"The women of Bikini Kill let guitarist Billy Karren be in their feminist punk band, but only if he's willing to just "do some shit." Being a feminist dude is like that. We may ask you to "do some shit" for the band, but you don't get to be Kathleen Hannah."--@heatherurehere


Friday, December 21, 2007

Men Doing Feminist Work: Feminist Dad

Marc at Feminist Dad doesn't have much time for blogging these days, being the father of a new little kid, but when he does find some time to post, he explores a lot of interesting topics, and asks a lot of questions. I'm particularly fond of his discussion on the blog about the ins and outs of him joining a local "mother's" group:
But what about fathering? What does it mean to father, if mothering carries such a gendered connotation? If it means maintaining the breadwinner role, then many fathers today will strongly argue that for years we've been working to redefine what fathering means in our society. If this is so, are we conflating notions of mothering and fathering work? Are we all neutral Parents, or should there still be a "Mom's Group" and then perhaps a separate one for Dads? After all, there are Dads in our neighborhood. They just don't go to the meetings, or at least not the ones that I know about.

He also often notices the ways in which rigid gender roles along the lines of parenting pop up along the way, like when they first began planning a flight with their newborn:
The bad news is that only mothers seem to be expected to fly with (or without) their babies: Mothers flying with, and now without, their child will be permitted to bring breast milk in quantities greater than three ounces as long as it is declared for inspection at the security checkpoint. How about "Mothers (and now introducing, new and improved, Fathers!) flying with their child..." for a change. The rest of the TSA page speaks in gender-free language, mostly by using "you" and "your" alot. But that doesn't change the headlining picture of a mother feeding a baby.
There are lots of daddy blogs out there (Marc has some on his blogroll), but this is a great one for being explicitly feminist.

Go check it out.
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