Quickies: Gender Bias in Textbooks, Empowered vs. Sexually Objectified, and Public Shaming

  • Italian Astronaut Wears Star Trek Uniform Aboard International Space Station – “On Friday, Cristoforetti, 37, Tweeted a photo of herself wearing not just any Star Trek uniform but one from the series Star Trek: Voyager, the only spin-off to feature a female captain, Kathryn Janeway.” I love Voyager, and I love this too!
  • FDA may crack down on junk homeopathic ‘remedies’ – “While prescription and over-the-counter drugs are approved before they’re sold, the FDA doesn’t usually evaluate the safety or effectiveness of homeopathic remedies, and new regulations could endanger popular products sold in stores, like cold remedy Zicam, Hyland’s sleep aids, and various supplements.” From Courtney.
  • Am I Being Paranoid? Being a Woman of Color in Academia – “As a perpetual outsider, in virtue of my brown immigrant body, my accent, mannerisms, and the assumptions about my affinities and motivations, I have encountered what are termed as, microaggressions both within the classroom and in context of presenting my research. There are countless such incidences, and they still occur every semester without fail. And even within these blatant instances of racism, there have been allies, who not only failed to understand the experience, but charged me with being overly-sensitive (paranoid).” From Nicole.
  • See Priya Cook: Gender Bias Pervades Textbooks Worldwide – “Blumberg has spent years looking at textbooks from all over the world. In almost every country she has studied, women are either completely written out of texts — or they’re portrayed in stereotypical, often subservient roles. Take for instance, a history and geography book for third graders used in West Bengal, India. The book doesn’t show or mention any career women. It only depicts women cooking for men, serving men or caring for children.”
  • Who Is Fair Game for Public Shaming? Here’s a Media Rulebook. – “So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed does delve deeply into several instances of that sort of shaming. Two are rather straightforward: social-media posts by women (one on Facebook, the other on Twitter) that were intended as humorous but widely seen as offensive, leading to both women losing their (low-profile) jobs and becoming more or less unemployable. Another is the somewhat more complicated story of a woman at a tech conference who posted a photo online of some fellow participants to call them out for making jokes she overheard and found offensive.”
  • Secrets of the Scientologists: Why people do horrible things for belief – “Going Clear gives a glimpse into how indoctrination really works. A 20th century tragedy reveals even more.”
  • How Can You Tell if You’re Being Sexually Empowered or Objectified? Ask Yourself This Simple Question – “There’s a long-standing debate in feminism about sexual empowerment: How do we know when someone is being sexually liberated versus being sexually objectified, since they sometimes can look similar from the outside?” Explained in fun comic form!
  • The Logical Failures of Food Fads – “Because despite a veneer of scientific rhetoric, food fads are ultimately about devotion to dogma; religion, not science. The appeal of modern diet gurus lies in their promise of nutritional redemption—and resisting that appeal depends on our ability to recognize and dismiss the irrational basis of their authority.” From Amy.
  • Jon Krakauer Tells A ‘Depressingly Typical’ Story Of College Town Rapes – “By his own admission, author Jon Krakauer is an obsessive guy, and his obsessions often turn into books. His best-sellers include Into the Wild and Into Thin Air, both about man’s battle with nature. But his latest book is about a far more intimate struggle. The title lays it out plainly: Missoula: Rape and the Justice System in a College Town.

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Mary Brock works as an Immunology scientist by day and takes care of a pink-loving princess child by night. She likes cloudy days, crafting, cooking, and Fall weather in New England.

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  1. Does anyone here recognize the logo Cristofforeretti is wearing? It’s not a Starfleet delta, but I can’t see it clear enough to tell what it actually is.

    1. There is a super hi-res version. If you click on it, and scroll around, you might be able to identify it. To me, it looks like a Soyuz rocket, passing through a ring for some reason. (Maybe an official or unofficial badge for anyone who had ridden a Soyuz?)

      I read a comment somewhere where someone (of unknown reliability) positively identified it as something, but I forget who, what and where. I should be a journalist…

      Later (and much wasted time): It’s a NASA astronaut pin.

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