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Notes Towards Day 20 (Thurs, Mar. 29): Holding Up the Sky

Anne Dalke's picture

FrigginSushi: "setting the scene" with Vanessa Carlton, White Houses

I. coursekeeping

* Colleen & hwink are on for Tuesday

* don't forget to post by Sunday evening--
plus a post w/ a link to your "setting up" videos/audios/books...

* for Tuesday, watch Live Nude Girls Unite! (by Vicky
Funari, who teaches documentary film production in
Independent Programs @ HC; her film is on reserve @
Canaday and also available streaming from Netflix);
today's readings provide an interesting/global framing
for this movie of U.S. organizing around sexual labor

* signing in

II. reflections on Tuesday's paired experiences,
word-defining and space-travelng: one trying to
pin down meaning, the other trying to open up imaginative alternatives...?

III. marked turn today, from re-working/de-stabilizing/"queering" gender,
to looking @ the consequences of its clear demarcation.

Do this in two parts: tracing our initial experiences of reading Half the Sky;
then considering our after-thoughts about the movement it's inspired.

1) Take a few moments to find one passage that caught your attention,
and write down why/what your reaction was. We'll go 'round and read these...
a single sentence by Kristof and WuDunn, then a single sentence by you.

What's the pattern? What draws us? What troubles us?
What can we do with what we've read?

(Did anyone hear Kristof speak here in Fall 2010--about
"lethal gender inequity" --> "stories of unbelievable inspiration")?

2) Nick and Sheryl's book started a movement, which has also found
expression @ BMC; two weeks ago, there was a cupcake sale, as part of
She's the First
itself part of the
Half the Sky Movement

see also Women Hold Up Half the Sky exhibition and review:
linking the horrendous symptoms of inequality ...while at the same time
demonstrating powerful possibilities to change those bitter realities ....

What are your after-thoughts, having seen
some representations of the movement?
What are our reactions?
What's the pattern among our reactions?
What draws us? What troubles us?
What can we do with what we've now seen and heard?

Reading Notes from Kristof and WuDunn's Chapters 1-3, 14:
covering quotidian cruelties: 100 million women missing
gender discrimination lethal in poor countries,
aggravated by modernization, technology
plight of girls an opportunity:
economic explosion in Asia outgrowth of economic empowerment of women: the girl effect
agenda focusing on three abuses:
sex trafficking/forced prostitution; gender-based violence; maternal mortality
recruit you into drama of empowerment
I. Emancipating 21st C. Slaves
most straitlaced sexually conservative societies = disproportionately large #s of prostitutes
worsened in last few decades, due to capitalism, globalization, AIDS
II. Prohibition and Prostitution
changed minds from legalize-and-regulate model
to law enforcement strategy to stop coerced prostitution:
crackdowns can reduce brothel owners' profits
(union of sex workers provided a front for brother owners, became a cover for trafficking)
cf. outcomes of legalized prostitution in the Netherlands,
w/ Sweden's criminalizing the purchase (not the sale) of sexual services
this debate irrelevant in poor countries: need to change reality, not laws
rescuing girls is the easy part: they return
because of stigma, drug dependencies, threats...
prevention is more productive
III. Learning to Speak Up
unlearning feminine stoic docility
new abolitionists: small targeted grants for social entrepreneurs
XIV. What You Can Do
ideal model: British drive to end the slave trade
meticulously amassed evidence of barbarity
women as underutilized resource: nourish, educate them to enliven economies
aid as a lubricant in the crankcase of the developing world
American feminism must become less parochial
television bringing new ideas into villages
3 specific initiatives:
* $10 billion to reduce the gender gap in education
* iodize salt in poor countries (to prevent iodine deficiency)
* $1.6 billion to eradicate obstetric fistula
challenge to change attitudes
"self improvement from helping others": personal dividends of altruism
4 Steps in Next 10 Minutes
1) go to P2P site
2) sponsor a girl
3) sign up for e-mail updates
4) join CARE Action Network