Why is the romance genre inherently feminist?

2 Feb

(Originally posted to the Community section of MyMedia forum)

Because is written mostly* by women for (mostly*) other women, centering mostly* women’s needs, and pleasure, and joy.

And that, sadly (because women are just over half the human population of the planet, and still the immense majority of stories center on the male experience), it’s inherently feminist.

“Romance reminds us that women want, and it celebrates this fact. How sad that that’s subversive, but it is. Also subversive: the idea of women reading books that are escapist delights instead of “bettering” themselves via the male-adjudicated canon or, honestly, doing housework or tending to their kids. Romance novels are political because of, not despite, the fact that they are usually really fucking fun.”

(source: Who Gets a Happily Ever After)

* mostly and not all, because, you know who has embraced genre romance and the opportunity for positive representation it offers? Minorities, particularly those in the LGBTQIA+ spectrum. Because the idea of joy and love that triumph over the miseries of life is necessary for those to whom the world is already unwelcoming, simply by virtue of being

~ * ~

Please note that the piece linked, at the time I post this, states that Jules Cassidy, from Suzanne Brockmann’s Troubleshooters series, is a SEAL. He’s not; he was written, from his first appearance on, as an out and proud FBI agent. I’ve contacted the author of the piece, and I hope there will be an edit on this at some point. But if not, now you know.

Advertisements

Biology, social conditioning, sex and pain

29 Jan

(Originally posted to the Community forum at MyMedia)

So.

#MeToo.

Women talking for a few weeks (perhaps just over a month?*) about their experiences with different levels of sexual violence/assault/harassment.

Lo and behold, to most women’s sorrow, yet utter lack of surprise, it turns out the most of the women we know have suffered some sort of sexual violence, and sometimes several different kinds, sometimes more than once over the course of their lives, sometimes at the hands of several different men.

And the natural response, from #notallmen, is to express their dismay that all this outpouring of female suffering…will make their dating lives harder.

That men will become afraid of dating, because “accusations of sexual abuse/domestic partner violence ruin lives!” (I can off the top of my head name at least an even dozen of male celebrities whose professional lives have suffered NO HARM, regardless of how many people bring receipts–hello, Woody Allen, Johnny Depp, Chris Brown, Casey Affleck, Donald Trump, Floyd Maywather, Kobe Bryant, Azis Ansari, Mike Tyson, James Franco, Al Franken, Joel Kramer, Kevin Spacey).

That mostly women accuse men to ‘gain something’ or ‘for revenge’ (the ultimate whine on that vein: Larry Nassar’s letter to the sentencing judge quoting ‘hell hath no fury’).

And, the icing on the WTAF cake: that women should consider/understand/learn about how men cannot control themselves because ‘biology.’ That this is ‘just how men are.’ The pseudo grown up version of ‘boys will be boys,’ if you will.

So, let’s talk biology, social conditioning, and pain.
Continue reading

Silver Master, by Jayne Castle

19 Jan

While I was still indulging in the great Harmony series listening glom, back in August (ye, gods, it’s been almost five full months!), I listened to the next few titles in the series, though I agree with Wendy the SuperLibrarian: there is danger in glomming. Smaller irritants can become major annoyances, and things one does not notice while breezing through one novel, can stop one dead after seeing them repeated in four or five.

Warning: evil is explicitly equated with mental illness–for both villains.

Oh, and there is sex on the page.

Silver Master, by Jayne Castle

This is the four novel in the Harmony series. It’s also the first one in the series that clearly links this world back to the Arcane Society universe, of which I am most definitely Not. A. Fan. Oh well.

We are back in Cadence, with two new characters and new dust bunnies. Here’s the blurb (from the Fantastic Fiction website):
Continue reading

The Mountain Between Us (sort of a movie review)

12 Jan

I first heard about this movie on twitter, a few months ago, when the question of whether it was a romance or not was asked (@mostlybree doing the Lord’s work). Looking up a bit more information, I discovered that it is a film adaptation of the novel of the same name, written by…some dude I had never heard of.¹

Which explained, to me, why I had basically heard nothing about the movie until just a couple of weeks before it came out, when it seemed as if the marketing team suddenly realized that a) Idris Elba fucking sells, b) romance readers will go see romances, and c) a romance starring Idris Elba really fucking sells. Suddenly, all sorts of trailers for the movie, highlighting the romance angle, popped up on twitter and youtube.

Here’s one:

 

The short teaser: there’s weather coming, and a number of airports on both sides of the Rockies are closing ahead of the storm. Both Alex and Ben have pressing reasons to get out of Dodge…erm, Boise. Unable to find a seat in the last commercial flights out, and through a connection of Alex’s, they charter a small plane to get them to Denver, where they may be able to catch connecting flights to the East Coast. Unfortunately, their pilot, Walter (played charmingly by Beau Bridges), suffers a cardiac episode as they approach some of the mountain ridges in their route, and the plane crashes. Stranded during a particularly bad storm, in winter, above the snow line, Alex and Ben have to find a way to survive.

Please note: I’m going to go into some detail on the rest of the plot after the cut, so if you are planning on seeing this movie unspoiled, you may want to avert your eyes, perhaps come back *after* you’ve seen it.

Continue reading

“What about the meeeeeeeennnnnzzzzzz???????”

8 Jan

Originally posted to the Community section at MyMedia

“Why do you harp so much on all the injustices done to women? What about the MEEEEEENNNNN??????”

Meet Jessica Eaton, who runs a charity exclusively focused on men’s mental health (in the UK), getting zero criticism from either men or women for this, yet gets everything from “you fat c*nt feminist” to rape and death threats for her advocacy against blaming women and girl victims of violence.

Continue reading

Five years on, still somewhat here.

3 Jan

I have a few moments at work, so I’m dashing off a bit of an update, after the deafening silence on the blog.

Continue reading

Please stop shrugging and waiting for someone else to fix the world.

21 Nov

(Originally posted to a private subforum at MyMedia, so I can’t link)

How I wish I could make everyone who casually reads this pay attention this week, and next week, and every week after, to three very basic things:

Continue reading