Good morning! I hope your weekend was a good one. Mine was both good and bad. On the upside, we had the announcement that the 13th regeneration of Doctor Who will be a white woman. Like my weekend, this is good and bad. Good: Yay! Female! Bad: Not a WOC. I can be happy and unhappy at the same time, and I am. I'm so pleased that the Doctor won't be yet another white man that I'm actually planning on watching the show for the first time ever. Jody Whittaker is an amazing actress. (Just watch her in Antigone.) At exactly the same time, there is usually an order to these things in the more conservative end of the progressive pool. White women are generally the next in line when it comes to representation. In a lot of ways it's the safest choice, after all. Nonetheless, it didn't abate the shitstorm of misogyny on the internet from grown men who know less about sharing toys than the average five year old child. (Thank the gods none of them were on my feed.) Ultimately, this is pretty wonderful. Like Alex Acks says so well, I grew up having to pretend to be male if I wanted to play pretend as one of my SF/F heroes. To quote from their blog: "And yes, you can pretend as many things as you like, but for all children are intensely imaginative, they’re also weirdly pedantic in certain ways. If you don’t ever see a girl being the Doctor, you come to feel that the Doctor is not something you’re allowed to be. Like when the young son of a friend of mine sadly informed one of his female classmates (this happened before we had Ahsoka and Rey, mind) that she couldn’t play Jedi with him and his friends, because girls aren’t Jedi – his parents corrected him on that one, but he made a perfectly logical conclusion from what he’d observed." This was very much my experience as a kid. Anyway, it's a great read. Ultimately, I have two hopes: the first is that the companion won't be male. Inevitably, there will be pressure for romantic tension between them, and when that happens the balance of power will tip toward the man. It's one of the reasons I hate the "a woman isn't successful unless she has a man" schtick. It reduces every female character as Woman = sex, romantic potential. It's awful. Let's stop. Shall we? The second thing is, if the companion is male I hope he's not a black man because cue in the Driving Miss Daisy association. I want a black man to play a significant role in the series. That would be amazing. Just...context is important, y'all.
And now, links.
Literature/Entertainment: How The Handmaid’s Tale Finally Made Hulu an Emmy Contender. Twitter Reacts to Photo of Kylie Jenner Looking Like Rihanna. And Can White Authors Write Characters of Color? File the next link under "Dude is seriously unaware to the point of unconsciousness." “National Review” mansplainer tries to take down Bechdel Test with “cowboy test.” Lastly, for those who missed it. Octavia Butler: Writing Herself Into The Story.
General: Why African Queer Women Cannot Remain Invisible. From the article: "But there are many LGBTIQ persons around the world who face violence and no one knows. As one Nigerian queer woman wrote ‘being invisible can be dangerous‘ because when violence happens to you in a silo, there is no one around to hear your screams. As an African queer woman on a continent rife with violence against LGBTI, this is a reality that could not be more real." American legislation in the works will take human rights from Trans citizens. Leave a comment. Interesting article which brings up some good thoughts, even though I don't necessarily agree with all of them now--Actually, Not Everything Is a Feminist Issue. Teachers With Student Debt: The Struggle, The Causes And What Comes Next. "Teachers are paid significantly less than many other highly educated professionals." This is because teaching is (now) a traditionally female job.
Trigger Warning: Betsy DeVos’s Education Civil Rights Chief Says 90% Of Women Are Lying About Rape. From the article: "Jackson - and DeVos and Trump - doesn't seem to understand what rape is. Rape is sex without consent. If a person doesn’t consent to sex, and you have sex with them anyway, it is rape. Even if you don’t use physical force. Even if both of you are drunk. Even if you had had consensual sex earlier. Even if your partner said yes at first and then changed their mind and said "stop." No consent? The other details don’t matter. It’s rape."
 See Wonder Woman.
 That's why I didn't want Suvi in Cold Iron to have a boyfriend or even marry. We don't have enough examples of women being successful without men--particularly in SF/F.