, asking myself this question, I strolled off to find a place for luncheon.”

    Some things never change do they? Woman seeks to find the source of male antipathy toward her. Comes up empty. Goes to lunch.

    Story of my life.

  35. No Sharp Edges

    OT:

    Twisty, have you seen this?

    http://www.katu.com/news/story.asp?ID=88966

    This woman (an emergency room nurse) came home, discovered an intruder in her house, and killed him – with her bare hands.

    For some reason, I thought of you.

  36. mrs_enid

    Joanna:

    I understand how filtering works. I have my Google preferences set to “Do Not Filter My Results” and the 5 results that I listed above were still what I got. As a matter of fact, I did follow your suggestion and I tried the search with moderate filtering, strict filtering and no filtering and still got the same top 5 results under all three preferences.

  37. somethingwitty

    i get something similar to greg and mrs_enid:
    http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=women&btnG=Google Search brings up
    ivillage
    women mathematicians
    Women’s biographies: Distinguished Women of Past and Present
    WomenWatch: UN Information and Resources on Gender Equality and …
    News, views for women on fashion, health, life Times Online
    Woman – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    i even get tame stuff on google images and i don’t have netnanny or similar and my google prefs are “Do not filter my search results.”

    My sponsored links: – a women’s forum and “become a mentor” before the requisite “Marry a Sexy Latvian Girl.”

    but my sponsored ads are specific to both “women” and “france”, which is convientally where I’m doing this google search from. are search results different for different locations? or maybe because I had specifically to tell it to search in english? or..?

  38. mrs_enid

    Serial posting to add that I’m not some pro-porn apologist trying to make an argument that no one uses Google to find nasty, woman-hating stuff. I’m quite sure that Google is the instrument of choice that many Neanderthals use as a direct conduit to their wack off material. However, I doubt they’re doing a one word Google search for “women” to get there. That search most likely consists of a string of terms that most of us would not use in polite company, and would get trapped by the spamulator if I attempted to replicate an example.

  39. hedonistic

    My weekly patriarchy check turned up some interesting, perhaps hopeful news: The Spanish government, concerned about the self-images of its young women, is banning too-skinny models from its fashion runways.

    I know, I know, it’s still FASHION, feh, but still. Hopeful, yes? Die-hard fashionistas and shoe fetishists are always welcome chez moi; of course I blogged it.

  40. maggiethewolf

    Today, I’m a different sort of Blamer. I blame the copywriter who composed the following crap for glutting the Internet with superfluous syllables.

    Behold and cringe; “As beauty goes, you can’t get more natural than this organic blend of chamomile, cucumber and calendula — not to mention rose absolute — to help moisturize and calm the skin.”

    To channel Seinfeld, how can you even say “not to mention” as you mention? The copywriter might want to come across as coy, but s(he) comes across as someone who stuffs sentences with superfluous syllables.

    And how can you “calm” the skin? Is the skin agitated, in the same way that the Dead Sea was once agitated, and it needs a good calming, via the Christ? Or is the skin sentient and atwitter, ala an early Scarlett O’Hara, who can’t quite squeeze into a corset while the gentlemen callers await?

    Whatever, oh, the prosaic horror, the prosaic horror. On this morning, with God as my witness, I blame all hoary women who buy that $45 an ounce crap for having no semantic standards. I blame, yes, I blame, with a quivering finger and a twitching lip.

  41. saltyC

    Start Trek TOS often contradicted itself.

    For instance, in the episode “Spock’s Brain”, a planet of women needed spock’s brain to run their planet or they would all be destroyed, and the moral was: you can’t justify murder, in any situation, even to save a planet.

    Yet on another episode, with Joan Collins playing a pacifist during World War II, they go back in time and, like, fall in love with her or something, but then let her get killed even though they know (they’re from the future) it’s gonna happen, because she has to die, or she’ll get in the way of the war effort.

    I wonder why murder is justified in the case of killing Joan Collins, but not Spock I wonder I wa-wa-wa-wa-wonder.

  42. maggiethewolf

    SaltyC, are you a nerd?

    ‘Cause I am.

    I’m such a nerd that even nerds will scornfully dismiss me with, “Nerd!”

  43. saltyC

    Am I a nerd?

    Just because I know that the Joan Collins episode was written by though not credited to Harlan Ellison, who also wrote the infamous “A Boy and His Dog”.

    Just because I belonged to the Science Fiction Forum in college?

    No, of course not.

  44. Twisty

    But Ellison is credited. I watched the very episode last night, and I swear I saw his name in the credits. Alas, no screen shot to prove it, though.

    I postulate that, without the Joan Collins episode (in which Kirk has to stop McCoy from saving Joan’s life in order to prevent an alternate dystopian future), subsequent time-traveler-altering-the-course-of events classics like “Back To The Future” and “The Terminator” wouldn’t exist.

  45. saltyC

    see? That right there proves I’m not a nerd.

  46. maggiethewolf

    Hot damn, I’m surrounded by nerds! Maggiethewolf has found her pack!!! I’d start sniffing your butts for joy, but you’d probably think I’m loopy (or loose–ooh-la-la!) rather than lupus.

    I have so much respect for those who write sci fi. I think Le Guin is one of the great minds of all time. And when I read “RingWorld,” I was amazed at the imagination. I write ordinary, old novels. Sigh. I’m vanilla and I know it.

  47. maggiethewolf

    If any Blamers don’t know Le Guin, then here’s an appetizer:

    http://www.ursulakleguin.com/FAQ_Questionnaire5_01.html#Help

  48. Mandos

    Most people here will know LeGuin.

    Ringworld is fascinatingly imaginative, but Larry Niven is fairly—and perhaps a little gleefully—uncharitable towards women.

    Personally, for that kind of Ringworldian imagination, I prefer David Brin’s Uplift universe.

    But for me, the greatest of all SF writers is Carolyn Janice Cherry, more commonly known as C. J. Cherryh. That stray h on her pen name’s surname is the result of a publisher informing her that “Carolyn Janice Cherry” will be relegated to the romance section of the bookstore, and none of the target audience would even read C. J. Cherry. Hence, Cherryh.

  49. vera

    Wow, science fiction and radical feminism, all in one place! I’m in girl geek heaven.

    Still, it’s an uneasy relationship, geek/feminism/scifi. You read science fiction, you love it, but (unless the author is Ursula K. LeGuin) you want to seize the author by the collar and give him a good shaking. You go off to school and the boy science fiction readers won’t let you into their club. Or they let you in but regard you as some sort of freak.

    Later in life you go off to work in a high tech company because you want to be where the other science fiction fans are, but they’re still mostly male and they still put out the “no girl (geeks) allowed” sign. Or they let you in but regard you as some sort of a freak.

    Sigh, sigh, sigh. And all this pain is doubled when you try working in the open source world. Someday I’m going to write about it, but for now it’s still too painful.

    Anyone here read Susie Charnas?

  50. Mandos

    I read The Furies. I’m not sure I totally understood it. I prefer Tepper, for that genre of feminist SF—Tepper has more of a sense of humour—like the pregnant men in The Fresco—but I’m not so much a fan of the environmental revenge fantasy theme that keeps cropping up. But I think I finally got what the *real* twist was in Gate to Women’s Country and realize that it must connect to A Plague of Angels in a sort of Asimovian indirect way.

    Vera, you are probably older than the fleshbeing who is my current vessel. In general, I can think of lots of women in the SF and gaming clubs of my high school and among my current friends. You’re very right about the open source world, though—as much as I love open source, it really is most conducive to a certain predominantly male personality type, for some reason. Still, are you familiar with groups like Linuxchix and all that?

  51. Mandos

    I overemdashulated. Oh, well.

  52. hedonistic

    Closet geek reporting for duty: I heart LeGuin.

    By the way, who else out there reads Charles De Lint? I mean, he’s a dude and everything, but DAMN! This man GETS IT.

  53. vera

    Hi Mandos: I didn’t know about Linuxchix, but I know about Ubuntu women. And I’ve discovered that I like the BarCamp movement, which my friend Chris Messina is involved in. BarCamp seems to be the softer side of open source. The true heirs to the flower children, in geek-land at least.

    My, it does me good to see that someone else has noticed the way a certain personality type dominates many open source groups. The feeling I often took away from my open source involvement was a sense of hanging out there all alone, twisting in the wind. Many times I’d witness some jerk saying or doing something completely, disgustingly, blindly racist/sexist/homophobic, and I’d call him on it expecting the troops to back me up. But the troops never came.

  54. maggiethewolf

    Amen, Vera.

    And hedonistic, sometimes, when I read Le Guin, I wondered if she were a different species than me. And as I sometimes wish I could see the world, for one day, through Michaelangelo’s eyes, I’ve often wished that I could think, for one day, through Le Guin’s brain.

  55. Mandos

    My best friend in college is one of the earliest Linuxchix. I had never heard of BarCamp until now. Thanks. I like it: it supports Foo, but isn’t Foo.

    “My, it does me good to see that someone else has noticed the way a certain personality type dominates many open source groups. The feeling I often took away from my open source involvement was a sense of hanging out there all alone, twisting in the wind. Many times I’d witness some jerk saying or doing something completely, disgustingly, blindly racist/sexist/homophobic, and I’d call him on it expecting the troops to back me up. But the troops never came.”

    I think there are two different things here. Political consciousness is never really very high among coders, who dislike politics. For instance, the high presence of right-wing libertarians is a reaction to the belief that the rest of the world is trying to interfere with them by making them think politically, among other things. A few become very narrow commies, like RMS, and he’s totally focused on one specific aspect of the problem.

    Then there’s another, more general personality issue, which reflects itself in unhelpfulness to newcomers. Since women are trained to lack confidence—well, they aren’t helped by this attitude.

    And an example:

    http://www.gnomejournal.org/article/48/the-womens-summer-outreach-program
    http://trends.newsforge.com/article.pl?sid=06/08/10/2219218&from=rss

  56. Violet Socks

    Anyone here read A Door Into Ocean? That was the first feminist sci-fi I ever read, about 20 years ago. I was mesmerized.

  57. Mandos

    Yes, I have read A Door Into Ocean, and Slonczewski continued that series with more and more intriguing books. Have you read the latest? Brain Plague, unless she’s written something else lately. Brain Plague is I think her best work, although it isn’t specifically feminist—but so imaginative. A very interesting look into domination, power, religion, addition via the mechanism of human characters who are gods to a population of micropeople living in the convolutions of their brains.

  58. Mandos

    Er, addiction, d’ph!

  59. Becker

    If I recall aright–and perhaps I don’t–Roddenberry changed the script to “The City at the Edge of Forever” so drastically that Ellison -wanted- his credit removed, but Roddenberry wouldn’t do it.

    The big one Ellison wasn’t credited for was the Terminator movies, which he claimed were based on some of his “Outer Limits” episodes. The courts fixed that problem though.

  60. saltyC

    You’d think that with the speculative premise of science fiction and fantasy, there would be more authors open to seeing what it’s like to be the “other”. One positive example is Michael Moorcock, who cultivated a friendship with and promoted the ideas of Andrea Dworkin. And he invented the only albino character ever who was a good guy.

  61. saltyC

    I nominate Becker for King Nerd.

  62. Becker

    Thanks, saltyC! If elected I promise a firm but fair (slide) rule.

    But speaking of Moorcock and Dworkin, here’s a link–you’ve probably seen this, but maybe others haven’t–to a 1995 interview between the two. As a Dworkin introduction and overview, it ain’t bad:

    http://www.nostatusquo.com/ACLU/dworkin/MoorcockInterview.html

  63. Violet Socks

    Have you read the latest? Brain Plague, unless she’s written something else lately.

    No, I haven’t, but I’m intrigued by your description. The last micro-people sci-fi I read was Flux, though I think those particular microscopic folks were living in a star. Flux was years ago, and for all I know there’s a whole sub-genre of micro-people science fiction.

  64. Mandos

    I think I read Flux but I can’t remember. There’s is a kind of sub-sub-genre of microscopic people. Another example is Greg Bear’s Blood Music, but the focus is very different—the microscopic people are totally alien to our psyches. Brain Plague is about civilizations, and it’s a kind fractal microcosm of Slonczewski’s other worcks. Intriguing question that’re explored: who has rights and who has responsibilities in this situation? Can an equal partnership be created when one is clearly dependent on the other?

  65. Ron Sullivan

    Mandos:

    Ringworld is fascinatingly imaginative, but Larry Niven is fairly—and perhaps a little gleefully—uncharitable towards women.

    I’ve muttered darkly for years (it’s a hobby of mine, muttering darkly) that Niven should be allowed to design worlds and, subject to editing, nonhuman life forms, but should be unplugged and returned to the storage locker before he’s allowed to get near character or plot.

    But for me, the greatest of all SF writers is Carolyn Janice Cherry

    I knew there was something basically sane and sound about you.

    Vera, I’ve read Charnas, and, yikes. Not cheerful — I can believe what I’ve heard about her having to wait a decade or so to write the third book of that trilogy because the first two depressed her so much. I couldn’t put the first two down, though.

    Have I mentioned Kage Baker here yet? Great fun.

  66. Pony

    Amananta on why women aren’t going to thank you anytime soon Mandos:

    http://amananta.wordpress.com/2006/09/08/gratitude/

  67. Mandos

    Pony,

    1. I’m not sure what that article has to do with me, especially since I blogged about something similar myself, ie, how patronizing self-satisfied Western media are in comparing the West to the Muslim world regarding women. I’m like, the last person to tell people how women should be grateful that the west isn’t like Saudi Arabia.

    2. I’m not sure where I asked to be thanked. I don’t write to please you. I write because it intrigues me.

  68. Pony

    You’re here to be used. Shut up.

  69. Mandos

    Hunh?

  70. Pony

    It seemed fitting to put your name at the end of it. In case your sense of self-importance was waning. At all.

    Just read it fercrissake.

  71. Mandos

    Ah. Gotcha. I thought you were talking in code, but you were using a literary device.

  72. wabewawa

    Oh, oh, oh, speaking of Ellison–he’s rather sparked another controversy again recently, with his “puckish” ways (heck, who remembers the ERA anymore anyways?):

    http://pnh.livejournal.com/25131.html (see #3)

    http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-4653991510586546104&q=harlan ellison connie willis

    http://www.edrants.com/?p=4195

  73. Pony

    Mandos on women in maths:

    Thanks. That was exactly three.

  74. Mandos

    Actually only one: Emily Noether. The first was a physicist and the next was a computer scientist. And yes, I’m only talking about those who’ve made it into any sort of popular recognition. Which means only one of the three: Marie Curie.

  75. Luckynkl

    Rosalind Franklin discovered DNA in the early 1950′s. Watson, Crick and Wilkin stold her research, work and DNA model and claimed credit for it and received the Nobel Prize. Tho all admit that Franklin played “an important role” in the discovery of DNA (important role, my ass, it was *her* model), her name has yet to appear in any official capacity as a co-discoverer. Because of her sex, she could be ripped off and denied the Prize.

    Another interesting woman was Mileva Marie Einstein. But everyone knows her as Albert Einstein’s wife. It turns out she was the genius, not her jerk of a husband. Apparently the Theory of Relativity was hers, not his. It appears that a lot of the credit that given to Albert, should’ve been given to her. She was the bright one. Albert was only at best, mediocre. Little wonder they couldn’t find anything special about Albert Einsten’s brain when they dissected it. They had the wrong brain.

    And then we have the ill fated Zelda Fitzgerald, a brilliant writer who had the misfortune of having F. Scott Fitzgerald as a husband. Insanely jealous that she was a better writer than he was, he had her committed, where she died in a fire.

    One begins to wonder if men invented or discovered much of anything. Even their religions and gods were a rip off. It seems the only thing men were ever very good at was lying, stealing and cheating.

  76. Pony

    Tell us more about Mileva. I have two family members who worship Einstein. :|

  77. Pony

    Beginning:
    http://www.pbs.org/opb/einsteinswife/classroom/lesson2.htm

    “Why was Mileva’s name removed when the papers were published?” Ask students what the theories are. (Some believe that there was a collaboration based on writings and outside evidence. Others believe she is simply a “sounding board” for Albert’s work.) Discuss with students their own opinion about Mileva. She had the education and the ability to conduct the research. They worked closely together for years, but she is not always listed on the papers.”

  78. Pony

    Mandos said: “I’m only talking about those who’ve made it into any sort of popular recognition.”

    83 eminent physicists
    http://cwp.library.ucla.edu/

  79. Pony

    And this from the Mileva Einstein link:

    “She limps because of a displaced hip, a birth defect unusually common in the region.”

    Probably some asshole obstetrician with forceps.

  80. Luckynkl

    I guess Mileva and Albert were divorced? I heard mention it was in the divorce papers. Apparently she had to keep her mouth shut and he had to pay her hush money.

    I’ve also heard mention from a few people now that Albert was a very abusive husband. So a picture is emerging of a man that beat his wife and stold her work. Some hero.

    But notice how Einstein’s IQ and work was just accepted and not questioned? Compare that to how Marilyn vos Savant is treated. Marilyn has the highest IQ ever recorded in history. And the boys just won’t stand for it. They spend countless hours trying to discredit her. “It just can’t be!” the boys cry. It is, after all, men’s divine right to lord over women. God says so!

    Little wonder women have been denied education over the millenia. If you can’t beat ‘em, just eliminate them from the competition! What a splendid way to shore up male superiority! If women can’t read and write, they can’t compete and they can’t record history! Throw into the fray that women couldn’t inherit or own property (which would include patents), couldn’t keep their wages (it went to the nearest male relative), own a bank account, let alone vote and voila! Instant male superiority! Just add water and stir.

    Of course, in recent relative history, these bans have been lifted on many women globally (tho many still remain under the ban). I guess the boys were confident that they had all their ducks in a row and had done enough to keep women out of the competition. But more than likely, they started believing their own lies. Despite milleniums of oppression, double standards and sexism, women not only caught up to men academically, but surpassed them in just a few short decades. Porn, sex work, rape and violence against women rise in direct proportion to women’s gains and progress. And so does war.

  81. Pony

    I just found her website, and a good example of what you’re saying re men just can’t believe it! All the great MALE mathematical minds lining up to hoo haw over her wrong. But she wasn’t.

    http://www.marilynvossavant.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=64?f=1&sid=380cd019112c5f2d2ef9f2f7b7a60098

  82. Luckynkl

    The blatant sexism and the attacks on her sex is nauseating, no? These boys don’t even have enough sense to be embarrassed by it. So I’ll be embarrassed for them and their arrogant sense of entitlement to male superiority. If that’s what they were hoping to accomplish, they only succeeded in doing the opposite. Oh, I’m so embarrassed for them!

  83. Pony

    I just received a message from the patriarchy:

    “Not even close. She did do the best X-ray crystalography on it, up to that time. She did not work and play well with others, and looked, sounded, and had a personality very much like Ayn Rand. Watson detested her, but stole her data when she refused all collaboration with anybody. That data was only one small part of the puzzle, and Watson made a leap with it which Franklin would never have been able to make, even if she knew all the other stuff, which she didn’t.

    Possibly she would have shared a Nobel in chem if she hadn’t died early. Read the Wiki for DNA (history part) and for Franklin herself, which is sympathetic. And for Heavensake read the Double Helix— one of the greatest and most honest books about doing science ever written.”

  84. Bendy Quicker

    The other day on I Love Lucy: Ricky spanks Lucy.

    Nuff said.

  85. Pony

    Oh you do have to read the wiki bio on Rosalind Franklin. Apparently, King’s College was not sexist. NuhUh. Although there was a men’s only dining room, most of the patriarchy would not dine there and instead preferred the mixed gender dining room. Why cause the men’s dining room was overwhelmed by theologians. Women 1 Theologians 0.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rosalind_Franklin

  86. Pony

    Rosalind Franklin: better

    http://www.physicstoday.org/vol-56/iss-3/p42.html

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