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<nettime> u-turns and brouhahas digest [x2: bechtel, rosler]
nettime's_walrus_and_carpenter on Sun, 15 Oct 2006 16:02:43 +0200 (CEST)


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<nettime> u-turns and brouhahas digest [x2: bechtel, rosler]


Brent Bechtel <bbechtel {AT} prodigy.net>
  <nettime> Gender and U-Turns
martha rosler <navva {AT} earthlink.net>
  Re: <nettime> The Sondheim brou-ha-ha: one perspective

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Date: Fri, 13 Oct 2006 23:00:39 -0600
From: Brent Bechtel <bbechtel {AT} prodigy.net>
Subject: <nettime> Gender and U-Turns

There are no Men's Studies courses because of the nature of liberation; 
many would drop this book into the recycling bin labeled "civil 
liberties" - there could be connotations, denotations, 
misappropriations, committees, reinvented lexicons strapped alongside in 
the canvas sacks headed towards the sneeze-worthy, rarely-circulated 
books depository.

Blazing through academics and politic fund-raising (always alumni 
conscious, you must see) stacks of unacceptable, offensive words 
(offensive thought, of course, is assumed incapable of coat-hanger 
abortions, vasectomies, hymens, glans penis lubrications, and 
catastrophic mentions of corollary -- even weakened and calmed by 
phenobarbital, alcohol, alprazolam, purring cats and ataxia -- 
comparisons are best hidden in hollow trees; myths of freedom were 
guarded by patriotic squirrels in such a place, as I was told ...)

Naked or nude? Oh, these were questions along with gender in my first 
sociology class at university. Be careful. Don't mistake sex and gender, 
especially not aloud.
Thankfully, it was a state school, West Virginia University, and I did 
not buy the books, study, use notes, and received an A. "Behold! 
Academics is an abandoned circus for a half-sleeping poet to mock with a 
triumphal grin!"  Ah, yes I know: Other sciences are not so infantile, 
puerile and stapled into lecture halls with packing crates and soggy 
cardboard boxes (which did once hold lettuce, among other perishable 
foodstuffs.)

Allow me a moment of flat, horrid reductionist observation: Western 
civilization -- *ahem* civilization on Earth, has for nearly all 
generations, in the majority, followed patriarchy, male headship (this 
is an antiquated term used by some Jews and Christians, etc.,) This is 
not comprehensive, it is one sentence. Patrilineal and matrilineal 
customs vary.

Examine your genealogy -- "Female Child" "Female, dead, age 3" -- no 
names given, nothing recorded, this well beyond the Enlightenment and 
Great Awakening in the United States -- (a diversion, but full of smug 
and growling analysis.) Infant mortality, death in childbirth for a wife 
without a first name? Too common for a culture claiming marriage as a 
treaty between two equals -- too full of blasphemed blasphemies directed 
toward discomfort -- oh, and this oppressor, the male? (I do not count 
this all-inclusive; neither dualistic/binary.)

Why do descendants of enslaved Africans search through and for records 
that do not exist to find a heritage? Oh? Why do males of European 
descent find clear records of their names, births, signatures in 
Christian Bibles, shares and stocks in attics and their handiwork 
preserved by families, generationally, as pseudo-sacred?

Ah, men have studied themselves enough, I declare!

Our accounts are known, my great-grandfather's daughter had no recorded 
name and died days from her birth; what is there to study apart from 
painted photographs -- often photographs taken of the child after an 
infant death -- no name, no history, no lineage, no concern,

SIMPLY FUNCTION my fingers declare. Why do I have books with my 
great-great-grandfathers signature and notes inside but I have never 
heard of a female of my family signing her ownership of a printed book; 
of a library established by a woman (for simplicity, let me invoke the 
gender-sex roles of the 1900s-1920s.)

MEN HAVE STUDIED THEMSELVES this could be as simple as a joke about 
masturbation, but this is a dance for archives, for understanding, 
preservation, iterations and categories I have no time to type.

Men know themselves well; they have known themselves well; there are too 
many records of wars and cabinetry and preaching and discipline and 
HEADSHIP of FAMILY set in concrete (which arrived eventually, but was 
never as pretty as cobblestones ...)

YES MEN ARE CATALOGED but WOMEN have a missing history -- this is why I 
believe Women's Research, Education, and A Firm Establishment of 
Identity (however this may be chosen by gender and sex or sex and 
non-sex and sexual non-sexual corporeal and chemical dictum) is DUE. It 
is welcome.

Details of social justice fill enough dusty books; they can be 
referenced with a NIOSH approved mask if you are sensitive to rot and 
mold. Or did OSHA determine those standards?
Now I begin to ponder whether both Man and Woman and Child have any 
names recorded when Material Data Safety Sheets sift through my 
hypothetical-grandson's desk.

-Brent
bnbechtel {AT} gmail.com

Nancy Mauro-Flude wrote:
> Why Isn't There Men's Studies? Gender and Us:
>
> A bit of a cop out but I find this quote by Kathy Acker (Lest We Forget) sums
> up the vicissitudes in question,
 <...>

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Date: Sat, 14 Oct 2006 17:53:41 +0200 (GMT+02:00)
From: martha rosler <navva {AT} earthlink.net>
Subject: Re: <nettime> The Sondheim brou-ha-ha: one perspective

dear e.,

to be quick and dirty, not even academe is safe from the retrenchment on
women's so called role equality, not only are women's studies programs (aka the
girls' ghettos) being closed all over the place, senior women profs are being
hounded out, all over the place. A number of senior women in science recently
wrote letters to the times (you can read them online if you are postnewsprint)
detailing how lousy it remains for women--despite all the gains in employment
and even acceptance-- in science and math.

And even good ol 60 minutes the show had a program on recently dismissed HP
head nancy wazzername and the one before, carly fiorina and how much worse
their fate was than would be any male's would be in the same circumstances.
Women's wages are still nowhere near par with men's and more people like youare
repeating the Playboy-promulgated remarks from 40, countem, 40 years ago about
victorian corsets and fainting spells the last time women became uppity and
comp(see articles with titles liek the new woman or the new girl) . And did we
mention the so called double day of work plus maintenance and reproduction of
labor? 

 I could write lots more, about theory and the need questioned in another post,
for thewomen to enunciate special demands  but i will leave more serious posts
to those better able to do them. 

It was the result failure of pan human (:) ) universalist demands for justice
to take account, in the real world, for the demands of Others and to provide
space to voice them in their own way, themselves, that led to so called 3 wave
feminism... lots of histories out there to read...

I repeat what i sugested above, we are in a moment of anti-woman sentiment and
retrenchment of commitments to all kinds of inclusiveness and one in which
those shutting em down feel inoculated against criticism, having already proved
that 'affirmative action doesnt work or has worked or cannot be allowed to
work'

not to be rude, but your post, in all good faith, literally reiterated the
precise points made by men of good will in the late 60s and early 70s: All
around me I see strong women, including in leadership roles, so what is the
problem! The answer is  begun precisely with the remark that part of the
problem is that you don't see the problem.

as to nettime and women... (!)

cheers, martha beenaroundtheblock rosler

-----Original Message-----
>From: "E. Miller" <subscriptionbox {AT} squishymedia.com>
>Sent: Oct 13, 2006 9:19 PM
>To: nettime-l {AT} bbs.thing.net
>Subject: <nettime> The Sondheim brou-ha-ha: one perspective
>
>Okay, I'll chime in too.
 <...>

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