Monday, December 20, 2010

The Bechdel Test: Are Women in Films Objects, or Characters

The Holiday season's here and with people taking time off to spend it with their families, many are headed to the theaters to see the latest winter blockbuster, romance film, or animated feature with their kids. Most people looking for a few hours of popcorn entertainment aren't thinking about social issues, such as whether the female characters in a film are there as a part of the story, or as little more than a plot device and/or object of a man's attention.

The Bechdel Test comes from a feminist comic strip named "The Rule" in which one of the characters will only go see a film if it meets the following criteria:

1. It has at least two women in it
2. These women actually talk to each other
3. And they talk about something other than a man.

How many films meet these requirements? You'd be surprised at how many don't.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

A Post From Craiglist that's not Creepy

Craigslist can be a freaky place at times; so much so that some of its "adult" sections have been shut down at the request of law enforcement. But occasionally, albeit strangely, people use it as a medium to express their deepest feelings. And we felt that this was rather touching.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Female Police Officers from Around the World!

It takes a special kind of person to put themselves in harm's way on a daily basis for the good of their community. Some people consider this as a calling to be a "sheepdog", protecting the "sheep" from the "wolves". It's a pretty good analogy about a bunch of pretty, yet tough, Divas.





South Korea


























Dominican Republic








Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Woman Strips to Lingerie to Protest Intrusive TSA Procedures

If you haven't been doing much travel recently, or following the news, you might have missed the fact that the Transportation Security Agency recently intensified its "efforts" to prevent acts of terrorism by requiring travelers to either submit to a potentially dangerous X-ray scan that renders them naked on monitors watched by one or more agents, or submit to an "enhanced pat-down" which involves direct hand-on genital contact.

Needless to say, many people are outraged over what they feel is a gross violation of the Fourth Amendment, especially given the fact that the TSA has yet to prevent a single incident of terrorism. That's right, the "underwear bomber" and the "shoe bomber" were both stopped by the passengers themselves.

The above woman, a former Playboy Playmate, has a unique way of protesting against the intrusion. And as a lingerie blog, we can only smile at her approach.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Heels: Not Just For the Sidewalk Anymore

Going off-road has never been so sexy! Sandal company Teva and NY-based clothing company Grey Ant conspired to create these (allegedly) functional, yet fashionable shoes. They are available in two styles: "Worlds Unite" (aka black and white) and "Natural" (aka tan) and retail for the low-low price of $330.00.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Meanwhile, in India

The epidemic of intentional, "accidental" groping and fondling aboard crowded trains in India has forced the government to create at least 8 new trains for the exclusive use of women. These men, apparently didn't get the memo. However, the women of India sure let them know about their mistake!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Saudi Arabia: The Practice of Male Guardianship

It's practically a case of Cinderella, with a few twists and no happy ending in sight. An unnamed 42 year-old woman in Saudi Arabia is bringing a lawsuit against her father for refusing all marriage proposals on her behalf. Why would he do this? Because the woman in question happens to be a surgeon, and as long as she is unmarried, he receives her paychecks.

The practice is known as "Adhl", under which unmarried females are essentially the property of their fathers. Wajeha al-Hawaidar, a women's rights advocate in Saudi Arabia, describes it as a form of slavery. "A Saudi woman can't even buy a phone without the guardian's permission" she said. She has subsequently been banned from writing or appearing on television.

Ironically, this growing outrage coincides with the fact that Saudi Arabia has been given a seat on the governing board of the United Nation's Women's Rights Council.

Contrary to the state's assertions that this practice is rare, there are a staggering number of cases coming to light. In 2008, Samar Badawi fled her father's house and petitioned the courts to strip him of her guardianship. After waiting two years for the verdict, it arrived: she was sentenced to a six month prison term for being disobedient to her father. A woman going by the name of "Amal Saleh", was threatened with "death and torture" when she insisted she be allowed to marry before she turned 30. She is now 37 and still unmarried.

Complicating the situation further for victims of Adhl, is the cultural notion that women over the age of 20 are unfit to be married; thus limiting the number and quality of potential suitors as the months and years go by. On top of this, Saudi public school curriculum provides instruction to boys on how to perform their guardianship duties. These instructions include limitations on beating disobedient women to avoid "popping the eye, breaking an arm, or leaving visible marks". Page 212 of the "Prophet Sayings" 11th Grade Textbook reads: "Be jealous, beat her hands, protect her, and achieve superiority over her".

The surgeon currently lives in a "protection house" and is escorted by guards out of fear of retaliation. Next month, she turns 43.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Ribbed, for Elegance

High Fashion, or High Function? Either way these dresses, made mostly out of condoms, make a statement. Of course, we're not exactly sure what that statement is. But given that some people seem to think condoms are bad (a viewpoint that is arguably responsible for hundreds of thousands of deaths from STDs and starvation), it's nice to see them brought into the public view in a unique manner.