Sarah and I spent some time brainstorming a list of articles and media to share with you relating to the theme of gender relations. It’s a pretty varied list because we have been pondering this topic (and talking about it) for quite some time.
Some of what is here might be best for you to do some background reading. Some of it you might link together to a QR code marked “For More On This Subject” that you can paste in the back of certain titles. Maybe you would share it with book clubs reading the book or – if you are tackling any of these titles with whole classes, maybe you’d pick an article or two to go with it.
These are really just here for you to check out — and we’re inviting the Hive Mind to add to the list. Feel free to look over what’s below and share what we missed. We’re annotating what we’re sharing here, so it would be helpful if you would do the same.
Other suggestions on how you might use any of these resources is certainly also appreciated.
- Kimberly at Stacked recently wrote a post about matriarchal societies in fiction, in fantasy in particular. She’s included a list of books that feature these societies and is looking for additional titles. This is an interesting post considering Kim points out that societies like this don’t exist. Why in fiction, but not in real life?
- The oversexualization of female characters in comic books has long been a topic of discussion – especially among those of us who appreciate superheroes and the comic book as a form. For years I have shared the image below (and I cannot quite figure out where it originally came from – so if you know who should be getting credit for this, please let me know!) with my students and just let them write about their reaction. It never fails to get conversations started.
- Jennifer Mathieu, the author of The Truth About Alice, has a guest post at The Perpetual Page-Turner about slut-shaming. She’s included a list of books that take on the topic of teen girls and sexuality.
- Jill Guccini at Book Riot writes about Speak, YA, Steubenville and rape culture. Can reading YA help our teens understand rape, our boys in particular?
- Speaking of rape culture, here are a couple of quick videos. The first speaks for itself – the second one from The Daily Show should only be shared with students under careful consideration – the back and forth between Jessica Williams and Jordan Klepper (starts at 2:16) about how to stay safe in college is brilliant but may not be appropriate to share in class.
- Lizzie Velasquez gives a powerful TED Talk about how we define ourselves. She brings up gender, but she also moves beyond topic.
- NPR reposted 16-year-old Radio Rookie reporter Temitayo Fagbenle’s story about the online trend of slut-shaming.
- Sarah Miller offers an accessible and scholarly look at the role of slut-shaming and the long-term consequences of this aggressive behavior at the Gender & Society blog.
- There has been conversation about an academic gender gap in recent years – that girls are outperforming boys in school. The linked article has some interesting explanations about what causes it and what can be done – and what might happen as a result of it.
- The following three videos show some interesting points about our gender socialization – what is expected of us in our roles as well as how others see us. It’s eye-opening. Keep in mind that our kids learn this. They aren’t born with these attitudes and schemas.
- Speaking of where all this socialization comes from, Lego has found itself in the midst of the great toy debate. If you’re a parent, you know that the toy aisles for girls are just glowing with PINK EVERYTHING. As a girl who was not particularly a fan of pink, I was miserable. Thirty years later, it’s still pretty much the same, but there are some positive changes. Easy-Bake Ovens now come in more than pink and Lego is making three new scientist mini-fig characters & labs that are both female and not pink. (Well, the astronomer has a pink scarf, but we’re not going to quibble over that. I like pink scarves, too.) Kira Cochrane from The Guardian had a great article this past spring about people who are and have been fighting against gendered toys.
Again, please add what you’ve seen that fits with the theme of Gender Relations by sharing links and annotations in the comments.
Just a reminder – we’ll be chatting about our title selection This One Summer on Twitter on August 26, 2014 at 8 PM EST. We hope you’re joining us in reading and we look forward to discussing it – and possibly some of the related resources and additional titles that have been shared – with you!