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Sarah Ditum on Cool Girl Feminism

(46 Posts)
AskBasil Tue 18-Mar-14 23:05:18


ballsballsballs Tue 18-Mar-14 23:11:47

Brilliant article. But the comments...

AskBasil Tue 18-Mar-14 23:13:34

LOL yes.

A load of wanky men needing to tell her she's wrong.

They sort of prove her point, don't they.

ballsballsballs Tue 18-Mar-14 23:27:33

They sure do, but they don't have the wit to see it.

WhentheRed Tue 18-Mar-14 23:30:16

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Wed 19-Mar-14 00:17:41


<not reading the comments>

FloraFox Wed 19-Mar-14 00:37:38

I also didn't used to have much time for Sarah Ditum's work but she has been great recently. This article on no-platforming is great stuff (and very brave).

ArtexMonkey Wed 19-Mar-14 00:41:50

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

KissesBreakingWave Wed 19-Mar-14 00:53:05

Read the article when it popped up in my news feed, and thought it good. Not going back for the comments - there are enough risks to my tooth enamel and blood pressure in daily life as it is - but it does remind me of a brilliant word for the kind of person who'd plaster misogyny all over the comments section of a New Statesman article on feminism: Brocialist.

You know, the 'feminism is counter-revolutionary' idiots who want the fight against capitalism to be a no-gurls-allowed treehouse club.

DonkeySkin Wed 19-Mar-14 01:32:50

I remember Sarah Ditum taking the pro-porn position against Gail Dines in a New Left Review debate a few years ago, and running what seemed to me even then (at the time I was on the fence about porn) to be a very glib line about the importance of individual choice, and absolutely refusing to engage with Dines's arguments about wider social structures.

I'm glad to see that she appears to have adopted a deeper and more radical analysis these days. I hope more women who previously subscribed to the choosey-choice school of third-wave liberal feminism will become more open to radical feminism, which IMO is the only way to enact genuine change for women and girls in this deeply misogynist culture.

Which culture is on full display in the comments, ugh. And these are the lefty men!

BuffytheReasonableFeminist Wed 19-Mar-14 08:57:05

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ballsballsballs Wed 19-Mar-14 09:48:25

That paragraph has made me think about how I treat women, Buffy.

benid Wed 19-Mar-14 11:51:30

awesome - thanks

puddock Wed 19-Mar-14 14:48:46

Although I like aspects of this piece (especially that part), I found some of it questionable - came across this blog post in response to the article and twitter discussion around it (where the 'slutty' thing came up more directly) covers some of my unease: [[]]
"it is seriously not feminist to say that other women only identify as feminist in some secret fake way to attract men" - well quite. Very redolent of the "fake geek girl" thing indeed.

puddock Wed 19-Mar-14 14:49:27

WTF can't I link today!

BuffytheReasonableFeminist Wed 19-Mar-14 15:02:27

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

FloraFox Wed 19-Mar-14 16:30:48

puddock I couldn't see what that blog post was responding to in Sarah Ditum's piece. It was like the author had read something completely different.

"I find the idea of writing columns about how other women are skanks a bit much"

Talk about a straw man. Mind you, someone who thinks "slutty" has "a lot of reclaim value" probably has to construct straw man arguments.

WhentheRed Wed 19-Mar-14 16:49:52

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

AskBasil Wed 19-Mar-14 16:52:28

There is absolutely no connection between that slutty article and the Sarah Ditum article.

Absolutely none.


BuffytheReasonableFeminist Wed 19-Mar-14 16:56:24

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

WhentheRed Wed 19-Mar-14 17:18:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Minnieisthedevilmouse Wed 19-Mar-14 17:29:05

After the comments here I was looking forward to the article. Bit disappointing really. Honest on her part. But not more than that really.... Don't get it.

FloraFox Wed 19-Mar-14 17:53:35

When I think that line you've quoted shows the problem with the blog post. She's picked up entirely the wrong end of the stick. Sarah Ditum was not saying women are identifying as feminists to attract men (has that ever worked? confused ), quite the opposite. I reread the Sarah Ditum piece and it's hard for me to see how anyone can come to that interpretation.

When's wardrobe reminiscences remind me of a time a million years ago when I was working in a cafe. I was asked by the manager to stop wearing very short shorts (them were the days) because although (in his words) I wasn't wearing them to look sexy hmm, another girl was wearing the same shorts but her look was too sexy. I still can't figure out the precise location of the offence I felt after this encounter. I wasn't trying to look sexy (and was apparently succeeding) but still...

There isn't really a point to this story except that it seems like the "cool girl" feminism (and this blog writer) is saying "we own slutty". We don't. Society, and particularly patriarchy, is a framework for our actions and choices and how other people perceive them. The fact that she feels she has to tell us precisely how we may use the word "slutty" towards her speaks volumes.

AskBasil Wed 19-Mar-14 18:54:20

Yep. If you have to hedge and caveat and explain the way you're using the word with references to other uses, then probably the word is just not very useful and you might be better off trying to find one which actually expresses what you mean.

This is not always possible or desirable but when a word has such cultural baggage, sometimes it's worth the effort to try and find a better one.

scallopsrgreat Wed 19-Mar-14 19:08:55

I think Sarah Ditum has had a couple of lightbulb moments recently. I've been nodding along to most of it. It's a good piece.

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