Thu Mar 25, 2010
My youngest turns 16 tomorrow. She’s passed her driver’s testing, so first thing in the morning we are going to the Dept. of Licensing to pick up her driver’s license. The next stop after that is the bank, so she can open her first checking account. She’s already working (my baby is self-employed. I can’t tell you how that tickles me.) so she sometimes is paid by check. She’s excited about having an actual account. For the evening, she’s picked sushi out for a dinner celebration. She’s fairly anti-celebrate, so that’ll be the extent of it. A far cry from the middle one who last year wanted me to rent a hall, and throw her something out of MTV’s “My Super-Sweet 16″. (note: that did NOT happen, it was only requested.. heh)
Been reading tidbits from the rest of the web this morning. Matisse posted her piece on the “Whip Smart” book over at The Stranger today. Similar take, although I think she was a bit nicer than I was when I wrote mine. Not that I have changed my opinion much, and it is just that, an opinion. Then I was reading about how Melissa Febos canceled her reading at Seattle’s Center for Sex Positive Culture. I guess I was surprised that she was appearing there to begin with, since I don’t think there was much sex-positive in what she wrote. At any rate, I’m not questioning her right to speak her truth, just a surprise that she’d think everyone would embrace it.
Then I caught a bit of the discussion about Venus magazine being under new ownership. Chicago Reader did a piece on the new owner, which showed up on my radar because of people making noise about it not being “feminist” any longer. So, I was reading through the piece, which had plenty of input from the founder of Venus, as well as the women who bought it from her, and are now selling it. I am struck (as I often am when reading about what is and isn’t feminist) that the sticking point seems to be whether the magazine wants to outwardly label itself as “feminist”.
I agree wholeheartedly with the new owner, Sarah Beardsley:
That’s such a word fraught with interpretation and meaning. We don’t use that particular F word around here. It just doesn’t seem relevant.
And she’s right. Look up the term feminism in Webster’s. I don’t think there are many contemporary women, self-identifying as feminist or not, who don’t support equal rights, opportunities and compensation for women. But the interpretation and meaning have changed. I am part of the target audience, presumably, of the new Venus. I am a self-employed, self-sufficient, creative woman who doesn’t identify with what that label has become.
Is it ok to take a magazine like that, and turn it into something else? Well, it seems to have the blessing of the founder, Amy Schroeder, and that’s good enough for me.