Feminist Friday: Legos get “girly,” superheroes get breast exams, Chelsea Clinton gets a TV gig


Welcome to Feminist Friday, a round-up of women-centric stories from the world wide web this week.

Despite all that chatter that she was going to make a bid for Congress in 2012, Chelsea Clinton made her TV debut this week on Rock Center With Brian Williams. She reported from her home state of Arkansas, spotlighting an after school teacher that works with disadvantaged youths. The story was sweet and uplifting — and I’m not sure any cub reporter has ever received so much scrutiny! “Breathe more,” the internet said. “Leave more space between your words.” “Smile more!” “Smile less!” “Be as charismatic as your parents who have been wooing crowds for decades!” I thought it was a great first outing for Chelsea, and I’m excited to see what kind of reporter she can become under the tutelage of the warm and wonderful Brian Williams.


Comic book mega site Bleeding Cool News previewed the inaugural issue of Avengers vs. X-Men this week, and my first thought was, “Holy crap! Hope and Scarlet Witch sharing a cover! Give it to me now!” But an astute commenter had a completely different reaction: “Has anyone pointed out that Frank Cho drew the Scarlet Witch and Jean Grey (or whoever that is) flying out of a vagina on this cover?”

Hmm, I see your point.

Cho chimed in hilariously: “It never occurred to me that I was drawing a giant vagina when I drew this cover. I could kind of see it now in its final colored form. It’s funny how people project their fears, concerns and fantasies into other people’s art. Okay. Rebuttal. Like Georgia O’Keefe, I love vaginas. What’s wrong with vaginas? ;-)”

Nothing, good sir. Nothing at all.

And speaking of comic book heroines, the brilliant ladies over at DC Women Kicking Ass have posted a bunch of images from an ad campaign for a Mozambique breast cancer awareness organization. They feature Catwoman, She-Hulk, Wonder Woman and Storm giving themselves breast exams. Says DC Women Kicking Ass:

The images are quite striking. The faces of the characters are only partially seen, but the characters are easy identifiable. And while we often see women feeling or touching their breasts n comics, the art here is not sexual or exploitative and has almost a solemn feel to it.

Here’s Storm. Click through to see all of the images.

Time magazine’s Person of the Year for 2011 is “the collective protester around the world.” There’s been lots of hoopla — per the usual — surrounding the announcement, with plenty of people calling it a copout because Time didn’t choose a specific person yet again this year. But the ladies over at Feministing.com have a slightly different point of view:

Interestingly, amazingly, beautifully, the cover photo is of a female Arab protester. I’m thrilled to see the Arab Spring, and to a lesser extent, related protests around the world including Occupy Wall Street, honored and acknowledged in this way. It’s so rare for the grassroots origins of social change to be celebrated in large, powerful media spaces like this. And the street protesters of today deserve it! They are working so hard, and sacrificing so much, in the name of social change.

I agree: Choosing a female protester — and an ethnic minority female protester, at that — for the cover is a refreshing change of pace.

Lego made waves this week when it announced the launch of a new girl-specific line of toys called Lego Friends (or, as The Mary Sue called them, “LadyFigs”). Apparently, Lego’s market research has led them to believe that girls hate the iconic yellow-headed Lego figure. “The greatest concern for girls really was beauty,” Lego’s market research manager told the press. So they’re rolling out new Lego ladies that look like, well, ladies. Cisgender ladies, at least. Lego is releasing 29 lady Lego Friends, comprised of nine nationalities, all of whom come with Barbie/American Girl-type backstories. Also, they’re “taller and curvier” than the standard LegoFig.

The weird part is that places like Target and Toys R Us won’t be marketing them with regular Lego displays. They’ll start out as end caps and end up on that aisle where everything is cotton candy pink. Which is weird, right? Because “regular” Legos aren’t for boys. Why the segregation?

Looking for something fun to do this weekend for only $3? Go get yourself a copy of Batwoman #4. Feminism done right. Trust me.

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