Culture

Sex, Dreads, and Rock 'n' Roll: Suicide Girls' live nude punks want to be your porn alternative

“People think I have the greatest job in the world,” says “Spooky” Suicide. On any given day, he’s busy coding, designing, or holding up the business end of his website. It doesn’t sound too glamorous—until you realize that his site, Suicide Girls, is probably the best known in a... Read more »

Women and Children First!: What's Up With War Reporting's Chivalry?

“At least 19 victims, mostly men and children, were taken for treatment to the hospital in Kandahar.” “The Israeli missile…took the lives of at least 14 other people—including three men and nine children.” “Tens of thousands, including men, children and the elderly, were victims of chemical... Read more »

Queens of the Iron Age: On the New Feminist Hygiene Products

When i was 8, my father organized a present for my sisters and me to give my mom for Mother’s Day: a pressure cooker, wrapped up with other fun kitchen items like tea towels, pop-up sponges, spatulas, and an apron. It seemed like a good idea—Mom was the one who was always in the kitchen, and... Read more »

The Common Guy: One Seemingly Benign Phrase Makes a Man Out of All of Us

Oprah says it. My yoga instructor says it. College students around the country say it. The cast of Friends says it, as do my own friends, over and over again. At least 10 to 20 times a day, I hear someone say “you guys” to refer to groups or pairs that include and in some cases consist entirely of... Read more »

O is for the Other Things She Gave Me: Jonathan Franzen’s "The Corrections" and contemporary women’s fiction

As every tabloid reader knows, it’s a short step from a celebrity marriage to a publicity-filled divorce. When Jonathan Franzen’s new novel, The Corrections, was published this fall, critics waxed hyperbolic over its wedding of character-driven family drama and up-to-the-nanosecond cultural... Read more »

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... Read more »

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... Read more »

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,... Read more »

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.” Read more »

Solid Gold Dancer

gina gold is a writer and filmmaker who spent five years in San Francisco's sex industry, starting out as a phone sex operator, then becoming an exotic dancer at the Lusty Lady, the Market Street Cinema, and the Mitchell Brothers' O'Farrell Theater. Her first film, Do You Want Me to Stay?, grew out... Read more »

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In a Bizarre 1976 Comic Book, Spider-Man Fought the Villain of Misleading Sex Education

Last week, I came across a very strange comic book: in 1976, Planned Parenthood teamed up with Marvel to publish a one-off comic in which... Read more »

Hot Under the Bonnet: The Cooptation of Amish Culture in Mass-Market Fiction

Dubbed “Amish romance novels,” “Amish fiction,” or the more waggish “bonnet rippers,” these novels just one entry point into the varying images of Amish communities in U.S. popular culture. Read more »

Tina Belcher's Sexual Revolution

Tina Belcher breaks all the rules of network sitcoms. That's why she's wonderful.  Read more »