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Editors' Letter: Is Biology Destiny?: Fomenting Activism in the Face of “United We Stand”

We sat down to write this editors' note more than two months after September 11. Since that morning, it's been hard not to feel that the work we do and the things we choose to write about have become far less important in the face of a sickening sense of loss; a looming, amorphous enemy; and renewed support for many of the right's potentially disastrous policy initiatives, both foreign and...

A Galaxy of Our Own: Searching for black women in science-fiction film

In the '90s, the black man suddenly invaded the blockbuster science-fiction and fantasy film. African-American males found expanded roles for themselves in a genre that had previously been blindingly white. We finally have a celluloid landscape in which Will Smith and Wesley Snipes get to represent heroic manhood for the masses, but hip and powerful black women have been overlooked by the...

Editors' Letter: Music: Why Music?

Whether a music writer makes a living marshalling lyrical evidence for supposedly new trends or manufacturing arguments to shore up tired clichés—and whether you applaud women’s progress in the musical arena or not—one thing’s clear: Women in music, prevalent as they may be, are consistently positioned as an aberration or an exception. Even the phraseology is troublesome: “women in...

Grrrl, You'll Be a Lady Soon

Last fall, at a reading for Manifesta: Young Women, Feminism, and the Future, a 50-ish audience member questioned the thirtysomething authors’ ever-so-casual usage of the word “ladies.” To this woman (who turned out to be tireless second-­wave activist Laura X, creator of the Women’s History Research Center), the blithe use of “ladies” ran counter to everything she and her generation of...

Teen Girls + Boy Love Dolls = Tru (heart) + $ 4Ever

Pop-sensation lifespans have been shrinking since the dawn of pop sensations, but the power of the boy band has proved enduring. These prefab crews of scrubbed, smiling teens busting a synchronized move to manufactured beats have a special place in pop – music history and in the hearts—and notebooks and lockers—of their (mostly female) fans.


Although the manufactured boy band has...

Sex, Lies, and Videotape: An Interview with <em>The Center of the World</em>'s Molly Parker

Reviewers have likened it to a dot-com Pretty Woman, but The Center of the World, the latest film from director Wayne Wang (Smoke, Blue in the Face, The Joy Luck Club), is a far more complex rumination on the intersections of sex, love, and commerce. Set in southern California, the story follows Florence (Kissed's Molly Parker), a rock 'n'...

Bad(ass) Brains: An Interview with Filmmaker Marina Zurkow, Creator of the Web's Freaky, Fiesty Cerebelle du Jour, Braingirl

I met Marina Zurkow in 1986 on the set of a horror film called Matt Riker: Mutant Hunt. I was the art director. She was hired to be my assistant. It was an entirely inappropriate crewing decision, typical of the low-low budget B-movie genre. I’d never studied art, never been on a film set, and never cared much for horror; Marina had graduated from the School of Visual Arts, she...

Sister Outsider Headbanger: On Being a Black Feminist Metalhead

“I wasn’t ashamed of my love for metal (well, except for maybe hair metal). I just couldn’t explain it to most people.”

Tea Time: Michelle Tea Likes it Caffeinated

Michelle Tea loves words, and it shows.

Editors' Letter: Issue 12

"I hear there's a bunch of angry women in town."

this lovely sentiment was reportedly overheard on the street during Feminist Expo 2000, a global gathering over 7,000 strong that was held in Baltimore the first weekend of April. Other reactions to the event ran along the same lines: A reception bartender told the Washington Post that "My boss said they're just a bunch of man-...

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