Category Archives: things i read this week

Things I read this week that I found interesting

This week, the link round-up is actually weekly. Once you’ve gathered yourselves from the utter shock of me having done something to schedule, settle in and read.

Decolonizing Gender: A Curriculum (Malcolm Shanks and khairi jackson)- This must-read zine provides tools for workshops on the theme, as well as being a very useful introduction.

We’re Here, We’re Queer, We’re Racists (Shon Faye)- An examination of gay men and fascism.

On Adele, Beyoncé & Solidarity (Mia McKenzie)- Solidarity means sacrifice: what Adele should have done.

Theo and the distinctly sexual flavour of French racism (Giuliane Kinouani)- How the rape of a young black man by police is par for the course in France.

Are All Trump-Haters on the Same Side? (James Butler)- How the enemy of one’s enemy is not necessarily your friend.

Transition, Tattoos and Body Ownership (LauraKBuzz)- A personal piece on taking control of your own body.

Reclaiming ‘race’ in postcolonialism: A personal reflection on the politics of the racial experience (Amal Abu-Bakare)- On race and academia.

How the Mast Brothers fooled the world into paying $10 a bar for crappy hipster chocolate (Deena Shanker)- A very interesting look at a massive scam.

Stop applauding a rapist for admitting he raped someone (Liv Wynter)- That viral TED talk made my skin crawl, and this article neatly nails why.

Transphobia Redefined (Josephine Livingstone)- A very elegant demolition of some popular concern-trolling.

I Was Robbed of My Transgender Childhood (Katelyn Burns)- Mourning, as a trans adult, the loss of a childhood.

On veganism and disability (s. e. smith)- A few pointers for vegans to take heed of.

What It Was Like To Love Oliver Sacks (Bill Hayes)- Deeply moving personal reflection on loving the amazing neuroscientist, glimpsed through diary extracts.

The Discomfort of Safety (Marie Thompson)- Dismantling the bad faith arguments against safer spaces.

And finally, rainbow toebeans.


Things I read

It’s that link-round up post again! This installment brings… mostly doom and gloom because everything is fucked.

#Milosexual and the Aesthetics of Fascism (Daniel Penny)- Analysing Poundland Joffrey’s position within fascism, Nazism and homosexuality, this article provides useful insights.

If British abortion providers turn away Irish women, it will be catastrophic (Megan Nolan)- A moving personal perspective from an Irish woman who received an abortion in the UK.

We Should Really Stop Ignoring All the Terrorists on 4chan (Violet Hargrave)- Tracing a connection between so-called “lone wolf” white terrorists.

Trial Balloon for a Coup? (Yonatan Zunger)- Analysis of the US travel ban, and how its function may be to test who takes which side in a coup.

Linda Stupart: ‘I’m interested in thinking about a world without men’– An interview with the writer and artist Linda Stupart, touching on witchcraft, queer futures, and lots of crystals.

White Women: This Is Why Your Critiques Of Beyoncé Are Racist (Lara Witt)- Picking apart underlying racism in the inevitable “critiques” of Bey’s pregnancy announcement.

A Law Student’s Guide To Free Speech (and what it isn’t) (Feminist Aspie)- A go-to guide as to the meaning of free speech. Bookmark and clobber freeze peach nazi enablers round the head with it.

The Death of Kink? (Nana Baah)- Examining the probable impact of age verification and other factors in the Digital Economy Bill.

Fish recorded singing dawn chorus on reefs just like birds– I did not know fish could sing, despite numerous cartoons showing them doing it. The cartoons were wrong, but the song is kind of nice.

Confronting the Raids (Anti-Raids Network)- This series on accounts of confronting immigration raids is an inspiring read, presenting tactics you can use to protect your neighbours.

This Group of Black Women Is Taking Up Arms to Fight Racism and Misogyny (Wilbert L. Cooper)- A feature on self-defence strategies and organising.

W. E. B. Du Bois’ Hand-Drawn Infographics of African-American Life– As well as being an author, civil rights thinker, sociologist and influential Pan-Africanist, Du Bois basically invented the infographic in 1900.

 

Centring Survivors: The Trouble with Stand Up To Racism (Members of LCAPSV and UK BLM)- An excellent and thorough perspective on why we should not be organising with SWP fronts.

Pragmatic nihilism: how a Theory of Nothing can help health psychology progress (Gjalt-Jorn Peters and Rik Cruzen)- I don’t usually include journal articles in this round-up, but this one’s open access and has useful insights on applying theories which extend beyond health psychology into the social sciences discipline, probably even natural sciences.

Well. That was heavy. So enjoy this lovely video of some people playing Call Me Maybe on bottles.


Things I read recently that I found interesting

Welcome to an incredibly belated link roundup. This is a massive bumper post, because a lot happened this month.

Facts to counteract the normalization of neo-nazis (Flavia Dzodan)- We are truly up against neo-nazis. Here’s the receipts.

Full Transcript Of Angela Davis’s Women’s March Speech (Angela Davis)- The veteran activist and thinker shows us the way forward.

How Ultrasound Became Political (Moira Weigel)- Longread on the politics and history of ultrasound, and their proximity to pro-life politics.

Please Stop Telling Women to Get An IUD (Anna Krist)- Before Trump took office, popular advice was to get an IUD. This advice doesn’t necessarily fly for women of colour.

How ‘Pussy Hats’ Made Me Feel Excluded — And Then Welcomed — At The Women’s March (Katelyn Burns)- A sweet personal story of solidarity with trans women.

When white fears become Big Data: racist emotions and the populists who love them (Flavia Dzodan)- Flavia’s work on data is vital, but this is a great place to start with it.

Dylann Roof Is An American Problem (Bim Adewunmi)- Exploring the death penalty and the shooter.

Book burnings (Han Koehle)- Contextualising a photograph which often does the rounds.

What Abortion in America Looks Like Right Now (Alexa Tsoulis-Ray)- Personal testimonials about the truth.

The Exploitation Of Martin Luther King Jr.’s Legacy By White Supremacy (The Establishment)- A look at who the man was, and the function of rebranding that.

“I couldn’t sleep at night. Had I sent them home to their deaths?” – An ex-asylum officer tells all (BBC Three)- Insights into what this violent role truly entails.

Saying that man and woman are the only genders is actually LESS nuanced than saying that earth, water, air, and fire are the only elements. (10 o’clock Dot)- A quick scientific reminder.

Why I’m No Longer A Punk Rock “Cool Girl” (Kristy Diaz)- Examining the internalised misogyny of being the Cool Girl with specific reference to punk subculture.

Sherlock Holmes is a Jerk. But an Empathetic Jerk who is a Good Person. (Fandom Musings)- In a nutshell, why you should be watching Elementary over Sherlock.

And finally, best Joker of the 21st century Mark Hamill reads a Trump tweet in his Joker voice.

 


Things I read this year: My favourite books of 2016

2016 has basically been a left-up toilet seat of a year, but it wasn’t all terrible. Some great books were published that I gobbled up like a little library gremlin. If you haven’t read these books yet, I strongly recommend you resolve to do so in 2017. Get in quickly, before the world ends.

Non-fiction

The Good Immigrant (Edited by Nikesh Shukla)- This collection of essays from black, Asian and minority ethic writers in Britain explores what life is like. Some are funny. Some stir up fury. Some will make you cry. They are all beautifully-written, smart and moving. Shukla has done a jaw-dropping job in assembling these voices and putting together a collection of must-read meditations on living on this rainy fascism island.

Purple Prose: Bisexuality in Britain (Edited by Kate Harrad)- A collection of writing, interviews, essays, poems and commentary on bisexuality and its many intersections. It examines the challenges bisexual people faces, and honestly examines bi activism–the good, and the things that we need to work harder on. It’s a great introduction for would-be allies and those who think they might be bicurious, yet also an important read for hardened bi activists.

Fiction

Virus (Linda Stupart)- I honestly can’t really explain this novella, so I’ll quote from the blurb: “WHAT TO EXPECT IN THIS BOOK:* tentacle sex * Kathy Acker * the violent deaths of male genius artists, philosophers and theorists * zombies * sirens * biohacking * rampant plagiarism * cop killing * spells you can use at home”. You get all of that, and more.

Everything Belongs To The Future (Laurie Penny)- Penny’s debut long-form fiction is a dystopian near-future where time is a commodity which the rich hoard, and a ragtag gang of scruffy anarchos want to change this. It’s a terrifyingly plausible dystopia, and the characters are highly recognisable if you’ve ever moved in activist circles.

An Accident of Stars (Foz Meadows)- This fantasy novel is a revival of everything that was enjoyable about your classic portal fantasy novel, but without the stuff that made them annoying (e.g. being all about a bunch of white men). It’s great fun whether you are usually a fantasy reader, or whether you’re new to the genre.

The Turning Tide (Dr Brook Magnanti)- If you’re a fan of thrillers, this is one for you. It’s got grisly murders, political conspiracies, and also, queer rowers, just to sweeten the deal. I also really enjoyed the fact that this is a thriller which actually understands the social media age, rather than just parps it in as a plot device without getting what’s going on.

Happy reading, friends. If you got book tokens or money for Christmas, I strongly recommend buying all of these books, and there’s only six of them, so you can probably burrow through them quite quickly.

This is probably my last post of 2016, so 🖕🖕🖕🖕 to the year!

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Things I read this week that I found interesting

For once, this is actually weekly. Enjoy these links.

All politics is “identity politics” (Maya Goodfellow)- This should be required reading for everyone.

Statement on the endemic sexual violence perpetrated by police officers. (Sex Worker Open University)- A necessary analysis of police as perpetrators.

“San Junipero” Is A Beautiful, Haunting Queer Love Story With Mixed Messages About Disability (Valerie Anne and Carrie Wade)- A conversation about the good and not-so-good in the best episode of Black Mirror.

Smear Fear (Annabel Sowemimo)- A black woman’s perspective on cervical smear testing.

The Chicken Connoisseur – On The Exploitation of Black Creativity (Everliving Roots)- The problems with going viral, and white exploitation of creativity from black people.

For the love of God, stop donating canned goods to the food bank (Tristin Hopper)- This warning is important. Always ask your foodbanks what they need–cash? Specific items?–rather than just donating whatever is in your cupboard.

Why Do Innocent Women Confess to Crimes They Didn’t Commit? (Amanda Knox)- Highlighting an often-overlooked aspect of examining false confessions.

A simplified political history of Big Data (Flavia Dzodan)- This accessible history of data is vital.

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Things I read recently that I found interesting

It’s that occasional round-up again!

Same as it ever was, only much worse (Dykes To Watch Out For)- In our hour of need, DTWOF returned after eight years hiatus!

Oral History: In 1985 Mr. Snuffleupagus Shocked ‘Sesame Street’ (various)- A really sweet oral history of how the decision was made to reveal Mr Snuffleupagus as real, and how it tied in to teaching children being abused that they would be believed.

Juridified Dispossession: Brexit, Migrant Workers and the Law (Gracie May Bradley)- What will Brexit mean for workers’ rights? Bad things, very very bad things.

Prejudice, “Political Correctness,” and the Normalization of Donald Trump (Julia Serano)- Theorising about the rejection of “identity politics” and what we can do next.

Political correctness: how the right invented a phantom enemy (Moira Weigel)- A history of the myth of “political correctness” and fighting this imaginary enemy led to Trump’s election.

The eroticization of abusers: from jizz in the face feminism to dapper white supremacists (Flavia Dzodan)- Examining and unpicking a particular strand of fuckery within white feminism.

From inside Colnbrook: my drawing is my feeling (Jay)- A young man in detention talks about the impact of detention and shares art he has produced.

Five Tropes Fanfic Readers Love (And One They Hate) (Flourish Klink)- Analysing preferences of fanfic readers and presenting massive survey results.

‘I knew I was home’: a trans woman’s journey through porn (Nadika Nadja)- A side of porn we rarely talk about.

It’s Time To Retire the “No Blacks, No Asians” Topic (Angry Black Hoemo)- Why discussions of racism in the gay community are limited in scope and unlikely to bring about much change.

No One Makes It Out Alive (Casey Plett and Morgan M Page)- Developing a trans reading of Little Shop of Horrors.

And finally, ever wanted to see a capybara farting in the bath to the chagrin of some ducks? Of course you do.

 


Things I read recently that I found interesting

Welcome to the semi-regular link round-up. It’s been a while since I’ve put one of these up, on account of the apocalypse having come (and also, I went on holiday).

Memorialising 2016: Transgender Day of Remembrance– Today is TDoR, and this year 271 murders of trans people have been recorded. The vast majority of them are trans women of colour. Read the list of their names, and remember their brutal killings.

Free e-books for the struggle ahead (AK Press)- Three books about resisting fascism are now available for free from AK Press. It’s vital that we are ready, and we know the history and tactics available to us. Also, free books, everyone!

Introducing Post Trump Europe (Flavia Dzodan)- This rise of fascism is not just limited to the USA. Flavia provides a brief, intelligent overview.

Preparing Your Children For The Apocalypse (Jendella Benson)- Reflections as a parent on the terrifying turn of world events.

Fuck Trump, But Fuck You Too: No Unity With Liberals (Bobby London)- Liberals are holding back any effective resistance, and maintaining the hierarchy of violence.

They interned my family. Don’t let them do it to Muslims. (George Takei)- George Takei–yes, that George Takei–has a warning from recent history.

Not guilty does not mean innocent (Rashida Islam)- A reminder, for those who have some weird vested interest in defending rapists.

Stop Calling Human Trafficking “Modern Day Slavery” (Eminism)- Some points as to why this phrase is inaccurate and appropriative.

Unaccompanied minors (judeinlondon)- A twitter thread on the needs of refugee children and why white people reject them.

Obedience tests (pookleblinky)- A twitter thread on normalising fascism and how we must disrupt at every step.

And finally, meet the Horniman Walrus, London’s most terrifying taxidermy, and read this cute little interview. As a bonus, have some ugly medieval cats. Yes, two jolly links today, because everything is terrible.