Archive for April, 2012

April 27, 2012

FWO Honored at The New School

Last night, The New School’s Office of Student Development & Activities held their 10th Annual Student
Leadership Awards, honoring individuals and groups at The New School who demonstrate a commitment to community leadership. We knew ahead of the event that our advisor Lori Lynn Turner received a nomination for Outstanding Advisor to a Student Organization, but we were surprised to learn that FWO had also received two nominations, one for Outstanding New Student Organization and one for Outstanding Student Organization or Group.

We are proud to announce that Lori Lynn won for Outstanding Advisor to a Student Organization! She was presented with a beautiful framed award, just as fabulous as the one you see here. Lori Lynn has worked tirelessly to support the FWO since its inception, and was instrumental in encouraging and facilitating  our most successful and ambitious event of the year, our Women Writing in the Age of ‘Post-feminism’ panel back in March. We are thrilled to see Lori Lynn’s hard work and dedication as an advisor, feminist, and an all-around inspiring person recognized.

Congratulations, LL!

April 15, 2012

Film, Food & Feminism: FWO Screens ‘The Purity Myth’

Join the Feminist Writers Organization at The New School as we celebrate the end of the semester and look ahead to the organization’s future by enjoying an evening of film, food, and feminism!

We will screen the “Purity Myth,” a documentary version of Jessica Valenti’s book of the same title, in which Valenti “trains her sights on ‘the virginity movement’ — an unholy alliance of evangelical Christians, right-wing politicians, and conservative policy intellectuals who have been exploiting irrational fears about women’s sexuality to roll back women’s rights.”

No need to be a student to attend, all are welcome, but we encourage you to RSVP.

FWO Screens ‘The Purity Myth’
Wednesday, April 25th, 6:00 p.m.
72 Fifth Ave., room 306

April 5, 2012

Don’t discriminate a book by its cover

Last week’s Sunday Book Review section of the New York Times has an essay by Meg Wolitzer, “The Second Shelf: On the Rules of Literary Fiction for Men and Women“. It’s yet another discussion about the disparities between published men and women authors, and she takes a closer look at book covers and how even those tend to convey sentiments of the books and their authors to the public.

Look at some of the jackets of novels by women. Laundry hanging on a line. A little girl in a field of wildflowers. A pair of shoes on a beach. An empty swing on the porch of an old yellow house.

I took semiotics back at Brown University in the same heyday of deconstruction in which Eugenides’s novel takes place (he and I were in a writing workshop together), but I don’t need to remember anything about signifiers to understand that just like the jumbo, block-lettered masculine typeface, feminine cover illustrations are code. Certain images, whether they

summon a kind of Walker Evans poverty nostalgia or offer a glimpse into quilted domesticity, are geared toward women as strongly as an ad for “calcium plus D.” These covers might as well have a hex sign slapped on them, along with the words: “Stay away, men! Go read Cormac ­McCarthy instead!”

It’s interesting to think about, given how size and shape are associated with men and women’s actual appearances. Shelley Jackson, in the FWO panel last week, described good writing — per critics — as being “lean”, and someone remarked the other day about how few women writers can write as sparsely as Hemingway. Perhaps there’s something to the declarative all-text titles on book covers by men that women’s books state less aggressively, but are starting to adopt more actively nowadays?

–Aditi Sriram

April 2, 2012

Open Meeting Wednesday, April 11

Join FWO for our next meeting on Wednesday, April 11th as we distill and discuss the fine points of our panelists’ remarks during our Women Writing in the Age of ‘Post-feminism’ panel.

Discussion topics will range from Cate Marvin’s take on the “numbers trouble” of VIDA’s reports, Shelley Jackson’s ideas of destabilizing both genre and gender in order to “do feminism” in writing, Camille Rankine’s troubling of the notion of focusing on just one of our multiple identities, and Ann Snitow’s framing of VIDA and FWO’s work in the broader history of social justice movements.

FWO will also plan our final event for the academic year,  a celebration and sharing of the creative work of the FWO community.

Newcomers are welcome! The q&a session at the panel was provocative but all too short, so come by and share your ideas on feminism, writing, and whatever else!

FWO Open Meeting
Wednesday, April 11th, 6:30 PM
New School Student Study Center
90 5th Avenue, room 211