All Oklahoma facilities licensed by state health officials that have public restrooms will be “required to post signs directing pregnant women to seek services other than abortions…It is unclear whether the signs are required to be posted in both male and female restrooms.”
“There are so many reasons why we smuggle our desire, why we keep it hidden in secret compartments and rarely offer others a look, but primarily it comes down to fear. Fear of what someone else will think, fear that you won’t get what you are asking for, fear of humiliation, fear of giving someone leverage to hang over you, fear of actually getting what you desire.”
“Trump won the Presidency by gas light. His rise to power has awakened a force of bigotry by condoning and encouraging hatred, but also by normalizing deception.”
Via British Library. University of Essex Theatre Arts Society: © University of Essex Theatre Arts Society, Richard Demarco Gallery: © Richard Demarco Archive.
Today—October 27th, 2016—would have been Sylvia Plath’s 84th birthday. Plath’s work is remembered for being many things, but one important aspect of her poetry that often doesn’t get enough attention is its complex depiction of motherhood and women’s reproduction. Looking back at Plath’s 1962 play in verse, Three Women: A Poem for Three Voices, it’s striking how well this piece speaks to our current political climate around reproductive rights—to Trump’s ridiculous claims about late-term abortion, his promise to appoint anti-choice justices to the Supreme Court who would “automatically” overturn Roe v. Wade, and to the widescale Republican war on women’s reproductive rights. It’s incredible, and terrifying that we’re still having this conversation. Right-wing anti-choicers could learn a lot from Plath’s play, which takes place in a maternity ward, and depicts—through three series of monologues—three distinct women’s very different experiences with pregnancy. The first is a married woman who’s excitedly welcoming her new baby; the second is a secretary who experiences a miscarriage, and the third is a student who places her child up for adoption. Plath’s play can be read as a meditation on the complexity of women’s feelings about pregnancy, why reproductive options are right and necessary, and why men, the government, and other structures of power really have no right to have any say about it.
Each of the play’s monologues hold equal weight within the piece, and the title, “Three Women,” conveys an equalizing recognition of all three perspectives on motherhood as valid, natural female experiences. Two of Plath’s women speakers have deep feelings of love for their unborn children—Woman 1 excitedly anticipates her son’s arrival (“I cannot help smiling at what it is I know./ Leaves and petals attend me. I am ready.”) and Woman 2 feels shattered by the loss of her pregnancy (“I am dying as I sit. I lose a dimension.”). Woman 3, on the other hand, expresses feeling trapped by her unwanted pregnancy:
“I wasn’t ready. The white clouds rearing
Aside were dragging me in four directions.
I wasn’t ready.
I had no reverence.
I thought I could deny the consequence–
But it was too late for that. It was too late, and the face
Went on shaping itself with love, as if I was ready.”
“I expected to feel his presence oppressively, but instead, in that small space, I registered him as being barely there—an empty vacuum into which the winds of whiteness, maleness, money, bigotry, and big talk were constantly rushing. Rather than being drawn toward a vortex of charisma, I found myself floating away from Trump entirely, preferring to apply my mind to anything else in the room—toward the people around me, who told me unequivocally that he speaks for them.”–Read about Patricia Lockwood’s long, dark night in Trumplandia here.
“This law closes most abortion facilities in the state, puts extreme stress on the few facilities that remain open, and exponentially increases the obstacles confronting women who seek abortions in the state. And it does all of that on the basis of a medical justification that cannot withstand any meaningful scrutiny that the American Medical Association has told you is groundless and that the district court found will actually operate in practice to increase health risks to women.”
Cady Noland’s Bluewald (1989) sold at Christie’s New York this year for close to $9.8 million—a record for an American artist. Curious who the “top 10 most expensive living female artists of 2015” are? Click here. Additionally, “In 2016, all of the solo shows at SculptureCenter in Queens, New York, will be by women.”
Is the future female? This feminist t-shirt seems to think so.
“After an Appleton clinic temporarily suspended abortions earlier this year due to funding issues, there are only three clinics that provide abortions remaining in Wisconsin…NARAL Pro-Choice Wisconsin announced recently that it is piloting a program in Madison to provide food, lodging and support for Wisconsin women who have to travel long distances to receive an abortion.”
“Black girls are six times more likely to be suspended than white girls…#SpringValleyHigh is everywhere.”
Introducing…HINDER! Hinder is “an exciting new app that helps you keep track of all the unhinged anti-abortion zealots right in the palm of your hand!”
Available on: http://ladypartsjustice.com
I just want you to know that I don’t want to hear from you. I don’t want you to try to prove your worth to me as a friend, because you already have. I wish things could have been different, but I need to move forward from everything that happened. You really have no idea how hard it was for me to get pregnant in the middle of my semester and to have to keep my abortion secret, to keep everything a secret because I was basically protecting your reputation. I wish you could have gone through that with me in a substantial way. It would have helped so much.
Please, if you care about me at all, do not respond to this email, and please don’t try to communicate with me again in any way. That’s what I need from you. If you want your books back you can ask Ken or Aaron or someone to ask me for them. I don’t want to hear from you.
I truly wish you the best. Continue reading