Literary Clusterfucks 2013

Message Bookmarked
Bookmark Removed
Not all messages are displayed: show all messages (2398 of them)

man that's a tough read

goole, Thursday, 10 January 2013 02:51 (eight years ago) link


buzza, Thursday, 10 January 2013 03:11 (eight years ago) link

How much you wanna bet that Mr Cowboy is gonna be a MRA talking head

Theodora Celery, Thursday, 10 January 2013 03:49 (eight years ago) link

In 2001, Valdes emailed a 3400-word resignation letter to her superiors at the Los Angeles Times. The letter was widely circulated on the Internet[ and reprinted in the St. Petersburg Times. In the letter she accused the newspaper of racism and discrimination, especially in its synonymous use of the word "latino" with "Spanish-speaker", a practice she equated to genocide.

buzza, Thursday, 10 January 2013 03:54 (eight years ago) link

buzza are you suggesting that alisa valdes is hysterical or otherwise to be dismissed

mookieproof, Thursday, 10 January 2013 04:32 (eight years ago) link

this is not the elizabeth wurtzel thread

buzza, Thursday, 10 January 2013 04:35 (eight years ago) link

And so, even though I was 43 years old and have Lupus


Una Stubbs' Tears (Trayce), Thursday, 10 January 2013 04:36 (eight years ago) link

hm prob should have read the whole post of hers before making light. still, this shit brings the whole 50 shades bullshit into its awful, true light.

Una Stubbs' Tears (Trayce), Thursday, 10 January 2013 04:46 (eight years ago) link

Considering Valdes wrote one of the single most amazing demolitions of a horrible person ever, reading/seeing all this...yeah.

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 10 January 2013 05:43 (eight years ago) link

okay that was awesome. thanks for linking that Ned

set the controls for the heart of the sun (VegemiteGrrl), Thursday, 10 January 2013 05:48 (eight years ago) link

still cannot get over her story with the cowboy. so fucked up. I mean, just that it reads so familiarly, is so sad to me.

set the controls for the heart of the sun (VegemiteGrrl), Thursday, 10 January 2013 05:52 (eight years ago) link

this is not the elizabeth wurtzel thread

oh, okay then

mookieproof, Thursday, 10 January 2013 05:55 (eight years ago) link

“An irresistible, post-feminist Taming of the Shrew. Don’t be scared by the premise. This is not a story about a woman relinquishing her identity. Quite the opposite. It is a riveting tale about how a brilliant, strong-minded woman liberated herself from a dreary, male-bashing, reality-denying feminism.”

– Christina Hoff Sommers, author of The War Against Boys; How Misguided Feminism is Harming Our Young Men

buzza, Thursday, 10 January 2013 07:24 (eight years ago) link

a practice she equated to genocide

ugh fuck this, there is like a 100% chance she was referring to cultural genocide, a term used for decades and not meant to imply the actual murder of a group of people

#guy #guy fieri #poop #hallway (zachlyon), Thursday, 10 January 2013 07:25 (eight years ago) link

buzza, Thursday, 10 January 2013 07:37 (eight years ago) link

buzza idgi are you trying to damage the credibility of the woman who basically just announced she wrote a book about a man who raped her

autistic boy is surprisingly good at basketball (silby), Thursday, 10 January 2013 07:39 (eight years ago) link

apparently so?

it's tough when you can only speak in the form of revived threads

mookieproof, Thursday, 10 January 2013 07:53 (eight years ago) link

seemed like zachylon wanted the context of the wiki quote so i provided it?

buzza, Thursday, 10 January 2013 08:02 (eight years ago) link

thank you for posting it

she does make a clear distinction between the two types of genocide tho she doesn't mark it with "cultural" or something similar. she does 'equate' the two but that's sort of the idea, while the wiki editor left out any of that context and framed it like "she compared this one tiny linguistic choice with the holocaust", fuck wiki

#guy #guy fieri #poop #hallway (zachlyon), Thursday, 10 January 2013 08:56 (eight years ago) link


Broken Clock Britain (Noodle Vague), Thursday, 10 January 2013 09:18 (eight years ago) link

I have a lot of thoughts about this whole thing and also some feelings but none are organized enough to share except for, Jesus, Lady--at least when I did that I didn't write a book about it.

grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 14:49 (eight years ago) link

considering that one of the major goals of feminism was to protect women from the power imbalances present in domestic relationships, it's not super surprising that valdes' paean to how feminism got romance wrong and how there's something special about a real man turned out to be about an abusive asshole. i don't mean to suggest that she deserves what happened in the least, but there is a sort of irony that the very political principles she decried in the context of this relationship turned out to be especially relevant to her needs.

Mordy, Thursday, 10 January 2013 15:01 (eight years ago) link

xp On second thought that makes it sound like my experience was as extreme as hers: it was not. I also didn't put it in those terms of submission etc or posit that it revealed anything about how feminism has failed us. And I didn't have to jump out of a moving truck although after getting hit by an actual car frankly I'd take another one of those accidents over another of those relationships.

grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 15:03 (eight years ago) link

there is a sort of irony that the very political principles she decried in the context of this relationship turned out to be especially relevant to her needs.

It's not like that's a coincidence. She decried them because she was being told to.

grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 15:07 (eight years ago) link

really want some blogger to try to get a reaction out of christina hoff summers

goole, Thursday, 10 January 2013 15:13 (eight years ago) link

I usually assume "How I did X and Changed My Life" memoirists are flighty, superficial and unrealistic people, because shit just doesn't work like that. This is a particularly egregious example.

drunk 'n' white's elements of style (Hurting 2), Thursday, 10 January 2013 15:25 (eight years ago) link

This is a horrible horrible story.

emil.y, Thursday, 10 January 2013 15:40 (eight years ago) link

btw, I regret my above post, having apparently made it without really reading most of the story in her blog post.

However, the blog post is now gone.

drunk 'n' white's elements of style (Hurting 2), Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:44 (eight years ago) link


goole, Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:44 (eight years ago) link

this just got a little clusterfuckier

drunk 'n' white's elements of style (Hurting 2), Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:46 (eight years ago) link

without the followup blog post this is kind of incoherent

she wrote a fluffy romance novel that seems to spend half its time scolding modern feminism, then revealed that the man she was writing about raped and abused her and (this is where things are fuzzy to me) the whole novel was a double-feint?

Solange Knowles is my hero (DJP), Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:52 (eight years ago) link

it's a memior!

goole, Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:53 (eight years ago) link


so, replace "romance novel" with "memoir"; is the rest accurate?

Solange Knowles is my hero (DJP), Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:54 (eight years ago) link


Ned Raggett, Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:54 (eight years ago) link


Solange Knowles is my hero (DJP), Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:55 (eight years ago) link

Given some of the things she was also saying about her publisher I wonder if that had something to do with it.

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:55 (eight years ago) link

Was just wondering the same thing.

grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:57 (eight years ago) link

not really a double feint in my reading; the now-gone blog post says the memior was written a couple years ago while still under the heavy influence of the guy and (i think?) before the most egregious instances of abuse had happened

goole, Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:57 (eight years ago) link

the memoir was finished 2 years ago and some shit has gone down since then.

an eagle named "small government" (call all destroyer), Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:57 (eight years ago) link

she also previously blogged about her breakup with him without as far as I can tell mentioning abuse or rape, which of course doesn't mean it didn't happen. But she wrote things like,

I am grateful for this entire experience, and I do not view this breakup as in any way being counter to the message of my book. I still love Steve, and I am convinced that I always will. This breakup hurts more than my divorce, because the depth and intensity of the love was the most profound thing I have experienced, other than being a mother.

I probably should have seen it coming, given what little I knew of his dating/family/job/friendship history. I ignored the red flags, and I chose to live in a state of hope. That’s not a bad thing, really. It was a glorious 1.5 years. Best of my life. I would not trade them for anything. I have never felt more at peace, and more alive, and more on fire with wanting than I did at his little house in the middle of nowhere, lying next to him in the deathly quiet of night. I am a completely changed human being for having known this man, in every way, and so the basic message of the memoir remains true, and always will. This relationship changed me, and just because it has been taken from me does not mean I am no longer changed. I am forever changed, better, new, reborn, wiser. Should I someday ever get to that place again where I feel I’m able to have another relationship (seems unlikely right now) I’d like to think my future boyfriend will owe Steve a thank-you letter for the woman I became with him — a gentler, more compassionate, more thoughtful and womanly version of the person I’d always been.

drunk 'n' white's elements of style (Hurting 2), Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:57 (eight years ago) link

when did the alleged abuse go down?

drunk 'n' white's elements of style (Hurting 2), Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:58 (eight years ago) link

(blog post was October 2012)

drunk 'n' white's elements of style (Hurting 2), Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:58 (eight years ago) link

The now-removed post also says that she sugar-coated things for her blog so that readers wouldn't know how bad it was.

grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:00 (eight years ago) link

redacted blog post

I’ve had more than a dozen books published, but never have I had a publication day come and go without so much as an email from my editor, wishing me well — until now. With the recent publication of my first memoir, The Feminist & The Cowboy: An Unlikely Love Story, I have had the odd experience of having been essentially shunned by my publisher, one assumes because the reality of my life more than a year after having turned in the final manuscript is different from the ending one might have liked to have seen if my life were the made-for-TV movie or fairy tale my publisher seemed to have hoped they might market my book as. I have been advised not to discuss any of this publicly, to just accept this cold shoulder and lack of support as my penance for the crime of being openly broken up with the cowboy when I should have just pretended we were still together long enough to sell books. I have tried to be cooperative, but as the early reviews come rolling in for the book I feel compelled to come clean — totally clean — with my readers. I do this because I think it will help to make sense of a book that in many ways just doesn’t make sense to healthy people, and because I believe very firmly that the truth is the only currency a writer has, and that if there is any hope of redeeming this book and making it meaningful it lies in the full story of my relationship with the cowboy and not just in the candy-coated version that appears in the book.

The first thing I think readers need to understand is just how much time it takes for a book to go from a writer’s computer files to a bookstore shelf. It takes more than a year, usually. That year is used for things like cover design, advance publicity for magazines, visits with book buyers from members of the sales team. So the version of my life that hit shelves last week is actually more than two years old.

That said, a lot can happen in two years, especially when you’re in a relationship with a man as complicated and volatile as the cowboy. There has been some confusion because in addition to the book I have also kept a sporadic blog about my ongoing relationship with the cowboy. Those who followed the blog understood that things changed, and they followed along with me. But for those reviewers who are new to the party, just learning about me from the memoir and then seeing on my blog that the relationship described in the book both wasn’t what it seemed, eventually, and is not in existence anymore, there is understandably a sense of having been the victim of a bait-and-switch operation. I am truly sorry for this, and I wish to reassure readers that no one in the world feels more the victim of bait and switch than I.

What I mean by this is that while I set out to write a memoir that was a love letter to a man I was deeply in love with, a man who challenged me in myriad ways, a man who changed my life profoundly, a man I respected and honored greatly at the time, what I actually wrote was a handbook for women on how to fall in love with a manipulative, controlling, abusive narcissist. The fascinating thing about the release of the book, for me, has been just how many reviewers have seen what I failed to see when I wrote the book: That the cowboy was controlling and abusive. I simply never saw it then. I admired and nearly worshipped the man. One reviewer described her disappointment in having learned that I was still with him at the end of the book, saying that she could not help but to think of cult members as she read my adoring account of a man who, to her eyes and through nothing but my journalistic descriptions of his interactions with me, was obviously a domineering abuser. It hurts to read reviews like that, but it is also empowering for me now. See, while I didn’t understand just what kind of man I’d fallen for at the start, and during the writing of the book, the longer we were together the more obvious it became.

That said, I want to come clean with something else. There is a LOT you don’t know about the cowboy and how he treated me. I kept a lot of it under wraps, because I had turned a book in and I was trying to be a good contract employee and not completely sabotage the book by telling the whole story on my blog. But with my publisher’s complete lack of support now, and with the reviews so clearly describing for me the fact that healthy women, whole women, are able to recognize in the cowboy a dangerous man that I was, in my blindness and lack of experience with abusive men, unable to see, I feel that the only possible way for any of this to make sense to anyone is for the entire story to be known. To be honest about it puts me in danger — real physical danger — so I am reluctant. But I also feel I owe it to my loyal readers and fans to be truthful now. It is the decent thing to do.

One reader wrote to me via a comment on this blog, condemning me for finding the cowboy’s behaviors abusive now, where I said they were wonderful before. This would be a fair condemnation if it were true. Though I have referred to the cowboy being abusive on my blog, I have never listed the reasons I believe this. If all you had to go on was the book, you could very well jump to the same conclusion my critic did. I don’t blame her, and I totally understand.

I have been working on a sequel about the cowboy and me, and though I am quite sure my publisher won’t want it I will likely self-publish it soon. In it, I plan to detail the ways I was fooled and manipulated, the mistakes I made in choosing to ignore red flags, the many unfortunate ways that I started to subsume and lose myself in order to please an unpleasable and controlling man. I hope that in doing so I will help to make sense of the first book, both for you guys and for myself. What I want to emphasize here is that the first book was NOT an attempt to sell a lie; it was a sincere, heartfelt memoir that came during the honeymoon period of an abusive relationship, before I understood just how much danger I was putting myself in, with me justifying the hints of violence through my own romanticized version of the American cowboy icon and, unfortunately, with me blinded by this man’s almost unfathomable physical beauty, which was almost impossible to reconcile with the brutality that this most handsome shell encased.

In the interest of retaining some respectability, I will tell you a few of the more painful moments, so that you can understand just how quickly things changed and just how violently they escalated. I do this as a warning to other women, too. For many years, I simply scratched my head at women in abusive relationships, unable to understand why they stayed, judgmental of them for not being smarter. What I didn’t understand was just how masterful some men can be at the seduction and honeymoon phase, just how ruthlessly perfect they can present themselves to be, before the screw begins to tighten, and tighten, until you one day wake up and don’t even recognize yourself anymore.

The worst of it began in April last year, when I discovered the cowboy and I had accidentally become pregnant. While I am pro-choice in theory, I am pro-life for myself. I could not abort that child. It went against everything I believed. And so, even though I was 43 years old and have Lupus, even though my pregnancy with my son had been a living hell 12 years before, I decided I would have the child. When I sat down face to face with the cowboy to discuss the situation, he was very kind at the start. He was supportive and said he wanted to help us sort out the best way to handle things. When I told him I was going to have the child, I expected he’d be supportive, even if he, like I, was overwhelmed by the idea of becoming parents to an infant at our ages (he was 53). Instead, his eyes grew snake cold. He glared at me, and moved away from me. He was angry, and told me very clearly: “Looks like you’ve made up your mind, but here’s what you need to know. You can have me, or you can have the baby, but you can’t have both.” I was stunned. I balked. “You don’t mean that,” I said. “You say you love me and my son, you wouldn’t just leave us because I’ve decided to have your child.” He smirked then, his eyes crueler and colder than anything I’d ever seen, and he said, simply, “Watch me.” With that, he got up, got the overnight bag he’d brought to my house in the city, and he walked out the door to return to the ranch, four hours away. He did not answer my phone calls or emails after that. I was dead to him.

I grieved harder than I have ever grieved in my life, absolutely astonished that any human being could contain within him the capacity to be so mean and selfish. I called many friends and family, and they got me through it. I tried to forget the cowboy, and kept the breakup and pregnancy a secret for the sake of my publisher, continued to post cheerful blogs about my supposed relationship. It was hell on earth. I tried to figure out how I was going to make it, how I was going to be a single mother while enduring what promised to be a painful and difficult pregnancy, how I would raise a newborn while still caring for my adolescent son, who would likely have to step in to be a mini-daddy for his sibling. It was truly awful. But I made my choice. The baby. Not the cowboy.

Then, at my first prenatal ultrasound appointment, the technician told me something terrifying. There was no baby anymore. The blood tests said I was pregnant, but there was no detectable sack or embryo. They rushed me to the hospital, thinking I was having an ectopic pregnancy. After observing me for a week, they concluded instead that I had miscarried. My father contacted the cowboy to let him know how distraught I was, how much I was suffering. This is because my father truly had sympathy for the cowboy, whom he saw as “a tragic figure,” because the cowboy had his shining moments, where he clearly longed to truly connect and love, but was unable to do either meaningfully because of severe abuses he had suffered as a child. The cowboy rushed to the hospital, full of apologies. We reconciled, because I was weak and stupid and wanted him to be the man I had once believed he was, the man I wrote about in the memoir I’d turned in months before. I wanted to make the fairy tale come true again. I wanted things the way I’d thought they were.

Things changed for good then, though. We tried to muddle through, but it just got worse and worse. There were certainly moments of great beauty and love, I cannot deny that, but underlying it all was this unrest, this unfortunate beast that would raise its head now and then, and more and more frequently. There were signs of physical violence to come, textbook signals. The cowboy bragging nonstop about all the fights he’d been in, all the men he’d put in the hospital, while polishing his guns in front of me, letting me know just what I might be in for if I got out of line again. There was the time we had an argument, the time I dared to challenge him and insist that I was right about something, when he, furious with me and so much bigger than me, simply dragged me down the hall to the bedroom, bent me over, and took me, telling me as he did so that I must never forget who was in charge, that I must learn to be nicer, that I must learn…to obey. Yes. I am not proud. I was so beaten down by then, from the constant daily criticisms, from the constant erosion of my self esteem, that I just took it, and wept, and apologized, and promised to do better. I did not think I would become someone like that. And there was a part of me hidden away inside, kept safe, that watched it all and waited for my chance to escape… There was the night we argued at my house, and he was going to leave, as he always did, stonewalling and locking me out being his favorite weapons, his silent treatments going on sometimes for weeks on end, the emails finally coming in which he said he was willing to come back as long as I changed a long list of things about myself, and me always caving in…but that night, he was brutal again, when I tried to say I was sorry, when I tried to stop the inevitable stonewalling, he glared, called me a mouthy cunt, told me to get to my side of the bed and not touch him, told me that he couldn’t stand the sight of me, told me that if I really wanted to impress him then I’d be a good girl and just shut the fuck up, and his finger poking me in the chest, and then wagged in my face, telling me that my biggest problem, the reason he would never marry me after all, was that I was a woman who just didn’t know when to shut the fuck up, shut the fuck up, and me saying I would, that I would be quiet, and turning my back to him so he wouldn’t hear me cry, and him feeling the bed shake anyway and yelling at me that I was pathetic, that if I wanted him to stay then I better stop fucking crying, and me running into my closet with my phone to fall in a heap on the floor and text myself so that in the morning I’d remember that this was NOT okay, that this was NOT love, and him pretending the next morning that nothing had happened.

The last day I saw him, I jumped out of a moving truck to get away from him. He was in a rage. He’d called me a useless cunt this time, a mouthy bitch, all manner of names. He’d told me what a terrible mother I was. He’d attacked, attacked, attacked, all because I didn’t say hello to him the right way when he came back from running the dogs on the ranch. He was convinced I was being bratty because I didn’t react with enough enthusiasm to his return. This unleashed an avalanche of hatred. I stood there in the sun, disbelieving, trying to reason with him. He told me that I needed to leave. “Get your shit and let’s go,” he said. It was getting late, and he knew I hated driving home from the ranch in the dark because so much of the rural highway out there had no cell service. If I got a flat tire or something I’d be doomed. I asked if I could just stay in the guest room until the morning. “You can either get your shit and put it in the truck yourself,” he said, “or I will drag you by the hair, beat your ass to the ground, hog-tie you with duct tape, and throw your ass in the back of the truck. One way or another, you will be leaving. You decide.” He meant it. By this time, he had raised his hand to me on at least three occasions, but had yet to strike me. He always blamed me for this. I drove him to it. Anyway, I got in the truck, and we started to leave. I was hysterical, and afraid, and he began to talk about how much he wanted to beat my ass down. The truck was going slowly, and the look in his eye was terrifying. I really believed he would kill me. He’d hinted at it. So I opened the door, and I jumped. I thought I’d land on my feet. I didn’t. I landed facedown on a bunch of rocks, nearly crushed under the back tires, dislocating my shoulder, badly cut and bruised everywhere, my hip filling with blood. I screamed. He stopped the truck, walked over, looked at me on the ground as I begged him to call an ambulance. “Only you would be stupid enough to jump out of a moving truck,” he told me. He did not help me, or come near me. Instead, he said he was going to the hunting lodge to get some witnesses, in case I tried to tell the police he had done this to me. In that instant, I finally fucking understood — this man did not love me. He could not love anyone. He was alone in his anger and paranoia. I pushed my shoulder back into joint, struggled to my feet, and terrified he’d kill me, I got my dog out of the back seat, and my purse, and I ran for the hills. I hid in ravines and canyons, behind juniper bushes, and walked the 16 miles back to my car. I drove away, and never saw him again.

That is what’s going on. That is why the release of this memoir is so bittersweet for me. The book was true, when I wrote it. But life changed. I didn’t try to fool anyone, or to exploit anything. Rather, I believed in a man who didn’t deserve it. I fell for the incredible charm and manipulations such men are capable of. I failed to see what women who are wiser than I was are clearly seeing as they read my book — that this man was “a jerk,” as one reviewer said. I didn’t know. Worst of all, I wrote about my love and my flexibility and compromises in so glowing and beautiful a way as to secure a book deal from a wonderful publisher, an elite publisher, and now the same publisher is treating me like I have the plague, all because, I feel, I have saved my own life. I didn’t set out to deceive them. No one wanted the fairy tale more than I did! Ironically, being “punished” by the publisher feels a bit like the abusive emotional stonewalling the cowboy would do to me when I didn’t knuckle under and do what HE needed me to do for HIS needs…it’s familiar territory, only now it’s being done to me by a progressive woman in New York. I’m not a commodity. I’m not an object. I’m not a thing to be sold. I am a human being, a writer, an artist, a work in progress, and real life is messy sometimes, especially when it comes to love and abuse. I am deeply wounded by the stonewalling from my editor, as wounded as I ever was when the cowboy did it to me…

I’m sure I’ll get shit for posting this. I’m betraying my publisher, who would have liked for me to be the next Ree Drummond. Hell, I would have liked for me to be the next Ree Drummond. But I wasn’t. I was the only Alisa Valdes, learning as I went along, living honestly and hopefully, trying to love. The only way the memoir works is if it is allowed to be what it IS rather than what others might like for it to have been. What is it? It is a guidebook for women on what falling in love with a controlling abuser looks like. It is a handbook on what NOT to do, what to run away from. I did not know it then. Then, I felt safe and thrilled, impressed with myself for having secured such a hot, strong, strapping, manly man. It was an illusion. Underneath it all was a scared, insecure boy, who talked the talk but didn’t walk the walk, a man who only felt good enough when he was making others feel badly. The memoir is important, and it is valuable, but not without this afterward. The message of the book, as I see it? Even smart, educated, self-sufficient, thoughtful women can get sucked into abusive relationships, and it will happen slowly, a little at a time, like a frog in a pot of cold water that is placed over a low flame, that even someone like me can, sometimes, be slowly boiled to death, that maybe we will write beautifully about how relaxing the warm water is, at first…

Finally, I want to say that I do not blame ranch life or cowboy culture for any of what the cowboy turned out to be. He could have been an accountant and it would have been the same. He was what he was because his own mother and father failed to love him. He was an abused child himself, and that was perhaps the hardest part of it all — that I saw glimpses of that little boy, the boy who so desperately wanted and needed to be loved, and sometimes he was playful, and joyous, and sweet, and happy, sometimes he loved, sometimes he allowed others to love him. Sometimes, we were happy. Blissfully happy. And that’s the part I never understood about abuse — that it doesn’t always feel like abuse. Sometimes, lots of the time, it felt like heaven.

I’m grateful to have gone through it. I learned a lot. I grew a lot. And now I know what so many of you who are reading the book already know — how to spot a controlling, abusive man from the get go. And I assure you: It won’t happen again.

In his own words:

CGI fridays (Edward III), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:00 (eight years ago) link

that seems plausible I guess

whatever is going on here seems sad and not good and I kind of feel like I want to stop gawking at it now

drunk 'n' white's elements of style (Hurting 2), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:02 (eight years ago) link

"seems plausible I guess" = the sugar-coating part xpost, I wasn't commenting on the story in the blog

drunk 'n' white's elements of style (Hurting 2), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:04 (eight years ago) link

O_O jesus

Solange Knowles is my hero (DJP), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:08 (eight years ago) link

I wish ppl would stop using "feel badly."

grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:09 (eight years ago) link

She's on the air right now!


Alisa Valdes Alisa Valdes ‏@MizAlisa

About to go live on the radio with Amy Oliver on 1310 KFKA in CO to talk about #feministandcowboy. @gothambooks

Alisa Valdes ‏@MizAlisa

Listen in! I'm on live.

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:12 (eight years ago) link

Seems to be talking about language issues right now.

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:13 (eight years ago) link


sleeve, Sunday, 20 June 2021 03:45 (five days ago) link

as a woman, i do not consider TERFs my ally in any way. they are villains and don't give a shit about women's full legal and economic equality because "full" would mean including *all* women.

superdeep borehole (harbl), Sunday, 20 June 2021 03:45 (five days ago) link

i can't believe anyone would defend them on this thread in THIS discussion, let alone anywhere. we have trans posters. for now. jesus christ.

superdeep borehole (harbl), Sunday, 20 June 2021 03:46 (five days ago) link

Of course I know what it stands for. And if you don't have a way to bring together people fighting for gender rights and equality that includes people who, e.g., have been fighting for gay rights for decades, then you're making your own fight harder. It takes work by everyone. That's how alliances work. The successful ones anyway.

Fuck entirely off, you can stay off my side, asshole

Clara Lemlich stan account (silby), Sunday, 20 June 2021 03:50 (five days ago) link

And yes there is more responsibility on the part of people with more privilege and power.

OK, I'm sorry. I understand and respect the sentiments of the room.

The USA allied with Stalin's USSR in WWII and that alliance was crucial to defeating the Nazis. Flawed allies can help you win battles and even wars, so long as each side of the alliance understands the necessity of defeating a common enemy. After WWII ended, they turned their attention to having it out with one another, but they each knew to address first things first.

What's It All About, Althea? (Aimless), Sunday, 20 June 2021 03:52 (five days ago) link

Sure ok whatever xp

Clara Lemlich stan account (silby), Sunday, 20 June 2021 03:53 (five days ago) link

Go read r/gendercynical for a while and then come back and tell us that you are willing to defend terfs.

Christine Green Leafy Dragon Indigo, Sunday, 20 June 2021 03:55 (five days ago) link

aimless, that is pretty nonsensical.

vcrash, Sunday, 20 June 2021 03:55 (five days ago) link

that is pretty nonsensical

not at all. it explains why terfs would show up to fight bills that are specifically anti-trans. it is because the legislators who sponsor such bills have a much broader agenda than anti-trans oppression and such bills are preliminary bouts that test the strength of each side.

this "no terf will ever be welcome in any battle I need to fight" righteousness is fine if all you want is to strike an attitude, but it weakens your cause to confine your allies to those whose ideas align entirely with yours. hence my citing the realpolitik of the USA/USSR alliance. The people who write anti-trans bills are far worse scum than terfs and if the price of stopping them is cooperation with terfs, it's a small price compared to letting the scum take over.

What's It All About, Althea? (Aimless), Sunday, 20 June 2021 04:07 (five days ago) link

Doesn't mean we should be nicer to TERFs; they should still stop being TERFs and just advocate against bad laws for normal reasons like the rest of us.

vcrash, Sunday, 20 June 2021 04:16 (five days ago) link

looking forward to the molotov-ribbentrop pact analogy

mookieproof, Sunday, 20 June 2021 04:23 (five days ago) link

has there been this mobilization by TERFs against anti-trans bills? I have seen zero evidence of this phenomenon

symsymsym, Sunday, 20 June 2021 07:45 (five days ago) link

Yeah, what I see is considerable TERF mobilization in favour of such laws - they are, after all, based on the same scaremongering they fell for in the first place. Terfs who proudly fight against their own political objectives must be pretty politically confused.

Daniel_Rf, Sunday, 20 June 2021 08:54 (five days ago) link

Think that when some leftists tried to pitch the "bigoted working class whites are potential allies, we should try to get them onside" plan it was pretty roundly ridiculed because queer ppl and poc shouldn't have to deal with outspoken bigotry against themselves in the name of tactical solidarity. Don't think this is any different.

Daniel_Rf, Sunday, 20 June 2021 08:58 (five days ago) link

tipsy i can't help thinking that there’s a specific personal story that’s forming the basis for what you’re writing that you’re not telling us the details of and which we can therefore never actually get to the bottom of. i have to say i agree that on the face of it the idea that trans people and their allies - nominal or engaged - should put aside their differences with people who want to *check notes* deny them their right to exist in order to achieve a victory (?) in some other sphere (?) - feels like, how does one put it - booshit mang

Tracer Hand, Sunday, 20 June 2021 09:09 (five days ago) link

I thiiink what's happening here is that tipsy is thinking of the acronym TERF akin to its early meaning of "long-time well-organised feminist campaigners, many radical enough to want to exclude perceived-male ppl from society in general, others enthusiastically involved in heterosexual activities - and who on democratic balance do not include trans wmn in their organisations"

and not the lower-case evolution of the term, in which a flourishing modern version of satanic panic has been whipped up over children being abducted from public changing rooms by trans ppl instead of by heavy metal musicians. also cis women might lose foot races, or something.

bobo honkin' slobo babe (sic), Sunday, 20 June 2021 09:28 (five days ago) link

has there been this mobilization by TERFs against anti-trans bills? I have seen zero evidence of this phenomenon

it's possible that Aimless is also thinking of instances where oldschool radfems fought anti-trans legislation decades ago instead of what is happening now? citing specific bills would probably clarify.

bobo honkin' slobo babe (sic), Sunday, 20 June 2021 09:32 (five days ago) link

Hungary has passed legislation that bars sharing LGBTQ content with people under the age of 18.

It comes after the ruling conservative party passed another law making it impossible for trans people to change the gender markers on their documents.

— NPR (@NPR) June 15, 2021

Section 28 turned out okay, right?

bobo honkin' slobo babe (sic), Sunday, 20 June 2021 09:36 (five days ago) link

Aimless' comparison of this whole sorry business to WWII is very silly. You can't do tactical, temporary collaboration with ppl who deny lives (like the Nazis did, so it's faulty at its most basic level) and it's ignorant of how they behave in online spaces, and how the moral panic they conjure up is now being translated into hostile legislation.

Seeing that there can be no collaboration is the ultimate source of pain for liberals. Hence the lashing out of non-collaborationists as having an 'attitude' problem. Maybe they are lacking in maturity too. Or they want purity.

xyzzzz__, Sunday, 20 June 2021 09:50 (five days ago) link

Its also my experience that terfs are pretty single issue, and that issue is anti trans. I know lots of people who have spent decades working hard and full time around issues of reproductive health, domestic violence, abortion stigma, and so on. Most of these people are now under siege by terfs and obstructed and frustrated from doing the work they want to do by an onslaught of pressure against things like services using more inclusive language.

I think its illuminating that one of jk rowling's most famous transphobic tweets was directed at an international development organisation working in africa and east asia providing access to menstrual hygiene for people in developing countries, similarly the current main target of terfs in the UK is the largest LGBT+ rights organisation.

plax (ico), Sunday, 20 June 2021 11:07 (five days ago) link

tipsy i can't help thinking that there’s a specific personal story that’s forming the basis for what you’re writing

This is true, but I recognize the limits of anecdote. I also recognize the differences between U.S. and U.K. politics. TERFs are not a particular cultural force in the U.S., certainly not in Tennessee. So I’m just going to shut up and not argue the point. I do not want to hurt anybody or be misunderstood.

Trans women are women. Trans men are men. I don’t want any ambiguity about my own beliefs on that.

this thread took a turn. I just want to amplify this:

xp I guess I'm confused why you feel the need to attack both sides here, in this thread, as somehow equally responsible for the dialog, and deserving of more grace than they get from every paper, news media property, the Guardian... Are TERFs the ones who are suffering here?

― vcrash, Saturday, June 19, 2021 11:33 PM (yesterday) bookmarkflaglink

and apply this logic to the specific situation of Adichie publicly maligning Emezi. The way this rift began is that Emezi had been a student of Adichie’s and really admired her, as many young Nigerian writers do. Adichie was supposed to blurb Emezi’s first novel and then Emezi came out as non-binary, and Adichie balked, pulled out of having her name associated with the novel, and Emezi accepted that. Emezi also wrote about how painful the fallout was, again, because they had admired Adichie and to be rejected by her based on their gender identity was painful. I don’t really get “both sides”ing this situation: Adichie has been an asshole. Emezi was just…being. (And Adichie is famous and well regarded and on a Beyonce album and everything! What is her goddamn problem? Just shut up about trans identity, about which you know nothing!!!)

I want to say something about TERF-ism which is that it strikes me as very jealously protective of the abject status of a narrowly defined concept of womanhood and thereby blind to the fact that as a woman, one can abuse one’s power over others. Emezi is a rising star, but there’s no question that Adichie has institutional power behind her, and when they first fell out, Adichie failed them as a mentor. Adichie sees trans women as endowed with privileges cis women lack, and just looking at the material realities of trans women’s lives, that seems like a crazy reading to me. I don’t think it’s fair to ask trans people to make common cause with people who don’t support their existence, just as I bristle when people tell me to make common cause with white racists.

horseshoe, Sunday, 20 June 2021 12:55 (five days ago) link

I think what Adichie did bothers me so much in part because I teach, and I teach some trans kids, and I am a 40 something cis feminist, and IT IS NOT HARD to support students or listen to them when they tell you about their lives and experiences! How obsessed with yourself and defensive about your identity do you have to be to withdraw support from someone because they don’t identify as you do?

horseshoe, Sunday, 20 June 2021 13:03 (five days ago) link


plax (ico), Sunday, 20 June 2021 13:43 (five days ago) link

I want to note that I was not excusing Adichie's shit in my comment above that plax mentioned, certainly didn't mean for it to come out that way. I think her comments are awful.

heyy nineteen, that's john belushi (the table is the table), Sunday, 20 June 2021 15:02 (five days ago) link

oh i didn't take it that way and me neither btw

plax (ico), Sunday, 20 June 2021 16:07 (five days ago) link

also lol i think it would be pretty out of character if you did

plax (ico), Sunday, 20 June 2021 16:08 (five days ago) link

Really good essay on this, gives plenty of context:

Worth a read, especially for those who think repeating a mantra like 'trans women are women' is 'cringe' or whatever the fuck.

xyzzzz__, Tuesday, 22 June 2021 09:12 (three days ago) link

That's a good essay, and seems like a really good site.

vcrash, Tuesday, 22 June 2021 13:39 (three days ago) link

gal-dem is very good yes

Daniel_Rf, Tuesday, 22 June 2021 13:47 (three days ago) link

Thanks for sharing that, xyzzzz, much more measured than I would be but great article nonetheless.

emil.y, Tuesday, 22 June 2021 15:20 (three days ago) link

gal dem is great

plax (ico), Tuesday, 22 June 2021 19:15 (three days ago) link

and since we're sortof on the topic, this investigative piece is a great if harrowing read

plax (ico), Tuesday, 22 June 2021 19:17 (three days ago) link

You must be logged in to post. Please either login here, or if you are not registered, you may register here.