F W O R D V O L III A P R I L 2 0 1 5
Welcome to VOLUME III of F WORD, a feminist publication based in Montréal, QC. We provide a platform for the feminist voices, and works by women, that are underrepresented in our community. Our notion of feminism is not limited to gender politics, but rather extends to all anti-oppressive perspectives. Though we do not align ourselves with one particular feminist perspective, the publication is politically motivated in its aim to discredit the negative stigma feminism has acquired as a deconstructive philosophy. Our mission statement was crafted with a focus on remaining impartial to content, so long as it is constructive. As well as being a platform for our contributors, we hope F WORD will evolve to be considered a community resource on current feminist events and opportunities in Montréal. We are currently working to partner with other groups and organizations that share our anti-oppressive values and interests. If you or a group you are involved in would like to collaborate with F WORD, please e-mail us. As always, we have the greatest appreciation for all of the support that we have had thus far from our lovely contributors, allies, and readers. Sending out all of the feminist love left in our hearts with each zine!
F WORD seeks to explore feminism in its present-day cultural context as a unifying, anti-oppressive, intersectional force. We seek to provide an accessible community resource through inclusive, constructive multi-media content. Through our collective’s non-hierarchical structure, we aim to challenge and move away from existing systems of oppression. We seek to prompt discussion: What does feminism mean to you? EXPLORE: fwordmtl.com COnnect: facebook.com/fwordmtl FOLLOW: fwordmtl.tumblr.com CONTACT: email@example.com SUBMIT: fwordmtl.com/submit
TRIGGER MESSAGE: As a feminist publication, some of the content in this zine can be triggering. Please read the table of contents and the accompanying trigger warnings carefully.
F Word acknowledges that Montreal/ McGill is on traditional Haudenosaunne or Kanien’kehá:ka land
TABLE OF CONTENTS
TABLE OF CONTENTS sudden loss of breath by Katie MacKinnon inside/outside by Caitlin Scolyer-Gray
Life as a Lexicon by Olivia Bradberry
A Woman’s Nipples by Kailey Havelock Not Your Doll by Jenee Larson
Anything Butt by Hannah Korbee
An Open Letter by Emily Sheiner
Mundane Realism by Stephanie Simpson You Don’t Have to Touch Her to Know Her by Hannah Chubb
Carribean Woman by Ashley Hobson-Garcia
On being a student, a feminist, and a parent by Gabrielle Mariano
Gynephilia by Olivia Bradberry
Diros, Open Up by Jackie Cooper
Black American series by Richenda Grazette The Body is Life Itself by Ashley Hobson-Garcia
12/11/2014 by Phoebe Frigoli
The Movie The Wizard of Oz but Only the Parts Before the Tornado and Also That Scene is How I Feel by Clare Biging
Clear Blue by Hannah Korbee Untitled by Uma Vespaziani
hey you by Sophie Tupholme
Chicana Muralists Reclaiming Agency through their Public Works by Laura Segal
my women, vermont 1 and personal space by Katie MacKinnon
tell by Sophie Tupholme
Letter to Giuseppa Mule by Ilona Martonfi (Trigger Warning: abuse)
noose by Juliette Mueller (Trigger Warning: violence)
Evidently Not by Sara Trojanowsky
Over Head, Over Hands by Jackie Cooper To Man by Emmanuel Adams
my women, vermont 6 by Katie MacKinnon
butterfly by Caitlin Scolyer-Gray (Trigger Warning: violence) feminine landscape by Övgü Nurözler
Untitled by Maya Teitelbaum Pressed and Released by Jackie Cooper
Front and back cover: Susan by Clare Biging
Emmanuel Adams, crusher of patriarchies, writer of prose and poetry from Montreal, Canada. Clare Biging is a Bioengineer and artist on the side. She has lots of feelings. Olivia Bradberry I am a first year student studying Environmental Science at McGill. I like to write for fun, to get out my feelings, and also because I hope I can make art that will empower my nonexistent audience. I wrote Gynephilia when I realized I was bisexual (surprise!) and it’s about the beauty of accepting my sexuality and how happy it made me to really be fully ~me~. I figured it would be relevant to F WORD b/c LGBTQ empowerment// sexual freedom//I felt very empowered writing it. Life as a Lexicon is all about the dissonance between my passions and what SOCIETY wants me to do :( it’s a confused poem n I am a confused girl. Jackie Cooper is from Toronto, Canada.
reflects my Caribbean upbringing, and the type of feminist I explicitly identify as. Central to my feminist politics and endeavors is to work with and for Caribbean woman. “The Body Is Life Itself” was written for a class in transnational feminisms and intimacies. It is a theorization of how I felt moving from Trinidad to the Canada. Moreover, it is an exploration of the ways in which bodies move through social spaces and are received differently within them. Jenee Larson In today’s society, women are consistently pressured to be thin,hairless,and sexually available to men. “Not your doll” is a rejection of these expectations and instead tells them in the words of Lesley Gore “You don’t own me. I’m not just one of your many toys.” Katherine MacKinnon My photographs document close relationships with my female friends and with myself as I navigate expressions of love and support. I enjoy working with double exposures, reflections and underwater cameras.
is majoring in English Cultural Studs thatSheMontreal/ McGill is on traditional ies and minoring in Communications at Selected work present- land aunneMcGill orUniversity. Kanien’kehá:ka ed in Scotiabank Contact Photography Festival with CAPIC’s “Xpose” Photo Exhibition (2013). Notoriously known for being a cat lover. Richenda Grazette is in third year Women’s Studies, with a minor in Canadian Ethnic & Race Studies. Ashley Hobson-Garcia I identify as a Trinidadian woman and Caribbean feminist. I have a double major in Women’s Studies and Political Science. My academic focus includes women’s empowerment and agency particularly in the ‘developing’ world. My research interests include postcolonial, critical-race and feminist-theory. I engage with a critical feminism that is intersectional and attentive to the diverse settings and experiences of women differently located. “Caribbean Woman” is an edited photograph of a painting. It
Ilona Martonfi’s poetry can best be described as an obsession with truth. Witness poems, the past and the present mix. This is what she knew, what she loved and hated, the seeds of her passion. Family secrets and taboos. Digging up roots: ancestral memories. Martonfi exposes a battered wife’s suffering, yet she never invites us to pity. Martonfi lives in Montreal, Canada. Author of two poetry books, Blue Poppy,(Coracle 2009.) Black Grass, (Broken Rules 2012). Forthcoming, The Snow Kimono, (Inanna, 2015). Publishes in zines and anthologies. Producer of The Yellow Door and Visual Arts Centre Readings. QWF 2010 Community Award. Juliette Mueller is a first year student. She likes long walks on the beach, picking fights with conservatives, and texting other people’s parents.
Caitlin Scolyer-Gray inside/outside & butterfly are both meditations on a similar theme. both deal with interiority and exteriority, vulnerability, sex, exploitation and abuse. they are both concerned by the misogynistic propensity to reduce feminine personhood to flesh for consumption, but both pieces embrace corporeality simultaneously through their sensuousness. they are also very personal & visceral, which is significant to my feminism insofar as the personal is necessarily political. they depict an internal struggle with expectations and prescriptions for femininity, particularly in terms of sexuality, desire, and self-worth. Emily Sheiner is a recent graduate of McGill University with a major in Art History and minor in Marketing. She is currently doing a marketing internship at the Guggenheim Museum in New York City. Emily is thrilled to be published again in F WORD MTL and is thankful to the zine for creating an outlet for the voices of young feminists. With the publication of this personal essay she hopes to not only contribute to the ever expanding dialogue on modern feminism but to inspire a reconsideration of the contemporary concept of masculinity. Sara Trojanowski is a high school junior in the Detroit area. In addition to being a feminist, she is also an avid reader and writer. Sophie Tupholme I don’t know how selves are composed, but we can’t be called whole. We aren’t
puzzles that can be pieced together, made of an established set of parts, available and visible to anyone who sees or meets us. We don’t shed our skins when we would like to, we don’t adapt when we ‘should,’ we aren’t subjects put into positions, we can’t be made complete sense of. We are collections of contradictions, resistant to others’ images, fluctuating. We are strange and confusing, lovely bits of old and new. I would like to be safe in that peculiarity and soothed by complexity. I would like to admire my mistakes and bare my scars. And I would like to innately know these things. Uma Vespaziani My pieces are some drawings from my notebook. The text is made up of little phrases I commonly say when I’m pretending not to feel sad in front of other people (I guess you could call them lies). In some situations it is best to use these little white lies, but sometimes you just gotta CRY and that is A-Okay! I am trying to see tears as a chill, cathartic thing, as a sign of healing instead of a sign of weakness. Crying persists as a feminine coded way of expressing emotion when it should be a sign of being straight up human! Some things to remember: 1. It is OK to cry about things both big and small :’( 2. If you are crying, writing/drawing in your notebook can be really helpful 3. If you are still crying, that is OK too! just let the tears flow and you will feel better soon <3
Listen to “Revolution” at soundcloud.com/nika-januszkiewicz/revolution This is a song that I wrote after I heard the quote in Emma Watsons’ HeForShe speech — “If not me, who? If not now, when?” I took that message along with my own raw feelings about feminism in our society today and put it into a song. This song is what feminism is to me; it’s empowering but it’s also overpowering, it’s inspiring but it’s devastating, I want to dedicate my life to it but I know it’s so much bigger than me.
sudden loss of breath !
inside/outside i fear that i am travelling like a stone down aphroditeâ€™s gullet with nothing to offer, nothing to give, except my body scarred, mottled skin, blue and white
yellowing bruises - neck, thighs, hips and arse the rain blows back, horizontal across the corrugated iron intersecting with the unrelenting vertical downpour
i am an empty vessel, and with this rain I would surely overflow if it werenâ€™t for the breach in my hull i fill and i fill and then again this void
i let the bone set crooked, protruding and useless knocking my ankles on half open doors
despite blocked receptors, something sometimes shoots but never leaves an exit wound
women are internal creatures after all
inside/outside & but similar theme. both exteriority, vulnera they are both concer reduce feminine pers both pieces embrace their sensuousness. visceral, which is s the personal is nece through internal struggle wi femininity, particul and self-worth.
wicked smile. Interrogating: February 2015 What will you2do after school? Life as a Lexicon
wicked smile. Interrogating: 2 February 2015 What will you do after school? Life as a Lexicon Janus licks his lips and smiles a licks that his lips and smiles a smile. wicked I lower my lidsJanus realizing lower my alids realizing that Janus licks his lips Iand smiles wicked smile. Interrogating: this is not a staring competition, this is not a staring competition wicked smile. Interrogating: What will you do afterInterrogating: school? but rather triangulation. Those eyes, but rather triangulation. Those do after school? an acute angleWhat fromwill my you normal, an acute angle from my normal What will you do after school? behold me not a refraction, behold me not a refraction, but a girl before her fall from glory – I lower my lids realizing that but a girl before her fall from gl I lower my lids realizing that this is not a staring competition, her pursuit was hallow. her pursuit I lower my lids realizing that was hallow. this is not a staring competition, but rather triangulation. Those eyes, this is not a staring competition, but rather triangulation. Those eyes,angle from my normal, an acute She wears “professionalism” like a glove. She wears “professionalism” lik but rather triangulation. Those eyes, an acuteroots, angle from my normal, behold me not a refraction, Straight hair, healthy Straight hair, healthy roots, an acute angle from my normal, behold me not a refraction,but a girl before her fall from glory – pencil skirt and stockings, pencil skirt and stockings, behold me not a refraction, a girl before her fall from – was hallow. her glory pursuit aware that thebut master’s tools will aware that the master’s tools wil but a girl before her fall from glory – pursuit waslifestyle hallow. construct her her a comfortable construct her a comfortable life her pursuit was hallow. if she wields them with a polite finesse. She wears “professionalism” like a glove.if she wields them with a polite Sheofwears “professionalism” like a hair, glove.healthy roots, Straight She’s comprised She’s comprised of She wears “professionalism” like a glove. Straight hair, healthy roots, pencil skirt and stockings, ‘alumni connections,’ and ‘3.7’s, and ‘alumni connections,’ and ‘3.7’s, Straight hair, healthy roots, pencil skirt the andlines. stockings, aware that the master’s tools will everything read between everything read between the lin pencil skirt and stockings, thatslang the master’s tools will construct her a comfortable lifestyle Later, she fallsaware into the of domesticity, Later, she falls into the slang of aware that the master’s tools will construct if lifestyle she wields them with a polite finesse. gold digger, marry rich, her a comfortable gold digger, marry rich, construct her a comfortable lifestyle if she them with a polite finesse. of She’s comprised trade her dreams forwields motherhood. dreams for motherhoo if she wields themtrade with her a polite finesse. She’s comprised of ‘alumni connections,’ and ‘3.7’s, and Did she sacrifice? Did she sacrifice? She’s comprised of ‘alumni connections,’ and ‘3.7’s, and read between the lines. everything ‘alumni connections,’ and ‘3.7’s, and everything read between the lines.she falls into the slang of domesticity, Later, But she dreams in a language But shethe dreams everything read between lines. in a language Later,to she into the slang of digger, domesticity, gold marry rich, that I can translate thefalls masses; that I can translate to the masse Later, she falls into the slang of domesticity, digger, marry rich, trade her dreams for motherhood. folded paper, gold meticulously scripted. folded paper, meticulously scrip gold digger, marry rich, tradeletter, her dreams for motherhood. Did she sacrifice? I fought for each each word, I fought for each letter, each wo trade her dreams for motherhood. Did sacrifice? and nailed it to hershe institution. and nailed it to her institution. Did she sacrifice? But she dreams in a language They nailed me to a cross They nailed me to a cross in aeyes language that I can translate to the masses; like everyone But else she whodreams shut their everyone else who shut thei But she dreams in like a language I can translate to the masses; folded paper, meticulously scripted. to patriarchal that propaganda. to patriarchal that I can translate to the masses;propaganda. fought for each letter, each paper, word, meticulously Long live the folded 1% paper, meticulouslyIscripted. Long livescripted. the 1% folded fought for each letter, each andword, nailed it to her institution. We know the Ionly equality in this world We know only equality in th I fought for each letter, eachthe word, andIt’s nailed to her institution. isn’t man made: that it everyone must They nailed me to a cross isn’t man made: It’s that everyon and nailed it to her institution. shut nailed their eyes die one day. They nailed me to a cross like everyone else whoThey die one day. me to a cross like everyone else who shuttotheir eyes propaganda. patriarchal like everyone else who shut their eyes to patriarchal propaganda. Long live the 1% to patriarchal propaganda. live the 1% We know the only equality this Janus’ face noLong longer Longinlive theworld 1% Janus’ face no longer the only equalityisn’t in this world man made: It’s that everyone must embodies pastWe andknow future; future; We know the only embodies equality inpast this and world isn’t man made: It’s that everyone die one must day. she was me, submission, she was me, submission, isn’t man made: It’s that everyone must die one day. I am now, resisting. I am now, resisting. die one day. I will not sacrafice. I will not sacrafice. Janus’ face no longer Janus’ face no longer embodies past and future; Janus’ face no longer embodies past and future; she was me, submission, embodies past and future; she was me, submission, I am now, resisting. she was me, submission, I am now, resisting. I will not sacrafice. I am now, resisting. I will not sacrafice. I will not sacrafice. 2 February 2015 Life as a Lexicon
inside/outside & butterfly are both meditations on a similar theme. both deal with interiority and exteriority, vulnerability, sex, exploitation and abuse. they are both concerned by the masculine propensity to reduce feminine personhood to flesh for consumption, but both pieces embrace corporeality simultaneously through their sensuousness. they are also very personal & visceral, which is significant to my feminism insofar as the personal is necessarily political. they depict an internal struggle with expectations and prescriptions for femininity, particularly in terms of sexuality, desire, and self-worth.
A Woman’s Nipples Sexualized breasts on billboards, if cupped in lace obscure the obscene, while nurturing breasts (ripe buds dare to be caught exposed) are “provocative.”
Not Your Doll
Anything Butt My butt, bum ass tushie my glorious gluteus maximus. You’ve been under a lot of pressure to be anything but yourself. Given tasks too big for two cheeks to handle. Told to answer the beckoning calls of hungry anacondas. Convicted for the ploys of wandering hands. Be a symbol, A combo. “Yeah could I get three parts Bey and Nicki. With some J-Lo jiggle, and a side of Iggy?” But, Butt. All I expect, Is for you to hold up my pants. To show up when I sit.
F"WORD"–"Jackie"Cooper" Artist"Bio"and"Photography"" 1."“"Diros,"Open"Up”"speaks"to"my"feminism"because"it"posits"that"a"woman’s"beauty" can"be"reflected"in"the"unseen"spaces,"layers"beneath"the"surface"of"the"earth."" " 2."“Over"Head,"Over"Hands”"speaks"to"my"feminism"in"its"depiction"of"two"colliding" forces"that"both"represent"solidarity,"regardless"of"differences"in"scale.""" " 3."“Pressed"and"Released”"depicts"a"woman"who’s"been"worn"out,"yet"her"marks"are" what"make"up"her"image."" " " Author"Biography:"Jackie"Cooper"is"from"Toronto,"Canada."She"is"majoring"in"English" Cultural"Studies"and"minoring"in"Communications"at"McGill"University."Selected" work"presented"in"Scotiabank"Contact"Photography"Festival"with"CAPIC’s"“Xpose”"" Photo"Exhibition"(2013)."Notoriously"known"for"being"a"cat"lover.""
And on occasion
and nothing else.
An Open Letter to the Guy who wouldn’t take No for an Answer A Refresher Course on Consent and Masculinity You ask me to go for brunch. It was a nice thought, and I smile at my iPhone screen, contented by your proposition. We had gone for drinks a few weeks back at a bar in my neighborhood. We sat at a high top by the window and you admitted to not knowing much about wine, so I picked the bottle. You seemed genuinely interested in me, asking all the appropriate questions, about my job, hometown, favorite trashy television shows, eyes wide as I answered, nodding graciously throughout. When the check comes you insisted on paying, a gesture both generous and predictable and following suit you walked me home. Nice guy I think, I deserve to be out with a nice guy. I am shocked when you bid me goodnight and proceed to kiss me against the wall of the Ukrainian restaurant below my apartment. When you asked me if you could come upstairs I instinctively laughed, half tempted to scold you for even asking, but I simply reminded you it was a work night and headed inside alone. Your suggestion of meeting up during the daytime forces me to reconsider my initial perception of you. In broad daylight there is no pressure to appease social expectations of how I must dress on a date, how much I must drink once the sun has gone down. To stress the unceremonious nature of our encounter I wear sneakers, somehow I assume my casual footwear communicates this will not be a sexual transaction. Again you choose a spot in my area, I can almost see my bedroom window from where we sit in the restaurant. Serendipitously we order the same meal and again you show genuine interest when I speak, but your eyes are so wide. Your stare is harsh and loaded, but this is brunch after all and I interpret your gaze as attentive, pleased that you are out with a girl who is educated, interesting and shares your affinity for eggs benedict. Its snowing when we get outside and you ask if I want to prolong our date, it is only three in the afternoon and neither of us have plans until evening. I see no harm in grabbing a cup of coffee, but you have an alternative activity in mind. You lead me back to the Ukrainian restaurant and stop before my doorway. I nervously look around knowing what you will suggest. I see the waiters preparing table settings for dinner, carting off the last of the soiled lunch plates as you ask to come upstairs. My hesitance provokes you to fire off a slew of excuses, you need to use my bathroom, want to meet my roommates, see where I live. I fold at your persistence and let you know the invitation is for a quick cup of tea. You immediately observe that yes, we are alone in the apartment and no, you will not be meeting my roommates. You ask which one is my bedroom, and I respond by pointing lazily in its general direction, fixated on the pot of water just beginning to boil. You proceed to head towards my room and after a few moments I understand what you have in mind. I follow you to coax you back to the kitchen. You tell me you’re really not a big fan of tea. You are 27 and well over six feet tall and I am 22 and just break five foot three. I am not humbled by your age and stature but intimidated. Your exceptional size advantage allows you to pull me onto the bed on which you sit, lifting me up and placing me where you please. I joke that this is the downside of being small, but you don’t find it so funny. You hold me down and grab my face and I tell you I don’t do this, that we just met. You assure me everything’s okay, we can go at “my speed” as if I am interested in something other than park. “Just lie with me,” you say after I thwart several of your previous advances, pinning me down with your outlandishly long arm and sticking the other up my shirt, grabbing at me. I push your arms away and you ask if I’m “a virgin or something?” I answer dishonestly “yes” and your
eyes grow even wider with incredible surprise. I don’t lie as a defense mechanism but rather out of genuine curiosity as to what your reaction might be. You are clearly disappointed by the sexual experience you believe I lack, you are disenchanted by my unwillingness to have mid-afternoon sex with you on our second date. I laugh and admit that I indeed am not a virgin and you seem relieved and try again to coax me into another compromising position. Before I finally ask you to leave I say the one thing that justifies the astonishing insensitivity you have exhibited and aggressive nature of your actions; “I’m sorry, I’m a good girl.” I however, am not an absolutely good girl; I have cheated on tests and lied to my friends and worn white jeans after Labour Day. I have done my fair share of inappropriate, impulsive and insensible things, ones I would never admit to my mother, and some that I actively deny to myself. I am human; I am inconsistent and imperfect and it is because I am human, not because I am female, that I reserve my right to not justify my decisions to you or to anyone. I am not necessarily respectable for refusing your advances and am not required to pigeonhole myself as a definitively good or bad girl to warrant my actions. I do not cling to a unilateral definition of myself and perhaps on a different day with a different guy I may have said yes – but on this day with you I said no and that is all I am required to say. By implicating my gender in the justification of my behaviour I not only offered an excuse that vindicated your aggression but denounced all women who perhaps would have acted differently. I am not propagating that I was right because to say yes is not shameful. She who says yes does not merit judgment and she who says no does not merit praise. She however deserves to have her decisions respected earnestly, the very first time they are muttered. I refuse to let myself feel victimized by your actions. You were simply “just being a guy” right? You were abiding by your conception of masculinity, a characterization skewed by the hook-up culture we exist within. You probably spend Sunday mornings with your buddies comparing conquests of the night before, perhaps you feel unfulfilled if you don’t have a tale to contribute. You were following prescribed social norms that you glean from television, from your friends, perhaps from your own father. I am not defending you, saying you mistreated me because your perceptions of the appropriate are tainted by your cultural and social surroundings. While this could be true I am urging you to understand that insistently pursuing me with sexual intent does not make you more of a man. I am letting you know that dating does not operate on the points system, just because you signed the bill does not require me to level the playing field, it does not make me indebted to you. As you probably comprehend from when I did not answer your text last week, we will not be going out again. Although you are handsome and successful you are too ignorant to understand what real masculinity is. Masculinity is not only respecting the decisions of other individuals regardless of age, sex or stature but also not needing to subscribe to behavioural customs to feel satiated or normal. I hope you take these words to heart during your next walk home with your next date. That you keep your hands to yourself if she doesn’t want them on her and that you respect her decision to retire inside alone if she wishes. Your reserve and humility do not make you weak and unmanly, they make you decent. And while I do appreciate your persistence to do what you consider chivalrous and pick up the tab, I would prefer if you forgo this element of your incredibly traditionalist definition of manliness in favour of courtesy, respect and knowledge of consent. I hereafter, will be buying my own eggs. Sincerely,
LIE Coverage natural. Perfect tomorrow. Makeup to perfect over time. Future damage. WARNING: stop. Irritation increases, irritation persists.
You Don’t Have to Touch Her to Know Her
Mundane Realism A contemporary term in social psychology, “Mundane Realism” refers to the extent to which an experimental situation can resemble persons, places, and events in reality. However, as the design is simply a façade, one will never be able to feel as natural in this “manufactured” state into which we are compelled by the cosmetic industry.
On being a student, a feminist, and a parent For a lot of undergrad students, university a time to learn about the world and dream of changing it, to work hard but also enjoy the freedom of independence, and, let’s face it, to be a bit self-involved. The idea of becoming a parent one day is something very abstracted from the current circumstances of most students. Moreover, a common attitude that I’ve noticed among feminist identifying students is that social pressures to get married and have children hinders the progress of the movement for gender equality. The unpaid domestic labour of women is largely attributed by radical feminism to the social expectations surrounding reproduction, along with a concern that compulsory child-rearing can leave women isolated, uneducated, unpaid, exploited, and even abused. There is much to be said about the unequal distribution of unpaid reproductive and domestic labour and the imposed gender roles rooted in motherhood that I will not discuss today. I became a parent at 21, and I also came to a feminist awakening at 21. For myself, like many people, the ability to make a choice about my reproductive health and gather information to execute that choice on my own terms was a very empowering and positive life experience. Managing my current course load, assignments, extra curricular involvements, exams, making time for my social and personal life, combined with raising a precocious and active child, is both extremely rewarding and challenging. But what I find more difficult than balancing my roles as a student and a parent is the prevalent negative attitude of my peers, who are future medical practitioners, healthcare providers, and social justice activists. For example, seeing people express disgust at the sight of natural childbirth in a nursing class and hearing “why wouldn’t she want an epidural?!” is a disturbing phenomena. These are students that will potentially assist people during one of the most vulnerable and significant times of their lives. Since we live in a culture where birth has yet to be normalized, these students fail to realize that by having an uninformed and closed minded attitude, they are participating in social sexism and the pathologization of healthy human body functions and capabilities. Similarly, instead of focusing on issues such as heteronormativity of the family or the medicalization of childbirth, bright women’s studies academics are ostracising and shaming people who have chosen to become parents. There is plenty of room in feminism to support pregnancy, parents, and children. There tends to be a focus on abortion access in women’s reproductive health discussions. Though it is important to consider a woman’s right to choose in academic theory, it is not a large social justice problem in Canada from my relative perspective as an American. Socialized medicine and a lack of prohibitive legislation creates a reality that currently makes abortion accessible and safe for anyone here. A more imminent issue in Canadian reproductive health is the lack of midwives available to meet the demand of those who choose to give birth in a non-institutional setting. Where is the support for people making informed choices and taking an active role in the milestone of their child’s birth? What about the social shaming and policing of those who exercise their right to breastfeed openly in public spaces? Does this tell us that breasts are only for sexual consumption, and no one should ever see breasts if they are doing anything other than selling a product? The cesarean section rate in Canada reached 28% in 2011 despite the World Health Organization’s recommendations of a 10-15% rate for developed nations. Why are students not talking about this? There is racism in the birthing room at hospitals, intersex infants undergoing genital mutilation, transphobic discrimination at day-care centres, and gender based segregation in elementary schools. These are just a few of many social inequalities that intersect gender, race, sexuality, identity, and embodiment with the experience of parenthood -- and they are all feminist issues. It is our responsibility as academics and future distinguished professionals to learn about these problems and take them seriously as we attempt to resolve them. Even as non parents, I hold my fellow McGill students to a higher standard, especially those of us who care about social justice. It is my hope that people can be more open minded about pregnancy and birth and realize that these are important elements of sexuality for many individuals. And, I think it would be interesting to see fewer shocked reactions when I ‘come out’ to people as a parent. We, the elusive student parents, do exist, and we are sometimes uncommonly feminist.
13 October 2014
But really how could you not like women when its all lashes legs lips, longing glances mysterious smoldering stares, and delicate wrists like the smooth handle of a war hammer. Yet for the first time I fantasize about running a finger across a peachfuzz jawline; I feel as though I’ve discovered God. Suddenly the sky is azure and attraction is physical, a flush like ethane and oxygen, only impossibly, I keep the system endothermic. When I kiss her I discover how beautiful I’ve always been because I’ve made people see the sky as azure I, too, have lips, shoulder blades, and war hammer wrists. I kiss her and I am cradled by the earth looking up into ether at what every man before me has seen. This is the discovery of Lascaux and I want to go spelunking. Until I die I’ll be an archeologist investigating my history of man and its implications, finally freed from inside/outside & butterfly are both meditations on a all anachronistic artifacts similar theme. both deal with interiority and exteriority, vulnerability, sex, exploitation and abuse. in the wake of the new epoch. they are both concerned by the masculine propensity to reduce feminine personhood to flesh for consumption, but both pieces embrace corporeality simultaneously through Or maybe I’ve left the cave, their sensuousness. they are also very personal & visceral, which is significant to my feminism insofar as no longer looking for love in the personal is necessarily political. they depict an internal struggle with expectations and prescriptions for femininity, particularly in terms of sexuality, desire, the obstruction of light and self-worth. and when I regard androphilia again I’ll see it through the eyes of a philosopher queen. The constellations in her eyes prophesize my future, on her breath the taste of an unraveling universe coaxes me into the light. This is not a romance between anyone but me, myself, and the new space I inhabit, where I have all the same furniture but the windows aren’t jammed.
“Diros, Open Up” speaks to my feminism because it posits that a woman’s beauty can be reflected in the unseen spaces, layers beneath the surface of the earth.
Black Americana Series Black BlackAmericana AmericanaSeries Series
Sittinâ€™ Soft in Dixieland
“If your feminism isn’t intersectional, then who is it for?” My pieces are focused on the intersectional experiences of Black women, and how our oppressions are carried with us through daily life, seen and unseen. Those oppressions could be memories of our collective pasts as Black women, or our contemporary struggles. I like to think that the pieces are layered, and that if you stare at them enough you can start to understand hidden meanings. Maybe not, but if I say that then you’ll stare at them and think I’m deep.
“If$you’re$feminism$isn’t$intersectional,$then$who$is$it$for?”$$ My$pieces$are$focused$on$the$intersectional$experiences$of$Black$women,$and$how$our$ oppressions$are$carried$with$us$through$daily$life,$seen$and$unseen.$Those$oppressions$ could$be$memories$of$our$collective$pasts$as$Black$women,$or$our$contemporary$struggles.$ I$like$to$think$that$the$pieces$are$layered,$and$that$if$you$stare$at$them$enough$you$can$start$ to$understand$hidden$meanings.$Maybe$not,$but$if$I$say$that$then$you’ll$stare$at$them$and$ think$I’m$deep.$I’m$in$third$year$Women’s$Studies,$with$a$minor$in$Canadian$Ethnic$&$Race$ Studies.$$
Oh - I Is Not!...
The Body is Life Itself. The body is not born without a history The body does not move without memories It is life itself The body, my body, I did not cherish its history Did not hold, treasure, or voice its memories Until it seemed that my body did not belong here I thought my body did not belong here But my body and memories do My body is multiply located It is life itself
12/11/2014 We meet up in a diner. i sit fiddling with my fingers waiting for you. You order a rum and coke. (at a diner?) You don’t want food, and i don’t want food even though i am hungry (the food isn’t good here) but I like this place, you say. i like this place too i just don’t like the food and no i don’t want a milkshake. (i don’t want to owe you money) i do a lot of smiling towards my hands. i ask you some questions, you get to talking. You talk so much and i stop listening, you’ve told me this story before you repeat yourself, you repeat yourself you’ve always repeated yourself and i never used to mind. you ask me about my life, half hoping i don’t answer, we talk about some movies. i critique one of your favourites for being sexist and i see your eyes glaze over. have you ever wanted to listen? today in starbucks i saw the girl you’re fucking you don’t really like her anymore, you say. ever since she fucked your best friend on your couch while you slept in the other room, you don’t like her. you sit here staring at me, unknowing i’ve done a very similar thing and i feel myself hating me. (for not caring enough about you not to fuck your best friend) i can never i can never i’m always wrong when i’m with you i’m always apologizing and i’m starting to think that despite loving me as much as you do, you bring out the worst in me. You infuriate me. you never think i’m funny. and i want to leave this stupid diner and i hate myself for always hurting you because you don’t deserve it but i do it anyway how many times have i had to say sorry? there were so many problems, i only notice now there it is. for a year while I loved you I couldn’t, but I’ve finally done it. A poem about you.
The Movie The Wizard of Oz but Only the Parts Before the Tornado and Also That Scene is How I Feel
Clear Blue If you were here, I’d make you Kraft Dinner with diced, canned tomatos, like I used to eat. You’d sit on a throne adorned with sail boats and bulldozers and ask me silly things. Speaking a tongue I used to understand, not too long ago actually. I’d ache to see them pity you.
Poor boy, se"it"posits"that"a"woman’s"beauty" they’d think ath"the"surface"of"the"earth."" never had a chance.
All they’d see would be the perpetual booger film on your upper lip. And the worn laces of your tennis shoes. m"in"its"depiction"of"two"colliding" Then move on.
Like compassionate people always do.
But I’d give you piggy back rides and cinnamon milk and smiles of ivory so blinding you wouldn’t notice.
"Canada."She"is"majoring"in"English" s"at"McGill"University."Selected" hy"Festival"with"CAPIC’s"“Xpose”"" Regardless, I’m glad you couldn’t make it. being"a"cat"lover."" !
Chicana Muralists Reclaiming Agency through their Public Works Through mural making, Chicana women living on the Western coast of the United States reclaim agency lost to Chicano people as a whole, empower themselves by reasserting feminist ideology into the male-dominated mural community, and reintroduce indigenous history by inserting historical female figures into their murals. Murals are essentially large, public paintings, often outside on the facades of buildings, in the public space, without the constraints of an installed frame, such as paintings in museums. All forms of public art can raise awareness about current socio-economic issues, which gives a platform to marginalized peoples, such as the women of the Chicana community who may not be able to artistically express themselves in formal institutions like museums. It also allows for a greater, more diverse audience than art shown in private collections only, as people pass by it during their everyday life, and not only if they decide to visit a museum. Public art is also extremely important for feminists because the public space was traditionally the domain reserved for men, not women. Murals are also often not government-commissioned and therefore less controlled by government constraints. They are often the art medium of choice for marginalized peoples who want to depict social injustices and tell their histories through art, but do not necessarily have the platform to do so, if they are not accepted in museums, for example. For murals made at more of a grassroots level, such as those in the Chicano Park, there will be less
funding, as opposed to those on organization buildings, such as the San Francisco Women’s building, which can impact the nature and scale of each one. The murals made by Chicana artists here will be from approximately the 1970s on, when Chicana muralism gained more attention from surrounding communities and news media outlets. At this time, in the rest of North America, there was the second wave feminist movement emerging and gaining more popularity. However, although many Chicana women defined themselves as feminists, they did not feel they were included in this movement because second wave feminism, though groundbreaking for many women, was not racially intersectional, and did not provide the space to protest for women who were not middle and upper class white women.1 This led to them expressing themselves and in that process empowering themselves, through what is called “third space feminism”. This is where Chicana women will figure - in between patriarchal, male-dominated ideas concerning muralism, and second wave feminism, not fully belonging in either one.2 Through the making of murals, Chicana women have the power to reinsert themselves into the previously male-dominated arena of public mural making. When murals became an important art form in the early 20th century in Latin America, specifically Mexico, it was dominated by male artists such as Diego Rivera, David Alfaro Siquieros, and José Clemente Orozco, known as the ‘big three’. Their murals depicted social injustices, but with an emphasis on Mexican nationalism. However, according to scholar Elena Poniatowska, women were continuously excluded from the community as muralists, as exemplified by artist Maria Izquierda’s experience. Izquier-
da was the first Mexican woman to have a solo exhibit in the United States in the 1930s, but in 1945, her instructor, Rivera, did not allow her proposal for a new project to go through for the Mexico City government because he wanted the opportunity for himself, though she was originally accepted and he had said Figure 1 â€“ Uprising of the Mujeres, Judy Baca, 1979. she was his best student.3 This is just one of the ways Mujeres Uprising, by Judy Baca (1979, in which women were excluded from fig.1), sponsored by the California Arts the public art space. Council, there are women, presum Another way would be by ably Chicana women, who seem to be claiming that women belonged in the crawling towards the viewers, looking private, domestic space, and men be- angry, and pointing to where the men longed in the public space. Therefore, are working. The physical attributes what viewers mostly saw on large, of the women pictured in this mural sweeping murals painted by men were are far removed from images of wommale heroes, and historical tales from en prettily supporting men. Here, the the typical male historical cannon. All woman at the front of the mural takes heroic and historical events depicted up a large amount of space, symbolonly involved men, and not to their izing the movement towards visually families or communities.4 In fact, al- adding more women into murals, and though women were a part of the does not look exotic or as if she is community consisting of male mural- there as secondary to the men. There ists, they were only there as the spous- is a juxtaposition between agriculture es. Judy Baca, a Chicana muralist liv- versus modern machinery. Towards ing on the West Coast of the United the back of the mural, there are men States, says that she could not relate working the land, while the front deto the women only there as spouses, picts a man working a conveyer belt even if they were both a part of the with coins on it, leading the coins into muralist community, because the wives the direction of the land. This imagery and girlfriends were not to create their shows not only how women empowown art.5 Therefore, Chicana women ered themselves by visually inserting were a part of the physical space of themselves into public murals, but also the murals being made and they had shows how they empowered thema supportive space within the commu- selves by voicing their opinions on nity, but were not iconographically and social injustices, such as environmenvisually represented in the process. tal issues, globalization issues, immi It was because of this paradox gration, and discriminatory issues that that Chicana artists started to produce have impacted their own communities. their own feminist iconography that Read the rest online at redefined how gender was representfwordmtl.com/Segal ed in public murals.6 For example, in
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See more at fwordmtl.com/MacKinnon
tell what do you do with the fragments of an old love where do they fit is there a drawer, a jar a certain hole in the floor? someplace dusty and bare to keep them all? if you put them outside in a tied bag won’t they come back in if you hide them in a box under the bed won’t your mom find them won’t she? they’re so stubborn so awkward so bulky so many and what about the sounds of an old love that sneak on you under the duvet at a party or in a daze on the train why didn’t the records break with you why didn’t the voices change what do you do with the sounds where do those fragments go when do they go tell! off they’ll all go
Letter to Giuseppa Mulè A cemetery on the slope of the hill, close to Termini Imerese, under a cypress, marble family tomb: bouquet purple gladioli. Your framed sepia photograph. My mother-in-law Giuseppa. Date palm and stone pines, arched Roman aqueduct. Narrow, mediaeval cobbled streets: on the square, La tabaccheria, brother-in-law’s invitation: “Venite a pranzo. Vi aspettiamo!” Come for lunch. We are expecting you. A round oak table and nine place settings: pasta. Roast beef arrosto. Artichokes. Pecorino cheese. White wine. Dessert: granita di limone. Down the hall, a room left empty: woman in blue wool dress. Shuffling gait. Parkinson’s hand tremor. Voice, a soft, hoarse rasp. I remember your wedding gift, a silver candelabra. Gold necklace. Giuseppa, your son, he beats me. — Ilona Martonfi
Read more of Ilon’a work at fwordmtl.com/Martonfi
F"WORD"–"Jackie"Cooper" Artist"Bio"and"Photography"" 1."“"Diros,"Open"Up”"speaks"to"my"feminism"because"it"pos can"be"reflected"in"the"unseen"spaces,"layers"beneath"the"s " 2."“Over"Head,"Over"Hands”"speaks"to"my"feminism"in"its"d forces"that"both"represent"solidarity,"regardless"of"differe " 3."“Pressed"and"Released”"depicts"a"woman"who’s"been"w what"make"up"her"image."" " " Author"Biography:"Jackie"Cooper"is"from"Toronto,"Canada Cultural"Studies"and"minoring"in"Communications"at"McG work"presented"in"Scotiabank"Contact"Photography"Festiv Photo"Exhibition"(2013)."Notoriously"known"for"being"a"c "
My research-based art examines and attempts to undermine the stereotype of the unpredictable, too-sensitive, “hysterical woman.” I translate this into my works by provoking discomfort: the visceral (nooses, nails, phallic shapes, human hair) are coupled with the lovely (lace, the color pink, soft textures) to convey a sense of how these stereotypes affect a woman’s psyche and behavior. Together, these materials evoke a sense of disgust, curiosity and horror in an effort to encourage the viewer to consider the way they perceive women. See more of Juliette’s work at fwordmtl.com/Mueller
Sara Trojanowski is a high school junior in the Detroit area. In addition to being a feminist, she is also an avid reader and writer.
“…I mean, I’m not saying that women couldn’t be pastors, but, you know, during that time of the month, I’m not sure if they could handle it…” I couldn’t stop my mouth from hanging open. Couldn’t handle it? Had John ever had a period? Does he know what it is like to have someone tell you that you couldn’t handle something based on the way that you were biologically created? Evidently not. It was Reformation Day at my Lutheran high school and, in celebration, we were allowed to make and present our own theses that we wanted the Lutheran Church to adopt, in honor of the 95 Theses that Martin Luther presented to the Catholic Church in 1517. I wrote about how I wanted women to be allowed to be pastors because there isn’t a good reason why we should follow the rules from when the Bible was written. Also, I know quite a few deeply religious women who would make fine pastors, but the most that they could ever be in the Lutheran church is a deaconess. When I shared my idea, people laughed! They LAUGHED at the idea that a woman could handle a congregation while her vagina bled. Apparently we’re too hormonal and cannot control ourselves. I wanted to tell him that I could run the whole damn world on my period for the amount of disturbance it causes me, but we were still in class, so I controlled myself (Good thing I wasn’t on my period! I might not have been able to!) Instead I replied, “You are the reason why we still have a patriarchy.” More laughter followed. My religion teacher, Pastor Smith, calmed the class down, and instead of reprimanding the boy, he started talking about how his wife had often commented that she doesn’t think she could lead a congregation effectively while on her period. After getting over my shock, I could only blink for a few minutes while the next person went up to present. Wasn’t blatant sexism supposed to have died in the 50s? Evidently not. Although I considered myself to be a feminist for roughly a year before the incident, this confirmed what I suspected. It profoundly disturbs me that a “mature” adult, some boys, and even other girls agreed that women can’t handle their own bodies! Most of them had never had a period and only got their perceptions second hand. How did this happen? It immediately made my mind jump to the 2012 presidential election and the attacks made on Hillary Clinton and Sarah Palin; the accusations of not being able to handle the presidency because they are women. Who would believe that a woman could handle the Oval Office if they believed that she couldn’t handle her own body? This incident infuriated me, but it also taught me a value of feminism: no one can tell me what to believe about myself, especially about my body. The fact that I am a woman does not mean that I am limited in any way. However, not everyone shares this belief; that concerns me. Subtly and blatantly sexist comments, even ones meant as jokes, bother me much more since that Reformation Day because they imply that I am less than the men that make them. If I could go back to that day, I would have confronted Pastor Smith for what he said; now I try my best to confront other people for the sexist comments that they make. After I came home from school that night, I went online and found a pin that said “THIS IS WHAT A FEMINIST LOOKS LIKE,” and I proudly wore it to school when it arrived. Although Pastor Smith didn’t seem to notice it, it didn’t matter to me because it felt so good just to assert myself as a feminist - someone who believes in equality and opportunity regardless of anatomy.
F"WORD"–"Jackie"Cooper" Artist"Bio"and"Photography"" 1."“"Diros,"Open"Up”"speaks"to"my"femin can"be"reflected"in"the"unseen"spaces,"la " 2."“Over"Head,"Over"Hands”"speaks"to"m forces"that"both"represent"solidarity,"re " 3."“Pressed"and"Released”"depicts"a"wo what"make"up"her"image."" " " Author"Biography:"Jackie"Cooper"is"from Cultural"Studies"and"minoring"in"Comm work"presented"in"Scotiabank"Contact"P Photo"Exhibition"(2013)."Notoriously"k
“Over Head, Over Hands” speaks to my feminism in its depiction of two colliding forces that both represent solidarity, regardless of " differences in scale. To Man This world doesn’t roll around about your feet, likely someone’s there feeding your heart this serenity, in that you lack and you need, and She’s been with you for longer than you think. Raised internally, forever cared for. The embryo was meant to andbe a ofShe. “To Man” is an exploration revocation the biological factors that separate us into “men”
and “women”. Within the social construct, an unfair advantage is given to those born with a cis-penis and not a vagina, or any other form of sexual organ; to quote De Beauvoir, “One is not born, but rather becomes, a woman”. The male figure and characteristics are predominantly standard—any other gender/sexual identity is not (yet) considered an end in itself, but rather, a deviation from the masculine norm. The speaker, presumably male (using “We” when referring to men), addresses this privilege by reminding the universal “Man” that the struggle of living is multiplied in those who weren’t born with a cis-penis, and that, essentially, genitalia should not determine privilege. Note: The title is ironic—a play on the common discourse that “Man” refers to the entire human species.
And here you go again, and I’ve been doing the same shit too, so let’s make it an absolute We, it’s more simple. Man, We’re fighting a war against ourselves when they live life fighting that and us as well, remember this the nextEmmanuel time Herof prose off, and even if Adams,you crusher of tell patriarchies, writer and poetry from Montreal, Canada. She’s strong it took a hell of a lot more to reach that far.
“To Man” is an exploration and revocation of the biological factors that separate us into “men” and “women.” Within the social construct, an unfair advantage is given to those born with a cis-penis and not a vagina, or any other form of sexual organ; to quote De Beauvoir, “One is not born, but rather becomes, a woman.” The male figure and characteristics are predominantly standard—any other gender/sexual identity is not (yet) considered an end in itself, but rather, a deviation from the masculine norm. The speaker, presumably male (using “We” when referring to men), addresses this privilege by reminding the universal “Man” that the struggle of living is multiplied in those who weren’t born with a cis-penis, and that, essentially, genitalia should not determine privilege. Note: The title is ironic—a play on the common discourse that “Man” refers to the entire human species.
butterfly i am going to gut myself from throat to crotch, fillet steak butterfly that shit like an and you can fuck me whilst hungry and empty but expensive.
inside/outside & but similar theme. both exteriority, vulnera they are both concer opera reduce feminine pers both pieces embrace I hang their open sensuousness. visceral, which is s the personal is nece internal struggle wi femininity, particul and self-worth.
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“Pressed and Released” depicts a woman who’s been worn out, yet her marks are what make up her image.
F WORD Collective Mathilde Augustin Jamie Kim Vita Azaro Sara Kloepfer Michelle Blassou Hannah Korbee Olivia Bradberry Tiffany Le inside/outside & butterfly are both meditations on a theme. both deal with Dylan Brekka inside/outside & butterflysimilar are both meditations Anna on interiority a Ma and exteriority, vulnerability, sex, exploitation and abuse. similar theme. both deal with interiority and they are both concernedAva by the masculine propensity to Nicole Coon Mohsenin exteriority, vulnerability, sex,feminine exploitation and reduce personhood to abuse. flesh for consumption, but both pieces embrace corporeality they are both Copeman concerned by the masculine propensity Caroline Gabrielletosimultaneously Morrison through sensuousness. they are also but very personal & reduce feminine personhoodtheir to flesh for consumption, visceral, which is significant to Mueller my feminism insofar as Dinger Juliette bothGabrielle pieces embrace corporeality simultaneously through the personal is necessarily political. they depict an their sensuousness. they are alsostruggle very personal & withÖvgü expectations and prescriptions for Marina Djurdjevic internal Nurözler visceral, which is significant to myparticularly feminism insofar as sexuality, desire, femininity, in terms of and political. self-worth. they depict the personal is necessarily Taryn Fleischmann LauraanOrozco internal struggle with expectations and prescriptions for Martha Galea in terms of sexuality, Stephanie Simpson femininity, particularly desire, and self-worth. Eloise Goldsmith Elisabeth Sulmont Olivia Hawkes Charlotte Wheeler Isobel Hayne Noah Witte-Winnett
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