Tag: sexism

French Author Yann Moix Claims Women Over 50 Are ‘Invisible’ to Him

Everyone has their own preferences in terms of romantic partners.  If you work out and are a busy bee, you might be looking for someone who can keep up with your active lifestyle. If you’re a big reader, you might want someone who can talk books with you, unless you’re someone who goes for the ‘opposites attract approach.’ Everybody is different, and all of this is pretty fair and understandable for the most part.

 

But then there’s popular French novelist and television writer Yann Moix, who has a preference toward younger women. About twenty-five years younger to be exact!

 

While speaking to French magazine Marie Claire, Moix expressed that he is “‘incapable’ of loving a woman over [the age of fifty]”, and that women over this age are “invisible” to him. Yikes.

 

Photograph of Yann Moix

Image via Kanada Versicherung

 

 

The French novelist went on to justify his preferences:

 

I prefer younger women’s bodies, that’s all. End of. The body of a twenty-five-year-old woman is extraordinary. The body of a woman of fifty is not extraordinary at all.

 

 

Since making these comments, Moix has come under fire from online critics, who have branded his comments sexist. Here is a selection of such tweets:

 

 

Pictures of beautiful celebrities over the age of 50 have also been posted in retaliation.

 

 

Even news stations are joining in on criticizing Yann Moix!

 

 

Yann Moix tried to make light of his comments, stating:

 

I like who I like and I don’t have to answer to the court of taste… 50-year-old women do not see me either! They have something else to do than to get around a neurotic who writes and reads all day long. It’s not easy to be with me.

 

With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, this publicity comes at a bad time and only time will tell if women of any age are going to be sending roses to Yann Moix!

 

 

Featured Image via Evening Standard

marian keyes

Irish Author Marian Keyes Calls out ‘Sexist Imbalance’ in Comic Fiction Prize

Irish author Marian Keyes has called out the  Bollinger Wodehouse Prize, awarded for comic fiction, as the shortlist of sixty-two novels failed to include her newest release The Break, and has pointed out that in the eighteen years the prize has been running, it has been awarded to a female author just three times. 

 

Speaking to an audience at the Hay literary festival, Keyes said that a “sexist imbalance” has resulted in the huge disparity. Keyes also said to BBC News Channel’s Talking Books show:

 

Say what you like about me, but my books are funny. What more can I do to qualify?…Things that women love are just automatically dismissed as frivolous nonsense. Football could be considered as frivolous nonsense but it’s treated as hard news in the newspapers. So I think by giving the men the prizes, it just reinforces that the men are more important.

 

However, Keyes’ publisher Michael Joseph,an imprint of Penguin, confirmed that her novel was not received for consideration for the prize due to an error. They said, “As publishers, it is our responsibility to ensure that our author’s books are submitted for prizes. We can confirm she was not entered for the Wodehouse Prize. We believe we did enter The Break for the prize this year and we are devastated to hear the books have not been received.”

 

The publisher went on to confirm that though the novel had not ended up being entered, this did not take away from Keyes’ orginial point. “There are many brilliant women writing humorous books” they said, “and it is curious not more of them are shortlisted or winners of this prize.”

 

Before The Break‘s publication, 35 million copies of Irish Book Award winner Keyes’ novels had been sold and they have been translated into thirty-three languages. She has been an outspoken supporter of women’s rights. 

 

Featured Image Via Daily Express

Amber Tamblyn

Amber Tablyn’s Debut Novel Set to Release This Month!

Popular film and television actor Amber Tamblyn (The Sisterhood of the Traveling PantsJoan of Arcadia) will be releasing her debut novel this month.

 

 

'Any Man'

Image Via HarperCollins Publishers

 

The book is entitled Any Man and details the story of one woman, Maude, as she hunts down men in bars, online, and even from within the comfort of their own homes and sexually assaults them in the most horrific of ways. The entire story takes place through the perspectives of the victims as they struggle against a justice system that doesn’t believe them, friends and family who shame and alienate them, and a media that hounds them while revealing their personal lives and the details of their assaults to the public. 

 

The novel is meant as a commentary on rape culture and a society that is so obsessed with views and the idea of celebrity that it doesn’t consider the lives it is damaging when it forces victims into the limelight. It also shows the ways in which victims of sexual assault are shamed, quieted, and tossed aside; along with the power and strength it takes to survive something so horrific.

 

It’s also interesting that the novel flips the story so the assailant is a woman and the victims are men. When asked about this, Tamblyn told Buzzfeed:

 

“By flipping the gender norms of rape culture, I hope to elicit some fresh, challenging conversations and examinations of who we are as a society while also allowing readers to relish in what I hope will be one of the most vile, heartless, and haunting female protagonists in modern American fiction.”

 

The novel sounds like it will be dark, unsettling, and all too relevant in a society in which, according to RAINN, an American is assaulted every ninety-eight seconds and one out of every six women will be the victim of an attempted or completed rape in her lifetime.

 

Sexual assault is so wildly prevalent in today’s society, new stories seem to appear in the media on a daily basis. The assaults are happening everywhere; HollywoodWall Streetthe militarythe NFLthe White House, and even within our schools.

 

The epidemic of sexual assaults on college campuses was revealed in the Emmy-nominated documentary The Hunting Ground; showing how colleges fail to protect, acknowledge, and find justice for victims despite the fact that one in four women will be sexually assaulted while attending college.

 

This is why Any Man is extremely important and, as someone who has publicly spoken out against assault before, it’s no surprise Tamblyn would choose this as the topic for her first novel.

 

However, despite this being her first extended work of fiction, Tamblyn’s not exactly new to the writing scene. She has a collection of chapbooks she’s self-published and released over the years, along with a collection of poems she released with Harper Collins in 2015 that describes what it means to be an actor in Hollywood, many famous celebrity deaths, and how it feels to be constantly in the limelight, Dark Sparkler.

 

Any Man is set to release on June 26.

 

 

 

Featured Image via Variety

 

Cat yawn

‘Cat Person’ Author Speaks out About Real-Life Inspiration for the Viral Short Story

This past December, a 4,000-word short story took the internet by storm when it was published in The New Yorker. The story is titled Cat Person, and details the trials of twenty-year-old college student Margot as she meets and briefly dates thirty-four-year-old Robert.

 

The all-too-realistic piece of fiction showcases Margot throughout the many quick-changing stages of a blooming, new relationship: the excitement, the giddiness, the butterflies of a growing new crush, the fantasies about everything this relationship could possibly grow into, all the way through unto the grounding realization that this person is not at all who you’d hoped they were.

 

*** SPOILERS AHEAD***

 

The rose colored glasses always begin to fade, and, when they do, Margot realizes Robert is not someone she wants to see. And, by the time everything’s progressed to their first (and only) sexual encounter, Margot’s already realized that she’s not at all attracted to this stranger of a man. She feels repulsion towards him, but doesn’t know how to stop, seeing as sex has already been initiated and they are well in the midst of it all. Margot allows her mind to drift off so she can “just get it over with” while Robert does what he wants until he’s finished:

 

…she felt like a doll again, as she had outside the 7-Eleven, though not a precious one now—a doll made of rubber, flexible and resilient, a prop for the movie that was playing in his head.

 

She ends their relationship shortly after, telling Robert she’s not interested and asking him to stop texting her. The story ends months down the line when Robert gets drunk at Margot’s go-to bar, then spends the remainder of night verbally harassing her via text messages, starting with:

 

“Hi Margot, I saw you out at the bar tonight. I know you said not to text you but I just wanted to say you looked really pretty. I hope you’re doing well!”

“I know I shouldnt say this but I really miss you”

 

And quickly escalating to and ending with:

 

“Answer me”

“Whore.”

 

This story spoke to millions of women of all ages who couldn’t help but see themselves in Margot. The societal expectations placed upon women and girls to always be appeasing, to never come across as difficult, and to never anger or upset the man you are in bed with are an unmanageable weight to bear. This story spread to such immense popularity because it worked to shine a light on the ways in which we are taught that consent always looks like x, y, or z. And that, if you agreed to the encounter initially, there’s no backing out; we are taught to believe that you cannot revoke your yes.

 

I don’t think I, personally, know any women (myself, included) who haven’t been in this exact situation multiple times over the years. Nights that end this way always feel like they’re surrounded by this foggy cloud of discomfort, fear, disappointment, dissociation, and disgust (both with them and with yourself). It’s scary to be alone with someone you don’t know very well, and feel just completely stuck inside their house with no real way out. You never want to be rude by asking to leave, and you also don’t want to anger them for fear of how they might react.

 

It’s the sort of situation where your heart races and your palms sweat and you feel yourself quickly weighing out all of your options until you, eventually, decide that, well, it’s already pretty late and, if you just stick it out until morning, you can go home and shower and pretend it never happened. This way, you avoid any awkward or scary confrontations, and ensure they’re feelings remain unhurt while you just mime your way through the rest of the evening; letting your thoughts wander somewhere else, to some far-off place until it’s all, finally, over. (It doesn’t even have to be a stranger from some Tinder date; we can all-too-often find ourselves ignoring uncomfortable or coercive behavior from people we are already in committed relationships with, allowing them to do what they want under the guise of being in love and being too afraid to rock the boat.)

 

This situation is such a commonality within the dating-sphere, it’s no surprise that author Kristen Roupenian drew from her own personal, real-life experiences to create this story. Roupenian spoke to The Times earlier this week, opening up about her own Cat Person for the very first time.

 

It all started when Roupenian, who had spent many years in a long-term committed relationship, found herself single at thirty-five for the first time since she was in her twenties:

 

When I was 26 and dating, I was such a mess and everything was terrible. I thought now I would be a mature adult and wouldn’t screw up and would understand when people are garbage right away. But instead I felt just as smacked by it and just as confused…I went on a date, it went poorly, and we got in a fight. And that’s alright, but I thought, ‘I’m 35, how did I make this mistake? How did I misread someone so completely?

 

The story grew to success seemingly overnight, and resulted in Roupenian landing a two-book deal with Scout Press, including a collection of short-stories set to release in 2019 and a currently untitled novel.

 

The success was by no accident, however. The story resonated, and still resonates, with people across the board.

 

Dating is never as easy as any of us hope it’s going to be. And, it can be difficult when you’re meeting all of these people to not feel tired of it all, and just ready to settle down with the next semi-charming, borderline-compatible adult human you stumble across. But, once you’ve already begun to force a connection with someone and convince yourself of it’s sustainability, it can be nearly impossible to come to terms with how you genuinely feel, walk out, and leave the situation behind you.

 

Roupenian went on to tell the Times about her own views surrounding the dating culture our society has built:

 

I think that young women in particular feel they have to manage and control and soothe and charm and weave this magic around men…The truth is, most people are not the right person for you, and the person who is the right person for you will still not be a perfect human being.

 

Since the Cat Person publication, Roupenian has learned she was never really alone in this thinking. Women all over have shared their own stories of uncomfortable dates that have ended in aggression, shame, and coercion.

 

I only hope that, now that a light has been shone on the aspects of dating and consent that before we had only ever been told to deal with and ignore, we can finally begin to see a shift in what we do and do not consider normal, healthy, and okay. 

 

In the meantime, we can continue sharing our stories. We can acknowledge and find comfort in the autonomy of our own bodies, and the fact that no one, no matter what their previous relationship to us may be, is allowed to steal that from us. We can refuse to accept the things that feel uncomfortable, scary, or harmful, and not feel any embarrassment, guilt, or shame in vocalizing that. We can understand and accept our own imperfect humanness, and work on erasing both our desire to mold and shift others’ views of us and our impossible desire to never disappoint.

 

We can keep standing up and speaking out. 

 

 

 

Featured Image via Sykesville Veterinary Clinic

Mr Men Little Miss

‘Mr. Men’ and ‘Little Miss’ Stories Are Sexist, Says New Study

As society becomes more and more woke, we become increasingly aware of how problematic some of the things we loved as children actually are. Time has not been kind on our childhoods. Such is the case with the Mr. Men and Little Miss series of books.

 

The Mr. Men series was started by Roger Hargreaves in 1971 while the Little Miss series began a decade later. Hargreaves’ son Adam took over the series after Roger’s sudden death in 1988. To date, over 250 million of these books have been sold.

 

A study conducted by the University of Lincoln has claimed that many of these books are sexist.

 

Mr Men Little Miss

Image Via Business Wire

 

According to The Sun, the study found that male characters on average received twelve more words than female characters. Little Miss characters have to be saved in 51.5% of stories, whereas the characters of Mr. Men only have to be saved 32.6 percent of the time, perpetuating the stereotype that females are less powerful and more passive.

 

There are also other, more obvious examples of gender stereotyping in the books. The first two books of the Little Miss series contained characters with names like Little Miss Bossy and Little Miss Naughty. Some of the books also contain passages like the following:

“She managed to find herself the perfect job. She now works for Mr Lazy! She cooks and cleans for him”

“I know what that naughty little lady needs.”

 

Mr Tickle tickles

Image Via eBay

 

In the brand’s defense, newer books have started to include characters that challenge traditional gender stereotypes. Little Miss Inventor was published this past March, just in time for International Women’s Day. In a statement to The Bookseller, Egmont, the company that publishes the book series, described the character as “intelligent, ingenious, and inventive.” Adam Hargreaves himself added that he has enjoyed writing a book “that promotes a positive role model.”

 

Of course not all of the Mr. Men characters have positive connotations, such as Mr. Greedy and Mr. Lazy, but hopefully this shift in characterization for the Little Miss characters will only continue to grow as the books’ creators focus more awareness on the messages that their books promote.

 

Feature Image Via Calendar Club