Why We Should Go Easy On Russia

Ever since primary school Jess brought an Anastasia DVD from Woolworths, I have been obsessed with Russia. The fallen monarchy, Winter Palace, Russian dolls- even the Rasputin Cossack dance on that wii Just Dance game- I love it all. The problem is, as I’ve grown up, it’s proved quite a hard love to defend: Russia rigged the election, Russian doping scandal, Russia hates gays, whichever part of the internet you go to (unless it’s, like, Putin’s LinkedIn page) there’s at least one article which aligns with Reagan’s ‘Evil Empire’ view.

So this summer when my Russian friend offered me the chance to visit her hometown Izhevsk I was so excited to finally see whether the media was right.

It wasn’t. Now obviously I’m not denying Chechnya’s gay purge or the fact the government’s corrupt- we’ve all seen the Reggie Yates documentaries- but when we talk about Russia we seem to solely focus on demonising it, which is strange considering every country has flaws and when I visited I was amazed by how normal it felt. So here’s why I think we should go easier on the planet’s largest country:  Continue reading

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Was Love Island A Feminist Show?

Like most young adults, I was hooked on Love Island, but while I was watching I couldn’t help thinking about its anti-feminist undertones and so I’ve finally compiled them all and I’m ready to ruin the world’s favourite show. Sorry in advance.

Diversity Fails: When will the media learn that a token black person doesn’t instantly make a show diverse anymore. It’s 2017 and still blindingly obvious that the producers have gone ‘ooh looks a bit like a box of Jacob’s crackers at the moment- let’s add Marcel to prevent bad reviews.’ Usually critics of diversity say ‘well maybe the white heterosexual cis person was just the most qualified for the job’ but that doesn’t work here because you literally just need swimwear and a summer without plans to qualify for the show, which I’m sure many people of colour, members of the LGBT+ community and those with different nationalities all had too.

The Frigid/Slag Divide: Jonny broke up with Camilla because after four weeks because she hadn’t done more than kiss him. Seriously? Four weeks really isn’t that long and it sends such a strange message to girls watching the show who could start feeling pressure to washing machine after the first date in case their partner dumps them. Also, why are we placing the ‘frigid’ label on Cam when actually it could be Jonny’s fault- maybe all his dick went into his personality so there wasn’t much left down there for her to play with? The possibilities are endless. Then on the other end of the spectrum you’ve got an internet calling Amber a slag because she had sex a few times (and one of them involved the instant aphrodisiac of a captain’s hat so we can’t even blame her for that one). Ladies! We can all do this whole love thing at our own speeds. There is no morally right way- let’s drop the labels k.  Continue reading

A Feminist Watches: Miss Congeniality

I literally didn’t watch films (unless they were Disney) until I was 16, so over the past couple of years I’ve had a lot of chick flick catching up to do, one of these being Miss Congeniality- which, to freak you out a bit, was released in America when I was 20 months old. So. Weird. I’m literally a fetus I swear. It’s about a FBI agent, played by Sandra Bullock,  who has to go undercover in a beauty pageant in order to intersect some kind of terrorist thing, and ngl it’s actually better than I just made it sound, but it still gave me a full house in misogynist bingo. P.S. This contains spoilers.

There are two types of women: You’re rather smart and ugly or pretty and stupid. I know that by the end of the film Bullock is supposed to have demonstrated how you can actually be smart and pretty, but it’s a pretty (see what I’m doing here) weak attempt. The pageant girls lack any depth, which is just so unrealistic like out of 30 girls not all of them are going to be drips. I reckon maybe 10% maximum using the laws of probability. Being pretty/in a pageant/valuing your appearance doesn’t mean you lack all other elements of character, so basically the film created a problem that didn’t need to exist, and therefore Sandy B wouldn’t need to become some kind of Super Hot Wonder Woman-Einstein at the end if they’d just increased the pageant girls’ capacities in the first place.

We Laugh Because SanBul Can’t Do ‘Womanly Things’: Hahaha she doesn’t know the difference between a BeautyBlender and a Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge, what an idiot! We’ve become so accustomed to always seeing women wearing full makeup and completely put together outfits from a vintage capsule wardrobe that it’s actually comic when women can’t live up to these standards. Someone make it stop, please. (Otherwise I’ll cry again like I do on my annual eyeliner attempt when I realise that though another year has passed my skills have not developed at all.) Continue reading

The Dumbest Shit I’ve Read on Twitter

I’ve been on Twitter a long time. And in that time I’ve seen a lot of ‘DS’ (dumb shit- not to be confused with the Nintendo DS because I genuinely couldn’t bring myself to say a bad word about Animal Crossing). I thought, in homage to me being away from blogging for so long, I would reminisce over the worst bits that I’ve seen in the meantime on social media, in hope that these would set the bar really low for my future posts.

‘Men cannot do domestic tasks because they are too busy building civilisation’ This was said by a meninist who believed men didn’t have time to participate in childcare, housework, cooking, etc. What he hasn’t realised is that, yeah men might’ve built the modern world, but women invented beer, monopoly and the folding cabinet bed, therefore we’ve built the perfect Friday night.

‘Women can’t be SAS trained. They’ll distract men. It’s biological’ Did you see SAS: Who Dares Wins? Did you watch a woman and a man come joint first without sleeping together? And when they were being interrogated in, like, Morocco, did you see her dramatically undo her ponytail, unveiling luscious Herbal Essence-d locks and apply Mac Velvet Teddy, causing all the spies to stop their highly classified, significant jobs and have a wank over her beauty instead? No. Because not every guy was straight. Not every woman is beautiful. And most importantly, these people are so skilled at doing their jobs so if a human with two lumps of fat on their upper torso and no dick can distract them that easily then I really don’t think they’re qualified to protect the country. Continue reading

Sexual Harassment at Work

I’ve just finished my final shift at my first paid job, working part time reducing out of date food for a supermarket. My general experience was faultless– I just want to establish that before I begin (so that this doesn’t affect me reapplying in the future) (and also so that, if you do know who I worked for, you don’t judge them). Blady loved my job. I quit because I had to study, not because of what I’m about to discuss.

Because I was both the youngest and fresh out the employment oven I suddenly became exposed to this world of sexual harassment. I was already familiar with catcalling (often when I was in my school uniform- not weird at all), everyday sexism and the occasional I’m-just-going-to-fall-asleep-in-your-lap-don’t-mind-me on the subway, but I had no idea what kind of timber ft Pitbull was going down in the workplace.

The company I worked for treated men and women almost perfectly equally- the ratio of female:male managers was pretty even and their wages were the same. The only difference was that the women’s shirts had waaay less buttons which left our necks more exposed and exemplified the huge colour difference between my orange foundation and chalk white neck. Oh and we didn’t get ties. As someone who blady loves a tie, this sucked. But, as much as I don’t want to justify their tailoring, these differences are so engrained in society that the company probably doesn’t even realise there’s anything wrong with them. So I’ll let that one lie.  Continue reading

Should We Support Ivanka Trump?

Headlines from the past few days make it apparent that Trump’s eldest daughter has been suffering from her father’s election:

‘Sales of Ivanka Trump apparel slumped at Nordstrom’

‘Upset with Trump the President, consumers boycott Trump the brand’

‘More companies drop Ivanka Trump products’

Here we see a female entrepreneur- a breed which is unfortunately still rare in the modern world- having her business boycotted due to the actions of the men in her life. On paper it’s a feminist’s nightmare, but in practice I think it’s pretty justified.

Don’t get me wrong, as a rule of thumb judging women for the actions of the men orbiting them is a no-go, but in this case, to blame men for the entirety of her demise just isn’t accurate. It’s not about boycotting Ivanka because of Donald’s actions (first name terms amiright), it’s about boycotting Ivanka because of her own. Or should I say lack of. Because yes, he is her father, and yes it would be blady awkward at their next family Thanksgiving if she publicly condemns his behaviour, but it’s still her choice not to do so. To deny that she has a choice is, as Sartre aka King Of My Heart describes it, ‘bad faith’. Continue reading