Category Archives: Gender, the Body, and the Self

Discrimination Against Overweight Applicants at Google?

Google has been talked about as a company that takes extremely good care of it’s employees, but this story paints a less than great picture of discriminatory hiring practices at the company.  A woman faces discrimination on the grounds of being female, a minority, or a mother in hiring practices, and also because they are heavier.  Hiring employees should not take weight, sexual orientation, or motherhood into effect, so why can’t we amend equal opportunity policies to include those groups and actually enforce the policies?

Female Mutilation

Image taken from

 There is an issue of women’s body parts being removed. We have women adding body parts, we have women taking body parts away here in America by way of plastic surgery. However, in some parts of the world, it’s not such a rosy picture. Some women have their clitoris removed. Some do it willingly not understanding how it will affect them later in life, some don’t do it willingly. Some say this is violence against women, some say this is a religious/ cultural belief in certain parts of the world and that it should be respected. It is still changing your body in some way that is not natural and is not what or how you were born.

Read here.

If male circumcision were as painful as what these women endure and if it affected men more, I somehow wonder if the issue would be stamped out more quickly?

Women More Generous Givers than Men

According to a recent study by the Women’s Philanthropy Institute at the University of Indiana, women are as much as 40% more likely to donate than men.the study found that a female-headed household with a family income of at least $103,000 is likely to give to charities, on average, nearly $1,910, or $1,000 more a year than a similar household in which a man controls the checkbook.Women were 55% more likely donors to international causes than men, 42% more likely to religious organizations, and 32% more likely to youth and family groups. Image and Article From: Time 

This article was very interesting. I think gender roles that are enforced by parents and our society have a huge deal to do with why women are more likely to donate money than men. Young girls are given toys, such as baby dolls, and are taught take care of the baby. Similarly, throughout a girls lifetime, she is expected to be caring, loving, and nurturing. Boys, on the other hand, are not expected to be caring. They are suppose to be the protector and the macho-man. So, I feel that there is a direct link between traditional gender roles and donating. I feel that women may feel that it is their obligation and duty to be caring and giving. That may be the reason why women are more generous than men.

Who’s in charge of your body image?

Photo from HERE

Often times women have negative feelings about their bodies, but is that because they don’t like their bodies or could it be that they feel others don’t like their bodies and that makes them feel shame? According to this study women maybe content with their body but often time are put down by people they hold important.

The most powerful influence on women’s appreciation of their bodies is how they believe important others view them, the study suggests. On the flip side, the more women are able to focus on the inner workings of their body — or how their bodies function and feel — rather than how they appear to others, the more they will appreciate their own bodies.

And the more a woman appreciates her body, the more likely she is to eat intuitively — responding to physical feelings of hunger and fullness rather than emotions or the mere presence of food.

“Women who focus more on how their bodies function and less on how they appear to others are going to have a healthier, more positive body image and a tendency to eat according to their bodies’ needs rather than according to what society dictates,” said Tracy Tylka, associate professor of psychology at Ohio State University and senior author of the study.


Sending Mom to the Chop Shop

Sending Mom to the Chop Shop

“Breast augmentations increased 55% from 2000 to 2006, going from 212,500 procedures to 329,326.  Breast lifts — another favorite among the mommy makeover crowd — went up 96% during the past six years, with the total number of procedures going from 52,836 to 103,788.  Tummy tucks jumped a whopping 4,384% and buttock lifts increased 174%.” For more on this article click link below.

A major trend is the “Mommy Make Over” and to me it is sad that so many women (myself included) are asshamed of their bodies after such a wonderful and life chaning event as childbirth.  Having my son was the bet thing that I ever did and I have the strech marks and tummy to prove it.   Why should the aftermath of such a wonderful event be embarrising?  What is causing these increases in the “Mommy Make Over”?  The images that we are bombarded with via media are so unrealistic that it’s almost comical if it wasn’t such a serious topic.  In many countries the signs that a woman has had a child is an honor.   Why can’t it be here and what can we do to fix it?

Image retreved from here.

Read more on this artical here.

U.N. Backs Gay Rights

In this historic decision, the U.N. has decided for the first time in history to back gay rights.  While the support does not bring any established laws for the protection/rights of the GLBT community yet, the importance of this step towards equality cannot be denied.  “It also established a formal U.N. process to document human rights abuses against gays, including discriminatory laws and acts of violence”.  While I feel that Americans are slowly but surely developing a more tolerant attitude toward these alternate lifestyles, it is also important to realize that countries banding together in support of gay rights will also put needed pressure on less accepting countries.

The 1st Video Vixen

I remember watching this video in my psychology class at PV and thought it would be a great contribute to this project. This video is about a woman who was treated like a freak because of the way she was built physically. I believe everyone should watch it because the way women present themselves now is just a result of the image in society. Women shouldn’t have to show off their bodies just to make money and some women are stooping to this level. I think this would be informative not just to BLACK women but to ALL women.

Tig Ol’ Bitties (Really!!!!)



As I was searching for a video for my topic this week, I opened youtube and found the enclose youtube video posted on the MAIN page!  As I watched the video and listened to the music and viewed the images, I was totally shocked and appalled.  It is any wonder that PLASTIC SURGEONS have hit PAY dirt in recent years with breast enhancements.  I am a woman in my thirties who gives in to the societal and cultural beliefs we have about how women’s bodies should look, however, I have managed to skate past issues related to my breast size.  I would much prefer to take five thousand dollars and travel to a third world country than go under the knife to surgically modify my body. So, I guess in some respects, I have managed to be “o.k.” with this area of my body.  I can’t help but think of how videos such as this might impact the younger generation who are trying to find their place in this world.


image found here

In honor of Gay and Lesbian Pride Month, the actress-turned-lifestyle guru has dedicated this week’s GOOP to a serious discussion about homosexuality and the Bible. But first, she explains her own views.

The actress admits that she doesn’t really understand the idea of homosexuality being morally wrong.

“When my daughter came home from school one day saying that a classmate had two mommies,” she recalls, “my response was, ‘Two mommies? How lucky is she?!’ What does it actually say in the bible that will cause some people to be upset by my line of thinking?”


I think that this post is wonderful because Gwyneth Paltrow just voices her opinion and I love her perspective. I agree that it would be a very lucky child to have two mothers, they wouldn’t need for nourishment or love, and would get all the attention they need. I can understand how it is believed that a two parent household is better, yet what the saying actually means is that a man and women, the mother and father, household is better, and I don’t necessarily agree with that statement. Children don’t need a man and a women, they need love and care, and a safe place to call home. It shouldn’t matter whether or not the household is a man-women household, a two father household, or a two mother household, they can each sufficiently raise a child.


Beauty Before Brains

Image retrieved from here.

When well-respected news-show host Greta Van Susteren moved from CNN to Fox in early 2002, she not only had a makeover; she surgically altered her face to appear younger and more “beautiful.” When her new show, On the Record, premiered, her hair was perfectly coiffed and she sat behind a table so viewers could see her short skirt and legs.

Read full article here.

Image retrieved from here.

Many believed that Greta Van Susteren’s role as an intelligent television journalist, illustrated progression for women. It was her brains, which made her so successful and not her appearance. This was until Van Susteren made her transition to Fox, where she appeared to have a younger looking face due to cosmetic surgery. Analyst, Robin Gerber concluded that Van Susteren “has become a painful reminder of women’s inequality… Being smart, smarter, smartest isn’t enough. By trying to become just another pretty face, Van Susteren instead became another cultural casualty.” In a sense I do agree with Gerber’s statement concerning Van Susteren’s surgery. She gave hope to women that beauty is not everything and that her appearance did not contribute to her position in power. Some can say that with her having this elective surgery, she has fed into this idea of what the media considers culturally acceptable for a women’s appearance.