8 min read · 2020-09-22 · Thirty years ago, the philosopher Judith Butler, now 64, published a book that revolutionised popular attitudes on gender. Gender Trouble, the work she is perhaps best known for, introduced ideas of…
~14 min read · Jun 10th · For 97 per cent of human history, all people had about the same power and access to goods. How did inequality ratchet up?
Since the elites are massively outnumbered, the origins and stability of unequal divisions of the cake are puzzling, especially once we realise that this is a very recent aspect of our social existence.
Our particular species of humans has been around for about 300,000 years and, best as we can tell, for about 290,000 of those years we lived materially poorer but much more equal lives.
4 min read · Jul 9th · No matter if it is Austen or Atwood, the Brontës or Booker winners, data shows men are reluctant to read women – and this has real world implications
Female authors through the centuries, from the Brontë sisters to George Eliot to JK Rowling, have felt obliged to disguise their gender to persuade boys and men to read their books.
For the top 10 bestselling female authors (who include Jane Austen and Margaret Atwood, as well as Danielle Steel and Jojo Moyes), only 19% of their readers are men and 81%, women. But for the top 10 bestselling male authors (who include Charles Dickens and JRR Tolkien, as well as Lee Child and Stephen King), the split is much more even: 55% men and 45% women.
~20 min read · Jul 4th · Far from dissipating over the last decade, misogyny in the ad industry has simply mutated into something insidious, invisible, lurking in the shadows. It’s time to fire up the floodlights.
I tell you these stories not to be sensationalist and not to seek out your sympathies, but because I want you to understand. There are real, horrific and painful reasons why women in this industry are angry, broken, exhausted and often scared into silence.
the culture of shame, silence and the utter lack of recourse forces women to suppress these stories, to keep their mouths shut and to try to carry on as best they can.
6 min read · Jul 10th · It’s 1978, and Iris Murdoch is appearing on a BBC television show called Men of Ideas. Nobody mentions the irony. She’s telling the host, Bryan Magee, she “feel[s] very strongly” that philosophy and…
3 min read · Jul 3rd · Handbags, lap dancing, Botox, comfort food … the columnist recalls how she only had five months to write the feminist bestseller about everything
I think most female writers with children have stories like this. It’s why that story of “Kubla Khan” grinding to a halt when a “person from Porlock” interrupted Samuel Taylor Coleridge always amuses me. Is it the only time a man has been interrupted while writing? Women have 50 “persons from Porlock” a day.
“Hysterical panic” is an underrated value in writing. You never get writer’s block if you have to write 5,000 words a day, minimum. You just don’t have the time.