Melissa McCarthy is hailed as a “plus-sized sweetheart,” a champion of representation for women of all sizes. But is she really just a sellout? Today we look at the difference between her roles in movies and the issues she brings to the spotlight in interviews and profiles to see if she really is the progressive comedian everyone makes her out to be. Then, it’s time for some swashbuckling history. We get answers about what’s real and what are myths when it comes to one of our favorite villains – the pirate. Plus, what is the real cost and benefit of personal privacy in a world where everything is under surveillance?
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Anita asked for $6000 to make a video series analyzing gender roles in video games; identifying and exploring tropes like “the sexy sidekick” and “the mercy killing.” She raised the money in one day – and eventually raised $158,000. The project’s first video, “Damsel in Distress Part One” hit YouTube in March.
Wander the aisles of your favorite grocery store and you’re likely to see produce marked as locally grown, meat that is trumpeted as grass fed and hormone-free, and canning kits to help you preserve your own garden’s bounty. The explosion of these products has largely been credited to the femivore movement, which has many women returning to the kitchen.
When people talk about boot camp, they are most likely referring to grueling workout routine designed to get people into shape, fast. But when Amy Richards and Jennifer Baumgardner offer their boot camp in New York City, it is not military training or abs of steal that they promise, it’s feminism.
The increasing prominence of women’s issues on a global scale has a number of scholars and activists wondering if we are on the verge of a “Feminist Spring”. Two years after seething political and social discontent exploded into protests that changed the landscape of the Middle East, mass movements are forming around women’s issues. From the streets of India to Steubenville, Ohio, protestors are marching against sexual violence against women. In Syria, Bahrain and Yemen, women are active members of the ongoing resistance. Here in the US, a record number of women are now in congress and running states as governor, and issues like reproductive health and gun control have activated formerly silent female voters. Sahar Khamis is assistant professor of communication at the University of Maryland. She’s written extensively about female activism in the Arab spring uprisings, and joins us for a read of where those struggles stand today.
Globally, the prevailing form of polygamy is of one man with multiple wives – generally older men marrying younger wives. Social scientists have quantified that crime rates are higher in those cultures, with younger men having few prospects for family life. And it is no great shakes for young, often pre-pubescent girls forced into marriage by culture, economics, and tradition.
Our guest embodies two very different worlds – the ivory tower, and the fitness center. By day, Lianne McTavish is a professor of art history at the University of Alberta Canada, she lectures on the seventeenth-century history of the body, and its representation in medieval art. After class, she heads to the gym for weightlifting and toning. Her enthusiasm for fitness got her thinking about working out as a woman and led her to create a new identity as – “feminist figure girl” – and enter the world of competitive bodybuilding.