Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Women continue to publish into a critical vacuum




Vida, the organization for women in the arts, has published some disturbing, though not surprising numbers. The pies that illustrate tell the story very plainly.
The truth is, these numbers don’t lie. But that is just the beginning of this story. What, then, are they really telling us? We know women write. We know women read. It’s time to begin asking why the 2010 numbers don’t reflect those facts with any equity. Many have already begun speculating; more articles and groups are pointing out what our findings suggest: the numbers of articles and reviews simply don’t reflect how many women are actually writing. 
Sincere thanks to Amy King and the women involved in VIDA. As I have said here and elsewhere, the continued blindness to reading and referencing habits is stunning.

6 comments:

Gillian W said...

If they didn't turn a blind eye they'd have to admit it.

Lemon Hound said...

This is never going to change until women are part of dominant discourses, not always trying to battle their way into these dominant discourses, or diverting the dominant discourses.

Of course there are many who choose to have their own discourse, outside of these literary mainstays...

Anonymous said...

Yep. And you still make significantly less than men for the same work, and you still think owning your body's exploitation counts as power (some of you). Time to get angry.

GirlfromHK said...

Between this and the recent statistics on women working in film, I'm feeling alternately depressed and determined.

Chris said...

I saw this link, and was about to send it to you to make sure you saw it, when I saw you in the comments.

Is this, I wonder, at least better than 10 years ago? 20? Has progress not only moved slower than it should have, has it stalled out completely?

(Also, unconnectedly: Really, Poetry only reviewed 20 authors in 2010?)

Lemon Hound said...

I think people have the conversations they want to have. It's complicated by many factors, but certainly on the whole, it isn't improving, no.

In the academy I think it's better. Something about the literary conversation is stalled...but this is just my opinion.

Part of why I suggested my LIterary Test is that I think it's a fairly basic assumption that if someone can have a literary conversation and not mention a woman that should be a sure sign that yes, you, Sir, have a problem.

FYI the Bok Starnino debacle where women came into the conversation only when pressed...

Conversations are serious indicators of what a person is thinking. If all the points of reference are male, white, like-minded, it's not only problematic for women it's problematic for literature....