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May 28 2009

Cuntalinagate

Just checking in to see how my “indictment” is going.

I see I have been voted off Savage Death Island. Brilliant.

Oh, looky. I’m likened to Don Imus! Ha! Good one.

And several demands for a public apology, as though I were some elected official who has trodden upon Roe v Wade in a pair of Louboutin stilettos on her way to sell a truckload of Moldovan teenagers to a sex slaver. Omigod, Twisty said “cuntalina,” she’ll probably be advocating labiaplasty next!

Ah, but wait. You know? I think I ought to clarify something. Just for the hell of it.

This is what I want to clarify: Twisty didn’t say it. I did. Twisty Faster is a work of fiction. She is a figment of the imagination of me, a real person named Jill. Twisty’s lobe is currently blown and is dripping grotesquely from the rafters down at the bunkhouse, so I, Jill, Twisty’s accommodating ghost writer, will be sitting in for her today.

Jill is a much better name than Twisty, isn’t it? When I was inventing the internet feminist I thought about letting her be Jill, too, but in the end I decided it would be too confusing if we were both named the same thing, and unlike Twisty I am Jill-centric, so I kept “Jill” for myself and gave her the goofy sobriquet. She pretends it’s cool, but has never forgiven me.

But I digress.

As I was saying — “I”, for the moment, being this Jill person of whom you are now suddenly and perhaps uncomfortably aware — Twisty and I have much in common. We are both geniuses, for example. We’re both spinster aunts. We like tacos. We both have obstreperal lobes. We’re world-famous concert violinists. We both think patriarchy sucks shit through Hefty bags. We’re both incredibly good-looking.

But alas, there the similarities end. Twisty is an alien from the planet Obstreperon. She is a superhero and pretty exclusively an internet feminist and is not real.

I, on the other hand, am an actual person. Happily, I’m no Platonic ideal. I’m not a paragon either, or an ideologue, or a charismatic cult leader, or a figment living only inside the mind of whatever philosopher-computer happens to type in my URL. I’m just some chump writer, chumping along like anybody else.

In fact, it turns out that I, Jill, have facets. Fortunately, not all of them are endearing. One of my best unendearing facets is that I drool on my pillow when I sleep. Another is a growing impatience with the rigidity with which Twisty is expected to conduct herself.

The heart bleeds for poor old Twisty; she’s constantly on the verge of being sabotaged by her crappy human ghost-writer. Twisty, a staunch dogmatist, probably wouldn’t use the word “cuntalina” to describe some antifeminist knob unless I, Jill, had had it up to here with that relentless, sanctimonious, supercilious Metrical Formula of Internet Feminist Conformity and Propriety, and had given in to the urge to let fly a deeply satisfying misdemeanor, yup, on purpose, because it blows my lobe, this impossible effort to continually accommodate every little stultifying molecule of the feminist archetype.

Another of my unendearing facets is poor impulse control. For which foible Twisty now suffers. Poor, noble Twisty, dripping from the rafters on accounta her imperfectly humble ghost writer.

So, before Twisty’s lobe regenerates and she comes back here throwing her big syllables around, let me, Jill, say the thing I came out to say: I’m damned glad you guys are taking this feminism thing seriously. Really. Nothing could be more heartwarming, except, possibly, certain heartwarming nature crap, than that there exist women who are able to grasp that “cuntalina” is an antifeminist slur.

But seriously, get off my fucking case already with this hypervigilant radfem hall monitor shit. The policey, self-righteous, gotcha bullshit around here generally is chapping my entire hide. When and if I commit some egregious ideological error that threatens the very fabric of the cosmos I’ll make Twisty fucking cop to it, as you fucking well know if you’ve been reading this blog for more than five minutes. But this cuntalina uproar is fucking absurd. Jayzus in a jetpack.

In conclusion: I’m not your fucking enemy, my dear asses, but if you like to think otherwise, I invite you to demand explanations and nominate Twisty for Misogynist of the Year to your heart’s content on some other fucking blog. The BDSMers hate Twisty, too, and will be happy to join you there.

Oh, and one last thing: to the blamer who thinks it’s OK to not like kids because kidness is a temporary condition: Your head’s up your ass, girlfriend, and I mean it in the kindest possible way. “Kids” are a class of people around the discrimination, domination, indoctrination, and abuse of whom entire cultures, industries, pathologies, and oppressive social systems flourish. Youth is temporary for the individual, yes, but a youth class persists; there is a constant supply of replacement children to keep this class well-stocked with hapless victims. Furthermore, the damage inflicted by expertly administered adult oppression techniques hardly vanishes the moment a kid turns 18.

But thanks for saying this: “I don’t know why Twisty used the term “cuntalina” but I gave her the benefit of the doubt.”

That was nice.

225 comments

6 pings

  1. MLH

    Well, yeah, I was taken aback when I read that term but when you consider how awesome the blog is in so many ways and how much it has taught me, it’s not that important. How’s the book coming, by the way?

  2. slownews

    Marvelous, Twisty Jill. Thank you. A shout out from St. Lou, where I still miss your RFT restaurant reviews.

    And childhood is not a choice. It’s mandatory, and all of us have been there. So society should show some respect. But does it? Of course not. IBTP

  3. estraven

    @slownews: I agree with everything you wrote. Except I’m not in St Louis :-).

    Jill Twisty, you are fabulous indeed.

  4. Whit

    I just wanted to pop in again, and say I lurve you and would make you some aerosol pancakes any time, even if you don’t lurve my bdsm-y-ness.

  5. micaaa

    mad props jill/twisty. i love your blog, and being the fembot that i am, took absolutely no offense to ‘cuntalina’ whatsoever. to quote my ever enlightening mother; sticks and stones my break your bones, but words can never hurt you…

  6. vinoveritas

    All you had to do was say that a cuntalina was a type of Texas Hill Country bird, and I, for one, would have totally bought it!

  7. givesgoodemail

    There’s no answer to my question about the chef’s job, and now Twisty’s lobeness is moistening the mesquite beams of her palatial mansi–er, her bunkhouse.

    Rats!

  8. Hannah

    Hi Jill,

    I’d expect all blamers to give Twisty the benefit of the doubt. I mean seriously, our rigid staunch dogmatist feminist archetype Twisty would just use a word such as “cuntalina” like any old misogynist??

    I Hope our superhero is well in the process of regeneration.

  9. magriff

    I think “Cuntalinagate” illustrates that peeps need to spend less time on the interwebs and more time fighting the patriarchy where it lives, which is definitely NOT on Jill’s blog.

  10. Kate Smith

    Fuck ‘em if they can’t take a joke.

    (Just yesterday, there was an op-ed in the paper, written by a woman, which started off by explaining that chivalry was killed off by feminists in the 70s, and I shouted, “You miserable cuntalina!” at the offending paper. No way to start a day, I tell you.)

    Thank you for blaming the patriarchy. It helps to know I’m not alone.

  11. Chocolate Tort

    There are a few good things to come out of Cuntalinagate. The first and most important is, of course, the term “Cuntalinagate.” It’s almost melodic. Second is something that I’ve seen occur on other feminist blogs – the acknowledgment that bloggers Are People Too, which means that they will occasionally let fly something like “cuntalina,” and it won’t serve to completely undermine every useful and interesting thing they’ve ever said. Third is an elaboration of the Jill/Twisty relationship. As a wannabe literary nerd, I found this hugely interesting from a narrative perspective.

  12. Shopstewardess

    “this hypervigilant radfem hall monitor shit”

    Yes. It reminds me of some early internet filth-filters which made it difficult for anyone from Scunthorpe, England, to go on line.

  13. ElleDee

    That’s all well and good, but is “cuntalina” = “cunt” + “javelina”? Because that’s what I really want it to be.

  14. Ron Sullivan

    “Don’t cry for me, Cuntalina.”

    “You were supposed to have been piss-tasteful.
    That’s all they wanted,
    Not much to ask for.”

    I suppose I’d have to read all the comments after that one to see if anyone else heard that first, but that’ll have to wait till after I take my daily Cozaar. But, ya know, Magic Mommas and Role Models and all that shit. Teflon underwear is all well and good but it gets kinda sweaty in hot weather.

    Never mind the spiders; it’s the chiggers that put me off.

  15. pheenobarbidoll

    do what now?

    This is what happens when you stop reading comments after a few posts. You miss cuntalina gate.

  16. liberality

    I don’t like the word cunt. Never have and never will. Words have power so that is why it matters. But sometimes I think it’s just a word for heaven’s sake–how can a word matter that much? I go back and forth on this issue in my head all the time. Most of the time I think words DO matter because they define concepts that are passed back and forth from person to person and signify specific meanings that are shared by the culture. Anyway, when I read the word “cuntalina” I thought it surely can’t be THAT word, it must be something I’ve never heard of. I ain’t as smart as you are. But even if it is THAT word, I still love you. Being Twisty must get old sometimes and I completely understand an occasional error, after all we are all human. You do a great service with this blog and for that I am thankful.

  17. JetGirl

    Hello Jill, nice to meet you!

  18. Antoinette Niebieszczanski

    (Lower lip protruding quiveringly, eyes welling) But I like having you on the Savage Death Island. If you get voted off, I’m coming with you.

  19. Mirisin

    I’m a first time poster here, partially because of this very issue, but a long, long time lurker.

    I’d suggest this Cuntalinagate post be added to “What the blamer should know before commenting.” It’s relevant, and it’s a problem a lot of fem sites & groups I read have.

    Sometimes we are capable of tearing each other down with even more zeal than we try and tear down the P because we aren’t infallible, and because it is easier to target a person rather than an institution to vent our frustrations on, or because someone we respect and who we wrongly assume we know well because we read her writing isn’t a paragon according to our standards, or maybe just because it’s been a long day and we’re in a bad mood.

    We gotta remember we’re all in the same boat, even if we don’t all have the same personalities and gripes, and that we’re all real people behind the keyboard. I think the anonymity of the internet disguises that fact too often.

  20. PhysioProf

    Another of my unendearing facets is poor impulse control.

    Welcome to the Did I Really Just Fucking Say/Do That!? club!

  21. verona

    I have been steady looking for excuses to use the term “Cuntalina” since I read it here. It’s damn fine creative profanity. All hail Cuntalina!

  22. Rachel II

    Thank you for saying this. I’ve never commented on your fantastic blog before because it’s saturated with dipwad “how you say it is more important than what you say” nimrods who can’t see the forest because the trees just aren’t quite green enough.

  23. Pulsar

    All this fuss.

    “Oh, and one last thing: to the blamer who thinks it’s OK to not like kids because kidness is a temporary condition…”
    Never said that. As I said to Agasaya back on the original thread, I was simply pointing out the difference between “I don’t like kids” and “I don’t like Mexicans”. I don’t believe both statements are “morally equivalent”, that’s not saying that I would defend either sentiment. I agree with everything you said about kids, I am just pointing out that each statement has its nuances and separate implications, just as “I don’t like Mexicans” is not the ethical equivalent of “I don’t like women”.

  24. Mel

    It’s so easy to slip and let fly a antifeminist slur when you are constantly surrounded by misogynistic crap as we so often are. It seeps into your brain despite your best efforts not to let it and I think this just reminds us that even the most radical feminists can’t totally escape it. I blame the patriarchy.

    And another note, not all BDSMers hate you. I’m one of them and I don’t! I get that people can have different opinions and I can still appreciate your commentary even if we don’t see eye to eye on this particular subject. I often take your comments and criticisms of BDSMers and think about it and roll it around with my own opinions. It’s good to stay critical, even of your own beliefs!

  25. DarthVelma

    You know, you would have done a lot better just to say, “I said it, it was stupid, I’m sorry.”

  26. Citizen Taqueau

    Grill, you got Magic Momma’ed and then you got trashed. Not cool and IBTP.

    Longtime listener, first-time caller. I love this blog. You and my good friend, phio.gistic and many, many others have helped me pull my head out of my ass and start to take a critical look at the systemic misogyny that I’d been buried in for so long it had started to seem like a sad but difficult truth. Thanks for writing so bravely. Your explosive obstreperousness and wicked humor peel down layer after layer, debunking the P while at the same time flushing it out. I no longer feel so helpless to examine and question and fight against the culture that claims I don’t exist. So I hope you’ll keep writing. But if you don’t, thanks for being there anyway.

  27. B. Dagger Lee

    It’s always time for Kipling!

    If you can keep your cuntalina when all about you
    Are losing theirs and blaming it on you

    –or:

    Whose cuntalinas these are I think I know.
    Her house is in the village though;

  28. Inkling

    My word, you are an arrogant bastard.

  29. undercover punk

    Jill, I called you out. Yes, I asked for your accountability. By your own admission, you used the term CUNTALINA on purpose. When the calls for your response were sounded, surely, a reaction from the Blametariat was expected (something more than blind adoration, that is). Whether our faux pas are the result of honest mistakes or willful insolence, I don’t believe in ignoring them for the sake of comfort.

    I do not enjoy hostility and I do not wish to fan its flames, for they are counter-productive to our shared interests. As I’ve already stated, I was treating you the way that I, as a non-superhero blogger, expect to be treated.

    I do not intend to nominate you for Misogynist of the Year, nor does Cuntalinagate invalidate your entire world view. That is hyperbole. Twisty’s blog has undeniable feminist value–particularly because of its reliability, popularity, humorous analogies/terminology, and the collective educational contribution it consistently offers to the students of feminism. I would never take that from you.

  30. B. Dagger Lee

    Oh, a few more–my personal favorites:

    cuntalina lived in a pretty how town
    (with up so many floating bells down)

    Someone else with an exploded obstreperol lobe:

    Because I could not stop for cuntalina,
    She kindly stopped for me.

  31. Jezebella

    DarthVelma, you totally missed the point, didn’t you?

    I, Jezebella, also have a ghost-writer named Jill, and I have to agree: it is an excellent name.

  32. birkwearingblamer

    Well, it is Savage Death Island, not Isle of Sparkly Unicorns and Rainbows. The latter would freak me out more.

    I like the Jill, who is just trying to live her life while putting up with shit, just like the rest of us.

  33. Tata

    I’d like to hear more about those tacos, if you don’t mind.

  34. bluey512

    But seriously, get off my fucking case already with this hypervigilant radfem hall monitor shit. The policey, self-righteous, gotcha bullshit around here generally is chapping my entire hide.

    You are the goddamn hall monitor. You wrote the feminist archetype you now find so stultifying.

  35. birkwearingblamer

    BDL, I hate Kipling, but with these alterations, I’m amused.

  36. Barn Owl

    Once, this little herd of cuntalinas spooked my horse on a trail ride.

    Or maybe they were javelinas. Or pessaries. I mean peccaries.

    *so confused by the conblogration*

    Anyway, Twisty/Jill, I love reading your blog and the heartwarming nature crap and the Savage Death Island perspective. Don’t let the interfering types get you down.

    And what magriff wrote, times two (at least). Yeah.

  37. B. Dagger Lee

    birkwearingblamer, Kipling is largely detestable–only the first one is him, the others are by more likeable poets.

  38. SKM

    I missed the original blogsplosion, but I’m just stopping by now to wish Twisty a speedy lobular regeneration and to second Chocolate Tort’s literary nerd’s fascination with the narrative implications of this post.

    May your tacos be always hot and crispy.

  39. Wolfhound

    Sometimes it’s just SO satisfying to utter/type an unfeminist, unenlightened, un-whatever slur, without examination of the consequences, or after examining said consequences, choosing to go full steam ahead anyhow with a grand, liberating “fuck it” attitude.

    Personally, I’m glad you didn’t apologize, Jill. I don’t usually rely on the mythical sandaled sky ghost for inspiration, but that dude was credited with some pithy remark regarding throwing stones, which I thought about yesterday while this whole kebbie-lebbie was going down. Maybe it’s not the best idea to refrain from casting stones, ever, but jesus mary and joseph on a popsicle stick, doesn’t a spinster aunt deserve a little slack once in a while? There’s got to be something else upon which the hollering hordes can unload their anger and scorn.

    None of this really needed to be said. But I’m pushing the damn “Blame” button anyhow.

  40. rootlesscosmo

    @B. Dagger Lee:

    did you know “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening” can be sung to “Hernando’s Hideaway,” from the musical “Pajama Game”? Now try and think of the poem without reflexively hearing that hypnotic tango:

    “Whoooose woods [beat beat] these are [beat beat] I think-I-know,” etc.

    @Jill: so you’re also Viktoria Mullova? Your recording of the Mendelssohn Concerto is killer!

  41. Rainbow Girl

    Cuntalina: a style of yoga meant to relax the mind of the exhausted radical feminist.

  42. Antoinette Niebieszczanski

    Thanks to you, Rootlesscosmo, I can no longer hear “We Kiss in a Shadow” from “The King and I” without laughing. What’s worse, if anyone else is around, I can’t explain.

  43. vinoveritas

    “My word, you are an arrogant bastard.”
    Seriously? Talk about not getting the point!

  44. Marilyn

    If you pronounce the “u” like “oo,” it sounds a lot better.

  45. vinoveritas

    (And in case the point wasn’t perfectly clear, using an anti-woman insult to chastise somebody for using an anti-woman insult is kind of completely stupid.) Ok, now I retire to the lawn with a cold beer.

  46. B. Dagger Lee

    rootlesscosmo, I did NOT know that, though I wouldn’t be surprised if a great many lyric poems can be sung to the tune of “Hernando’s Hideaway.”

    That might explain why for a couple of years around the turn of the century I was suddenly and profoundly allergic to most lyric poetry, though I’d spent a great many years studying and writing exactly that. Too much tango.

  47. humanbein

    Brava, Jill. Stumbling along as I do, I hardly notice when someone else stubs a toe. I dislike hearing a chorus of boos when a great dancer makes a landing of lesser grace, but still with her customary visible passion.

  48. yttik

    Cheer up, Twisty. All we demand from women is constant perfection. You’ll just have to squeeze it in somewhere between ruining people’s lives and world domination.

  49. uccellina

    *claps*

  50. beethovenqueen

    I like Twisty A LOT but I love Jill.
    (xcept not the drooling on the pillow!)

    (weird to have to hit the “blame button” for these statements.
    Guess I’m blamin’ myself!)

  51. inanna

    Hi. I never post. But….

    Certainly Twisty’s word usage was in keeping with her usual style of sardonic expression, which is informed by an underlying wealth of cultural knowledge/analysis.

    Usually, she is applauded for this very feat; now she is met with censure. The objection seems completely off. I read “cuntalina” as a fairly idiosyncratic Twisty expression.

    Someone used the words “feminist luminary” to describe her. I find that very apt. I have been inspired and informed by her for years.
    In light of that fact, I am impressed by those whose intellectual honesty compelled them to be critical of their superhero.

  52. procrastinatrix

    @ yttik: word! and LOL!

    Hi, Jill, I’m a coward because I didn’t weigh in on cuntalinagate even though I was reading the comments (not that anyone is dying for my opinion or should be). This post has encouraged me to, though.

    I was confused, because I did think it an odd choice of epithet, but I really relish when Twisty lets loose with a “fuckin knob” on here, so in the end I kept silent. Gendered insults towards men in a patriarchy are of course vastly different from gendered insults towards women, but I find both really satisfying to shout sometimes. Hey, I’m fighting an enemy inside my own head, right?

    You raise many interesting points about blogger/reader relationships and obligations or lack thereof. As a reader I love that blamers feel free to call you/Twisty out on stuff, and that you/Twisty feel free (it is your Island) to tell them where to get off. I can see how it might get old at times and feel like a waste of energy better spent fighting the owners of our society(ies), and I hope that posts like this one help to regenerate the O-lobe.

    All the best!

  53. Citizen Taqueau

    @rootlesscosmo:

    “My little horse must think it queer/ to stop without a pool hall near.”

  54. Karen

    I’m not handling this revelation of Twisty’s secret identity very well!! Can we just forget it ever happened?

    As for ‘cuntalina’, I found it off the normal Twisty standard; since I don’t live up to that standard I abstained from judging.

  55. MaryK

    Cuntalina? That sounds like a swimwear line at the Miss USA pageant.

    Dear Lard, I love this blog.

  56. Inkling

    @vinoveritas: You missed mine. ;-) I wasn’t condemning, I wasn’t criticizing, nor was I complimenting or coddling. I was merely making an observation. I’m sure Twisty/Jill will interpret it in the spirit it was meant.

  57. MaryK

    Oops. I should clarify. Catalina used to be the official swimwear of the Miss USA pageant. It sounds funny, just like Cuntalina sounds funny.

  58. frog princess

    From time to time I’ve been astonished to hear words come out of my mouth in reference to other women that shock me. It’s like I’m channeling my dad’s worst attitudes, but even he in his raging never said some of the words I’ve said in anger and frustration. I am ashamed of saying these words and I am disgusted with myself when I find myself using them.

    I consider myself a feminist, but many would drive me out and starve me as a poser if some of the comments on the cuntalina post are to be believed. If I say a nasty, sexist word or think it, I correct myself and I move on, aware that I’m as screwed up as anybody else and I’m not better or all that much worse than most. I was raised in a sexist nation, by sexist people, nursed at the bosom of the patriarchy–wouldn’t it be more surprising if I didn’t let loose with an occasional hateful epithet? I acknowledge my hatefulness and move on. It’s how I deal with my racism, too. Wallowing in my own shit is exhausting, so I try not to do it too much.

    Cold Comfort Farm was in the tape deck on a long drive yesterday and there’s a wonderful passage in it discussing the habit of a certain kind of Christian to self-flagellate, self-question and engage in daily, thorough, delicious, and erotic uncovering of sin and evil in self and others. Like those Church of the Quivering Brethren types, some feminists seem to feel entitled to put others through the psychic equivalent of the martyrdom of Saint Bartholomew, skinning others alive for someone else’s real or imagined failures to live up to a personal and unique Platonic ideal of feminist philosophy the accuser has dreamt up or hoped for.

    Maybe that flaying’s just another aspect of the ugly desire to see a neighbor burned as a witch. Maybe uncovering something dark in someone else makes the stinking tar that boils around inside your own self seem to stink and burn a little less. Maybe it’s just a gas, gas, gas! to point out others’ peccadilloes. I’m not without sin in the area of character assassination, I confess.

    Alternatively, the “say it isn’t so!” posts could be the cries de coeur of children who need their parents to be perfect and right and infallible. Those lost souls are more to be pitied than censured, really.

    Jill, thank you very much for sharing your humor and your talent and your outrage and for inspiring me and many others to at least keep talking and falling down and talking and laughing and having a place to do it in relative safety. I’m grateful to you for providing me with a place to come and be strengthened. Peace to you.

  59. mir

    Glad you addressed it, Jill, thanks.

    Gotta say you and some of the blametariat are hitting the ‘humorless feminist’ trope pretty hard though:

    “Fuck em if they can’t take a joke”, “interfering types”, “hollering hordes”, “hypervigilant radfem hall monitor shit”. Really? Some women object to the use of the word cunt and they “can’t take a joke”? They’re being “hall monitors?” Are you fucking kidding me? Someone suggested that those who object to the word cunt “spend less time on the interwebs and more time fighting the patriarchy where it lives”. So don’t object to gendered slurs, ladies, go do something important?

    Look, it’s possible to love this blog, to appreciate and respect Twisty/Jill, without defending the use of the word cunt. Jesus Christ this is basic shit, and so beneath all of us. Fuck.

  60. sonia

    everyone gets pissed off, and there are certain words available for pissed off usage, and being that we’ve all been raised in some hardcore woman hating, those words sometimes fit the moment.

    nobody’s perfect.

    I’m less offended when a feminist says “cunt,” than some guy. that’s my personal prejudice. it makes no sense, but that’s how it sits.

  61. sonia

    and also! (because I can never comment just once), we totally need a word that is insulting for women who hate women and stand in the way of woman-positive stuff. because that gets under my skin every day. and then we could eliminate the c, b, and other words from pissed off feminist moments.

  62. OVERLADY

    we totally need a word that is insulting for women who hate women and stand in the way of woman-positive stuff

    Collaborator? Hmmmm
    Quisling? Nah
    Dickbreath? HA HA HA No that’s no good!

    Let’s have a contest!

  63. Cycles

    Frog Princess, that was beautiful. Made me realize: oppressive words, even when you try not to use them, even when you’re one of the people hurt by them, can still be hard to quit precisely because of the established power differential. They are quick and strong and devastating. It takes practice to wean yourself of the power trip.

    Obviously, Twisty knows a thing or two about antifeminist slurs, so it’s not like an apology would start a dialog wherein she’d suddenly realize that patriarchy sucks. What would an apology accomplish? I started out asking that rhetorically, but if anybody has a response, I’m curious.

    Apology or not, the root problem is the big P. Where women’s genitals are considered so repugnant that few people ever get around to questioning why “cunt” is such a powerful insult. Where even staunch internet radical feminists are tempted to use the word in anger because it packs a punch.

  64. bertalou

    In my mind Im goin’ to cuntilina
    Can’t you see the sunshine
    Can’t you just feel the moonshine
    Maybe just like a friend of mine
    Jill hit me from behind
    Yes I’m goin’ to cuntilina in my mind

    You just keep on blamin’ girlfriend.

  65. Bird

    Thanks for being human, Jill. There are no saints in the feminist world, and for that I am deeply grateful.

  66. Medbh

    Twisty, ‘cuntalina’ from you compares with hearing ‘uncle tom’ from bell hooks. It’s a fitting appellation for a lap cat of patriarchy.

  67. WindinHerTeeth

    Well, see, I LIKE the word “cunt”, because it is just that–powerful. Because it’s so powerful I am careful when/how to use it. And like all powerful words, it can be used with negative connotations or with raging dark power when I refer to my own genitals. AAAND, I consider myself a pretty tough radfem *gasp* at the same time. I don’t actually say it out loud much at all because society has attached woman-hating to it and I don’t want people thinking I’m with them on that one.

    It seems like Twisty or Jill felt this was one of those special occasions.
    What saddens me about humanity at times like these, even in feminist communities, is the inability to deal with contradicting information in other human beings though we do it all the fucking time ourselves. We understand ourselves to be complicated and full of contradictions, and forgive ourselves for that deep down, but call each other out on these little things, knowing full well where someone is coming from when they say/do something that is generally out of character.

  68. Inkling

    “…we totally need a word that is insulting for women who hate women and stand in the way of woman-positive stuff. because that gets under my skin every day. and then we could eliminate the c, b, and other words from pissed off feminist moments.”

    Misogynista? How about traitorous, back-stabbing b—-ird-poopie-head!

    In all seriousness, I think the best term for a woman meeting this criteria is “a woman living, breathing, eating, sleeping, shitting patriarchy”, which was all of us, once upon a time. Some women are more emotionally invested in patriarchy than others. I’m not so sure that collaborator-shaming is the most effective way to convert the uninitiated, kwim? It’s not unlike hurling epithets at prostitutes in an effort to wake them up to their role in perpetuating gender inequity. Blame the victim and all that rot.

  69. Felicity

    If you were expelled from Savage Death Island they’d only follow you!

    The radfems on the other thread obviously just don’t know when to shut up.

  70. Jonathan

    I’d just like to compare this incident to John Stewart’s Mea Culpa in which he, IMHO, ran like a moral coward by apologizing for calling Harry Truman a war criminal.

    Is Twisty/Jill infallible? No. But I dare say that the Twisty’s moral compass is as far above the syndicated social commentators as her pay is below theirs.

  71. Laughingrat

    Some of the discussion that cropped up over in that thread was really interesting. Even though it probably sucked to have people going on at you about a relatively minor infringement of the Radical Feminist Convention of 1873, it did open up a troubling subject for exploration.

    If Twisty–or Jill–occasionally flies off the handle and uses an antifeminist slur, well, maybe it’s just another example of how we all get fed up now and then and how, in this matrix of Patriarchy, sometimes shit’s gonna fly out of our mouths that reinforces the dominant paradigm. Patriarchy’s just that insidious.

  72. Kali

    we totally need a word that is insulting for women who hate women and stand in the way of woman-positive stuff

    Cocksucker? Buttkisser? These words are more acccurately descriptive of tools of the patriarchy than the b-word or c-word.

  73. Pinko Punko

    I don’t like the word, but I think it contains multitudinous meaning. That is the problem with words. They mean different things to different people at the same time. I think some people really do get mad at the use because of what the word means to them, and I can’t begrudge that. I think others use their mad costume as rhetorical leverage. This is pretty obvious. I think one of the problems is being really mad and being fake really mad for the sake of the goal of superiority and slagging off someone for the sake of group status is pretty indistinguishable.

    I’d like to posit that J. put the words into TF’s mouth to represent the f***ing near constant Prisoner’s Dilemma of choices women face when under the big P. And even though in many cases Collaboration with the P is done for survival, it seems that in others the collaboration and betrayal is truly cutting and horrible. I think the word was used to suggest the magnitude of that. Maybe it is because TF wouldn’t even just use ALL CAPS to make a point she had to go to the C-word.

    Collateral damage there likely be when the big guns come out.

  74. Felicity

    “So don’t object to gendered slurs, ladies, go do something important?”

    Precisely. I thought radfems went by subtle behaviour cos otherwise we’d have nothing to go by. The bigger picture is always most important. The bigger picture in the other thread was Twisty angry about a patriarchy- flattering cow; unfortunately the bigger picture here. is a bunch of feminists desperate and coming out of the woodwork to flame. The smaller picture is that she used cuntalina, and if we operated by specifics and what this means if she said this and that, we could pick out problems till it bored us. And it is boring and non- refreshing.

    With this game unfortunately we need to be cool with a lot of things that in normal life we’d get angry over. Working with pro- prostitution feminists for e.g pisses me off but we smile nicely and look at the bigger picture. Otherwise we come into this thing with our backs to one another and our arms folded. When most important is that we GET ALONG otherwise feminism does not exist, or may as well not exist.

  75. Inkling

    Felicity, shut up.

  76. Sutton

    Guys call each other “prick” and “dickhead” and the like all the time, and nobody calls them sexist. Or antimasculinist.

  77. Felicity

    Fuck you cunt. :)

  78. Tomecat

    …we totally need a word that is insulting for women who hate women and stand in the way of woman-positive stuff.

    Exactly. Just yesterday I found myself floundering for a word to describe a particularly despicable tool of the patriarchy, who also happened to be a woman. The lack of just such a word left my explanation of why I so dislike her sounding somewhat flat and did not reflect my very real anger. Every. Single. Word. I could think of was a gendered slur. So goes the patriarchy.

  79. Samantha B

    Wow. I missed a lot over the past few days.

    So, yeah, I was mildly taken aback at the (apparently horribly offending) Word of the Day, but I decided just to add it to my ever increasing understanding of patriarchy blaming, Twisty-style. In other words, I absorbed it and moved on.

  80. Inkling

    “Fuck you cunt. :)”

    No, no, no. It’s: “Fuck you, cue ball cunt. :)” I’d prefer my status as a shaven-snatched rad fem to live on in ignominy on IBTP.

  81. Spiders

    I agree we need more non-gendered insult alternatives. I find it’s safe to go with shithead, arsehole or dirtbrain. Here in Australia scumbag is popular and considered non-gendered, but I’m told that in American culture it *is* gendered (?).
    Where do we stand on bastard?

    I’m also wondering if The Cuntalina will be the next cheesy dance craze.

  82. ghost of a dead nazarene

    Yes, well, I get to read but I don’t get to comment. That doesn’t seem very fair to me.

    But, of course, I don’t have my own blog. I just rely on the kindness of strangers.

  83. tinfoil hattie

    Well, I never knew a damn thing about “blaming” before I started reading this blog 2-3 years ago (how time flies!). Reading this blog and Twisty’s eloquent posts made me think and re-think everything about myself, my family, my family of origin, my relationships, my prejudices, and what I stand for.

    I guess what I am confused by is: giving blow jobs is not feminist, because you don’t really like it, you’re just serving patriarchy; eating meat isn’t feminist, because it contributes to the oppression of animals; hating children isn’t feminist because children are an oppressed class; but objecting to the use of the word “cuntalina” is being a hall monitor, taking things too seriously, and going all rad-femmy. Jeez, can’t we take a joke?

    So I don’t know what’s up. Was I supposed to guess from the context of the post, that Twisty/Jill/whoever was “just joking”?

    If there’s one thing I learned from this blog, it’s to call out patriarchal bullshit and oppression when I see it. And that’s what I did, and I’m sorry if it hurt your feelings, Twisty/Jill. That wasn’t my intention, just as it wasn’t your intention to hurt anyone’s feelings by using the term “cuntalina” to refer to a writer with whom you disagree.

    But I don’t apologize for calling it out, especially not on this blog, of all places.

  84. Felicity

    Shaven- snatched status radfem? You’re proud about giving into the patriarchy? (I’m not telling you what I’ve got, why would I feel the need to either prove something about my radfem status, or lack thereof, or to be that disgusting).

    Clearly we have those radfems with great humanity and those who might have an idea, but are moreso here to annoy everybody else. Just FUCK OFF. I’m making my own island with Twisty and other gods of high intelligence and morality, onto which nice feminists are welcome. Pompous bitches unfortunately get booted.

  85. magriff

    I have a feeling that if we want Twisty to keep on blamin’ this thread should simmer down, now.

  86. Linda Atkins

    “Cuntalina” didn’t bother me in the slightest. It made me chuckle, and seemed to be very well deserved.

  87. Kauri

    I agree with someone above that the hall monitor attitude is actually engendered by this blog’s rules of engagement. Live by the flame, die by the flame. Or, live by the feminist crit-selfcrit, die by the feminist crit-selfcrit. And I don’t like the word cunt being used as an insult, although I think “cuntalina” is a very pretty word. We should keep moving towards all positive uses of it expressed above. I might start calling my cunt “cuntalina”. Or my next cat. Or, I might start using it as a word for my favourite feminists. We’re all azaming* cuntalinas!

    For an insult word for women who are conscious collaborators with patriarchy, I like quisling actually (as mentioned by someone else above). It sounds like what it is, and it has an interesting history. And it’s a word that’s a little out of fashion, and thus ripe for reboot.

    But I also like the way this discussion’s going. I recently un-subbed altogether from Bitch PhD over the way she handled AnnCoulterTransJokeGate. I’m so over self-regarding hipster bigotry, which is just the latest face of privileged white middle-class bullshit. But Jill (and/or Twisty) has already shown she is capable of some righteous self-examination and apology, and I want this blog to keep going. It’s all that keeps me sane some days and has informed my thinking in ways that have saved me.

    So: Hugs Twisty! And Jill.

    * A long time ago, a good friend who was dyslexic gave me a fabulous feminist book for my birthday and wrote in the inscription that it was an “azaming book for an azaming friend”. I’ve loved the word “azaming” ever since, even though it doesn’t officially exist.

  88. Linda Atkins

    After pondering the matter for a few more moments, and reading a few comments, I suppose that if you had called the woman a “cunt,” period, I would also have been a bit taken aback. “Cuntalina,” however, perfectly gets across the idea that you are thoroughly pissed off, but still enough in possession of your faculties to come up with something witty and unique.

  89. estampa

    Rock on Jill, this post has been one of the most refreshingly honest items I’ve read in awhile. I tip my beer to you.

  90. Fool on a Hill

    I don’t comment here often, but I read all the time!

    Here’s the thing. Words have power, including words on the internet. However, I am way more likely to let a commonly hurtful or abused word slide when it comes from the mouth of someone in the same boat as I am, someone who is hurt by the word and therefore has more right to choose whether to use it. So when Twisty/Jill used “cuntalina,” I thought, “should I care? Nah. Because does she have the power to oppress me with it? Nah.”

    And honestly, sometimes I get sick of saying that my head hurts like the dickens, and I just want to say that it hurts like a bitch.

  91. coathangrrr

    Misogynista

    Effing brilliant.

  92. Laughingrat

    The lack of just such a word left my explanation of why I so dislike her sounding somewhat flat and did not reflect my very real anger.

    I usually settle for “collaborator,” or if I’m feeling more subtle and particularly snide, I’ll call ‘em “a Good Woman.” Cos that’s what Patriarchy says they are, within limits anyway–since according to Patriarchy, after all, the only really good woman is a dead woman. But while those terms adequately express my own venom, they aren’t something that means much to a broader group in the way the usual anti-female hate slurs do in our society. And in that sense, “Good Woman” and “collaborator” are not as satisfying as they could be.

  93. Kelly

    In conclusion: I’m not your fucking enemy, my dear asses, but if you like to think otherwise, I invite you to demand explanations and nominate Twisty for Misogynist of the Year to your heart’s content on some other fucking blog. The BDSMers hate Twisty, too, and will be happy to join you there.

    A persecution complex does not suit you.

  94. Nolabelfits

    I can understand that there are women on this blog that were personally offended by the word. (although I am not one of them) I also found some of the reactions to being offended equally offensive, like demanding an apology. Anytime anyone demands something of me I get really pissed off.

    I have on occasion said shit to my kids that I’ve totally regretted. Some of the things I have said and done have made them feel like shit. Its not me, really, its my upbringing and my own shitty enculturation talking. Sometimes I’ve apologized to them, sometimes I have not. Point is, I am an imperfect person, so is Twisty/Jill. I think the content of the entire blog speaks for itself. I could probably go through any one of y’alls blogs and find shit to interpret as anti-feminist.

  95. Squiggy

    The jolt of reading Twisty’s use of the word cuntalina was followed instantly by hoping she would write about her use of it. Daily and sometimes hourly I would check the blog with hopes high that she would speak of it. It didn’t diminish my highest esteem for Twisty or Jill one whit. I hungrily wanted to know one more fascinating detail of the marvelous workings of her astounding mind. I’ve never read writing that is more brilliant, incisive, truthful, and laugh-out-loud thrilling. If I didn’t have this blog and Twisty/Jill in my life it would be a hollow shell of it’s current glory.

  96. Agasaya

    Perhaps the shell-shocked readers should review the content of the post which led to ‘cuntalinagate’. Go back and read the incredible outpouring of hatred for all women by that mental hernia who determined that motherhood defines those born with XX chromosomes. The rest of us were consigned to subservience to, and adulation for, the working womb.

    Having worked with many abused children, I bless the foresight of women who don’t assume the responsibility for bearing and raising a child because they know they aren’t suited for the task. If you had little choice in becoming a mother, your child wasn’t asked either. Obtaining decent employment conditions for working parents requires a defense of children’s rights to proper care by people legally and morally mandated to put them first.

    It is anti-feminist to talk about kids as if they are a race of uniform beings responsible for creating chaos and disorder in your version of a woman’s life. Any disapproval is really about our inability or unwillingness to meet their needs. Kids trump feminism because they raise the stakes to humanism. All women are responsible for shaping the world in the image of how you want these new people to grow up and view women. Spinster aunts are great at assisting in such efforts. It does take a fucking village.

    The patriarchy automatically damages kids but instead of debating gender-worthy insults, please go write a letter to the advertisers who paid that black hole of humanity (is an astronomical epithet ok?), to relegate all women to the role of incubator.

    I now return you to Savage Death Island.

  97. Mog

    But seriously, get off my fucking case already with this hypervigilant radfem hall monitor shit. The policey, self-righteous, gotcha bullshit around here generally is chapping my entire hide. When and if I commit some egregious ideological error that threatens the very fabric of the cosmos I’ll make Twisty fucking cop to it, as you fucking well know if you’ve been reading this blog for more than five minutes. But this cuntalina uproar is fucking absurd. Jayzus in a jetpack.

    A-fucking-men. It’s asinine and, dare I say it, a tad paternalistic, to think it is one’s personal responsibility to lecture other feminists about things which they are already clearly well aware of. Is using words like “cunt” promoting misogyny? Likely. But so is heckling other women at every turn for not conforming to your expectations of their behaviour. This is one reason feminism as a movement doesn’t feel like it’s gained much ground; feminists seem far more interested in playing Mommy to other feminists than working with them towards change.

  98. Jezebella

    Kali, cocksucker will not do. It is both misogynistic AND homophobic. I am fond of “dickblister”. I’ve recently started employing “son of a cock,” which I think I made up my own little self. It’s quite pointy and satisfactory, particularly in hairy driving situations.

  99. Nolabelfits

    Jayzus in a jetpack.

    That line alone, and the placement of it within the text, is funny as HELL.

  100. Dicey Venison

    Oh God!
    What about the Douchebags!?!

  101. Jonathan

    Nothing could be more heartwarming, except, possibly, certain heartwarming nature crap, than that there exist women who are able to grasp that “cuntalina” is an antifeminist slur.

    And Twisty’s blog is a place where people can openly question use of the c-word. In the mainstream media, slurs against any other minority group can be (marginally) opposed, but women are always last in line. The b-word is never censored, and hell rains down upon any woman who opposes the use of the c-word. I even remember a misogynist gangster rapper who removed the b and c-words from his performance when he was put on the air during a prime time broadcast (I think it was the Oscars). Afterward, the white male commentators made fun of him for taking the b-word out when he wasn’t legally obligated to.

    I think that may be why the reaction to the c-word was so strong here: Twisty’s blog is a rare space where women are allowed to defend themselves. No other media outlets, and few websites, care enough to oppose the misogynist shit.

  102. Mo

    All you had to do was say that a cuntalina was a type of Texas Hill Country bird, and I, for one, would have totally bought it!

    Now I desperately want to go painted cuntalina sighting!

    Oh, and B. Dagger Lee? You crack me up.

  103. yttik

    “This is one reason feminism as a movement doesn’t feel like it’s gained much ground; feminists seem far more interested in playing Mommy to other feminists than working with them towards change.”

    I agree and until women learn how to stop doing this, we’re not going to move very far.

    We’re well trained under the patriarchy from day one to pig pile on the woman target of the day. I think I mentioned the media and Perjean, Pelosi, Palin, whoever is the designated shit head female of the week that we’re all supposed to focus our rage on.

  104. Jonathan

    @sonia:

    we totally need a word that is insulting for women who hate women and stand in the way of woman-positive stuff

    How about “tool”? It aptly defines their role as a slavish instrument of the central P-hive. Finding a gendered version of “tool” will be harder, as the entire language was constructed to make it damn near impossible to insult women without using their genitals. IBTP.

  105. Margaret

    Gee Twisty, In the post where cuntalina first appeared, I was waiting for a dictionary-type definition of cuntalina to follow and it didn’t. I did get that it was an antifeminist slur, but it sounded like an interesting and potentially useful word anyway. I’m sorry, but cuntalina is part of my vocabulary now, though I hope to use it as seldom as possible.

  106. Critter

    I cannot believe that Twisty (err, Jill) felt herself required, let alone bothered, to respond to the fuss kicked up about the word ‘cuntalina’. I would have thought the lobes of the readers here would have been quick enough to withstand the overt irony of such a term from the mouth of such a brilliant blamer. I take my hat off to your neologism. I feel compelled to know your last name now, though. Have you published anything we could read?

  107. hero

    Toolette? Toolina? Toolentine? Feminine diminutives can make things funny–once, I saw a radfem use the word cunt with -alina on the end. HI-larious.

    I heart Twisty, and I may, at my discretion, pretend not to know her secret identity just yet. I have this marvelous image in my tiny mind of who/what Twisty is–not ready to let her go (sorry “Jill”).

  108. Hattie

    I don’t think hostility toward children is a lovely character trait.

  109. Casey

    I don’t drop by as often as I should. Especially since now I’ve got a great idea for a stage name.

    Thanks, Jill, for your writing and your insistence on your humanity.

  110. Heart

    When I read “cuntalina”,I thought might be a riff off of “kundalini” which means “the vital force lying dormant within one until activated by the practice of yoga, which leads one toward spiritual power and eventual salvation.” I thought admixing the c-word with this word was kind of interesting, if worrisome in various ways. I somehow just didn’t think the word being used was really c-word-alina, as in a riff off of the c-word, because that didn’t seem Twisty-like. I figured I’d think about it some other time, like when everybody else got upset about it.

    I also thought about a Dorothy Allison piece I love where Allison is bemoaning the advent of lesbians being able to marry, and she writes something like, “after I’ve done [all sorts of things for my partner], you mean I’ve gotta marry the wh***?” Even though I can’t stand the word, I still love what Dorothy Allison wrote in that piece, and who she is.

    I really hate the hall monitor e-mails, too. I closed down comments for a while over them. Like I wrote privately somewhere else today (after another woman said the same thing), worse than a feminist using misogynist words I don’t like is feminists self-righteously,publicly piling on to punish the woman who used the word. Worse than that last even is feminists waiting around for a feminist who is respected and has influence to slip up, then getting all happy about the chance to dole out their (sadistic, though they claim to oppose BDSM) punishments. My .02.

    Heart

  111. ElizaN

    I drool on my pillow too, and I find it perfectly endearing. I like to use a dark pillowcase so I can read my fortune in the dried-drool patterns that I find in the morning.

  112. thebewilderness

    My cat drools on my pillow. Not particularly endearing at three in the morning, but I have lots of pillows. Come to think of it, I have lots of cats, too. Fortunately, not all of them drool on my pillow.

  113. xochitl

    “The heart bleeds for poor old Twisty; she’s constantly on the verge of being sabotaged by her crappy human ghost-writer.”

    I love your description of Twisty and Jill! You remind me of Joan Foster in Lady Oracle.

  114. The Hedonistic Pleasureseeker

    I am pleased to learn that I missed Cuntalinagate. _(ehn)__gates are so BO-ring, as are huffy snit fits and tiresome demands for public apologies over the misuse of words, words words. I’m all for respectfully calling people out on their shit, but in general I try to keep my outraged rants confined to my blog. That way, when I wake up embarrassed I can delete them. Handy!

    The bowels of the comments section at IBTP can be hostile territory. On the one hand I love the intellectual challenge. On the other hand IBTP commenters can get pretty mean spirited. Has everyone seen the “Cyber Sisters” at the flame warrior roster?

    http://redwing.hutman.net/~mreed/warriorshtm/cybersisters.htm

    Mmm yeah it’s kinda like that. ANYWAY, the word cunt doesn’t bother me at all. If someone calls me a cunt I just snort, like, eh, you say cunt like it’s a bad thing. Next? The next time I join a forum Cuntalina is totally going to be my new handle. You hear me? I GOT dibs, beyotches, DIBS!

  115. WindinHerTeeth

    Oh, and thank you, Agasaya, for your words.

    I honestly and sincerely believe the government should give me a friggin’ trophy or gold medal for not having children myself. I would make the worst mother ever. I can see my poor mom getting stuck with raising my child, once I totally lost it. Which, I guess, would be better than social services, but how fair is that to my parents who thought they were done raising children? This author does not realize how much damage women like myself are saving her and the world from by abstaining from childbearing.
    Does she consider factors like resources and money we as women have, for example?

  116. Tomecat

    But while those terms adequately express my own venom, they aren’t something that means much to a broader group in the way the usual anti-female hate slurs do in our society. And in that sense, “Good Woman” and “collaborator” are not as satisfying as they could be.

    I’m with you on those terms, and they work very well within the confines of this space. Unfortunately, I was trying to explain my disdain to a) a man, and ab) a man who is just at the very fringes of accepting that feminism is a necessary or even desirable construct.

    On further thought, I should probably have come here to tell my story and spared myself the needless frustration of his indifference.

  117. Ayla

    “The bowels of the comments section at IBTP can be hostile territory.”

    It can also be quite liberating here, but you’re right. I got virtual slap once for extolling the virtues of hydroponic gardens as a way to empower starving people to grow their own food. Apparently my shiny sliver of hope wasn’t sufficiently covered in the funk of defeatist despair.

  118. nails

    I don’t know how it deserves the gate suffix when people just posted “cuntalina wtf?” over and over again. It takes two seconds to post that and you don’t have to be a policey feminist hall monitor to point out that it was messed up to call a woman that.

    I am confused by the post. It says there will be no apology, and then sort of hints towards wanting to, and then praises serious feminism, and then condemns seriously serious feminism. It is an avoidant mess of a post that didn’t resolve anything. Comparing the reaction to this post to the blowjobgate stuff is weird because twisty pulls a “feminists need to discuss everything and understand the political implications of personal choices” style response. The idea that we should discuss everything seems a lot more consistent with the other posts here than the “lets get along in order to recruit more patriarchy blamers” style that many have adopted in the comments above.

  119. Gertrude Stein

    “Avoidant mess.”

    Thank you, Nail.

    Just say “I screwed up. Sorry.” Why is that difficult?

  120. slashy

    The comments section here can indeed be hazmat-suit-requiring levels of hostile, at times, and yet, almost always, worth a read. Smart people comment here, and even when they’re smart people I passionately disagree with: well, it is valuable to have the opportunity.

    What I like most about this post is the relationship between Jill & Twisty being described. It’s so deliciously, delightfully meta, and who among us HASN’T wanted to know more about the physical being that contains the brilliant, lazer-sharp, enlightening & enlivening Twisty Faster? Thanks, Jill. You sound ace.

    I would like to put my hand up with Mel as another of those BDSM-ers who doesn’t hate Twisty Faster. I might sometimes roll my eyes a little reading those particular screeds, but it doesn’t even remotely dim my appreciation of the excellent writing, excellent feminism, excellent lexicon-invention and excellent culture-creation that happens here. I have been known to stomach appalling misogyny in order to fulfill a craving for excellent writing. Compared to that, a failure in a brilliant author to cheer on the choices I make in my sex life is not even remotely offensive.

  121. wendyann

    “The bowels of the comments section at IBTP can be hostile territory.”

    For a place that is supposed to be blame-free toward anything other than the patriarchy, there sure is a lot of hostility toward women with dissenting views.

    I kinda like it.

  122. hellonhairylegs

    You know what the main outcome of this post will be? In five years we will be inundated with cute photos of kids named Jill.

  123. Sophie

    Don’t mind the haters Jill, you have more guts than most to even put your/Twisty’s opinions out there in the open for people to argue with and I (and many others) greatly respect you for it. Whatever happened to blaming the patriarchy, not the woman, anyway.

  124. minervaK

    This reminds me of the time someone I knew was smarter than me told me she thought the word ‘irony’ meant ‘full of iron.’

  125. JenniferRuth

    To those that object to the word cunt – is there ever an appropriate time to use it? Just wondering.

  126. Nem

    Worse than that last even is feminists waiting around for a feminist who is respected and has influence to slip up, then getting all happy about the chance to dole out their (sadistic, though they claim to oppose BDSM) punishments. My .02.

    Do feminists really do that? That’s a very different interpretation of what’s gone on here than I would have made.

    I missed updates on IBTP for a week or so, so when I saw this post and clicked back to the previous post, I expected to see some truly bad behaviour in the comments. I didn’t. I saw people calling on the blogmistress to account for an anti-woman slur in a feminist space. That’s not gleefully biding one’s time to pounce on the blogger who got too uppity. That’s not dismissing all the good Twisty’s done to martyr her for a single group of lexical pixels. That’s calling out sexism where you see it and calling for dialogue instead of letting it pass by invisibly.

    (What else is the point of the feminist blogisphere if not to promote dialogue about such things?)

    There may well be a cogent and lucrative discussion to be had on use of such a loaded slur. Or it could be an epithet used unthinkingly in frazzlement. Nothing definitive’s been said here either way. I have no idea whether Twisty/Jill’s post is apologising, or giving other feminists the finger.

    “Cuntalina? WTF???” is still a better call to dialogue than using ‘tone’ arguments to indict the “hall monitors”, and the straw feminists who sit hoping and praying to be able to tear down a feminist who gets above her station. Cause women all hate pther women and must always be in competition with them, right?

  127. TheLady

    Joshua Judah and Jehovah in a jumper, I go on holiday for a week and look what happens!

    I wasn’t going to add any fodder to this compost bin, but frog princess’s beautiful, beautiful post moved me to say: “that’s beautiful, woman”. And also Jonathan’s. I liked that.

    What I would also like to say is that I’ve skimmed through the majority of comments on both threads now, including both posts of course, and I agree with almost everything everyone said. On all sides of the argument.

    Here’s why:

    Liberation isn’t only about women being set free from constraints on their discourse and be allowed to swear, get angry, rant, shout, preach and lecture – although that is a very, very important part of liberation that Twisty embodies in every pixelated fibre of her fictional being.

    Liberation is also about the more radical fact that we ought to be allowed to be assholes, bitches, bastards, cunts, dickheads, dipshits, fucktards, idiots, douchebags, tools, morons, cocksuckers, motherfuckers and sister-boilers. That we should be allowed to loudly accuse each other of being these things. That we should be allowed and encouraged to call each other out on using the incorrect or insulting terms for describing these things that we are allowing ourselves and each other to be, to notice, to talk to and about. That sentence was not designed to make sense. Move on.

    Because female anger is powerful. Female wrath is one of the greatest dammed-up forces of human history, it is the very thing that oppression tries to stifle. When Demeter got angry, the crops didn’t rise. When Titania got angry, the forests didn’t bloom. When Inana got angry, the whole world was flooded. Our anger is our power, and power is the means to liberation.

    Unlike Twisty herself, I believe in making the revolution a little bit every day in every way, so I say: own you anger, glory in your disagreements, enjoy the debate.

    Incidentally, that’s by far not the only thing I’ve ever disagreed with Twisty on, so maybe that’s why I’m personally not all that het up about the cuntalinafication of discourse here on IBTP: less of the fallen idol stuff going on.

    With that in mind, do keep Jill out of it. And remember that when you hold another woman up to an impossible standard (even if it’s a standard that she herself has helped create) you’re only doing what the P has been doing since forever. Whether it’s photoshop or feminist hall-monitoring, let’s not make the mistake of creating an unreachable bar against which all of our achievements and accomplishments can be judged to be wanting.

  128. V.

    Every now and then, we all lose it.

    Me, I’m weighing one ‘cuntalina’ againts every other trailblazing, radical, intelligent post on this blog.

    Does one ‘cuntalina’ wipe out everything else?

    Nope.

    Onward.

    And Pulsar?

    Rating the varying degrees of morality of your right to dislike entire classes of oppressed people is a great steaming pile of self-justifying crap.

  129. Alderson Warm-Fork

    Having not perused the relevant comment-section, my first thought on seeing the title of this post was that it pronounced “cun-/ta/-li-na-/ga/-teh”, and was a type of pasta with a humourous-sounding name.

  130. auntieintellectual

    Isn’t there a new Cadillac Cuntalina? I’m considering getting one myself, since I heard that they’re coming out with a hybrid model in 2010.

  131. tinfoil hattie

    Don’t mind the haters Jill,

    Who the fuck said anything about “hat(ing)” Jill? Sycophancy much?

    So now, at I Blame the Patriarchy, the official rule is: Don’t call out anyone, especially Twisty, for using language that is offensive and oppressive toward women. Because then you are a woman-hating feminist who wants to police and monitor the “good” feminists? And meanwhile let’s come up with a word for women who hate other women? What the hell?

  132. SargassoSea

    @Heart

    Exactly what I thought too – as in ‘her cuntalina needs to be awakened to her toolentine nature.’

    I do not blame, er, “Jill”. You know who I blame.

  133. Lucija

    I love this blog and it’s helped me get through so much in life, and I thank you for that, Twisty. Or Jill. As many have already said, this one word doesn’ invalidate all the good stuff you’ve done. Not that it should matter to you, but you definitely won’t lose me as reader over this.

    I won’t pretend I’ve never used an anti-woman insult in anger. It can be difficult to avoid it, since this kind of insults is the kind most commonly used against persons of the female sex. But even as I say it, I’m aware of how terribly wrong they are.

    What I find illogical is how this blog post goes in the face of everything the blog advocates. Twisty is the one who always, and rightly so, mocks “fun feminism”, Twisty is the one who tells us that we don’t need to and shouldn’t turn a blind eye when it comes to patriarchy, even if what we are protesting might at the moment seem relatively small and unimportant. Twisty is the one who told us that these things actually aren’t unimportant, that everything matters.

    Twisty is part of the reason I understand that using “cunt” as an offense is not small and insignificant. It is not small and insignificant when men hurl it at me in the street, it’s not small and insignificant when I hear it in sexist, demeaning rap songs wherever I go, it’s not small and insignificant when it’s used to offend guys by way of comparing them to us. It’s not small and insignificant any of the gazillion times I hear it in a day. It’s not small and insignificant when Jill uses it.

    It’s obvious that a lot of you think that the comments expressing confusion at the usage of “cuntalina” were examples of unnecessary hall-monitoring, or even examples of patriarchy’s unrealistically expectations of women to be perfect. How is it possible then that you don’t consider Twisty an even worse hall-monitor and an even worse stickler. I’ve never once thought that way about Twisty and her opinions, and I am disappointed to see Twisty calling out other feminists on applying the same kind of standards on her own words.

    If a guy used that word everybody would be calling him a douchebag and there would be no doubt in anybody’s mind as to whether he should be chastised for it. If most women used it, the same would apply. But in Twisty’s case it seems that most of you accept her usage of the word lightly and even find it funny. When do we draw the line. Would Twisty using a racist slur be funny? (Not to imply Twosty would do it, just suddenly wondering what the general reaction would be.)I find Twisty using the word worse in a way than that a non-blamer using it, precisely because she is so aware what the word represents in this context and because she is normally so critical of it.

    I don’t think Jill owes us an apology. It’s her blog, she owes nobody anything. But it is my personal opinion that in the interest of preserving the (formidable) power of the rest of her writing, it would have been nice to see a more straightforward acknowledgement of the wrongness of such words and of the wrongness of using them. I believe that, although I am definitely in the minority, I am not alone in thinking so.

    I understand that Twisty is not Jill, but she is Jill’s creation. I assume that the opinions Twisty expresses are shared by Jill. I don’t see what the point of writing a serious blog would be if it were otherwise. I know Jill is human like the rest of us, but we are responsible for what we create. We don’t have to agree with criticism, and we don’t need to take it to heart at all. But when we create something and publish it is subject to criticism. That’s just the way it is. And we can’t just disown it at will. I simply don’t get the point of being so annoyed at people for criticising Twisty’s posts. That is the purpose of comments, or at least one of the purposes.

    Ultimately, people calling Twisty out on her usage of the word is simply fair. She does it to others. We do it to others. All that this boils down to is whether we should hold Twisty to the same standards as the rest of the blogosphere, or the rest of the world. I believe we should.

    P.S. JenniferRuth, the word “cunt” denotes a body part. I, however, am not that body part, and neither are you. We’re people. I think it’s pretty clear when somebody is using the word neutrally, and when it’s being used to offend. Twisty used it to offend.

    P.P.S. Sorry, I had no idea when I started writing that this comment would end up so long. I know that it will strike many of you as an overreaction, or even as not fun enough, but I can’t really say that I’m sorry for that.

  134. goblinbee

    JenniferRuth: “To those that object to the word cunt – is there ever an appropriate time to use it?”

    Hi, JenniferRuth! I know we’re already dialoguing about this a tad on the other thread, but I’ll say it here too. I don’t think it’s a question of whether someone likes the word or not, but of why someone would use such a strictly female term as an insult. It seems to perpetuate the very notion I wish would wear off — that our cunts are something bad.

    Myself, I weigh in on the side of liking the word. I don’t use it a lot, but, with my partner, I COULD. And I love your idea of using “cuntalicious” for anyone who is awesome.

  135. Heart

    To whoever said how can “c***aline, WTF, how can that be a ‘-gate’” (it’s true, I can’t stand to even type the c-word,but still stand by the comment up there a ways), the -gate part is happening in Twisty’s e-mail, she knows about it because of her e-mail, it’s happening in various other venues, private and public. If my experience holds true, some will never allow this chapter to be forgotten, they’ll bring it up whenever they figure it will work forthem (like when they aer feeling self-righteous/self-aggrandizing/in-a-mean-girls-mood). It has the -gateness feeling about it.

    tinfoil hattie, I don’t think that’s the new rule. In various places and spaces there has been a huge uptick in demands for apologies for words typed by lesbian feminists in particular. In sociological terms, there’s a “crime wave”/scapegoating feeling about what’s happening right now, a burn-the-witch vibe. If you haven’t seen this, some of the responses might not make sense (though you’re fortunate not to have seen it.)

  136. ew_nc

    I haven’t posted a comment on this blog for over a year. But for this subject, I feel compelled.

    I nursed third-degree burns I got from the IBTP message forum for over a year before going back to reading this blog occasionally. Why did I begin reading again? Because I finally got some perspective, and I learned a valuable lesson about idol-worship. I had been so angry with Twisty Faster for stating that eating meat was anti-feminist. To me, it smacked of major elitism to take such a stand. I decided that the entity known as Twisty Faster had a decided superiority complex and therefore I had to boycott her. But I did miss the mind-expansion I got from reading her writings, so I decided to take the good along with the not-so-good and read it again.

    I really have to agree with tinfoil hattie, the use of the word cuntalina needed to be called out. And I wish that a quick post with a “Sorry I offended, this is what I really meant” message would have been good. I sure didn’t expect the persecution rant of this post. But there is a real human being behind the Twisty persona, and I’m not always going to agree with her. So I’ll just keep reminding myself that everything I learn is just grist for the mill, and that it’s always a mistake to put human beings on a pedestal. In the words of Joan Baez –
    “Idols are best when they’re made of stone;
    And saviors are a nuisance to live with at home”

  137. AnnaArcturus

    I don’t comment much, but what the fuck people?? What the hell do you think you’re going to get by running at the keyboard about the use of this word? Why do you want to make this a struggle of wills and what the hell are you accomplishing if you do force a woman to apologize? In a patriarchal world, we are every one of us making choices every day that further that patriarchal system. We’re damned if we do, damned if we don’t. Yes, we have to keep pointing those things out, but there is ZERO point to raising Cain about it.

  138. Twisty

    Tinfoil Hattie: “So now, at I Blame the Patriarchy, the official rule is: Don’t call out anyone, especially Twisty, for using language that is offensive and oppressive toward women. Because then you are a woman-hating feminist who wants to police and monitor the “good” feminists? And meanwhile let’s come up with a word for women who hate other women? What the hell?”

    Ha, yeah! How absurd the whole thing is. Perhaps we could all use a breather.

  139. arfeuse

    Coming out of long term lurkerdom to say that no-one is actually obliged to read the blog nor the comments if they object to the content. Do I go over to “irritating male blogger who totally fails to own his own privilege.blogspot.com”? No I don’t. Nice to see such a varied obstreparathon online, mind you. Although one does rather imagine the PatriarchalPigMan who’s in charge of, well, Everything, thinking, “Yay, I can hardly hear the feminist message over the sound of the infighting”.
    Go Twisty/Jill – now I have a word which cheers me up whenever I’m faced with patriarchal product from the Daily Male. I intend to substitute with “cockalina” on a random basis.

  140. Twisty

    “Just say “I screwed up. Sorry.” Why is that difficult?

    Not difficult. Except that I’m not “sorry.”

  141. bellacoker

    Topic adjacent, I <3 this post, you are obviously the Italo Calvino of radfem bloggers.

    More on point, ain’t nobody perfect. If we expect people to always meet our standards, we are going to be regularly and consistently disappointed.

  142. Jonathan

    @arfeuse:

    Although one does rather imagine the PatriarchalPigMan who’s in charge of, well, Everything, thinking, “Yay, I can hardly hear the feminist message over the sound of the infighting”.

    Bah. The Dudebags don’t read comments.

    Moreover, they will always interpret every feminist discussion as infighting until the end of time. Even if every last commenter is gushing in unison over heartwarming nature crap, it’s still infighting to them. Mr. PatriarchalPigMan wants to see constant infighting between women, and so that’s what he sees, regardless of what is really there.

    Male privilege does not require men’s feelings to match reality, and men control enough of human society to make it move according to their illusions for as long as physically possible. (To see an illustration, just read any 2005 financial news article on the permanence of ever-rising housing prices.)

    Now, if anyone can figure out how to exploit this mass-delusion to enact social progress, please let me know!

  143. Jonathan

    Damn you, HTML, foiled again.

  144. dawn coyote

    Fuck you Twisty.

    Just when I’m full to the fucking gills with feminism and plotting my escape, you give me a reason to love it again.

    Signed,

    A Fellow(!) Impulse-control-challenged Font of Deeply Satisfying Misdemeanors

  145. rainie

    I have a family member that we all refer to as the cuntasaurus. I suppose that we should probably just refer to her as that awful person, but it somehow doesn’t convey the same thing. We do frequently shorten it to the ‘saurus, but in our heads we hear the rest, so it’s not really any better.

    Perhaps we could work together to come up with some vocabulary that aptly describes despicable human beings but is not insulting to women and does not use comparison to womanly bits as an insult. Thing is, in the case of the ‘saurus, part of her awful behavior is based some weird misappropriation of feminism and ’50s stereotypical housewife privilege, and the women shop and men screw up theme, and basing worth on how much stuff a person has, and on and on, stuff that is almost all tied to some wrongheaded gender role. So, it’s hard to come up with an appropriate description that isn’t tied into that. Shrug. Just my rambling thoughts.

  146. JenniferRuth

    Hi again Goblinbee!

    Yes, I agree with you that it is rather bizarre that we humans use our body parts (cunt, dick etc.) or natural actions (shit, fuck etc.) as insults when we can say murder, torture and kill whenever we want….
    It can’t be denied that calling a woman a cunt as if that is somehow a bad thing is misogynistic. But I have to admit that I have called many people (men and women) cunts in the past. I’ll have to be more careful about that. I suppose I used it because I liked the sound more than anything.

    I’m with you – let’s reclaim it to mean something good. Y’know what Goblinbee? I think you’re pretty cuntalicious :D

  147. Kali

    Kali, cocksucker will not do. It is both misogynistic AND homophobic.

    I don’t think it is either misogynistic or homophobic because I don’t believe it is something that is representative of either womanhood or gayness.

  148. LisaB

    OMG. Why is cocksucker considered an insult? Because our society considers sucking cock a subservient act. And who does it? Women and gay men. It’s an anti-women, homophobic insult, all right.

  149. Linda Atkins

    Dorothy Allison DID go ahead and marry her partner, former tongue-in-cheek gripes aside. Last autumn.

  150. tinfoil hattie

    “Just say “I screwed up. Sorry.” Why is that difficult?

    Not difficult. Except that I’m not “sorry.”

    That’s that, I guess.

    @Heart: Your assertion that I just don’t understand that “cunt” is not objectionable because I’m unaware of the recent persecution of lesbian feminists on the internet is a stretch. “Cunt” is offensive, because it demeans women. This is a feminist blog. I call it as I see it. So what if nobody agrees? Like Twisty, “I’m not sorry” for voicing my opinion. I am also offended by “funfeminism” and the “But isn’t feminism all about choice” versions of feminism. Big deal. You think I’m not already accustomed to having unpopular views? HA!

  151. wiggles

    Wow this cuntalina thing is still going? I just figured the whole thing had something to do with Twisty/Jill being human and capable of screwing up once in a while, but maybe that’s overly simplistic?

  152. Jezebella

    @Kali, who said:

    Kali, cocksucker will not do. It is both misogynistic AND homophobic.

    I don’t think it is either misogynistic or homophobic because I don’t believe it is something that is representative of either womanhood or gayness.
    ————

    How nice for you that your Savage Death Island is completely immune to the patriarchy. Here in the rest of the world, the P says that only women and homos suck cock, and that’s a bad thing, because being a woman or a homo is a bad thing. So, you can pretend all you want that it’s neither homophobic nor misogynistic, but I guaran-fucking-tee you that everyone’s gonna take it that way. You don’t get to decide how people respond to your words, in case you haven’t noticed.

  153. Inkling

    Felicity, I have nothing against you personally, okay? I gave you an ironic little jab, that’s it. You’d nattered on about how pretentious, self-righteous feminists should just “shut up” already, and then you proceeded to hop up on your sanctimonious soapbox and unleash a tidal wave of self-righteous vitriol on those who disagree with you. Always remember: pomposity reduction begins at home.

  154. Pulsar

    V.:

    “Rating the varying degrees of morality of your right to dislike entire classes of oppressed people is a great steaming pile of self-justifying crap.”

    Please read the entire post before you try to call me out on something. I was disagreeing with Twisty’s assertion that “I don’t like kids” is the “moral equivalent” of “I don’t like Mexicans”. Does pointing out a difference between two sentiments somehow magically mean that I endorse either of those sentiments? I hope your answer is “Obviously not.” But strangely you interpreted my post as asserting a “right to dislike entire classes of oppressed people.” Where are you getting this from? If I were to point out that racism is different from sexism, would you leap to the conclusion that I was racist and sexist? I thought this was a forum where critical thought took place, not where people made distorted and nonsensical assumptions.

  155. delphyne

    “because it blows my lobe, this impossible effort to continually accommodate every little stultifying molecule of the feminist archetype”

    What, like not calling another woman a cunt? Do you seriously find it that hard, Twisty/Jill?

    I am enjoying the way you’ve engineered your radical feminist commenters into singing the praises of calling women the c-word though. That has to take quite a bit of skill.

  156. Kali

    So, you can pretend all you want that it’s neither homophobic nor misogynistic, but I guaran-fucking-tee you that everyone’s gonna take it that way.

    So “cunt” and “bitch” is OK despite how it is taken by society but “cocksucker” is not OK because of how it is (allegedly) taken by society? That is some twisted thinking. Or is it “cocksucking” that you are attempting to defend in the name of anti-misogyny and anti-homophobia? Or is it that something that can be interpreted as homophobic is worse than something that is almost universally used as a misogynistic epithet?

    Because our society considers sucking cock a subservient act.

    It *is* a subservient act, so I don’t blame society for that. I blame the society for eroticizing female subservience.

  157. Kali

    Having said all that, I think I like “quisling” the best. Very apt description for tools of the patriarchy. It’s also very PG-13 without being weak or ineffective, which is nice.

  158. figleaf

    Good post. I don’t always like Twisty either but this is a great blog.

    I remember watching a rock climber, one of those townie types not the real magazine-cover macho types. Instead the kind who’ve been doing it the same way up the same wall since they were “temporary conditions” and know the terrain like they know their bathroom faucets. Anyway, this climber was free-climbing a pretty technical route, one that most people would have spent all afternoon mapping out all the safety rope and hardware they’d use. It was a pretty impressive performance and pretty much everyone else who’d been milling around doing the macho/butch climber strut had stopped to watch.

    And at the last minute, just a foot or two from the top, the climber put in a piece of safety hardware and attached the rope to it. And someone down below, one of the many who were metaphorically dangling between impressed and terrified of watching a fatal fall, yelled “mortal!”

    And you’d think that would have diminished the climber in everyone else’s eyes. But it didn’t.

    Or, I should say, it didn’t in the eyes of anyone who actually *understood what had happened.* I’m sure some weaselly little weekend wannabes with a bunch of perfectly beautiful but never-used gear were disillusioned by the climbers lack of immortal perfection but nobody cared but them.

    Instead the climber *was* mortal. Was *human.* Which meant everyone else could identify instead of just feel matinee-audience awe or envy or whatever the hell climbers feel when they do that stuff anyway.

    So you said a bad word and didn’t backspace over it. That’s good. It means *humans* can be feminists too and not just fictional creatures who’s authors have backspace keys and maybe 24 hours to think about exactly what they’re going to say and how before they click “publish.”

    Mortal!

    Good.

    Not that it doesn’t make it easier for anybody. (Heh. You think any of those other climbers thought they could attempt what the first one accomplished!?!?! And I sort of doubt the climber, who said it had been the scariest, hardest moment in a reasonably long life, ever tried it again.) It actually makes it harder. But *possible.*

    There’s a world of difference.

    Thanks.

    figleaf

  159. Human Bean

    This is all so absurd that I wonder if the only reason there aren’t more comments with nothing more than laughter is because Twisty has that policy about no lol-speak.

  160. Jonathan

    The firebombing comments on this thread (such as delphyne’s and the one likening Twisty to Don Imus) have highlighted two nasty rules of Patriarchy:

    1. In a Patriarchy, no one ever has to apologize for using the c-word or the b-word on a woman.

    It hurts that the level of social condemnation that gets white men knocked off the air (well, for 5 minutes) for “nappy headed” does not even remotely exist for the c-word or the b-word or the h-word. But this hurt goes far beyond the bounds of this blog. A lot of the hurt is being trucked in to IBTP.

    2. In a Patriarchy, women are allowed to have unrestrained anger only when hating and attacking other women.

    Many of the commenters that didn’t agree with Twisty’s use of the c-word were incredibly kind, respecful, and really smart about it.

    But for the flames being sent in response to Twisty (and I shudder to imagine her inbox), I have to wonder:

    Is the anger directed at Twisty worse because a radical feminist used the c-word? Or because it is safer (and more socially accepted by peers) for women to launch verbal napalm at each other, than to napalm the Dude bloggers who fling the c-word around infinitely more?

    While I also hate seeing the c-word used as an epithet, especially by such a gifted writer, I feel that the Imus-level of outrage is completely insane. For one thing, Twisty only uses epithets on genuine human stains, and not on children like that cockalina Imus.

  161. Heart

    Hattie, you missed the part where I said I don’t like the c-word. You also missed the part where I couldn’t even type the word out. Neither other words, like the b-word, the wh-word, the sl-word, et al. Really, you missed the whole part.

  162. Jonathan

    @figleaf:

    It means *humans* can be feminists too and not just fictional creatures who’s authors have backspace keys and maybe 24 hours to think about exactly what they’re going to say and how before they click “publish.”

    Actually, Twisty does spend hours thinking about what she says (start here for an example), so you are not off the hook for shoddy or callous writing, figleaf.

  163. V.

    Hye, Pulsar, I read the post.

    If you meant anything else other than to defend your right to say ‘I hate kids (as a class)’ because it’s just better than hating on other, even more arguably oppressed classes, well, I guess your meaning just flew right past me.

    Or maybe you just meant to say that children are less oppressed as a class than Mexicans. Was that your point? There it goes, flying past me again.

    Fly, little birdie. Fly.

  164. tinfoil hattie

    Heart, I didn’t miss anything. But thanks.

  165. goblinbee

    JenniferRuth: “Y’know what Goblinbee? I think you’re pretty cuntalicious :D”

    This sure made me smile. It felt so friendly. It’s probably what delphyne meant by saying “I am enjoying the way you’ve engineered your radical feminist commenters into singing the praises of calling women the c-word,” but, for me, I was just feelin’ the love.

    On a different note, I am enjoying (and learning from) this conversation immensely!

  166. jael

    pop will eat itself.
    feminists, they eat each other.

  167. random_anomaly

    Sounds like the name of a boat:
    “They set sail for Savage Death Island, aboard the Cuntalina”.

  168. Pulsar

    V. Once again, where are you getting this? How is my post “defending” hating on kids or Mexicans? Really, where is the basis of any of these theories in anything that I’ve posted? I don’t quite comprehend how you got to that conclusion. Also, nowhere did I make a comparison as to which is a more or less oppressed class. This isn’t the oppression Olympics, “rating” and arguing over who is more or less oppressed is highly counterproductive.

    You asked what my point was–I’ll spell it out. I wanted to illustrate that the sentiment of hating kids and the sentiment of hating Mexicans have different implications on society, and as a result they are not, as Twisty said, “morally equivalent”. I never mentioned anything about one being more or less oppressed, neither did I suggest (as everyone seems to be thinking for some reason) that either sentiment is justifiable. There is no foundation for that claim in anything I have said–that conclusion (as a logician would say) does not follow.

  169. jael

    ah… a ship! why yes.

    Just sit right back and you’ll hear a tale,
    A tale of a fateful trip
    That started from this tropic port
    Aboard this tiny ship.

    The mate was a mighty blamer,
    The skipper brave and sure.
    Far too many passengers set sail that day
    For a three hour tour, a three hour tour.

    The verbage started getting rough,
    The tiny ship was tossed,
    If not for the courage of god knows who
    The Cuntalia would be lost, the Cuntalina would be lost.


    So this is the tale of the castways,
    They’re here for a long, long time,
    They’ll have to make the best of things,
    Though they’ll fight each other, you’ll find.

    So join us here each week my freinds,
    You’re sure to get a smile,
    From many narking castways,
    Here on “Savage Death Isle”

  170. Hedgepig

    Nope. Nomatter how many songs people sing here lately I always leave with “Thumbelina” firmly stuck in my head.

  171. minervaK

    Ok, well, nobody seems to have gotten my irony comment, so I’m gonna go ahead and put my foot in it. Please hold your death threats until the end of the show.

    It puzzles me that the Cuntalinagate comments seem to fall into one of two camps: those who feel the author’s use of the word cutalina was a ‘lapse’ and that she should get a ‘pass’ for it, and those who feel that it was an egregious and intentional trespass against the Feministeriat at large and that she ‘owes us an apology.’ To me, the two things both require the author to assume a position that I find offensive.

    She said what she said. She’s not sorry. It wasn’t a mistake. She said cuntalina. She meant cuntalina. She chose to use the word with the freedom of expression that is conferred upon us all. Demanding that she be sorry, or positioning ourselves as morally superior by ‘excusing’ her use of the word as a ‘mistake,’ speaks of an intolerance that goes beyond the question of feminism.

    You don’t like the word? Fine. Your objection is duly noted. But Christ in a sidecar, what is with the marathon of trying to prove you have some control over somebody else’s behavior by demanding an apology, or pretending she just made a mistake that she wouldn’t have made had she known how much it would have offended you? Do you not understand that freedom of expression means that you will regularly encounter words and ideas that make your brain hurt? And that your job, as an adult, is to effectively manage your own brain pain, not attempt to make the words and ideas stop?

    Finally, consider this: IBTP is part opinion, part satire. Satire, by definition, rarely toes any particular line of behavior for the comfort of it’s audience. It’s supposed to offend you. That’s the part that makes you think about YOURSELF. You know, that thing you have control over.

  172. figleaf

    @Jonathan: “Actually, Twisty does spend hours thinking about what she says (start here for an example), so you are not off the hook for shoddy or callous writing, figleaf.”

    Good! I’m glad we agree since my comment (however hastily or shoddily written) was a very sincere, emotional appreciation of the author of this blog. Who I mostly (maybe 98% of the time) admire very much and admire more now.

    figleaf

  173. MariaS

    “Cuntalina” as a word is very pleasing. But within an instant of its coining, the poor thing gets deployed as an unmistakable slur. (Tangential Brit-rant: the inescapable implication of likening a Daily Mail journalist to a cunt is to liken a cunt to a Daily Mail journalist – I can’t think of a worse way to denigrate cunts! One of the first acts of a feminist uprising in Britain should be to take out the Daily Mail. It’s pure poison within a cloak of unimpeachable middle class respectability. It quietly nurtures and normalises a mindset of complacency, racism, misogyny and homophobia within hundreds of thousands of households across the land.)

    When I read that post I thought “wtf???”. I was giving Twisty the benefit of the doubt, but the waiting for her to say something about it was absolutely killing me, I’m sure it was the same for lots of people. Not to hold her to a standard of absolute feminist perfection, not to go “gotcha”, but to know why, that it was a slip up or something. I was worried she might say, for example, there was no problem in calling that journalist a cunt because the journalist’s own words were so misogynistic, and go to great grandstanding lengths to justify it. Though if she had, it wouldn’t have been the end of the world, I would have probably commented to disagree, and would still have enjoyed and learned from her many fine blog posts. And would have probably thought ah well, she has blind spots, she messes up, she’s just human after all.

    I think we readers are used to Twisty not losing her rag. Sure, her blogging is usually inspired by something triggering her obstreporal lobe, but the obstreporation is channelled into sharp, measured, unflappable analysis. She comes across as above it all – I mean that she always sounds (as I read her) detached and dryly amused; patriarchy doesn’t get to her, she gets to it. Even when there’s trolls or when things get heated in the comments, she seems to sit back and observe and not get het up, just laconic and infrequent interventions. And so actually, it makes total sense that she is a feminist superhero from the planet Obstreperon. She’s from outside the patriarchy, which is why she can name it and its manifestations for what they are, she’s not grown up steeped in its influence.

    Some people are saying “I wasn’t offended by the word”. It’s not a matter of taking offence, or of refraining from possibly offending people. Our personal reactions or feelings don’t change the history of a word or the wider social meanings attached to it. For example, recently my mother and her cousin were reminiscing, and talked about how their grandad had had a black dog that he called [N word]. I didn’t even say anything, they were already pre-empting my reaction and said embarrassedly “of course, we didn’t know any better back then”, and “it’s not as if there were any black people around to offend” (in a village in the north of England in the 1950s). What I struggled to articulate then, and worked out properly later, is that those circumstances don’t change the charge that the word carries, nor would the existence of an individual Black person who didn’t mind it. For one thing, there would still be other Black people who would have minded, but more than that, the inherent messed-up-ness of it was that white people’s casual thoughts of Black people could make that link or comparison with a black animal (with the “less than human” attitude about animals).

    People don’t think of what they imply when using “cunt” to convey how heinous they think someone is, but it’s associations are still there. Twisty wasn’t using it in a casually misogynistic way, not in the same way a misogynistic man would, but the usage still rolled along the same-old, same-old, misogynistic furrows – she borrowed its power for emphasis and anger but can’t alter where that power comes from. (Myself, I’ve never used it as an epithet, but that’s because of compliant “good girl” conditioning to not swear – wouldn’t have used what is after all the worst word in the world ever – and even though now thanks to feminism I’ve grown more comfortable expressing and using anger, that same pesky feminism got me thinking about language).

    What I think I’m trying to say is that, no it’s not the end of the world because Twisty said “cuntalina”, but it is also good to be able to say why and how “cunt” is used against women and discuss its potential for reclamation and so on. Thanks Jill/Twisty, and thanks for giving us “I blame the patriarchy” as a feminist shortcut to clarity when bogged down with struggling along with other human beings enmeshed in patriarchy.

  174. birkwearingblamer

    jael has me LOL!

    minervaK, there you go with all of your *maturity* about how we shouldn’t be control freaks and how we can only control ourselves. Wait a minute! That’s true!

  175. Larkspur

    One last comment from me on the moral equivalency of child-hating, etc.

    The instance that prompted the opinion that not liking kids was morally equivalent to not liking Mexicans came out of a discussion of a dumb article written by someone who knows for absodamnlutely sure that a woman must have children in order to fulfill her destiny, or complete her as a woman, and that all women know this in their hearts, and that in the author’s opinion, more and more people are becoming courageous enough to say such a thing out loud. And also stuff like how childless women will eventually change their minds, and that having a kid makes you into a woman who always wanted to have had kids, et cetera.

    So a commenter comes along and says, well, I’m a woman and I’m absodamnlutely sure I don’t want to become a mother, and I don’t think there’s necessarily some kind of biological imperative for each individual woman to become a mother. Plus, I don’t even like kids that much. Sure, I know kids are important, and as a member of society, I’m all about doing stuff that makes life better for children. But momhood is not for me.

    Here is what the discussion was not about: we were not talking about a modest increase in a local sales tax, or a bond measure of some kind for the purpose of installing additional stop signs, flasher lights in the crosswalks, and more crossing guards around the city’s schools. Had we been talking about that, then OMG, yes, if a commenter were to come along and say, Okay, whatever, but I don’t think I should have to kick in any money because I don’t have kids, I don’t want kids, and I don’t even like kids.

    Had that been the case, I’d have figuratively spanked that commenter and sent her to bed without her supper. Because that’s mean and wrong.

    But that’s not what we were talking about.

    The end. Time for a glass or three of wine.

  176. j

    Though it’s apparently the rage, I’m not taken aback, Jill, and I don’t have any doubt to give you the benefit of. I think it’s perfectly legitimate to treat avowed anti-feminists with the non-existent misogyny they believe in.

    “Cuntalina” it is for Ann Coulter and Sarah Palin and a gal who wouldn’t give me a job if I didn’t make it clear *in a fucking job interview* that my childfree state is very painfully not by choice. (And my male counterpart would apparently be off the hook for that unmentioned unchoice.)

    Until she acknowledges that I am human without giving all my free time to the undercompensated scutwork that is modern motherhood, referring to her by an encutened term for her anatomy is fine by me. And that goes for men, too. Rush Limbaugh and his merry band of detainee rapists are scrotalinis and wilty limp dicks of quivering pathology.

  177. io

    I missed Cuntalinagate, too — I check IBTP so often, I read the posting before the comments got to that point. It is indeed mind-blowing that people can throw a shitfit over one (creative made-up) word among a body of work of deep analysis, irreverent reveries and delightfully tuned prose.

    Anyway, Twisty/Jill you’ve changed my life and my thought processes in profound ways. You are up there with Kant for me in that way — and like him, you are an imperfect genius. I’m not being factious! Your philosophies have me questioning every facet of my existence and interactions on a near-daily basis, asking if I need to redefine my values in new light.

    Please, please know you are loved and you are important to us (as I’m sure many of the comments above also attest) and please, please keep writing!

  178. Nolabelfits

    I’m really amazed how people can write these big ass essay responses to stuff. I’m impressed. Really. I was capable of that once upon a time.

    Not relevent to the discussion, I know.

  179. SoJo

    I honestly didn’t notice the Cuntalina bit. I just read the post. Which was awesome as always.

    Love you Twisty/Jill!

  180. Hedgepig

    Nolabelfits, I’ve been pretty azamed at the big ass essay responses too! And everyone’s so quotable!

  181. wiggles

    Jonathan: “Twisty only uses epithets on genuine human stains, and not on children like that cockalina Imus.

    I believe that’s “cockalino.”

    “Dickalino” has a nice ring to it too.

    I once used the term “pardon my Swahili” instead of “pardon my French,” just to mix up a cliche, and was reprimanded by the language police for disrespecting Swahili-speaking cultures. That’s my little anecdote re: dealing with the hall monitors. It does get ridiculous at times.
    I’m not in favor of “cuntalina” myself, but on balance who cares.

  182. Spiders

    “A persecution complex does not suit you.”

    Oh right so now when a feminist acknowledges that feminists are hated, it’s a persecution complex. Gotcha. Thanks so much for that, Kelly.

  183. polly sytrene

    In perhaps one of the most super examples of ‘feminist political correctness gone mad’, I was criticised for calling the Daily Mail the Daily Male. Because apparently that insinuated that all its readers were misogynistic males, when they are in fact working class women.

    Which would have been correct except that 48% of male readers are um, male, and 66% are middle class. And of the course the ‘Male’ thing is a an amusing play on words, designed to donate the patriarchal attitudes of the publication in question.

    Still, why bother writing your own stuff when you can just criticise a more popular blog and get lots of readers that way eh?

  184. delphyne

    “Finally, consider this: IBTP is part opinion, part satire.”

    Actually minervaK what it’s been claiming is that it is radical feminist. Twisty draws heavily on a whole lot of radical feminist theory to make her posts.

    “Satire, by definition, rarely toes any particular line of behavior for the comfort of it’s audience. It’s supposed to offend you. That’s the part that makes you think about YOURSELF. You know, that thing you have control over.”

    Well you’re an asshole. Don’t take offense though, try to control yourself instead as I’m being satirical to make a point. At least I didn’t call you a cunt.

    Did everybody forget the feminism or something?

    Satire isn’t the highest value, freeing women from sexist oppression (including being called cunts) is.

  185. phiogistic

    I like calling people C.H.U.D.S.
    “Who are those chuds?”
    “What a chud!”

  186. Jess

    If I had offended people with a word in a blog post of mine, I’d have changed the word in my original post and added a short footnote explaining the change, or simply added a footnote explaining why I wasn’t making the change; I’ve seen Twisty do this here.

    Also, nobody seriously thinks Twisty has revealed her true, non-feminist colors with the use of one word, do they? (I don’t think anyone has said this in the comments.)

  187. Larkspur

    IBTP is a party. Twisty hosts the party. Twisty encourages lively conversation. At a certain point, dissatisfied guests really ought to go host their own parties.

  188. Digger

    Larkspur,

    Yes, that’s pretty much the thoughts about this I’d been having as well. That, and, for all Teh Evilz of Twisty (safe journeys), she didn’t kick anyone out for crapping on her, at her own party.

  189. Felicity

    “One of the first acts of a feminist uprising in Britain should be to take out the Daily Mail.”

    I agree, it’s getting to the point where 98% of its content can be labelled sexist. Anyone with two brain cells hates it for being so cheap and nasty anyway (Daily Fail!) so we’d be supported from that quarter.

    Inkling – it was nothing personal from this side either. The whole topic has a schizophrenic feel to it, I think it should cessate.

  190. Felicity

    Chud sounds too similar to ‘chode’!

  191. frog princess

    “Satire isn’t the highest value, freeing women from sexist oppression (including being called cunts) is.”

    Very glad to have the whole point explained to me, on account of I really needed someone to teach me and all these other know-nothing pretenders how to suck eggs.

    Sincerely,
    Yore Grammaw

    PS As a certified teacher of English literature, may I also point out that the major object of satire is, in fact, to spur social change–in this case, sexist oppression–through humor, ridicule and sometimes shock, to enlarge a bit on what MinervaK has rightly said.

    See, for example, J. Swift’s _A Modest Proposal_, which attempted to point out to the English people’s that their oppression of the Irish was wrong and bad. So the highest value is indeed being served, and not being sublimated, were we but skilled enough readers to perceive the subtleties. Americans are often accused of not getting irony and satire. Students often fail to find _A Modest Proposal_ at all funny. Because eating babies is wrong, as you may know. And if you did not know it, they will write essays informing you of the fact and denigrating and condemning J. Swift for not knowing it and encouraging such evil among those who might think it is a good idea and not wrong at all! People like myself, whose first thought on reading _MP_ was, in fact, “Bayyyybeeez. Yummmm! Wonder if I could make money selling a deep-fried, tender baby on a stick, like them candy bars at the fair! Everything is better deep-fried and on a stick. Probably sell like hotcakes!”

    But do enjoy that ride on that lovely high horse. I’ve enjoyed the view from my own noble steed any number of times, and I understand how delightful it can be to breathe the invigorating, rarified fresh air of righteousness and holy virtue you can only get find up there, as you swing your blade, all alone and unaided, against Error, wheresoever she may lurk. Ride, Red Crosse, ride!

  192. frog princess

    Mea culpa on poor proofreading! “…to the English people…”

  193. veganrampage

    Jonathan- Imus said “nappy-headed hos”. Let’s not forget the all important whore calling of a group of young women athletes who just happened by coincidence to be black. I’m sure he meant no harm, being the warm hearted avuncular guy that he has proven himself to be. He likes his misogyny on the rocks with a ample splash of racism, an extremely popular CoCKtail and long lived tradition in the U. S. of A.

    I don’t want to invent a word for women who hate other women, but it would be good to have a term for women who act in concert with the patriarchy in a vicious and knowing way, as Ann Coulter is wont to do.

    Quisling, collaborator and misogynista were mentioned. The sentiment is right but the sound is all wrong.

    What makes a great swear word in terms of sound? I have put more thought into this over the years than I probably should have. There are reasons besides meaning that give satisfaction to utterances of swear words, or screamings of them at the top of one’s voice.

    Three effective sounding and popular words are fuck, cunt, and slut. I am not referring to meaning here, just the actual sound of the words.

    They are all one syllable. They are all four letters. They all have hard sounding endings and they all have the “uh” sound in the middle, the guttural U sound that is all important in these words.

    Since Quisling was a notorious traitor and a collaborator, why not use Ann’s last name in the same way? We could shorten it though and just say Coult, pronouncing it like cult. This could give double significance to the word, as misogyny is a cult and America’s true religion.

    Lest anyone think cult means solely a small underground group, here are 8 definitions from dictionary.com.

    “cult –
    ??/k?lt/ Show Spelled Pronunciation [kuhlt]
    –noun
    1. a particular system of religious worship, esp. with reference to its rites and ceremonies.
    2. an instance of great veneration of a person, ideal, or thing, esp. as manifested by a body of admirers: the physical fitness cult.
    3. the object of such devotion.
    4. a group or sect bound together by veneration of the same thing, person, ideal, etc.
    5. Sociology. a group having a sacred ideology and a set of rites centering around their sacred symbols.
    6. a religion or sect considered to be false, unorthodox, or extremist, with members often living outside of conventional society under the direction of a charismatic leader.
    7. the members of such a religion or sect.
    8. any system for treating human sickness that originated by a person usually claiming to have sole insight into the nature of disease, and that employs methods regarded as unorthodox or unscientific.”

    Let’s use it in a sentence.

    That woman from the Daily Male is such a coult! Damn, you are such a cult sometimes. How could you act in such a coultish way? Don’t bother asking her for a job, she a coulter. See what I did with that last one?

    Should we capitalize as in Quisling, or keep it lowercase as with other “offensive” words. Thoughts? Better suggestions?

    We do need a name for this type of behavior, and women should be the ones, for a change, to do the naming.

  194. goblinbee

    I’m not fond of “coult-pronounced-cult.” Because it’s pronounced cult. When used as an insult, cult most always means definition #6.

    Tool works well for me.

  195. admirerofemily

    Hmm, whilst there is discussion about ‘what is the best insult’. I want to ask – do we really need to insult *anyone*?

    It’s a serious question that centres around a whole issue I have about how best to do social change. It’s also often on my mind as I read my beloved ibtp.

    In my neck of the woods there is are a couple of arguments around that I’ve been grappling with (being a person who feels like I get too angry too quickly in a way that doesn’t strengthen my case too often:

    1. There is an argument around that if you are feeling strong and in control, then you don’t get angry at someone’s hurtful behaviour (‘You BITCH!!!!!’) you either laugh it off (huh, cute, nice try, you aren’t going to get away with that sonny) or face it with power (‘The way you just spoke to me is inappropriate and disrespectful. If you continue to swear at me this meeting is over.’)

    That ‘carrying on’ with a whole lotta ‘you fucking asshole wanker’ is actually another way of going ‘You’re being mean to me and you have all the power and it’s not fair and I wish you wouldn’t you fat bastard’.

    So is being angry and insulting someone useful or is it actually disempowering?

    2. Then there is the whole Buddhist ‘have compassion for they know not what they do’. Now this one I have a lot of trouble with, perhaps because I don’t know enough about Buddhism. But it does seem to smack of letting people off the hook who oughta be held accountable. But it’s an argument that’s subscribed to by many.

    3. Then there is whole ‘play the man not the ball’ aspect (hate that term, oh well, will just go and find out how to spell ad hominum ad hominem.) This is from the ‘Getting to Yes’ school of negotiation where you assume that people, whilst they might not completely agree with you on everything, might agree with you on some things, so alienating them totally by insulting them isn’t going to get you that far.

    Whilst I think there is absolutely a time and a place for letting off steam and the value of satire such as Swift, I do wonder about the overall value of insults.

  196. polly sytrene

    Actually I see people using the word ‘twat’ all the time. And guess what:

    “The word twat has various functions, its primary meaning being a vulgar synonym for the human vulva, vagina, or clitoris.[1] It is also widely used as a derogatory epithet, especially in British English. The word is usually considered vulgar in all contexts.”

    Thanks wikipedia.

    It is interesting how much more important it is thought to be to jump on expressions of ‘misogyny’ displayed by the use of, for example a single word, on feminist blogs, than to talk about say, women being murdered by men or stuff.

    But that would involve blaming the patriarchy of course. Interestingly the jumpees are usually keen, however, to excuse almost any other behaviour on the part of women on the grounds that it was ‘the patriarchy wot made them do it’. And that therefore they just couldn’t help themselves.

    So it seems that the only women who have this mysterious thing called ‘agency’ are popular feminist bloggers. And that they must therefore be held to much higher standards of behaviour than plain old women who just do what the patriarchy makes them. Funny that.

  197. Nem

    Wow, Polly. You might want to leave a little straw for the horse’s bedding.

  198. polly sytrene

    Well as I’ve said before, these righteous indignation fests are an easy way for the less popular blogs to get their stats up.

    But then I’d rather be famous, than righteous, or holy, any day.

  199. Jess

    OK, so there’s almost 200 frickin’ comments on this post now. Maybe we should just leave it and start discussing interesting things, like women’s oppression. Y’know? If one mistake makes you feel Twisty is completely invalid, stop visiting her blog and move on. If you’re OK with it, move on. Whatever your opinion, it’s already been said and it’s time to leave it.

  200. Jill

    “these righteous indignation fests are an easy way for the less popular blogs to get their stats up. “

    It sure worked for me, back in the day!

    My stats are low now, though. Internet feminism is a cutthroat world.

  201. V.

    @Pulsar.

    Ok, thanks for clearing up my confusion.

    I see that you think that the oppression of kids has much less Impact on society than the oppression of other oppressed classes.

    Because, as we know, the very second any oppresion eases up, the memory of it evaporates instantly! Instantly, I say! And leaves no memory or impact behind.

    Indeed, we know there is no such thing as internalized oppression, and absolutely, positively, no pull to reinact the effect of oppression by either oppressing others or reinacting powerlessness.

    I’m glad you cleared that up.

    I can clearly see how the oppression of children as a class is nearly trivial, and has negligible moral import for society.

    It’s not as if children will ever gow up to reinact their own oppression on anyone else, of course. That never happens. We should hardly be concerned.

    Golly, I’m relieved.

  202. Pulsar

    V.: I don’t know how how many times I have to say it before you comprehend. I never trivialized the oppression of children or even suggested that this particular form of oppression was greater or less than any other. That you continue to believe this was my point confuses me. Once again, maybe thoroughly reading my original post would clear this up. Why you continue to construct this straw man out of my post is completely lost to me, and if all you want is to argue with someone over nonsensical assumptions you can find someone else.

    It seems no matter what I say you consistently misconstrue it, and making you understand the point of one post I made on a blog I like is not the goal of my life.

  203. admirerofemily

    Oh geez three typos in the first two paragraphs! And I even wrote the thing in Word to try to get it right. Sorry people, will try harder.

  204. Butterflywings

    Thank you, Larkspur. Exactly.

  205. Inkling

    *applauds admirerofemily* When we use epithets like “bitch”, “cunt”, “asshole”, etc., we’re merely trying to reassert our place in the invisble hierarchy that defines patriarchal society, doncha think? Someone insults you, you feel disempowered, psychically subjugated, how are you going to pull yourself back up into a position of power (if only in your mind)? Easy, you demean the insulter. Not only does this type of behavior reinforce the domination/submission paradigm, it escalates the animosity between ideologically opposed groups of individuals.

    Now if only I could muster the strength to live up to that standard. I love that this thread has inspired me to become a better feminist, though I’m sorry it’s caused so much pain to so many.

  206. Inkling

    Clarification: Live up to the standard of *not* resorting to the use of epithets, that is.

  207. Inkling

    Oh crap, IBTP ate my previous post.

    Well, kudos to admirerofemily for questioning the wisdom of hurling epithets. It’s a good way to put out an eye, for one thing. I’d also had the thought that it might inadvertantly reinforce ye ole patriarchal dom/sub paradigm. We’re raised in a society where your place in the invisible hierarchy is of primary importance, and when someone comes along and verbally, or otherwise, trounces you, disempowering you in some respect, the initial instinct is to regain your hierarchal footing, and you can achieve this by dominating your oppressor. A simple, straightforward way to assert dominance — if only in your mind — is to demean the trouncer by insulting hir. So maybe refraining from hurling epithets is one way to obliterate patriarchy by opting out of the hierarchy game.

    I’m feeling inspired, thanks to admirerofemily’s musings, to try to live up to that standard. Thank you, dear!

  208. mearl

    Late to the Gate? Damn it all!

    Jill, you can now sit back and relax your lobe, knowing that you’ve reached such heights of fame in the feminist blogosphere that you have to start presenting your every thought an in inhuman, vote-soliciting diplomatic manner AT ALL TIMES lest the public catch you making some fatal slipup that will cost you the title of Grand High Spinster Aunt, Radical Feminist Laureate, or whatever.

    I admire you for not being sorry about it. You can’t please all the feminists all of the time, and I don’t consider calling out equality-hating women to be antifeminist. Sure, everyone is brainwashed by the P, but that doesn’t mean someone is blameless when that person goes on some sort of Hooray-For-Patriarchy rampage.

    I am also confident that using the term “cuntalina” is NOT, in fact, the first step in a downward spiral that will culminate in the Blametariat one day bearing witness to your announcement on your blog – accompanied by a photo of you eating a Meat Punch sandwich – that you’ve become a born-again Mormon Republican. As a longtime reader of the blog and admirer of your views, I just can’t get my underwear in a twist over some creative slagging. Remember what happened when Ani DiFranco got married to a Dude? It was like the Great Schism.

    Of course, I do love the idea of gender-neutral name-calling, and I think “misogynista” is a good one. I also like “tool,” since it goes with the whole “tool of the Patriarchy” concept. However, has anyone yet submitted “fucko?” I’ll never hesitate to admit that I love calling asinine people “fucko.” It is just one of those satisfying things to scream out.

    I’m biased, though, in favour of creative insult-flinging, in the same way that I am in favour of throwing rocks at cars what splash me on purpose when I am next to a puddle, and kicking men who try to assault me squarely in the chiclets. There is much more fun to be had with this approach. Maybe if I were religious I’d be more apt in the ways of forgiveness and neutral, politically unmotivated, unbiased commentary on life. Or if I were a highly objective lettered academic or a world-renowned scientist or a Tibetan monk, since they, too, are free of bias and incapable of insult. Etc, etc, etc.

    But I digress…instead, I will BLAME!

  209. mearl

    Forgot to clarify: I AM aware that “misogynista” isn’t gender-neutral, but I like it.

  210. Elizabeth

    Guess hardly anyone has read Inga Muscio. . .

  211. Heart

    Mearl: You’ve reached such heights of fame in the feminist blogosphere you have to start presenting your every thought an in inhuman, vote-soliciting diplomatic manner AT ALL TIMES lest the public catch you making some fatal slipup

    Won’t work. Then she’ll be called a tool for failing to throw off the shackles of the compulsorily feminine, i.e., just look at her, trying to be all nice and courteous and shit, how unevolved.

    Elizabeth: Guess hardly anyone has read Inga Muscio…

    So true and too funny!

  212. M the Pedagogue

    Oh my fucking god, it’s like a flashback to badly-organized activist bullshit in college run by passionately ignorant nineteen-year-olds.

    It’s one thing to say “Whoa, Twisty, did you really mean to say that?” and then figure out why exactly she might coin the cuntalina (I’ve got my ideas). It’s another thing entirely to go into this Puritanical seek-and-destroy mode that the whole big stupid middle class Left does by insisting on shaming someone into some tearful apology. At which point, you dust yourself off, leave the sinner to mull over her repentance on her knees, and wait for the light of Heaven to shine down upon you. Then the sinner is supposed to come back, report on having “seen the light” and is welcomed back to the fold as an acceptable, if substandard, convert. The persecutors, of course, have jockeyed for alpha-asshole status, and whoever is deemed responsible for the repentance/conversion is the winner.

    Go fuck yourselves, those of you enacting this disgusting little ritual. You have no feminist cred, rad or otherwise, as far as I’m concerned, until you can use your withered little imaginations to figure out some other way to “call out” your so-called allies without beating Calvin’s rotten corpse.

  213. zelda1

    I’m late to measure in on the use of cunt, and I’m certain most don’t really give a holy crap what I think, but when a woman, especially a feminists woman uses cunt, I think it shows ownership of that word. It’s sort of like the “N” word. Black people can use it all day long and for whatever way they wish, it’s their word. I think, when we see these words, we must contextualize them and remember that we own those words. That’s all.

  214. goblinbee

    M the Pedagogue, I don’t think what you describe is the only thing that’s been happening. Lots of readers were legitimately confused by Twisty’s use of cuntalina. I don’t have any theories about it yet myself (but would love to hear yours). I truly have not understood. I think most women feel somewhat protective of the way cunt gets used. If nothing else, most of us have SOME reaction to it; it isn’t just a neutral term. Twisty’s use of cuntalina as an insult was less confusing to me than if she had called someone she didn’t respect a Twistalina or a Jillalina, but it smacks of the same self-loathing.

    Zelda1, I’m interested in the comparison with black people using the N word any way they want. I’m assuming from that that it gets used both as an affectionate term AND as an insult, but I don’t know that from experience.

  215. Jonathan

    I’m late to measure in on the use of cunt, and I’m certain most don’t really give a holy crap what I think, but when a woman, especially a feminists woman uses cunt, I think it shows ownership of that word. It’s sort of like the “N” word. Black people can use it all day long and for whatever way they wish, it’s their word. I think, when we see these words, we must contextualize them and remember that we own those words. That’s all.

    How can rebranding be effective while the oppressive majority owns the airwaves? Despite rebranding attempts, the n-word is used just as actively and as pejoratively by skinheads, the KKK, and the bigoted masses who mumble it just as regularly under their breath whenever it is convenient for knocking people down. If anything, it is the outrage that now results when the n-word is used by privileged whites that has (marginally) dislodged the word from daily discourse.

    For every admonishing comment that has appeared on this blog, orders of magnitude more must show up in the inboxes of misogynist bloggers, AM talking heads, pornographers, and their ilk. The caustic ass Keith Olberman one aptly said in an NPR interview that in order to be effective, you must punch upwards.

  216. buggle

    I’m with tinfoil hattie and delphyne on this one. I laughed out loud to see Twisty yelling at US, at US- about doing the EXACT things that she and others on this blog have been doing for years! LOLOLOL!!!!!!! Talk about hypocrisy.

    Not ok to call a woman a cunt. Not ok. Ever. What is so complicated about that?

  217. sevanetta

    What io said. Jill, Twisty, you have changed my life and made so many things make sense. I’d understand if you got jack of it again, but I so, so, so want you to stick around and keep writing. please stay.

    I know it’s work, and spinster aunts prefer ‘chillaxing poolside’, but you really should write a book some time.

  218. M the Pedagogue

    Yes, buggle. You are now the Bestest Feminist on the Internet. Congratulations. You win and are more righteous and holy than everyone. I’m glad you posted your little “me too” or we wouldn’t realize how holy you are. How are your blog stats coming?

  219. polly sytrene

    I’m with the Woolwich (Sorry – joke that only inhabitants, or expats, of the UK over 40 would understand).

    Just trying to get my blog stats up. Damn, I didn’t include a link!

  220. buggle

    Oh yeah, I totally just posted that to get my blog stats up. LOL! It didn’t have anything at all to do with a “radical feminist” calling a woman a cunt, and 200 other “feminist” women agreeing with her. Oh no, it’s all about my blog stats. LOL!!

    This is a truly sickening and disturbing thread.

  221. Jill

    Well, now that Buggle has spoken, and everybody’s blog stats are right where they oughter be, and the internet has been educated by right-thinking people who know what words mean, I’m going for a drink. This has been, hands down, the most hilarious blogsplosion in I Blame the Patriarchy history. Here’s lookin’ at you kids.

  222. Cathy

    Sonia, it does make sense. It’s like the way African Americans can call each other the N word and it’s OK, since they’re making fun of white racism toward them. But it’s totally uncool for whites to use it.

    And may I suggest my word for a misogynist woman? Strap-on. It’s like calling her a dick, though a fake one. I also like “drag queen” because she’s female on the outside, but male on the inside. Kinda like Native Americans calling traitors “apples.”

  223. buggle

    Well, as long as you had fun, “Jill” I guess that’s all that really matters. Bleh.

  224. alison

    I wasn’t taken aback by the word at all. We used it liberally in England. Gonna adopt it as anti-feminist slur from here on in. It’s a word. A female bodypart. Big cunting deal.

  225. alison

    Oh and more the point Jill… THANK YOU for taking apart that stupid bitching vapid cow at the Daily Mail.

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