feminism vaginas

International Women’s Day has gotten SO commercialized

I mean, seriously?

I’m not even sure if I’ll be putting up a tree next year.

That said, Martha Marcy May Marlene is an awesome movie. You should rent it and eat cupcakes.

In the meantime, let’s celebrate International Women’s Day the right way. With a gif of Maude Lebowski saying “vagina.”


EDITED TO ADD: In case anyone is wondering, I have no idea who did that graphic; it’s floating around on tumblr. I found it courtesy of unknowable woman.

87 replies on “International Women’s Day has gotten SO commercialized”

@FelixBC: I think they also got it right on the telescope, though like most inventions we’ll probably find upon examination that the line chosen to decide who invented it is arbitrarily drawn. Almost every person who has been called the inventor of something was in fact simply improving upon the design of someone else, because invention in general is simply evolutionary rather than revolutionary. Someone chooses at one point to say ‘well, because of this advance the thing became a commercial success, so we’ll say Edison and not Tesla created this thing and move on’.

Despite American entrepreneur myths to the contrary, Invention typically does not exist. Ideas exist in the collectivity and people tend to come up with the same inventions in parallel all the fucking time.

also I was under the impression neanderthals invented fire

Nah, that’s one more (comparatively trivial) way in which this guy is wrong. At least if Neanderthals has discovered fire, it might plausibly have been a European “man” who first figured it out, albeit probably not a particularly “white” one. Instead, the earliest sites demonstrating fire usage predate the Neanderthals by a fair amount – they are from Homo erectus, in Africa. So even if somehow he happened to guess the gender of the extinct species member who first banged two pieces of flint together correctly – not that he’d ever actually know he did, since there’s no earthly way short of magical time machines we could possibly know that – he pretty definitely got the “white” part wrong. Also, you know, the implied “human” part. And the “fire is a thing one ‘invents'” part. But other than that, he totally made sense! :-p

Despite American entrepreneur myths to the contrary, Invention typically does not exist. Ideas exist in the collectivity and people tend to come up with the same inventions in parallel all the fucking time.

This is true, what is also true is that the vast majority of things which would actually count as “invention” historically have been untracked, especially in women’s “spheres” or in poorer communities. Novel ways of doing things are often spread throughout small communities with spotty attribution at best, even in the period of time right after the development of the method. Notions of exclusivity around patents and invention don’t often mesh well with traditional community and family skill sharing.

BlackBloc: >>It’s because we invented fire. And the wheel.

I believe those were likely invented by proto-humans, so modern racial concepts probably don’t apply.

Fire yes. The Wheel, no. It’s Middle Eastern.

Writing has two proveably independent inventions (Mayan Glyphs, and Cuneiform. It’s not provable the Chinese were completely independent, but it’s possible.

No white folks in either of them. The Alphabet is probably semitic, from adapting Egyptian heiroglyphs (which were syllabic).

We could look at things like weaving… probably a woman. Spinning of carded wool? Probably a woman (though it’s possible that the twining of fibers was male… no one can really say).

Which is true of most fire, the wheel, even writing. Gunpowder… probably male, because it was late in the day.

Domesticating fowl? I’ll bet that was women. Agriculture… side effect of, “women’s work”.

In short, I’d say the important advances (relative to the world we have today), probably about 50/50, by count, and one can dispute which of them were more important.

I do know one of the first writers, one of the first great writers, in human history was a woman. Enheduanna was high priestess and her religious prose was the Sumerian equivalent of Biblical and epic poetry. Her work was preserved and held in high esteem centuries after her death.

Just a little thing I wanted to throw in there.

Kiki, please share whatever drugs inspired the sloth comment. Or at least tell us where we can get some.

It’s from the picture in David’s post. Though you may have to be high to make the connection sans help

The sloth and the guitar are pretty much the only good parts of that picture. Now, if we could just have the sloth play the guitar in an adorably sleepy fashion, that would be awesome. It wouldn’t have anything to do with International Women’s Day, but it’d be awesome.

Did someone say sleepy sloth playing guitar?

There are no words for how much I love the internet.

The internet is amazing, and I am laughing my ass off now. Well done!

“The thing standing in the way of your dreams is that the person having them is you”

That’s fantastic, even by xkcd’s high standards. I’m going to get it engraved on a bracelet and wear it always.

I’ll admit that I was pretty high when I made that comment. But I was also surprised – and other posters’ comments seem to back this up – by how many times I had to look at the picture before I noticed WTF THAT WOMAN HAS A SLOTH ATTACHED TO HER HEAD.

I’ll de-lurk for that awesome “femmes de l’avenir” post. Everybody click that link it’s so fantastic! I see it’s probably ironic and not at all feminist, but the cards are still awesome as hell.
I want the top-hat with the duck. So bad.

Two other things:
The Women’s Day wasn’t invented in Russia at all but by German communist lady Clara Zetkin (I think), and
@BoggidWurms: As an ANE scholar I have to give you major props for knowing Enheduanna! Hers was a time when women – while not actually on the same powerlevel with the guys – had it much, much better than in the roughly three millenia that followed. I wonder what went wrong…

You want to know why we white males get special treatment?
It’s because we invented fire. And the wheel. And gunpowder. And telescopes. And money. And writing. And elevators. And nuclear bombs.

When you invent those things, you can complain. Until then, all you non-white males need to go fuck off.

Even if this were true (and it mostly isn’t), it doesn’t really matter what “white males” have accomplished.

What matters is – what have YOU accomplished? And I would guess, not a whole heck of a lot.

This discussion reminds me another one, where a guy tried to convince me that islamophobia is normal because Arabic countries haven’t contributed (his thoughts, not mine) to culture or science in the few hundred years.

Ignorance makes bigotry easier.

Lol @ the guy who said white men ‘made’ gunpowder. I thought it was basic knowledge that the (eeevull) Chinese invented that stuff?

Fire wasn’t invented, it was discovered, and the first humans to use fire lived in Africa, so they were not white. The oldest wheel was discovered in ancient Mesopotamia, not Europe. Mesopotamia is also where the earliest writing was discovered, again, not Europe. China was the first to use money, and as someone already pointed out, they invented gun powder. That leaves telescopes, elevators, and nuclear bombs, which really were invented by white men. That being said, the invention of stuff is a silly excuse to give any one group special treatment.

I know I’m necroing but it’s International Men’s Day (woohoo)and I thought you folks might enjoy this press release –

Yep, apparently MC Hammer is a positive role model.

Oh, and if your research is “irrefutable”, you don’t have to , you know give citations. Cos, hey, noone could refute it, even if they knew where it came from and how it was done. Cos, irrefutable, folks.

“mothers typically are nurturing, soft, gentle, comforting, protective and emotional. Fathers tend to be challenging, prodding, loud, playful and encourage risk taking. ”


My mother is most of both lists. Idk what they mean by soft, but she’s sorta squishy when I poke her and then loud about being poked…and protective, I’ve kinda trained her out of that one, in part because my father is the definition of over-protective, to the point that *drumroll* no risk taking can occur!

In short, having a father in the home does not inherently mean having a positive male role model.

“we invented fire. And the wheel. And gunpowder. And telescopes. And money. And writing. And elevators. And nuclear bombs.”

Leaving out that it definitely wasn’t Europeans who discovered fire (discovered in Africa, since it’s older than Homo sapiens), or invented the wheel (probably Middle East), gunpowder (China), money (Middle East) or writing (Middle East)…

There’s this small problem that the vast majority of white men didn’t invent anything either. It wasn’t you who invented telescopes, elevators or nuclear bombs. Why should you get to piggyback on the accomplishments of people who happen to share your skin color?

Couldn’t resist – I note that the charming (not) Warwick Marsh is a co-founder of the National Marriage Coalition, opposed to same-sex marriage. So is IMD only for the straight cis-men, then?

To promote positive male role models; not just movie stars and sportsmen but everyday, working class men who are living decent, honest lives.

And we’ll start the press release off with a quote from MC Hammer.

Dear International Men’s Day committee: Please stop mythologizing the working class. We are people, and not all of us are men. What we really need are jobs that pay a living wage, not lip service on your special day that you made up.

To improve gender relations and promote gender equality.

But first we’re going to start off with some nifty gender essentialism that tells mothers and fathers how thy are supposed to be. Father’s being soft, gentle, nurturing and emotional? Mothers being loud, playful, prodding and encouraging risk-taking? Nonsense! Better toe the appropriate gender line! And better be straight and cis-, too! Cause the only “real” family is the “Leave It Beaver” fantasy model.

I love my dad and definitely consider him a positive role model, but “encouraging risk taking”? No. Actually probably would’ve been quite different if I were a boy, but no.

Protective? Yes, both my mom and dad are that.

“mothers typically are nurturing, soft, gentle, comforting, protective and emotional. Fathers tend to be challenging, prodding, loud, playful and encourage risk taking. ”

Hmm. I’m really nothing off the mothers list except protective. I am probably challenging, prodding, loud, and playful, though. I guess I had better become a father, not a mother.

Both of my parents were nurturing AND encouraged some risk taking. Both parents dispensed both hugs and discipline. Mum was more playful, Dad more emotional (which doesn’t mean that either parent lacked the other quality).

These guys aren’t describing things they’ve actually observed, they’re describing a fantasy that seems to be all that keeps them going.

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