“Being taken seriously means missing out on the chance to be frivolous, promiscuous, and irrelevant. The desire to be taken seriously is precisely what compels people to follow the tried and true paths of knowledge production around which I would like to map a few detours.”
― J. Jack Halberstam, The Queer Art of Failure
“I find I am constantly being encouraged to pluck out some one aspect of myself and present this as the meaningful whole, eclipsing or denying the other parts of self.”
― Audre Lorde, Sister Outsider: Essays and Speeches
“The gendered entitlement of criminals – rapists, domestic abusers, murderers – is almost always universally condemned as unacceptable throughout polite society (at least in 2014), as is the era of dowries and legal spousal rape, when women were considered the literal property of the men in their lives. But those men whose actions exhibit in softer – sometimes even socially acceptable – ways their belief that women should pay them deference (or at least quietly tolerate their varied hostilities) face much less opprobrium.
This is how men get away with bludgeoning the joy that is friendship into the unrecognizable “friendzone” – a place where it’s actually humiliating to be friends with a woman. ”
- Men aren’t entitled to women’s time or affection. But it’s a hard lesson to learn, by Cord Jefferson
"People go to the movies instead of moving! Hollywood characters are supposed to have all the adventures for everybody in America, while everybody in America sits in a dark room and watches them have them! Yes, until there’s a war. That’s when adventure becomes available to the masses!"
The other day, I was upset about something. I was walking home, and I was upset, and I was thinking about why I was upset, when suddenly a car honked at me while I was crossing the street. When I looked up, the driver, a middle-aged man, made a gesture with his hands towards his mouth that meant: SMILE! Without even thinking I immediately obeyed and smiled at him.
As I kept walking, I got progressively angrier about what this man had asked of me, and even more so about my instinct to just smile when I’m told to smile. Why can’t I just walk down the street and be upset? Why did this man feel it was his right, or even his duty to tell me to smile? Why did I smile?
I’m a really emotional person and I’m rarely able to hide me emotions. My face always gives me away, so this is not the first time a male stranger has told me to smile. Why is this a thing? Are these men just trying to be nice, or caring, or is there is something more to this need some men have to make women smile? Do female emotions other than happiness make them uncomfortable? Or is it because showing emotion is seen as a weakness, and weak people need strong manly saviours to help them?
As I said before, I’m a really emotional person, AND I’m also a really strong person. What makes me strong is that I feel my emotions. What makes me strong is that I don’t always smile to make others more comfortable. So to all these nice guys worried about my frowns, I would like to say: I don’t need you to save me from my emotions. I’m fine.
So ladies, don’t smile, just because they tell you to. But don’t just take my word for it, check out this is an amazing art project about it by Tatyana Fazlalizadeh called Stop Telling Women to Smile.