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Preacher's Daughter: Anti-Feminism in the Music of the Christian Right

I have a confession to make. I was raised in an evangelical Christian home, and when I was much much younger... I was a fan of contemporary Christian music (CCM). Oh, yes. I reailzed just how much of an affront to music it is almost half of my life ago, but lately, I've been thinking about just how entrenched it is in the ideology of the Christian Right. Consider this awful 1995 track by Twila...

Thursday Night 'Lights: A Fun Night Out

"I want to go to there." This Liz Lemon quote kept echoing inside my head while watching three-fourths of NBC's Thursday comedy block this week. Almost all the shows ventured out of familiar settings, and as a result we were treated to a housewarming party, a camping trip (with candy! and puppies!), and a garden party. And then we even witnessed a marriage proposal at the end of the...

Isn't He Lovely: Male Nudity, the Final Frontier

The first time I really paused to consider the naked male body happened circa age 9 while watching Blossom on the floor of my parents' bedroom, where I ironically snuck in all of my parent-disapproved TV programming. I can't remember what plot twist provoked it, but at some point, Six explains to Blossom that naked men look like "half-decorated Christmas trees." Conjuring up an image...

The H-Word: Nafissatou Diallo

Sex (work) sells, but at whose expense?

Bringing Up Baby: Pam on The Office and the Issue of Control in Childbirth

During season six of The Office, Pam delivered her baby girl in a two-part episode appropriately deemed "The Delivery." This episode was notable for handling the issue of control thoroughly and with heart.

Douchebag Decree: Dr. Pepper, Doucheologist and Men-Only Drink Specialist

Oh "light" beverages. When will you stop freaking out and shoving your unnecessarily constructed masculinity in our faces? The latest in this long line of I'm-so-manly-it's-sexist diet drinks (predecessors include Miller Lite, Pepsi Max, and Coke Zero) is none other than Dr. Pepper 10, with a new ad campaign that screams IT'S NOT FOR WOMEN.

What makes a calorie manly? A tiny patch...

Bringing Up Baby: Childbirth as Male Bonding Experience

This week on NBC's drama Parenthood, main character Kristina Braverman (played by Monica Potter) gave birth. The episode was so exactly a precise enactment of pop culture's "childbirth formula" I wrote about earlier that I was a little creeped out. It also made me think about something else, a trope I'll call Childbirth as a Male Bonding Experience.

The H-Word: Paper Crane: Antonia Crane Writes About Recession Sex Workers

"It all started with Stephen Elliot. I read his book My Girlfriend Comes to the City and Beats Me Up while in grad school and I started following him. I discovered the Rumpus and submitted an essay. I got rejected until I wrote something they liked."

Isn't He Lovely: The Ad That Turned Men Into Sex Objects

Advertisers have long used handsome men to hawk their wares. In the 20th century, marketers who realized that women did a majority of the household shopping created dashing spokesmen, such as the Arrow Shirt Man, to appeal more to the ladies than the menfolk. And certainly advertising has played an integral role in the male beauty culture that has skyrocketed in the past 20 years, too. In fact...

B-Sides: Zola Jesus

Zola Jesus can be hard to pin down. One minute, she smothers listeners with cold blankets of synthesizers, hitting them with some of the most uncomfortable atmospheres since Second Edition by PIL. Then her opera-trained voice (that voice!) bursts through the sludge and you realize "oh my god, it's a pop song!" Live and on her latest record, Conatus, she drops a few...