Women's News from the Web

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Comedy travel shows are a huge TV trend. So why can’t Whoopi Goldberg get commissioned?

Mon, 01/21/2019 - 21:00

When comedian London Hughes got her hero to appear on a travel programme with her, she was overjoyed. Until she tried to get it made ...

‘I didn’t think 2019 would start with me in my house in a onesie, hungover and watching Sister Act, angry,” says London Hughes, a 29-year old comedian and TV presenter from Brighton. But this anger did inspire a tweet that went viral: “Sister Act is on, and I’m still a tiny bit pissed off that in 2018 a whole Whoopi Goldberg agreed to do a travel show with me but no TV channels wanted it,” she posted on New Year’s Day.

Sister act is on, and I’m still a tiny bit pissed off that in 2018 a whole Whoopi Goldberg agreed to do a travel show with me but no TV channels wanted it.

In 2019 let’s have more female comedians travelling and making TV and not just male comedians and their mum’s please. Thnx

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Avon apologizes for anti-cellulite ad after being accused of 'shaming women'

Mon, 01/21/2019 - 12:18

Avon responded to actor’s criticism: ‘We realize that we missed the mark with this messaging. We have removed this messaging’

Cosmetics giant Avon USA has apologized for an anti-cellulite product after the ad campaign was accused of “shaming women”.

Actor Jameela Jamil had criticized the ad, which features a seated woman in shorts and tank top with the caption “dimples are cute on your face (not on your thighs),” on Saturday afternoon on Twitter.

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Why Iron Girl went down like a lead balloon

Mon, 01/21/2019 - 07:44
In the week in which Jasmin Paris won the 268-mile Spine Race, and women are winning more and more endurance races, a 5K night-time race for ‘women over 16’ had to be hastily rebranded

Last week Jasmin Paris became the first woman to win the 268-mile Spine Race, running for four days solid on fewer than eight hours’ sleep. In the same week, Ironman England advertised an event called Iron Girl, a 5K night-time race, as part of a triathlon festival. An Ironman race consists of a 2.4-mile swim, a 112-mile cycle ride and a marathon. Iron Girl was billed as being less intimidating, by using the word “girl”. In the attempt to attract grown women (the event was for over-16s), Iron Girl went down like a lead balloon. It was quickly renamed Night Run, and opened to men, too.

Of course, getting more people active is to be encouraged. But assuming that women would be intimidated by an event called “Ironman” goes against recent form. Jasmin Paris is not alone in winning an endurance event overall – in December 2016, women won five ultra distance races outright. Many believe that women may have a physical advantage in running or cycling longer races because they have more stamina, greater fat reserves (which can be called upon for energy) and better mental strength. Women are better at pacing and we cope better with heat.

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If we don’t stop smearing smear tests, women will die of embarrassment

Mon, 01/21/2019 - 07:05

Women continue to receive negative messages about this simple, benevolent test – and that could mean thousands of lives lost unnecessarily

A smear test, or cervical screening, as it has been rebranded in the hope of making this most unfairly loathed of all tests sound a bit more appealing, hurts. So the lore goes, anyway. Of all the routine medical checks out there, it’s the one devised by “Dr Pap” in the 1940s, when cervical cancer was the biggest killer of women, that gets most, well, smeared. It is seen as being intrusive, offensive, scary, gross. Never mind the fact that cervical screening helps pick up changes to cells that could eventually lead to cancer. Never mind that they save thousands of lives every year. Smear tests are embarrassing.

These are the messages women continue to receive, whether openly, subliminally, through word of mouth, by default or negative association. While it’s true that most things are more fun than a smear test – and I say this as someone who has had abnormal smears and after the birth of my first baby, developed an unexpected, thankfully short-lived fear of speculums – the same could be said of many routine checks.

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Want to tackle domestic violence? Then ensure refuges are properly funded | Jane Dudman

Mon, 01/21/2019 - 05:23
Domestic abuse bill won’t reverse dangerous cuts to women’s refuges and other vital local services

Many UK citizens will welcome the publication of the government’s draft domestic abuse bill this week. But there are six Sussex women with particular reason to hope the bill makes lasting changes in tackling this crime, which costs England and Wales £66bn a year. Poppy, Norma, Alice, Vivienne, Natalie and Lorraine all feature in an online exhibition raising awareness of the importance of local support services like refuges in escaping violent partners. Like other campaigners, the women in Sussex will be cheered by many of the measures in the bill, including banning perpetrators being able to cross-examine victims in court, the appointment of a domestic abuse commissioner, and financial and manipulative non-physical abuse being included in the statutory definition of domestic abuse, as well as children being recognised as victims of domestic violence.

Related: Domestic abusers may face lie-detector tests on release from prison

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At last, the Elizabeth v Mary catfight trope of history is being reassessed | Jerry Brotton

Mon, 01/21/2019 - 02:25

Male historians long pitted Elizabeth I against Mary Queen of Scots, but Josie Rourke’s film opens the door for new tellings

The argument that history is written by the winners depends on your definition of winning. Who “wins” in the struggle between Elizabeth I and Mary Queen of Scots may seem obvious in the director Josie Rourke’s new film, with its opening scene of Mary’s execution on Elizabeth’s orders in February 1587. But in naming the film after Mary, Rourke and screenwriter Beau Willimon imply that although Elizabeth won the battle over her Scottish cousin, it was Mary who triumphed in the longer historical war of sympathy and affection.

For the first time in this story’s cinematic history, the two female leads are directed by a woman who avoids the catfight trope and instead sees Elizabeth and Mary as potentially kindred spirits, whose antagonism is manufactured by their fearful and violent male lovers and counsellors.

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Domestic abusers may face lie-detector tests on release from prison

Sun, 01/20/2019 - 14:01

Domestic abuse bill published as £66bn a year cost of abuse in England and Wales revealed

High-risk domestic abuse offenders could face mandatory lie-detector tests when released from prison under long-awaited proposals published on Monday.

The Home Office, meanwhile, has released analysis that puts the cost of domestic abuse in England and Wales at about £66bn a year.

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Smear tests: women asked to discuss fears as test rate plummets

Sun, 01/20/2019 - 14:01

Charity Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust launches campaign #SmearForSmear in cervical cancer prevention week

Young women put off smear tests due to feelings of embarrassment and concerns about being hurt, a survey suggests.

New data from the charity Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust found that those aged 25 to 35 are also put off by the idea of a stranger examining them.

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'An angel, a diamond': Aiia Maasarwe's Palestinian identity was erased after her death | Jennine Khalik

Sun, 01/20/2019 - 13:44

It shouldn’t matter where Maasarwe comes from, but it does

The senseless killing of student Aiia Maasarwe last week was a bitter reminder that women can have their lives pointlessly cut short by men, even when walking along streets they have memorised.

The alleged rape and murder of Maasarwe is one of several brutal attacks on women in Melbourne in recent years, with Eurydice Dixon and Jill Meagher meeting similar fates. It has left women once again asking ourselves: where are we safe? Where do we go from here?

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'Inhuman conditions': life in factory making Spice Girls T-shirts

Sun, 01/20/2019 - 08:00

Staff at Bangladesh plant tell of fainting and abuse while sewing charity tops designed by group

Salma has never even heard of the Spice Girls. Her life, hunched over a sewing machine for up to 16 hours a day, is a world away from the luxuries enjoyed by the millionaire pop band.

But while neither knows it, Salma and the Spice Girls are connected. The factory where she has worked for more than five years, off a narrow, winding road three hours’ drive from Dhaka, is where charity T-shirts designed by the group were made.

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Revealed: Spice Girls T-shirts made in factory paying staff 35p an hour

Sun, 01/20/2019 - 08:00

Workers producing tops sold to raise money for Comic Relief receive far below a living wage

Spice Girls T-shirts sold to raise money for Comic Relief’s “gender justice” campaign were made at a factory in Bangladesh where women earn the equivalent of 35p an hour during shifts in which they claim to be verbally abused and harassed, a Guardian investigation has found.

The charity tops, bearing the message “#IWannaBeASpiceGirl”, were produced by mostly female machinists who said they were forced to work up to 16 hours a day and called “daughters of prostitutes” by managers for not hitting targets.

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I’m not 50, but it’s a relief to be invisible to men like Yann Moix

Sat, 01/19/2019 - 22:59

The French novelist’s sexist, ageist, racist remarks caused offence – yet there’s some unexpected comfort in what he said

I’m writing this standing up in an Apple store in New York, here in the city for 24 hours without a charger. Nobody has said a word to me, as I furtively steal their power while carefully keeping my face in neutral. The shop is busy with teenagers upgrading their iPhones and aggressively friendly staff, and the only still points are me and a man wearing three coats and broken flip-flops playing Candy Crush on an iPad. It is a quite lovely feeling to be, if not invisible, then at least translucent.

A book called An Unexplained Death came out last month, and I reread it on my journey – it appears to be a true crime thriller about a man’s final days, but quickly and sneakily reveals itself to be a memoir of the writer, Mikita Brottman. Years before starting it, Brottman went to see a psychoanalyst because she’d started to feel invisible. “I appeared to be completely forgettable,” she writes. To be “invisible”, she elaborates, “feels a little like being a ghost – people don’t seem to notice or acknowledge my presence, or look right through me. This has its advantages, though. I often feel as though I can learn people’s secrets, and get away with anything.”

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Bill bans ‘abhorrent’ quizzing of domestic abuse victims in court

Sat, 01/19/2019 - 19:59
Landmark draft legislation also includes measures to raise awareness and support survivors

Domestic abusers will no longer be able to cross-examine their former partners in family courts under a comprehensive government package of reforms to tackle the issue.

The landmark draft domestic abuse bill, published tomorrow after an 18-month delay, will prevent victims from being subjected to the “abhorrent practice” of being interrogated in court by their abusers, alongside other measures designed to raise awareness, support survivors and tackle perpetrators.

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Thousands rally at Sydney Women's March in shadow of Aiia Maasarwe's death

Sat, 01/19/2019 - 18:31

Author and sexual assault survivor Bri Lee tells crowd it’s ‘so hard to keep an olive branch in the palm of your hand when you need your keys between your fingers’

“We march today and think of Aiia,” the writer Bri Lee told more than 3,000 people at the Sydney Women’s March on Sunday.

The coordinated worldwide protests, held in dozens of major cities, sought to highlight an extensive patchwork of women’s rights issues.

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Women around the world march against austerity and violence

Sat, 01/19/2019 - 10:07

Tens of thousands take to city streets to protest against violence and the impact of austerity on their lives

Propelled by a mass public rendition of Sisters Are Doin’ It for Themselves and accompanied by a thudding police helicopter overhead, hundreds of protesters have rallied in central London in solidarity with an estimated 89 Women’s Marches worldwide.

In Athens, Berlin, Washington DC and Los Angeles, to name just a few, tens of thousands of demonstrators turned out to protest against violence against women and the impact of policies of austerity. They also had some choice words for Donald Trump and Theresa May.

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Women's March 2019: Tens of thousands take to streets across the world – video

Sat, 01/19/2019 - 09:27

Demonstrators march on the streets of Washington, Berlin and London on Saturday as part of the global Women's March to protest against violence against women and the impact of policies of austerity

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Thousands join Women's March across US as controversy dampens turnout

Sat, 01/19/2019 - 06:01

Rallies take place in cities from Washington to Los Angeles but an antisemitism row has overshadowed the buildup

The first Women’s March, held the day after Donald Trump’s inauguration as president in 2017, was the largest single-day protest in US history, drawing millions to the streets to reject Trump in a colourful riot of placards, fury and pink “pussy hats”.

Related: What has the Women’s March accomplished, beyond mere visibility? | Jessa Crispin

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What has the Women’s March accomplished, beyond mere visibility? | Jessa Crispin

Sat, 01/19/2019 - 01:00

Amid a storm of criticism surrounding the organization’s leaders, we should also look at what political action, if any, the group has taken to create structural change

In two short years, the Women’s March has gone from amassing good will (and hefty donations) to amassing suspicion. Once heralded for organizing the single largest protest in America’s history, now the only thing anyone wants to talk about is the leaders’ association with antisemitic, homophobic, transphobic Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan.

This weekend, the third women’s march on Washington, with corresponding local marches in cities across the United States, will be taking place, but it risks being overshadowed by the storm of criticism that has arisen about alleged antisemitic rhetoric within the group’s leadership and investigations by the Daily Beast and Tablet into the possible mishandling of funds.

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Women's March 2019: thousands to protest across US

Fri, 01/18/2019 - 20:00
  • Policy platform to be revealed at main event in Washington DC
  • Movement has suffered infighting over antisemitism claims

Thousands of protesters will take to the streets across the US on Saturday to resist Donald Trump and stand up for women’s rights at the third annual Women’s March.

Though this year’s event has been marred by controversy, participants will seek to channel the spirit of the first massive march in 2017 that saw hundreds of thousands of protests take over the nation’s capital the day after Donald Trump’s inauguration, spurring activism and political campaigns by women around the country.

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Women's March: 30 countries set to take part in third global protest

Fri, 01/18/2019 - 06:57

Women to march against violence and austerity with UK rally likely to have anti-Brexit tone

Women in more than 30 countries around the world are expected to gather on Saturday as part of the global Women’s March, to protest against violence against women and the impact of policies of austerity.

In London thousands are expected to gather outside Portland Place in central London at 12.30pm and march to Trafalgar Square by 1.30pm, ending in a two-hour rally.

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