Inclusive children go far.
Kids are too smart for this school crap.
This would make my day as a teacher.
man you can think someone is childish for liking stuffed animals and dressing up to go trick-or-treating and watching animated movies and anything else all you want but you want to know what is actually childish??? being rude because you think someone is childish for having fun and enjoying things when there are no age requirements to what can bring a person joy
someone’s not going to be invited into the blanket fort of happiness
and it’s you, my friend
Well, white dude with I’m guessing considerable stock in Google, is the library just there for your needs or purposes?
Maybe you enjoyed your exercise in wordplay and making points already made. But what was your point again? Books make libraries so without books libraries aren’t libraries? Books look different so libraries can’t be libraries? Libraries look different so libraries can’t be libraries? You don’t need libraries for books so we don’t need libraries? I’m sorry, what?
Oh but wait, we’re pretending? Pretending what? Pretending there’s an access divide? Pretending there’s a digital divide? Pretending information illiteracy? Pretending folks lack job skills? Pretending college students need help with citation (BAHA HAHAHAHAHHA)? Did I get a Masters in Pretending? I MEAN I DO HAVE A GREAT IMAGINATION SO I PROBS GOT STRAIGHT A’S. OR P’S FOR PRETENDING. I’m sorry, what?
Also read this from BeerBrarian - The End of “The End of Libraries”
On Sunday, October 14th, yet another “End of Libraries” piece appeared. Per usual, it was written by a white male with no use for libraries, because every single time this trope appears, that’s part of the author’s demographic background. Beyond that, it’s a crucial part of the author’s background. It is overwhelmingly affluent white men who argue that because they do not use something, it has no value for anyone. Libraries. The Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program. Affordable health care. It’s the same argument.
"The internet has replaced the importance of libraries as a repository for knowledge." Ah, yes, because you can trust everything you read on the internet.
Republicans play this game all the time. “I don’t need it, therefore it’s not important and we should get rid of it.” I can vividly remember the last time I was in a library. It was three weeks ago. I needed to do research and the material I needed was not online. Not every book is completely indexed in Google Books. And yes, an ebook is cheaper and faster than buying a physical copy of a book - but it’s harder to skim through an ebook quickly, and the physical copy at the library costs you nothing (up front; tax dollars etc etc).
Like I said, I was at the library three weeks ago. It was around 4 pm on a Tuesday. And you know what? It was CROWDED. There was a packed sign-up sheet for the computers. Kids and parents abounded in the children’s section. Older people and teenagers read at the tables in the main area. I had to wait in line to check out my book.
Before that, I had spent a lot of quality time on my library’s website. I like to read both physical books and ebooks. My library does Kindle loans. OK, their website is a crappy government website, and it can be a little difficult to navigate, but it’s doable. I read books I probably couldn’t or wouldn’t pay full price for, AKA a big part of the purpose of a library.
Libraries are not useless in the digital age, and even more importantly, they aren’t all empty. Just because YOU, PERSONALLY do not need or use something doesn’t make it a charming but impractical relic of a long-forgotten age.
My kid and I go to the library often enough that most of the librarians recognize her. And it’s wonderful because she now reads so much and so fast that we wouldn’t be able to afford all the books she consumes otherwise.
This guy is a tool.
i never understood the whole reaction towards mental illness where someone says “it’s all in your head” i feel like that statement is just as redundant as telling someone with pulmonary edema that “the fluid is all in your lungs” like yes. yeah thats exactly where it is get it out of there???
After the 2012 Grace Hopper conference I wrote a post in which I raged against the company that had the audacity to put branded fingernail polish in the swag bag. My exact quote:
“Nail polish? For attendees of a technical conference? Just… Fuck you. This is so very, very inappropriate The thought that someone out there assumed that I, as an attendee of the Grace Hopper conference, would appreciate nail polish as a free gift, is incredibly insulting. It completely ignores the intellectual, technical side of me, and reduces me to someone who cares primarily about upkeeping my physical appearance.”
I had a brave friend who talked with me about this afterwards, saying she felt a bit hurt and alienated because she routinely paints her nails. The fact that she would have appreciated getting free nail polish made her feel that I was reducing her to someone who cares primarily about upkeeping her physical appearance.
Men aren’t the only ones to buy into the myth that feminine presentation is inferior to masculine traits. Women also receive these messages, and reinforce them.
"In short, it’s bad to assume that just because someone’s a woman that she wants nail polish. It’s just as bad to assume that just because someone’s a smart, technical women, that she doesn’t want nail polish.
You can’t fight stereotypes by declaring everyone has to do the exact opposite of what’s stereotypical – that’s just creating a new enforced stereotype. To truly fight stereotypes we must detach the ideas entirely, not replace them with something else.
Nail polish has nothing to do with technical intelligence. (It has nothing to do with gender either, but that’s a bigger battle.) It’s just a colorful paint that you can put on your nails. Some people like to use it. Some people don’t. That’s all, everyone go home now, we’re done.”
i’m not sure where the idea came from that liam is just a bumbling baby idiot and that we shouldn’t blame him for his actions because of this, but it’s really rubbing me the wrong way. “he isn’t smart, he can’t word things correctly, he doesn’t mean any harm!” he’s 20 years old, not an infant, and sometimes that is just the way shit happens when you’re an ADULT - you fuck up and you have to deal with that. he knows how to form sentences, he knows his fanbase, he knows how to read when people react. stop trying to bypass his actions by calling him unintelligent, which, by the way, is also offensive, is it not? feel how you want to feel about someone/a situation, but don’t try to shove it under the rug because ‘no harm was meant’. the point is, you’re missing the point.
Before John Green, his general category of realistic (non-fantasy) YA was rife with teen angst and “issues” fiction that you might have associated with the legendary Judy Blume, or with newer writers like Sarah Dessen or Laurie Halse Anderson. Anderson’s classic 1999 novel Speak, about a high schooler struggling to deal with the aftermath of sexual assault, was so influential that three years later Penguin launched an entire imprint named after it. One of the books launched under the behest of Speak was Green’s Looking for Alaska. But it’s Green whose name you’re more likely to know today, not Anderson’s, although Anderson has won more awards and written more books.
On Twitter, Green has 2 million followers. Compared to the rest of the leaders in Young Adult fiction, that number is staggering. To approach even half the Twitter influence of John Green all by himself, you need an entire army of YA women. Anderson, Blume, Dessen, Veronica Roth, Cassandra Clare, Richelle Mead, Margaret Stohl, Kami Garcia, Rainbow Rowell, Maureen Johnson, Malinda Lo, Holly Black, LJ Smith, Ellen Hopkins, Shannon Hale, Lauren Myracle, Libba Bray, Melissa Marr, and Leigh Bardugo: As a group these women only have about 1.2 million followers on Twitter.
That’s the voice of one man outweighing several decades of women who have had major successes, critical acclaim, and cultural influence.
So there’s this thing that I’ve always known about, that @Karynthia, @Blackamazon, @so_treu @weseerace and @bad_dominicana discuss often, about how terms, ideas and scholarship that Black women create are not associated with their originators or even with any Black women at all (and not even speaking of just plagiarism; I mean erasure). Or worse, they’re used against Black women. Or even worse, people actively fight the terms’ existences especially within mainstream feminism.
Womanism. Intersectionality. Matrix of domination. Misogynoir. Four of the many concepts that are fought tooth and nail to not exist (especially the latter since it’s newest). Subject to the scrutiny of imperialist White supremacist capitalist patriarchy (this is bell hooks’ combined term) and how it shapes epistemology. Eventually once accepted, then they are disconnected from its originators often for the purpose of silencing other Black women. There’s people who use the terms and ideas to push their agenda (agendas that usually exclude Black women) yet none of the originators are anywhere on their sites. No tags. Not mentioned in conversation or teaching. Nowhere. And even when they discuss modern issues in feminism, they refuse to name Black women currently doing the work. They gladly name any White woman they’re referring to.
This is not about Black women wanting “White approval” as utterly boring and predictable Whites and some Black men (who also try to silence Black women with other Black women’s words) will suggest, a notion I already deconstructed in the past. It’s about a long history of taking and erasure. Taking. Erasure. This has a history as certain aspects of Black progressive politics are regularly appropriated and then used by Whites to shame or exclude Black people.
Anytime I mention Black women’s work, all of a sudden it becomes “unethical” or “greedy” to credit our work or idea spreading and education is deemed “impossible” if our names, contributions, ideas and praxis are mentioned. I am fascinated by multi-degreed, multiple column-writing White feminists who can’t figure out who coined “intersectionality” or what it actually means. This is willful ignorance shaped by a need to erase Black women’s work/relevance in feminism on the surface and marginalizes Black women, in general.
today i got to sit in a circle slumber-party style with my group of ninth graders and listen to what they like best about themselves and even though some of it was thoughtless, some of it was also really sincere and sweet. it felt so good to be able to tell them that yeah dude, being able to draw a mushroom is cool as heck and so are you.
Mark Carrigan, Asexuality: The ‘X’ In A Sexual World
I love this quote so much because I’ve said the SAME thing to my friends when talking about asexuality. So many times in our culture we couple romance and sex and they just AREN’T the same thing. They aren’t the same feeling. And, I’ll use TV as an example, too many times in our media shows will write in “romantic” plots and most of it is about sex and we are expected to enjoy this—expected to support this. But it feels so unreal and contrived because this kind of portrayal weighs heavily on the sexual aspect of a relationship, and we as the audience on some level understand that this isn’t right. That a truly romantic relationship/connection isn’t necessarily about sex or sexual desire.
The reality is that romance and sex are different. They may support each other, but they are fundamentally different. Having a distinction, thanks to the asexual community, i think allows us to speak to a new language of interpersonal connection. One that is richer and more definitive than the distinctively sexualized one we’ve been speaking.
You are one of the best US-SJ people on tumblr I have ever read, very mindful of the differences in the concept of “White” in different counties and I am really need your advice on this problem, if you are willing to give it, of cause.
A lot of spending SJ people on tumblr are rather US centric, when it comes to defining racial categories and react very strongly when you try to talk about other places and categories, especially if they perceive it as a white-on-white issue (because that would have been a white on white issue in the states, and they would be rightfully outraged by the oppressor group trying to occupy their spaces and derail the whole thing).
It is understandable to a certain extent: your own pain is always closer and more real then the one that is removed from you (That’s why I think the concepts like Asian Privilege are born: Out of the perceived lesser oppression other discriminated groups are experiencing)
As a non-American/non English native speaking person, who have discovered a lot of communality of experience with the American people submitting and writing SJ blogs, I am not sure as to what should I do:
On one hand, I am quite sure that the discrimination I am experiencing is real and based on the idea of whiteness and my lack of the proper amount of it. It brings me considerable discomfort and led to some rather bad internalized feelings I feel towards my own people and culture, I am still trying to get rid of, but I don’t think that I will ever be able to.
On the other hand, the racist structure of the States lacks the category I belong to, and defines me as properly white (I don’t live in the States (this IS important), cause if I did, I wouldn’t be facing a lot at all)
What should I do?
1) Start speaking at risk of being dismissed due to the prevalence of the US-discourse in the tumblr-sphere? ( But, I don’t want to give the American whites additional derailing arguments since I have seen enough “but the X where white and faced horrible discrimination” arguments, which conveniently ignored the fact that in all these cases the group in question was defined as NOT WHITE in their own respective context).
I feel like it can potentially harm people I do not want to be harmed at all: people who are oppressed by the idea of white superiority in the States.
2) Or should I remain silent, implicitly enforcing the universality of the US idea of white ?
I am starting to feel that the whole thing makes me feel a slight resentment towards the wrong kind of people, I otherwise agree with: You know the thing you feel when an otherwise splendid feminist is denying racism, or an antiracist not believing in sexism , the feeling of disappointment in people who get one aspect of it very well, not getting their own privilege in other aspects (In this case: Being American and having the power to define the discourse in even the international spaces due to the relative cultural power of the States). I don’t think I should feel it, but then again, why should we be mindful of the American structures when the Americans don’t need to know anything about ours before starting writing?
Should I just step away from the English speaking discourse on this matter?
Sorry if my thoughts are a little bit to jumbled at this point: I have been reading a lot of the US social justice blogs without writing anything about it for about half a year and came to the point I can’t ignore this duality anymore.
Thanks so much for sharing. This is one of many problems that I have with Tumblr’s SJ discourse, as you’re exactly right in saying that it tends to be incredibly US-centric and myopic. What does “POC solidarity” look like in the Arab World where there is local Arab supremacy and a long history of racism and enslavement of African peoples and a more recent history of SE and South Asians laborers and maids who also face abuse and tremendous discrimination? What does “POC solidarity” look like in a world where the global imperialist leading drone strikes against black and brown peoples in the Third World is a black American man? What does the very term “POC” mean, and, for that matter what does “white” mean within and without the US geographic context, in Europe especially?
I have written about this topic of “whiteness in Europe" previously but anything that challenges or acknowledges problems with Tumblr SJ discourse tends to not be as "popular." For context, I have had the tremendous privilege to have been able to travel abroad considerably and currently have family in both Africa and Europe, so I have witnessed, read and heard personal accounts providing testament to just how important local context is in local conceptions of race especially.
For some reason (maybe due to lack of exposure or just buying into the American global hegemony which breeds myopia in both white and non-white Americans), it’s hard for people on here to wrap their heads around the fact that the following people would not be considered “white” in their home countries due to their ethnic background:
(Image description: Portrait of Dzokhar Tsarnaev, the Chechen American Boston Marathon bomber. Chechens and other peoples from the Caucuses are specifically targeted for discrimination in Russia and are not seen as “white.” My friend, blackgirlinrussia, remarked to me how she, as a black woman, would never get stopped by Russian police, but those who “looked” like they were from the Caucuses always were)
(Image description: Portrait of Charlie Chaplin, 1/4 Romanichal famous British comic who purposefully hid his Romanichal heritage to pass as “fully” white in British society)
(Image description: Portrait of a little blonde girl with pale skin and light blue eyes, the “blonde angel" whom Greek authorities kidnapped from her adopted Roma parents thinking that she was white. DNA tests later showed that she was Roma. Roma face rampant antiziganism in Europe, lighter skin can afford some privilege, but they are still subject to antiziganism and are racialized as non-white as Roma regardless.)
(Image description: A picture of 3 blonde Irish Traveller girls who face institutionalized discrimination and disenfranchisement in Ireland and the UK. Irish Travellers are not a Roma subgroup)
(Image description: Portrait of a blonde Polish woman. Polish people face discrimination within the UK today based on their ethnic background and were also specifically targeted for extermination by Nazi death squads along with other Slavic peoples.)
(Image description: Portrait of Simone Veil, a French Jewish member of the EU Parliament and also a survivor of Auschwitz, Jewish people, including those with pale skin, are distinctively racialized as non-white throughout Europe)
A lot of Americans just don’t seem to /get it/. They don’t understand how important local histories and context are in shaping the way race is “seen” in any given country, although this should be patently obvious. Whiteness and race, are fluid categorizations that change on a temporal and geographic basis. When we fix ourselves in our current local context and deny the experiences of others, like you, our analyses not only lose nuance, but we reproduce systems of oppression (e.g. American dominance of global discourse) as well.
When I was in Sweden this past summer visiting family, it was a huge wake up call for me. My cousins there are 1/4 black and 3/4 white and would, without a doubt, “pass” for white in America, but they do not pass in Sweden. One of my friends there is South Asian and lives in the ghetto. The ghetto in Sweden is very mixed with (non-white Swedish) folks. This includes Bosnian refugees, whom we would all see as fully “white” in America. Interestingly, though, despite being racialized as “other” in Sweden, their “partial” whiteness does provide them with some privilege, and they were typically the top of the heap in the ghetto in Sweden, but they were still in the ghetto at the end of the day and not “fully” white (like white Swedes).
After 4 weeks in Sweden, I was looking at white people differently, and implicitly categorizing them by where they came from, my mind adapting almost instinctively to local racial context. People who “looked” Southern and Eastern European began to stick out to me in ways they never did in America. I began to make distinctions of the white people who “looked Swedish” and those who did not, and especially those from Eastern and Southern Europe.
In Europe, xenoracism (which “others” all immigrants, but definitely takes on racial dimensions for people who cannot pass as the local dominant ethnic majority) and ethno-nationalism (which elevates things like a specifically “Slavic” identity and “look” in Russia, “Englishness” and Anglo features in England, etc.), creates a completely different landscape for race and conceptions of “partial” and “full” whiteness.
I mean, what else explains the racist undertones of the derogatory term “PIGS”, used for Portugal, Italy, Greece and Spain, in mainstream media in the UK since the 90s, especially when we take a step back and think about how Southern Europeans have historically been deemed “Mediterranean,” “Iberic” and other terms to distinguish their whiteness from those of Northern and Western Europe. Cartoons like the below reinforce the implicit racialization of those countries and their peoples as subhuman, gluttonous, pigs:
(Image description: cartoon of 4 pigs with the flags of Greece, Spain, Portugal and Italy gorging in a bed of coins with the words “ALL YOU CAN EAT” under it)
What else explains the staunch opposition of many European countries to Turkey’s entrance into the EU (many Turkish people who would be racialized as “white” in much of America, although, if they are Muslim, that does complicate their whiteness somewhat) with explicitly racist and Islamophobic cartoons like this:
(Image description: Cartoon of a chicken coup representing the “European Union” with white chickens on two branches with one saying “D-D-Don’t worry-he’ll melt right in.” And a much larger, dark chicken in the middle wearing a skullcap labeled “Islamic Hordes from Turkey”)
People on tumblr really need to decenter themselves from American geo-political context and not shut out the voices of people from other countries when discussions pertinent to those countries are occurring.
Things I don’t have time for:
- White Americans saying shit like “OH, LIKE THIS POST SHOWS, SOME OF US ARE DISCRIMINATED AGAINST IN OTHER COUNTRIES, SO WE CAN’T HAVE PRIVILEGE.” Dipshit, you’re in America and are racialized as white here, while the “white” peoples who are discriminated against in certain European contexts are NOT racialized as white there.
- Tumblr folks flatly applying US conceptions of race, whiteness and privilege to the world, erasing the experiences of people like you and being totally ignorant, especially since antiblackness is not the fulcrum of white supremacy in much of Europe and the rest of the world.
- Tumblr folks being called out on being US-centric and not giving a fuck, especially on posts relevant to Europe and other geographies.
- Just derailment overall. A discussion about race in America is centered there and should not have people clamoring to and pointing to this post and others derailing that discussion. A discussion about race and whiteness on a global scale or in specific non-American contexts should NOT be derailed by Americans with our typical myopic bullshit that does not include and acknowledge local racial context.
There is tremendous tribalism in Europe, and distinctions and hierarchies of whiteness do exist (e.g. Southern and Eastern Europeans being seen as “lower grade” whites in Northern and Western Europe) along with the outright racialization (as fully non white) of people from certain ethnic groups (e.g. Roma, Jews, Chechens) that include very fair individuals. These distinctions are important. The world does not revolve around America.
As I’ve said before:
I think many people forget that “whiteness” is an inherently fluid categorization of people that is only “fixed” somewhat on a temporal and inherently local level. Whiteness as we see it in America today, is not the way that it’s seen in Europe, Latin America, etc. even as we speak right now.
And with that, I’m done, as I personally have no patience anymore for Americans on-and-off Tumblr who are willfully ignorant and refuse to decenter their US-centric perspective even when faced with evidence to the contrary. In American-specific discussions on tumblr, speaking up would be derailing and inappropriate (and cater to racist white Americans), but definitely do share your opinion in cases relevant to Europe and your local context.
Thanks for the ask,
this is such a great post. thank you so much for making it. i bolded a few things, too. please read this, you guys.
it’s incredibly important to remember that race and ethnicity aren’t the same thing, and that “whiteness” as it’s often discussed on this website does not apply to large swathes of the rest of the world.
If what is meant by “making STEM more attractive to women” is to reform working conditions to make them more hospitable to people who have non-work commitments (like children) or just an interest in having a life apart from work, then it is incredibly sexist and insulting to all concerned to assume that this is only of interest to women. I am all for these reforms, but let’s stop acting like they are just going to benefit women, because men have kids and aging parents and hobbies, too.