Please click on the link below and take a few minutes to provide some anonymous feedback for our visiting panelists from Purdue’s LGBTQ Center last week. You’ll receive 5 points for completing the survey (print and turn in the final page when you’re finished).
This morning, I opened my email and saw this, sent courtesy of Hungry Boiler at Purdue:
From a feminist perspective, what’s the problem with such campaigns, despite what seem like good intentions (i.e., breast cancer research).
There’s a theme here, as with other “cutesy” campaigns that attempt to make breast cancer a crude joke (e.g., the pun on “cups” here).
For starters, a huge part of the problem with such campaigns is that breast cancer isn’t fundamentally about “saving boobs,” but about saving women’s lives. And what kind of message does this send to women about why they should get regular breast exams? The message here makes getting a breast exam into a frat boy joke, some sort of titillating exercise where a woman protects her “boobs” because she wouldn’t want to lose them (never mind her health or her life). But of course, for those who are diagnosed, breast cancer isn’t funny at all.
The other problem, of course, is that breast cancer can also be found outside of a woman’s breasts, for example, on the chest well or pressed against the ribcage. Perhaps most harmful of all is the fact that such campaigns – pushes for “creating awareness” that start with preventative tests that can be prohibitively expensive for many women without insurance – prevent us from looking for underlying causes, like environmental pollution, industrial agriculture, and a diet of increasingly process and genetically-modified foods – all of which contribute to rising rates of all cancers.
As you’re working on your Current Events journals, I wanted to share a couple of recent articles, which you may or may not have already stumbled on yourselves. These are certainly timely and might be of interest to several of you.
Number 1: The Winter Olympics in Sochi
Number 2: Healthcare and the LGBTQ Community
Next week, we’ll start talking about sexuality and sexual identity, as well as sex education, so this article seems rather timely: “Idaho Bill Would Allow Doctors or Cops to Refuse Service to LGBT People on Religious Grounds.”
Number 3: The Purdue Women’s Archive
For those of you who really enjoyed your trip to the archive, here’s an excuse to go back: you can use one of your Current Events Journal entries to discuss something you look at in the Women’s Archive. Remember that you need to email an archivist, like Stephanie, ahead of time so they can retrieve the materials for you. Click here to view what’s in the archive before you request material.
In the clip below, African American poet, writer, and activist Alice Walker (author of The Color Purple) performs Sojourner Truth’s 1851 speech:
The film Iron-Jawed Angels (2004) portrays this historic march in one scene, including a sampling of delegations marching and the heckling and violence inflicted on the women marchers by the (largely male) crowd that attended the march. The scene also shows newly-elected Woodrow Wilson arriving at the train station to almost non-existent fanfare (because everyone was at the march).
Hilary Swank plays Alice Paul, who marched in her academic gown, Julia Ormond plays Inez Milholland, who leads the march on her white horse, and Adilah Barnes plays Ida B. Wells. (FYI: the background music becomes chant composed by 11th century German abbess, writer, composer, mystic, and activist-in-her-own-right Hildegard von Bingen).
CONTINUING THE FIGHT
Alice Paul and Lucy Burns, the two radical American suffragettes who organized the march, and many other suffragettes continued working to gain the right to vote after the march, picketing the White House in 1917 until President Wilson had them arrested.