Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Feisty fighting females

The British Pathé blog has a wonderful post entitled Ladies Who Lunge: Women Fighting Through History (great title too). It features early film clips of women stage fighters doing boxing, judo, and so on. I had rather hoped that it was about women fencers, which would have been a very bluestocking activity, but nevertheless these gals certainly have gallantry and gumption!

Thursday, 7 July 2011

Women's rights around the world

The United Nations has just published a report on women's rights around the world, and The Guardian has created an interactive timeline of when women got the vote in various countries around the world, as this is a key indicator of women's rights being taken seriously.

However, women's rights more generally are still a work in progress:
More than half of working women in the world, 600 million, are trapped in insecure jobs without legal protection, according to the first flagship report of the new agency UN Women. A similar number do not have even basic protection against domestic violence, it finds, while sexual assault has become a hallmark of modern conflict.

Wednesday, 6 July 2011

Suffragette surveillance photos

BoingBoing has a great blogpost about surveillance photos taken by Scotland Yard of suffragettes in 1912.

The original article from which the photos came was in the BBC Magazine in 2003.
"On the one hand, the state considered them dangerous terrorists, but on the other it simply did not know what to do with them," says Ms Tulloch.

"The police and prison officials were so worried about what to do they made sure that every step they took was authorised by the Home Office. In the records you can find daily communications between the governor of Holloway Prison and Whitehall. In that era it was extremely rare for government to communicate so quickly."

But the police surveillance did nothing to stop the movement - nor did it dim the growing support they were finding in the country.

There's also a potted history of the suffragettes on the BBC site.

Wednesday, 13 April 2011

Alan Turing revisited

There's a fascinating blogpost about Alan Turing by Christopher Pressler, who is descended from another hero of Bluestockings, Charles Babbage - he who encouraged the Enchantress of Numbers, Ada Lovelace Byron.

Do peruse it, gentle readers.

Tuesday, 5 April 2011

Mary Wollstonecraft talk

On Sunday 22nd May, after morning service at 11 am in the chapel of Harris Manchester College (Mansfield Road, Oxford, OX1 3TD), there will be a talk at 1 pm by Lyndall Gordon, the author of Vindication: A Life of Mary Wollstonecraft, concerning the life and times and Unitarian connections of the 18th-century feminist (wife of William Godwin, mother of Mary Shelley, and “the foremother of much modern thinking about education and human rights, as well as about women's rights, female sexuality and the institution of marriage"). Please bring your own sandwich lunch; for directions to the college, consult the Chapel Society website.

Tuesday, 8 March 2011

Happy International Women's Day

Today is International Women's Day - sadly hardly even noticed in the UK. It has been celebrated around the world since 1910. In Russia and Italy, the mimosa or Silver Wattle flower is associated with International Women's Day.

The Bluestocking would like to wish all our readers a happy International Women's Day - and believes that we should continue to celebrate International Women's Day until gender equality is achieved.

Daniel Craig and Dame Judi Dench have teamed up for a two-minute film highlighting the need for gender equality:
Dench rattles through a grim list of statistics detailing continuing inequality of the sexes worldwide. "Every year 70 million girls are deprived of even a basic education and a staggering 60 million are sexually assaulted on the way to school."

The film concludes: "So are we equals? Until the answer is yes we must never stop asking."

There is also an International Men's Day on 19 November, just in case the chaps were feeling left out.