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NSFW (so keep those headphones in)

In a public radio world that turns a blind eye and blushing cheek to sex, we give you Audio Smut. We are a show about your body, your heart, and your junk. Every 2 weeks we deliver honest and emotionally engaging stories that read like a diary and sound like a dream. Our mission is to educate and initiate public discourse about gender, sex, and relationships from a sex-positive, queer, and feminist perspective. Our work portrays sexuality in a diverse and honest light.
[more inside]
posted by kagredon on Jul 26, 2014 - 3 comments

Gender and Jeopardy

Julia Collins of Kenilworth, Ill, is now the winningest woman in Jeopardy! history, the third winningest non-tournament player, and she isn't done. She'll be playing her 20th game tomorrow night, wherein followers hope she'll break the $400,000 mark on her steady climb. You can catch up on her run at YouTube.

One of the champions whose records she has now surpassed is Arthur Chu, who has also made big waves this week, speaking out on misogyny in geek culture, in response to the murders in Isla Vista. Writes Chu: The overall problem is one of a culture where instead of seeing women as, you know, people, protagonists of their own stories just like we are of ours, men are taught that women are things to 'earn,' to 'win.'

The show's history and the iconic host's banter seem to reveal that in terms of gender, Jeopardy! is not, as etymology would have it, "an evenly divided game," but could this be the year things change?
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur on May 29, 2014 - 65 comments

Can we do that there? Be that here? Check Equaldex.

Equaldex: the collaborative LGBT knowledgebase! A crowd-sourced, verified, beautifully presented representation of equal rights (and how they are specifically denied) for LGBT folks. [via reddit]
posted by batmonkey on May 13, 2014 - 7 comments

17 Lies We Need to Stop Teaching Girls About Sex

Whether it's the constant fretting over Miley Cyrus' influence on school girls or the growing (and troubling) tradition of Purity Balls, it's clear that society has a fascination with young women's sexuality — especially when it comes to controlling it. But what are we actually teaching today's girls about sex? Fueled by outdated ideals of gender roles and the sense that female sexuality is somehow shameful, there seem to be certain pernicious myths about girls and sex that just won't die. That sex education in America has gaping holes in its curriculum hasn't helped much, either; in a recent Centers for Disease Control (CDC) report just 6 out of 10 girls said that their schools' sex ed program included information on how to say no to sex. This lack of personal agency was reflected in a forthcoming study by sociologist Heather Hlavka at Marquette University as well, which found that many young girls think of sex simply as something that is "done to them." Knowledge is power, and we can promote a healthier relationship with sex by encouraging a more open dialogue, teaching girls to feel comfortable with their sexuality and, most importantly, emphasizing that their bodies are theirs and theirs alone.
But first, we're going to need to stop perpetuating the following 17 myths about female sexuality.
[more inside]
posted by Blasdelb on Apr 28, 2014 - 120 comments

Supreme Court of India recognizes transgenders as 'third gender'

The Supreme Court of India directed the Indian Government to include a new gender category to include people who don't identify as the traditional male or female. My head spins as I write this. A combination of being woken up suddenly from heavy sleep and a sudden jerk of pleasant shock has left my head spinning. I am humming some sweet songs in celebration! Hurray!
Supreme Court ruling grants transgender recognition and OBC status* in India. [more inside]
posted by infini on Apr 15, 2014 - 19 comments

Female portrayal in video games

QCF Design talks about making their game Desktop Dungeons more gender neutral. [more inside]
posted by arcolz on Mar 4, 2014 - 27 comments

we keep hesitating at the notion that sex does not obey strict binaries

A New Era for Intersex Rights

Previously: "Australian Passport gender choice made easier"
posted by andoatnp on Jan 4, 2014 - 19 comments

Ages 3 and Up

"Queen Frostine turned into a Bratz doll" - The evolution of sexed-up Candyland.
posted by Artw on Apr 26, 2013 - 57 comments

Oh don't lean on me man, cause you can't afford the ticket

Chako Paul City is a women-only city in the north of Sweden, established in 1820 by a wealthy widow. It is "a place that is respectful of women's love, but with a rule that men cannot enter"; the few who have tried have found themselves beaten half to death by the formidable Amazonian sentries at its gates. It has a castle, and its main industry is forestry, with a sideline in lesbian tourism. Of the 25,000 women, from all over Europe, living in Chako Paul City, those wishing to seek male company are allowed to leave, but may only reenter after having bathed and undertaken several other measures to avoid negatively affecting the mental state of the other residents. [more inside]
posted by acb on Apr 24, 2013 - 76 comments

When Women Wanted Sex Much More Than Men

The idea that men are naturally more interested in sex than women is ubiquitous that it’s difficult to imagine that people ever believed differently. And yet for most of Western history, from ancient Greece to beginning of the nineteenth century, women were assumed to be the sex-crazed porn fiends of their day.
posted by latkes on Mar 31, 2013 - 73 comments

Born which way?

Natalie Reed, who often writes about gender politics and social justice, calls out "born this way" (especially in a gender/trans* context) as its own form of gender essentialism:
“Gender identity” is still gender-essentialism. It’s just a gender-essentialism where we get to continue thinking men are men, and women are women, and these are inherent parts of who you are, but we also get to ignore the uncomfortable demand of DEFINING “man” and “woman” and what we mean by that, and thereby dodge the uncomfortable fact that any such definition within any essentialist framework necessarily invalidates, undermines, insults or excludes at least some trans or intersex people. It’s a way to go right on believing that our womanhood, or our manhood, or whatever “gender identity” we have, is an immutable and intrinsic quality of ourselves, and thereby maintain the comforting belief that it’s concrete and stable and unassailable, but without having to deal with any of the difficult implications of that, without having to interrogate our definitions, without having to worry about what we mean, and without having to really think about gender beyond the generally received notions. It’s a way to be transgender but still think of our genders the way cis people do.

posted by divabat on Mar 12, 2013 - 87 comments

"...an enormous erect phallus, and piles of lettuce in the background."

First noticed on tumblr but now available to all, Alex Clayden's paper "Same-Sex Desire in Pharaonic Egypt" which, among other things, tells you about the connection between lettuce and semen and the Ancient Egyptian for "You have a nice ass."
posted by The Whelk on Jan 25, 2013 - 26 comments

All I remember about it was that I was having sex with Pierce Brosnan in a hot tub. Except that he had a vagina.

"Emma Stone was my dream best friend for a number of weeks. We'd see movies together. Get drinks and gossip. I remember one dream where we just texted. She resurfaced as my best friend last fall after I saw The Help. An actual friend of mine once told me a story about meeting Andrew Garfield's best friend, which meant Andrew Garfield and I were dream best friends for the following few nights. Again, there was texting." The Awl asks people: What Was Your Weirdest Celebrity Sex Dream?
posted by The Whelk on Nov 15, 2012 - 113 comments

Coronet Instructional Films

From the mid 40s to the mid 50s Coronet Instructional Films were always ready to provide social guidance for teenagers on subjects as diverse as dating, popularity, preparing for being drafted, and shyness, as well as to children on following the law, the value of quietness in school, and appreciating our parents. They also provided education on topics such as the connection between attitudes and health, what kind of people live in America, how to keep a job, supervising women workers, the nature of capitalism, and the plantation System in Southern life. Inside is an annotated collection of all 86 of the complete Coronet films in the Prelinger Archives as well as a few more. Its not like you had work to do or anything right? [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb on Nov 1, 2012 - 41 comments

Does This Plate Of Beans Vibrate?

"In removing the associations with genitalia, the messiness of bodies mashing together is obfuscated. Men no longer have to worry about being replaced. Women no longer have to worry about the psychic implications of being penetrated by a penis. Society doesn’t have to worry about gender norms being disturbed. And expectations of what defines sex remains stable." -- Jenny An on "The Pleasure Model" (a jokey NSFW pic at the top)
posted by bardic on Oct 18, 2012 - 66 comments

No more Windex

The Sponsor Effect: Breaking through the Last Glass Ceiling (pdf) Women aren't making it to the top. Despite gains in middle and senior management, they hold just 3 percent of Fortune 500 CEO positions. In the C-suite, they're outnumbered four to one. What's keeping women under the glass ceiling? High-performing women simply don't have the sponsorship they need to reach the top. The study found that women underestimate the role sponsorship plays in their advancement. And those who do grasp its importance fail to cultivate it. It's also a classic catch-22: a woman's personal choices, whatever they may be, brand her as not quite leadership material. What will it take to promote sponsorship?
posted by infini on Sep 20, 2012 - 33 comments

Sex crazed, but not too picky

Nature constantly engineers new and creative solutions to all sorts of problems—turning our stereotypes about sex upside-down along the way.
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Sep 17, 2012 - 16 comments

Take that, Caitlin Flanagan

Focusing on career -- how hookup culture empowers women
posted by msalt on Sep 9, 2012 - 51 comments

"...he has been fairly clear that he is simply a boy who sometimes likes to dress and play in conventionally feminine ways."

What’s So Bad About a Boy Who Wants to Wear a Dress? [NYTimes.com]
posted by Fizz on Aug 8, 2012 - 96 comments

Where did heterosexuality come from?

The Invention of the Heterosexual: In a new book, author Hanne Blank explains the surprisingly short history of the concepts of hetero- and homosexuality. [more inside]
posted by latkes on Jan 31, 2012 - 50 comments

Women and men are different!

This just in ... Men are different from women. OK, scratch that. More different than researchers had previously thought.
posted by anothermug on Jan 5, 2012 - 87 comments

male/female/more than that

Gender: there's a lot more going on than just "male" or "female". [some links NSFW]
posted by divabat on Dec 22, 2011 - 40 comments

VICTORIAN SEX MYTHBUSTERS

A Few Popular Misconceptions And Victorians And Sex
posted by The Whelk on Oct 18, 2011 - 28 comments

Don't let kids watch Chaz Bono on Dancing with the Stars?

Don't let your kids watch Chaz Bono on Dancing with the Stars, warns Dr. Keith Ablow (a forensic psychiatrist and "street therapist"), or the depiction of transgender reassignment as a heroic journey rather than tragedy may normalize it and affect their burgeoning sexual identities (a kind of observational learning effect). Transgender advocates vociferously disagree.
posted by shivohum on Sep 5, 2011 - 153 comments

The Pianist

Yuja Wang (official site / wikipedia) is a 24-year old, Chinese virtuoso classical pianist who became an overnight sensation in 2007 when she filled in after piano legend Martha Argerich, cancelled a performance with the Boston symphony. Since then, Ms. Wang has become a superstar in her own right, hailed by critics for her precise, passionate performances and lightning-fast technique. But after a recent appearance on-stage in a short red dress and high heels led to a critic's complaint about her outfit, others are now weighing in on whether it is appropriate for a female classical musician to wear revealing clothing. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Aug 15, 2011 - 104 comments

"Sex selection defies culture, nationality and creed."

"Over the past few decades, 160 million women have vanished from East and South Asia — or, to be more accurate, they were never born at all. Throughout the region, the practice of sex selection — prenatal sex screening followed by selective termination of pregnancies — has yielded a generation packed with boys. From a normal level of 105 boys to 100 girls, the ratio has shifted to 120, 150, and, in some cases, nearly 200 boys born for every 100 girls. In some countries, like South Korea, ratios spiked and are now returning to normal. But sex selection is on the rise in Eastern Europe, Southeast Asia, and the Middle East." American journalist Mara Hvistendahl's new book: "Unnatural Selection: Choosing Boys Over Girls, and the Consequences of a World Full of Men," examines and tries to predict the actual and potential effects of unequal sex ratios on men, women and the social economies of the affected regions, including the recent spike in sex trafficking and bride-buying across Asia. More. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Jun 10, 2011 - 65 comments

With one voice

Mariella Frostrup on International Women's Day, feminism and the emancipation of women in the developing world.
posted by Artw on Mar 6, 2011 - 10 comments

And the battle of the sexes continues...

Sex Is Cheap: Why young men have the upper hand in bed, even when they're failing in life. Remember this thread from last weekend? Here is another interesting take on the dynamics of modern heterosexual relationships.
posted by fernabelle on Feb 25, 2011 - 138 comments

Women Prevent Women Prettier Than Themselves From Getting Jobs

From the NYT Economix blog: Are good-looking people more likely to get jobs? That depends whether you’re talking about men or women, according to a new working paper.

Job applicants in Europe and in Israel increasingly imbed a headshot of themselves in the top corner of their CVs. We sent 5,312 CVs in pairs to 2,656 advertised job openings. In each pair, one CV was without a picture while the second, otherwise almost identical CV contained a picture of either an attractive male/female or a plain-looking male/female. Employer callbacks to attractive men are significantly higher than to men with no picture and to plain-looking men, nearly doubling the latter group. Strikingly, attractive women do not enjoy the same beauty premium. In fact, women with no picture have a significantly higher rate of callbacks than attractive or plain-looking women. We explore a number of explanations and provide evidence that female jealousy of attractive women in the workplace is a primary reason for the punishment of attractive women.
posted by krautland on Nov 24, 2010 - 75 comments

Philosophers all have long, gray beards!

Professional philosophers have long known that there are far fewer women in philosophy than there are men. (Some quick info.) Recently, this issue has taken center-stage in the philosophy blogosphere. First, a new study suggests that gender plays a role in what intuitions one has to philosophical thought experiments, such as the Gettier cases about knowledge, and The Trolley Problem related to ethics (via). Second, a new blog, What is it like to be a woman in philosophy?, has exploded in popularity as it shows the good, the bad, and the downright ugly involved in being a woman in the profession. [more inside]
posted by meese on Oct 14, 2010 - 37 comments

Afghan boys are prized, so girls live the part.

Facing social pressures, families disguise girls as boys in Afghanistan. (slnyt)
posted by killdevil on Sep 21, 2010 - 15 comments

Anti Porn Men

The Anti-Porn Men Project [more inside]
posted by blue funk on Sep 17, 2010 - 146 comments

When you've got to go, how do you know where to go?

Go Where? Sex, Gender, and Toilets.
posted by hermitosis on Sep 2, 2010 - 159 comments

You’ll be pleased to note, it also makes it easier for you to dust.

My Fault, I'm Female [more inside]
posted by lunasol on Jul 19, 2010 - 712 comments

Choice of Broads, Choice of Dudes.

Choice of Broadsides is a choose-your-own-adventure game set in an alternate 19th Century world that is much like our own, where Albion and Gaul fight for naval supremacy. You can choose to be a gentleman in a standard patriarchal society, or a gentlewoman in a matriarchal one. Later on in the game you can choose your sexual orientation. Originally there were no options for a same-sex relationship, but after demands from players, it was added in. Spoilers below the cut. [more inside]
posted by Kattullus on Jul 14, 2010 - 42 comments

The End of Men

The End of Men, in The Atlantic. An article about the rise of women (now over 50% of the U.S. workforce), and implications of the attendant changes for both women and men. [more inside]
posted by marble on Jun 10, 2010 - 161 comments

Arabian Goggles?

“Guys are a@#$%^&. Be Safe. Every time.”
posted by stinkycheese on Mar 4, 2010 - 198 comments

Why Are People Always Having Sex With Dragons In Science Fiction?

[NSFW] Why Are People Always Having Sex With Dragons In Science Fiction?
posted by jason's_planet on Dec 26, 2009 - 158 comments

Marching through the claims like Sherman through Georgia

Neuroscientist Lise Eliot finds that claims of sex differences fall apart. In one study, scientists dressed newborns in gender-neutral clothes and misled adults about their sex. The adults described the "boys" (actually girls) as angry or distressed more often than did adults who thought they were observing girls, and described the "girls" (actually boys) as happy and socially engaged more than adults who knew the babies were boys. Dozens of such disguised-gender experiments have shown that adults perceive baby boys and girls differently, seeing identical behavior through a gender-tinted lens. [more inside]
posted by cashman on Sep 3, 2009 - 106 comments

Caster Semenya and sex varification controversies

South African runner Caster Semenya wins a gold in the 800 meter amid controversy and accusations about her sex. Analysis of Semenya's situation and more information on sex verification in sport.
posted by serazin on Aug 19, 2009 - 171 comments

Beneath the burqa

Shuttlecock burqas to fetish wear. Some snapshots of Pakistan's struggles with its sexual identities. [more inside]
posted by tavegyl on May 14, 2009 - 10 comments

I can't take my eyes off of her.

"Men look at women. Women watch themselves being looked at. This determines not only most relations between men and women but also the relation of women to themselves." Also: male gaze on the Gender Ads Project. Laura Mulvey's original 1975 essay on Male Gaze in cinema.
posted by Optimus Chyme on Mar 12, 2009 - 248 comments

Gender "Cheats"

In late 2006, Santhi Soundarajan took the Silver Medal in the Women's 800m at the Asian Games in Qatar. Less than a week later, she was stripped of her medal by the Olympic Council of Asia after a chromosomal test. According to the Times of India, "the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) said the 25-year-old had failed a sex test, implying she had deceived the sporting world by competing as a woman when she was actually a man." The disqualification ended her athletic career, and several months after returning to her rural village in Tamil Nadu, India, she attempted suicide. [more inside]
posted by Kadin2048 on Jul 29, 2008 - 25 comments

Should we worry?

Mercedes Allen looks at who's in charge of deciding the fate of Gender Identity Disorder in the DSM-IV. The APA (American Psychological Association) has announced it's intention to revise the DSMV (Diagnosis and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders). The expert they've named to chair revisions on sexuality and gender is Kenneth Zucker. Zucker is the major remaining proponent of Reparative Therapy for LGBT folks. [more inside]
posted by FunkyHelix on May 17, 2008 - 86 comments

There are two guards: one always speaks the truth, the other gouges the eyes out of people who ask tricky questions.

All men are liars. Start with the follow-up to this much-discussed article.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane on Aug 3, 2007 - 103 comments

Some days you get to be the pigeon. Some days you get to be the statue. And some days . . .

[NSFW] Much of contemporary liberal thought rests on the idea of the Social Contract. In this scheme, we agree to give up a certain amount of freedom in exchange for the protection and opportunity that society provides. Our individual lives mirror this. We defer to others when politeness requires it. We assert ourselves and our needs with pleases and thank yous. Most of daily life has some power dynamic to it, expressed with the subtlety that civilization demands. And what is implicit in daily life is made explicit in the role-playing of BDSM, based on the idea of a Power Exchange, where one party explicitly agrees to give up a certain amount of power to another. For most people who are into this, the “scenes” are circumscribed by rules, usually discussed beforehand, such as appropriate safewords, time limits, etc. For a small subset of this group, the typical safeguards are cast aside and the slave surrenders all aspects of his or her life to the master. The female submissive Polly Peachum has written about this lifestyle in her essay “Violence in the Garden” about her life as a 24-7 slave and the sexual dimensions of that relationship.
posted by jason's_planet on Oct 1, 2006 - 219 comments

Near Ovulation, Your Cheatin' Heart Will Tell on You

Near Ovulation, Your Cheatin' Heart Will Tell on You "New research from UCLA and the University of New Mexico suggests that members of "the gentler sex" may have evolved to cheat on their mates during the most fertile part of their cycle — but only when those mates are less sexually attractive than other men."
posted by anyokerin on Jan 18, 2006 - 57 comments

Gender Based Brain Research

A review of the current state of gender based brain research shows that women and men differ both in the way their brains are constructed and in how they function.
..correlation between brain region size in adults and sex steroid action in utero suggests that at least some sex differences in cognitive function do not result from cultural influences or the hormonal changes associated with puberty--they are there from birth.
Treatment for such things as schizophrenia and depression will likely have gender specific variations in the future. Previously, brain research that examined gender differences was considered controversial because it was argued that the results might give rise to more sex discrimination against women. That view may be changing.
posted by peacay on May 3, 2005 - 33 comments

Bridging the gender gap in computer gaming.

Bridging the gender gap in computer gaming. Computer games often portray women as victims or prizes . But things seem to be changing. Some see hope in the growing number of games where women play the leading character, especially when the game (NSFW) completely focuses on the character herself. Change, however, may be more apparent than real. If this is real change, it may reduce gender drift (.pdf) in gaming. Women are getting out of the closet (discussed here). Their motto: They grow stronger !
posted by joaovc on Apr 29, 2005 - 44 comments

Girls, Girls, XXs...

Girl Power or: Partnership status and the human sex ratio at birth: a paper by Karen Norberg

Could the sex of a child be influenced by the status of the parents' relationship at the time of conception? In a sample of 86,436 births in the United States, we find a small excess of sons among births to parents who were married or living with an opposite sex partner before the child's conception, compared to births to parents who were not. This is the first evidence that household arrangements can affect the human sex ratio at birth, and could explain the fall in the proportion of male births in some developed countries over the past thirty years.


(Data published on FirstCite registration required) via The Economist

(special note for mathowie: No word yet as to whether or not those single moms can also reliably produce offspring with an astigmatism.)
posted by lilboo on Oct 27, 2004 - 12 comments

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