12 thought-provoking articles from 2018

12 thought-provoking articles from 2018
Photo: kaboompics

Once upon a time I did weekly round-ups of articles, blog posts and stuff from the internet that caught my attention. While I grew tired of that particular blog post format, I do still enjoy sharing those things on Twitter (follow me here, if that sounds like something you’ll enjoy!). For the last couple of years I have shared the articles, from the previous year, that had the biggest impact on me. This is year no different.

Some of these articles stayed with me because I agree with them wholeheartedly. Some made me think about things differently. Many made me realise that I need to do better especially with anti-racism work. They’ve helped me understand the world a little better or challenged my views on certain issues, in the way that great writing so often does.

What Is A Woman Worth?

The thing about addressing misogyny is that it’s like unspooling a tangle of 1,001 different threads. It’s complicated and unclear and systemic and anything other than linear. And it touches everything. – What Is A Woman Worth?

Beyond Strange Bedfellows

Sex work, the directive argued, was not only the sole factor responsible for driving trafficking, but opposing it—in any form—was necessary for a “comprehensive attack” on trafficking. – Beyond Strange Bedfellows

On how supposedly pro-woman language was co-opted in an effort to unite the left and the right in the “war on trafficking” and the conflation of all sex work with human trafficking.

Comfortable Allies are not Allies

Being a comfortable ally is about getting cookies and kudos and although it’s awesome that I can count on you not to spit on me in the streets, what I really need, what we all really need are people who are dismantling the system that make bigots feel safe to spit on people in the streets in the first place. We need people who are using their privilege to take down the culture that supports this, even at the risk to their own comfort because they value liberation for all over comfort for them. – Comfortable Allies are not Allies

On why simply saying you are an ally to people of colour isn’t enough. We, as white people, need to walk the walk.

When Feminism Is White Supremacy in Heels

If there is not the intentional and action-based inclusion of women of color, then feminism is simply white supremacy in heels. – When Feminism Is White Supremacy in Heels

On why feminism needs to be 100% intersectional and why paying lip service to intersectionality is not enough.

Why we should all strive to be feminist killjoys

But feminists. We make people very uncomfortable. To be a feminist is to refuse to adhere to convention. To be a feminist is to highlight that many people’s comfort has been built on the oppression of others. To be a feminist is to disturb the fantasy that the world is fine as it is, despite its glaring inequalities. To be a feminist is to challenge people to look more closely, listen more carefully, and work harder so that everyone has the chance to be happy, not just a privileged few. – Why we should all strive to be feminist killjoys

A Meditation on Personal Branding, Truth, and Our Digital Selves

The trick must be to lean into the wilderness of it with the best intentions, I think. To recognize, like in real life, that we can’t be or do everything perfectly all at once. That it’s okay to not always add up or be on. To not always be palatable or perfect. To just exist. – A Meditation on Personal Branding, Truth, and Our Digital Selves

I’ve legit read this essay, about how we choose to portray ourselves online, about once a week since it was published. So much to think about, so many chords struck and I’m no closer to reaching an answer to the social media related questions I ask myself. I guess, in keeping with my theme for 2019, my social media feeds are still a work in process.

I had to quit my hospital job when I resented patients who got better

Before, when I’d experienced strain in my personal life work had been a welcome distraction, but now every day I’d re-live the trauma of mum receiving her diagnosis. I was trapped in a bad dream I couldn’t wake up from. – I had to quit my hospital job when I resented patients who got better

This is an experience that can’t have been easy for Catherine Renton to share, but I am so glad she chose to.

All I want for Christmas is equality of representation and opportunity

People underrepresented in the glitz of awards are continuously overrepresented in low-to-mid level positions, ‘menial’ labour, or in ‘free’ labour at a cost to health, time and personal resources, such as non-profit activism. What is harder for a white woman with connections compared to a white man, is harder yet for a LGBTQ+ and/or disabled and/or woman of colour without them. – All I want for Christmas is equality of representation and opportunity

We, white women, need to do better by people of colour. Particularly when it comes to the women of colour we organise alongside and then write out of the official narratives of our activism. If you’re noticing a theme in some of these articles, that’s because there is one. White supremacy should have no place in our social justice movements, yet it does and we, as white people, need to do the work of dismantling it.

For most people recovery will be a series of false starts and empty promises

When we decide that we want to recover, and we fall at the first hurdle, we feel as if we have failed. If we had more will power, if we were stronger, better people, then we would have stayed clean. It becomes harder for the people around us to keep the faith each time that we relapse and re-enter the cycle of recovery. – For most people recovery will be a series of false starts and empty promises

Recovery isn’t linear and when we treat it as such we put pressure on people to get it “right” first time.

Take You Me For a Sponge?: How My Marriage Survived Illness and Caregiving

That’s the good thing about both sponges and marriages: They’re both absorbent and, if tended, resilient. However hard you squeeze, if you realize what you’re doing and let go, they regain their form. – Take You Me For a Sponge?: How My Marriage Survived Illness and Caregiving

This is a gorgeous essay on love, marriage, illness, and caregiving.

‘My wife has a quirky cancer, she is informed. There’s nothing the specialist can do’

People show you pictures of happy times that you can never quite place. This gives you solace. So many happy times, that you’ve forgotten half of them. – ‘My wife has a quirky cancer, she is informed. There’s nothing the specialist can do’

This essay is as devastatingly beautiful as everyone says it is. Read it, it’s worth your time, but know that it will likely result in tears streaming down your face.

“Who Gets To Live In Victimville?”: Why I Participated In A New Docuseries on The Clinton Affair

So, what feels more important to me than whether I am owed or deserving of a personal apology is my belief that Bill Clinton should want to apologize. I’m less disappointed byhim, and more disappointed for him. He would be a better man for it . . . and we, in turn, a better society. – “Who Gets To Live In Victimville?”: Why I Participated In A New Docuseries on The Clinton Affair

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