There was no bloggery yesterday as I was in London all day. That may turn into a project of some sort, but I won’t know for a while. Now I’m catching up. Here are a few stories of interest.
Locus has launched a Kickstarter project to help digitize the vast collection of SF-related photos and ephemera that the magazine has collected over the years. Jonathan talks about it here. Please help if you can.
Yesterday Niall Harrison posted an analysis of gender breakdowns in SF&F reviewing from 2011. There are a couple of things that particularly interest me about it. Firstly I see that the number of books received by Locus in 2011 from US publishers are split roughly 50:50 between men and women, whereas books received from UK publishers included twice as many books by men than by women. Obviously there are caveats on the data, but that’s such a startling result that it has to be significant. Secondly I’m interested to know what criteria were used to select the venues for inclusion.
Via Monica Roberts I learn that a massive public outcry has forced Miss Universe Canada to change its mind and re-admit Jenna Talackova to the contest. Of course this is a classic example of how trans rights are taken much more seriously if the trans people in question are lucky enough to conform very obviously to the gender binary, but at least one trans woman is getting a chance to live her dream, and one more piece of discrimination has been swept away.
Finally a rather old post (from 2000), but one I only learned about today. It is a survey of stories from abortion clinics about the attitudes of openly anti-abortion women to whom they have provided services. Here’s a taster:
I have done several abortions on women who have regularly picketed my clinics, including a 16 year old schoolgirl who came back to picket the day after her abortion, about three years ago. During her whole stay at the clinic, we felt that she was not quite right, but there were no real warning bells. She insisted that the abortion was her idea and assured us that all was OK. She went through the procedure very smoothly and was discharged with no problems. A quite routine operation. Next morning she was with her mother and several school mates in front of the clinic with the usual anti posters and chants. It appears that she got the abortion she needed and still displayed the appropriate anti views expected of her by her parents, teachers, and peers.
That example was from Australia. There are others from the USA, Canada and The Netherlands.