Showing posts from April, 2019

STEMinist - Broxicity

Up until I was ten years old, when my mother choreographed for and taught dance to the kids of the local Indian community, I looked up to one of her students. She was in her later teens and was the star of every show because she was the best dancer in the group. I knew she was studying to be a civil engineer, and she refused to listen to her mother’s advice to take better care of her skin every time she went out into the field for work, making her intrepid in my eyes. After we moved away, my mother unsuccessfully searched for a contact number or an email address to get back in touch with her family for decades. Twenty-two years later (just last month) my mother was finally able to track her down and speak to her. I was happy to hear that she asked about my career and wanted to know if I was still working in mechanical engineering. When my mother said yes, she said, “Good.” Women frequently dropping out of STEM fields is a very commonly acknowledged, and almost accepted, pheno

Navigating Performative Allyship Within Spaces of Genuine Solidarity: What Does it Mean to be an Ally?

In the wake of the horror that was the Christchurch mosque shooting, Brunei’s anti-LGBT laws and the current political atmosphere, solidarity and community must become our anchor. It can act as the compass that guides us through this tumultuous period of anger and sorrow. As the old but never aged feminist saying goes, ‘the personal is the political’. This quote holds particularly true for those of us who exist within the margins of identities that do not align with white cis-heteronormativity. But for those whose reality is a privileged one and who don’t necessarily have to think about how skin colour, gender and sexuality impact job opportunities, healthcare, the right to exist, etc., this article is for you.  Particularly, for those of you who want to support the equality and rights of marginal groups and identities, or who have already declared themselves allies to these groups, but don’t seem to understand how this works in concrete terms. Because it takes more than hashtag ac

What Tayla Harris Taught Australia About Misogyny

A few weeks ago, young women in Australia and around the globe discovered a new role model in sports superstar Tayla Harris, when a photograph of Harris appearing to defy gravity went viral. People were inspired by the fantastic photo, which captured the skill, dedication and physical fitness of an athlete in her prime. The photo and its reception said so much about the state of female athletes in today’s world. Image Description: Photo of Tayla Harris on a turf soccer/ football field. She is shown mid-jump, with her left leg bent behind her at a 90-degree angle and her right leg stretched almost straight up towards the sky (with a very slight bend at the knee). Her right arm is hanging down by her side and her left arm is stretched straight across her chest and behind her leg. She is wearing a black jersey with a multi-colored patch at the bottom (red, yellow, blue, green), a pair of white shorts and bright orange cleats. Her hair is blonde and pulled up in a high ponytail.

Feminism and Health: Our Bodies are not Testing Grounds

Women, transgender and non-binary people's relationships with the medical system have historically been fraught .  Many of them have left medical appointments feeling unheard, belittled, humiliated or like they are prone to hyperbole.  In order to change our collective relationship, interaction and engagement with the medical system to serve rather than hurt, it is important to understand why our relation to medicine has been problematic for us.  This piece will illustrate the ‘why’ through the lens of women’s experiences. However, transgender and nonbinary people face a multitude of additional healthcare issues. In order to do this topic justice, I will consider it more in-depth in a subsequent post. Image Description: Photo of a nurse taking someone's blood pressure. The photo is taken from above and set against a light blue background. Both of the nurse's arms are outstretched, while only one of the patients is. The nurse is holding the patient's el