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Today is International Women’s Day 2013:

International Women’s Day has been observed since in the early 1900’s, a time of great expansion and turbulence in the industrialized world that saw booming population growth and the rise of radical ideologies.

On a day like today, it’s good to take a look back for perspective on how far we’ve come in the pursuit of equality. And yet, too often we are still battling to be able to do the things we want to do in life — and fighting even for things as elemental as equal pay, equal rights, and safety from violence.

For anyone who has a daughter or knows a daughter anywhere, these struggles are immediate and shocking. But the biggest risk may be to the youngest dreams. Right now my 8-year-old daughter wants to be an entomologist. While she knows nothing of potential limitations and I’d like to keep it that way, she spends a lot of time with online games and is, of course, aware of the world around her.

Yesterday, Anita Sarkeesian released the first in her highly anticipated series on the representations of women in video games. If you are not familiar with the background of this series, the most important thing to remember is that she was not silenced by “the cybermob.”

In honor of dreams of daughters, sons, women, and men everywhere, I encourage you to take the time to watch, and perhaps discuss with your own kids. And keep the dreams alive.

Anita Sarkeesian: Damsel in Distress: Part 1 – Tropes vs Women in Video Games

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  1. Marilyn Pratt

    Thank you Moya for marking this day with the Sarkeesian content.  While I haven’t listened to it in its entirety, I have spent a good deal of time thinking of how we proliferate sexism and other biased perspectives through “benign media” .  My adult daughter wrote an interesting thesis/critique of Disney characters from the perspective of inclusion, bias.

    Thanks to James Governor I’ve just read an excellent article by @shoreditchworks ..

    Let me know what you think: http://shoreditchworks.com/women-tech-city-advice-solutions-sexism

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    1. Moya Watson Post author

      Marilyn Pratt thanks so much for pointing me to that — what an excellent collection.  Really proves the point that there’s no one way to be “a feminist” or no one way to be in general.  I guess that’s the whole point of not being ‘silenced by the cybermob.’  To get the chance to be whatever it is you’re going to be.

      And this point is so true: “It’s contentious to challenge the way things are” — it seems Sarkeesian dropped right into the storm with that.  Even I’ve seen the effects – talking about this on Twitter a person explained to me that much of what she calls out really isn’t misogynist at all. 

      I’m not sure how just exploring representations of women winds up being necessarily seen as exploring misogyny.  There’s a lot more to be.

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