Tag Archive for women

Book Review: The Tattooed Lady by Amelia Klem Osterud

<a href="http://www.paradigmshiftnyc.com/feminism/wp-content/uploads/2009/12/the-tattooed-lady-and-a

uthor.jpg”>Author Amelia Klem Osterud

Author Amelia Klem Osterud

Review by Janice Formichella

Prior to contemporary notions of feminism and economic independence countless brave women paved the way for our generation by taking risks, challenging the status quo, and daring to be nontraditional. Among the more fascinating are the “Tattooed Ladies” that travelled the globe with circuses and performed as exotic “oddities” in dime museums in the early 20th Century.

The Tattooed Lady, written by librarian Amelia Osterud provides a first-time look into the history of the many tattooed lady performers. The book includes a comprehensive look at the history of the tattooed lady as an act itself, background into the history of tattooing, and individual histories of many successful tattooed ladies.

One fascinating thing I learned is that several tattooed ladies worked side by side male partners. Two of the earliest and most well-known tattooed ladies actually married men who took their last names. Remarkably enough, the earliest tattooed lady on record, Irene Woodward, who arrived on the scene in 1882, was one of these women. Each woman had achieved more fame than her husband the couple saw it as more beneficial to use the name of the wife. This shows a lot of willingness to be unconventional, both for the tattooed ladies themselves and their husbands.

While it would be unfair to judge the Fruit machines tattooed ladies according to a contemporary feminist lens, Osterud believes that tattooed ladies were definitely early feminists: “That tattooed ladies found a way to chose a better paying, downloaf free games more rewarding career makes them feminists, even if they would not have considered Up for a science challenge? Check out our con drivers ed book online video competition winners earn some awesome prizes!Get challenge updates sent right to your inbox!Learn more about how to make a winning video entry. mobile Ben 10 games free download for girls themselves such.” Without a doubt these women were exercising a level of control over their own bodies that few women in the early 1900s were willing to exercise, and they used the dynamic to financially support themselves and their families.

While the tattooed ladies had the self-determination to seek lucrative employment, the decision to tattoo had little to do with self-expression. It was truly a online casino means of making a good living, and all tattooed ladies featured in the book were tattooed to be able to cover all tattoos while not performing.

The first tattooed ladies appeared in the later part of the 19th Century. The act’s popularity reached its peak at the beginning of the 20th century, however the last tattooed lady, Lorett Fulkerson, actually worked until 1995.

The decline in popularity of the tattooed lady coincided directly with the growing popularity of tattoos as a form of self-expression. This trend resulted in a loss of mystique for the tattooed lady performers and the act became less and less profitable.

While tattoos themselves are no longer seen as a marketable act, many female performers still favor tattoos. Osterud highlights several such women at the end of her book. One performer is Peekaboo Pointe, a burlesque dancer here in New York City. I have never been to a burlesque show or understood their popularity among my feminist friends, but after reading The Tattooed Lady and learning more about its culture I think I may just attend one of Peekaboo Pointe’s shows!

The Tattooed Lady provides a thorough history of both tattooed ladies and tattoos in general, yet is so full of fabulous photographs that it can be used as a coffee table book. The selection of photographs in the book is so phenomenal that I had to look through the entire book before starting to read it.

The Tattooed Lady makes an excellent gift for anyone with tattoos, anyone interested in American history, and any women’s history enthusiast. It is a fun and unique book and will keep anyone who picks it up turning pages.

Amelia Osterud currently lectures about tattooing and may come to NYC next year for an event. Heres to hoping!

Guest Post: Sex. Consent. Power. Pleasure. THE LINE screening & Panel Discussion

By Nancy Schwartzman, “The Line” Filmmaker

posted originally http://whereisyourline.org

Last week, over 100 New Yorkers (and a few strays from New Jersey) crowded into Gallery Bar to watch THE LINE and hear from a kick-ass group of panelists, including: Erin Burrows of SAFER, Joe Samalin of Men Can Stop Rape, and Ignacio Rivera, trans artist, poet and educator. Thanks to everyone that came out and gave their voice and support!

Folks crowded up to the bar and sat along the wall for cushy seats. We give extra love to those who sat on the concrete barroom floor. Julia Weis and Meredith Villano, of Paradigm Shift hosted the event and got us the Time Out critic’s pick for the night. I was extra nervous to present the film to the home-town crowd, but was rewarded by watching the story work as a catalyst to bring folks together to talk about consent, accountability, and creating a real change in our communities and bedrooms.

After the film, I answered questions – and to my delight – fielded one from the bartender, proving that everyone has a stake in the conversation. He wanted to discuss the socialization of men, and how we applaud male promiscuity, and judge the same behavior in females. I bounced his question to Joe, who could address the work being done by men to challenge male assumptions and socialization.

Joe mentioned that even doing this work personally and professionally, his gut when watching the film, still ran to victim blaming and doubting it ‘was rape’ first.

Even as I KNEW that wasn’t the case, and knew it was socialization, I couldn’t help but go to that place of questioning (you) and getting defensive.

I asked him later about using the film in his work as an educator:

The film helps us frame sexual violence not ONLY as a women’s issue but men’s issue, and it helps us address the nuances of mens responsibility as a whole/group for the violence committed by a not so small small minority of men. My dad (bless him) actually pointed out that I should have also mentioned that we don’t want to ‘other’ violent men, that we are ALL educated/socialized to be violent, and all have that potential.

Erin Burrows explained her work as an activist with SAFER and their unique campus-based perspective:

We can prevent sexual assault through a strong communally shared and agreed upon definition of consent that accounts for a wide range of sexualities, and that a definition of consent must put the onus of obtaining consent on the initiator, and insist that silence, a previous or current relationship or consent to a previous sexual act is NOT consent.

She emphasized that a strong sexual assault policy for a contained community, such as a college campus, must hold people who violate consent accountable through a fair disciplinary process.

Ignacio Rivera really called out the idea of privilege and reminded me that the personalis political. They discussed the importance of harm-reduction, non biased and non judgmental approaches to assessing risk, communication and best practice for sexual health. The concept and practice of Risk Aware Consensual Kink (RACK) and Safe, Sane & Consensual (SSC) were cited as examples, and were new terms for a lot of folks in the room, myself included. Ignacio made clear that we can all learn from the queer, kink and BDSM communities when we talk about consent and sexual behavior.

Melissa Gira Grant asked the question about how we could respond to the topics raised in the film and during the panel that address the needs of the queer community. Erin responded that a movement for sexual assault policy reform must come from a broad coalition of students that is sex-positive, trans and genderqueer inclusive, and accounts for the intersectionality of multiple identities and how that impacts a person’s experience as a survivor of sexual assault. Ignacio underscored their point about taking cues and lessons from the complexities of consent from within the kink and BDSM communities. I chimed in that we’re planning on shooting some short videos to accompany the educational package of THE LINE that will include these discussions and perspectives.

Audience member Kalimah Priforce spoke up:

I am a victim of rape. When I was two years old, my mother was giving me a bath. I slipped and fell, and was bleeding. My father punished her, and raped her. My brother was born of this rape, and I buried him 18 years later. Men need to stop this violence, because we are all effected by it.

After a bleak political week, including an escelation of the war in Afghanistan and the voting down of marraige equality in New York State, hosting and provoking dialogue about creating more sex-positive education, conversations and communities, was a big, bright spot. What are some other ways you’d like tocontinue this dialogue?

View “The Line” trailer

“Feminist Art Series” Artist Profile: Rebecca Goldings

This is the first installment of  Paradigm Shift’s Feminist Art Series, which will showcase up-and-coming visual designers whose work creates innovative ways to speak to the everyday feminist.

Please welcome Rebecca Goldings, our premiere Artist Profile!

Rebecca is an artist and mediamaker from Dallas whom I met a few summers back when the two of us were interning at a nonprofit arts organization. Being a fellow Texan and NYU attendee, we soon hit it off — and I knew once the PShift blog was up and running that we had to feature some of her amazing work.

Though Rebecca’s focus is multimedia art production, her portfolio also features several drawings that capture her vibrant, honest and unsettling perception of gender norms. Below are two examples of her work: “Barbie on a Leash” and “Sweetheart” (series) – both of which might be best described as resembling pop art with a twist.

Barbie On A Leash

Barbie On A Leash

Sweethearts (series)

Sweethearts (series)

Rebecca’s photography is also incredibly provocative, but you’ll have to check that out on her web site at www.rebeccagoldings.com, since we haven’t gotten clearance to post her photographs on our blog yet (C’mon, R!).  *** Staff Pick: “Another Hairy Thing With Lips”.

Of her many accolades, Rebecca was recently  selected as a 2009-10 Artist Fellow at The Drisha Institute for Jewish Education. In her spare time, she freelances web and graphic design, which you can also check out online (link above).

For price requests or questions about Rebecca’s work, please contact her by email at rgoldings@gmail.com.

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