In celebration and remembrance of all the beautiful and incredible women in the world, some of whom have risen above adversity and others who still struggle to survive as a citizen of the world.
Happy International Women’s Day
I want to do it because I want to do it. Women must try to do things as men have tried. When they fail, their failure must be but a challenge to others. — Amelia Earhart
The Feminist quagmire
On this special day of perpetuating gender stereotypes and unsentimental parasitic capitalism, lets just give in to what we all want, whatever our gender or sexuality.
Happy Valentines Day to All!
History is written by the powerful. It is unsurprisingly that the significant role of women in Irish culture and history has been confined to a limited and specific stereotype of caring mother and supporter. To say that women haven’t played a significant role, is to be blind to the centrality of strong women in Irish culture. Any one who read in school Táin Bó Cúailnge will remember Queen Medb; hardly a beacon of feminine grace and purity. Or the pirate Grace O’Malley. Gender blind history often over looks some of the passionate and independent women who bucked the ideals of confined ideals womanhood from as Countess Markievicz to the Gilford sisters, the incandescent feminist firebrands Hanna Sheey Skeffington and Kathleen Clarke. All leaders and innovators that challenged repression and inequality.
It is in this context that The Women’s Museum of Ireland is being planned, to be officially launched in early February. The creators of this idea plan to cover themes such as “women trade union leaders and agitators,” “the Cumann na mBánn,” and “women who defended castles.” Equally important to any true discussion of history is the negative consequences and the dark role that some women played in running the Magdalene laundries. Its not always a pretty picture, but the very idea of a Women’s Museum of Ireland is one step towards creating a more rounded concept of our past by highlighting the role played by women throughout Irish history.
For some more details of Irish women in history have a look at iGenders “Great Irish Women through History”
In a society where the rights and potential of women are constrained, no man can be truly free. He may have power, but he will not have freedom. — Mary Robinson
SMASH THE PATRIARCHY!!!
In the last two months, two young Irish women have been driven to suicide by online bullying and harassment.
Erin Gallagher, a 13-year-old girl, was found dead in her Donegal home last Saturday. This follows the suicide of 15-year-old Ciara Pugsley from Co. Leitrim.
Both young women had been harassed on the social media website, ask.fm – which allows users to ask and answer anonymous questions and comments.
The public response has sparked off a debate about social media, bullying and mental health across Ireland and abroad. The calls to action have ranged from asking schools to be more proactive against online bullying to online groups trying to shut down ask.fm.
On June 6th, approximately 177, 000 students started the Leaving Cert,the controversial jewel of Ireland’s education system. Every year the Leaving Cert is criticized for its archaic use of rote learning and every year the academic dominance of girls suggests that the Leaving Cert is gender imbalanced.
For those applying to medical school there is the added pressure of the Health Professionals Admissions Test (HPAT),which is usually taken 4 months before the standard exams. Success in both the Leaving Cert and the HPAT is necessary for those wanting to go to medical school as an undergraduate and avoid the costly postgraduate fees. A high score in the HPAT can add 300 points to Leaving Cert results.
It was hoped that the HPAT would single out good potential doctors rather than just good academics and address the issue of gender imbalance in education. As Professor of Academic Medicine and Director of Undergraduate Teaching and Learning at Trinity College Shaun McCann said, “The pendulum has swung too far in favour of females”.
Preliminary admission of guilt: I’ve always been sceptical of online dating. I know that there are people who find the love of their life online but I suspect that they are in the minority.
An online profile lets you highlight how cool your taste in music is, or how “you’re a total sweetheart” or “always up for a laugh”. And when you are your own judge and editor you can totally ignore the things you don’t want to admit.
We do this in everyday meetings too but when you’re face-to-face with someone you pick up on the more subtle personality traits. Maybe you’re saying all the right things, but are you making eye contact?
In light of a growing social movement to support women entering politics in Ireland, failed French presidential candidate Marine Le Pen offers us a compelling reminder that a woman in power does not necessarily work for gender equality.
Marine Le Pen marketed herself as the new face of the Front National; France’s extreme nationalist party. Superficially, she represents a change in the party’s founding patriarchal ideology.
This educated, successful and in comparison to most French politicians, young blonde made her name in feisty debates with mainstream figures. While the men at the table in shirts and ties attempted diplomacy in their disagreements, she would interrupt, accuse and proclaim. She had a voice; she was going to use it!