Check out a post by Ms. Brennan that I found! She is a fantastic author of the ever compelling Demon’s Lexicon series plus the soon to be out books Team Human (with Justine Larbalestier) coming in July and a brand new series called Lynburn Legacy coming in September, starting with Unspoken. Not only does Ms. Brennan write great books but she writes great characters, two of which happen to be strong above average women. YAY! She also loves Tamora Pierce as do I. Double YAY! This post of hers, along with a link to Tamora Pierce’s blog, explain well what it means to be not only a woman in real life but a woman in literature and the names that we sometimes use for women as terms of endearment that are also used as terms of insult. I love that the female authors I’ve always admired, continually make me proud to be a woman, a reader and a writer.
Neither of these exceptional authors will ever read this, but Thank you.
“Breakfast at the writing retreat, and we were all reading an essay written by Tamora Pierce, in which she discussed why calling other women sluts and bitches was not okay with her.
I have, like pretty much every lady in the universe, been judged for the way I dress and the way I talk and the way I interact with others, ladies and gentleman, sexy interactions or otherwise. I have, like pretty much every lady in the universe, seen my friends so judged, and circled the wagons: ‘Don’t call her that!/Let’s go./Excuse me, who gave you permission to be such a hateful waste of oxygen?’
Real women get called this stuff all the time.
But it also made me think of a discussion a while back in which people were discussing whether it was okay to call a female character a bitch, and the many, many occasions when people have made my head spin right off my shoulders with the force of my rage when discussing female characters’ behaviours. (She was leading him on./She shouldn’t make out with so many people./ She thinks she’s so great, or so sexy, or in such demand./It’s bad when the boy does it too… but I’m never going to mention that until you point it out./Bitch./Bitch in heat./She’s so uppity./I was very uncomfortable when she did that with a boy, or with a girl, or by herself.)
Much worse when applied to real women, and they have certainly been applied to me! But I feel frustrated rage over the fictional ladies too… fictional ladies can’t defend themselves, and seeing these words said/written often by girls, reading thinking generally awesome girls, makes me despair over the way people think about ladies.
This stuff is important. These words represent a way of thinking which has to stop.
Another day, another time I was glad that Tamora Pierce wrote the first fantasy I ever read.”