gender and sexuality in the ancient world

Jan 06


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Stephen Colbert Made Conservatives More Conservative

The Colbert Report: St. Valentine’s Day

Mary Beard: “The role of academics is to make everything less simple” She is a feminist to her bones, and gives no quarter to the kind of historical relativism that ringfences the brutality of the past as something natural and unremarkable, like eating songbirds. “It’s very hard to get positive female role models in the history of the Roman empire. You think you’ve got one, and then, oh no. She’s been raped. And killed herself. If you’re going to remove the sexual violence, you cannot tell the story of Rome.” She is resolute on her purpose in public life, and has no qualms about the distinction of scholarship: “What is the role of an academic, no matter what they’re teaching, within political debate? It has to be that they make issues more complicated. The role of the academic is to make everything less simple.”

Ovid’s Afterlife: Mythical Rapes and Rape Myths

Making of a Monster (Content Note: this article includes discussion of child pornography, quotes from illegal online activity, and links to articles that describe graphic and disturbing descriptions of child pornography, incest, rape, and suicidal ideation.): “As I read the descriptions of child pornography and Mr. Cruel Daddy’s online activity I felt the immediate and visceral disgust that I imagine most members of our culture feel when a fundamental taboo is transgressed. A selfish thought soon joined my feelings of revulsion, however, bringing with it a feeling of guilt that I can’t entirely shake: ‘But his scholarship is so good!'”

The Importance of Being Helen: “It seems to me that Helen, like today’s most beautiful people, suffers from misunderstanding and misapprehension. For some, she is a conniving and unrepentant femme fatale… an untrustworthy witch… a maddening bitch. For others, she is a desperate housewife who lacks voice, agency, and self-determination; or a lonely woman who seeks meaning, trust, and connection in her life but finds little with Menelaus, Hermione, Paris, and others.”

Women’s War Daily: Military Brohesion.

Gender Performance: The TransAdvocate Interviews with Judith Butler.

Judith Butler: your behavior creates your gender. 

Judith Butler 101: one is not born a queer theorist, one becomes one. 

A Cambridge museum is talking about sex–with an ancient Roman penis pot

Vote Trump, Get Dumped: A “Lysistrata inspired” campaign encouraging women to go on strike. “Until Trump is defeated, we don’t date, sleep with, or canoodle with Trump supporters.”

Did women in Greece and Rome speak (by Mary Beard) linked to a discussion in Time: The long, sexist history of shrill women

****If you don’t know who Mary Beard is, read this article from The New Yorker: The Troll Slayer. A Cambridge classicist takes on her sexist detractors. 

Martius Madness: On Manliness, Roman Gambling Laws, and NCAA Brackets

International Women’s Day: Women Share Stories of Inequality

Alcibiades’ Trump Card: The Political Masquerades of Masculinity

Review: Searching for Sappho. The Lost Songs and World of the First Woman Poet, but Philip Freeman

Aristophanes in Illinois: Spike Lee’s CHI-RAQ

Ancient Medicine and Fetal Personhood 

Pandora’s Ballot Box: The Myth of the Irresponsible Female Voter

How to Teach an Ancient Rape Joke

Ovid and the Art of Love Filming in Detroit

How Doctors Take Women’s Pain Less Seriously

The Gender Gap in Pain