The Femisphere: A Link Roundup

ESPN The Body Issue 2016 cover: Vince Wilfork
ESPN The Body Issue 2016 cover: Vince Wilfork

A Body Image, Body Politics, and Body Justice News Roundup



  • Terrorism is happening and has been happening around the globe. Are we paying attention when it is not a western, predominately white country that is terrorized?  Are we grieving for the lives lost and people of Istanbul, Dhaka and Bhagdad? Why are the lives of Muslim taken by terrorism so easily absorbed as the holy month of Ramadan was coopted by violence? Where is the indignation, the outrage and most importantly the collective support for this loss? Let’s not let fear win over empathy and humanity.


  • In Tal Abyad, a former Daesh stronghold, 27-year-old co-mayor Layla Mohammed is setting new precedents for the town’s inhabitants, particularly its women. …In October 2015, the 178 member committee that governs the town elected two ethnically and gender diverse co-mayors—Kurd Layla Mohammed and Arab Mansour Saloum (later replaced by Hamdan al-Abad). – Syrian Town of Tal Abyad Has First Female Mayor via


Disability & Activism

  • “On 22 April 2016, the Food and Drug Administration proposed a ban on electrical stimulation devices used to punish people with intellectual and developmental disabilities with electric shocks. There’s one program in the country that uses electric shock as a form of punishment.  The Judge Rotenberg Center [JRC], a school and treatment facility for disabled children and adults just outside of Boston, has not only done this legally but has also prevented state agencies in Massachusetts and New York from stopping it for decades. … To make sure that the ban goes through and put an end to JRC’s shocks once and for all, we need to send them as many comments on the proposed ban as possible before the comment period ends on 25 July 2016.” – Tell the FDA: Stop the Shock! by Silence Breaking Sound Blog. The linked blog offers specific instructions on how to comment in support of the FDA proposed ban to ensure that it goes through.


Identity, Art & Culture


  • “Vince Wilfork is a big, proud man who doesn’t give a damn what you think. That’s part of the reason the veteran nosetackle was willing to pose nude for ESPN’s latest edition of “The Body Issue,” in which he showed off all 325 glorious pounds of his body. One of main goals of the annual “Body Issue” is to examine top athletes of all shapes and sizes, and there’s no denying that Wilfork — however big he may be — has been one of the best defensive lineman in football over the past decade.”



  • “This stuff about fat bodies—the truth of lived experience—isn’t easy to speak about publicly because it’s not the joyful, uplifting message of [fat] acceptance. What [Roxanne] Gay’s talking about is the harder, more candid reality of what it means to take up space in a body that doesn’t grace the cover of a Torrid catalog. At the end [of her This American Life] interview with Ira Glass, she says, “And even when you’re Lane Bryant fat, it’s a struggle. But at least you have that. I don’t even have that. And so it’s like, let me feel the way I want to feel. Just let me be me.” – Allison McCarthy gets accountable for dismissing Roxanne Gay’s lived experience in Roxanne Gay I’m Sorry I wasn’t Listening for the Establishment.


  • “We live in a world that has hardened us and conveyed the message that being soft, and raw and talking about our pain means to be weak. Through social media, we’ve been displaying radical vulnerability by sharing our stories, experiences, and pain. By doing so we break down stigmas and bring visibility to folks whose trauma and histories are similar to ours. We empower other survivors to speak out. This work and visibility is extremely crucial and, in many cases, life-saving. When we are radically vulnerable, we not only work to heal ourselves, we are healing those around us.”- Radical Vulnerability: Why It’s Important to be Visible Online if You’re Sensitive Nik Moreno for Wear Your Voice


  • “Earlier today[July 6], Calvin Klein revealed photos from their AW16 campaign. Atlanta rapper Young Thug was one of the stars, appearing alongside other musicians like Frank Ocean, Yung Lean, Tommy Genesis, and South Korean trap artist Keith Ape, as well as models like Kate Moss and Bella Hadid. On top of their print campaign, the brand have also released a series of short video spots featuring the models. In Young Thug’s clip, the rapper responds to an interview question – seemingly asking about his decision to wear dresses – by discussing his own perception of gender. ‘In my world of course, it don’t matter,’ he says, ‘You could be a gangster with a dress, you could be a gangster with baggy pants. I feel like there’s no such thing as gender.’” – Dazed Digital


  • The Trans Life & Liberation Art Series creates art about and with living trans people on the front 5188f4a5c70c4fc254f06bacd62c9c0a_originallines of our liberation movement.” You can support this amazing portrait series on Kickstarter! “It’s a weekly series of collaborative portraits created about and with living trans people on the front lines of our liberation movement. Trans visual artists across the U.S. work with other artists and organizers to create portraits that tell their stories and honor their work.”


  • The 20th Anniversary Author’s Edition of Stone Butch Blues is available in multiple formats, including a free PDF copy. Leslie Feinberg worked up to a few days before hir death to ready the 20th anniversary Author’s Edition of Stone Butch Blues, to make it available to all, for free. This action was part of hir entire life work as a communist to “change the world” in the struggle for justice and liberation from oppression. This Author’s Edition of Stone Butch Blues is dedicated to CeCe McDonald, a young Minneapolis (trans)woman of color organizer and activist sent to prison for defending herself against a white neo-Nazi attacker. #RIPLeslieFeinberg

#Black Lives Matter


  • “To love the non-black people in my life but always harbor some small resentment knowing that they will always have it better, and to be inherently suspicious of allies because I worry they care more about looking good on social media than they do about my actual life. It’s exhausting to be sought out to write essays about race in popular culture, and to try to explain that there are some days when I absolutely cannot muster a single shit about taking a celebrity to task for saying something boringly bigoted when I am watching videos of my black brothers and sisters being murdered in the street as revenge for having the audacity to breathe.” – Black Exhaustion By Pilot Viruet for Matter on Medium





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