Monday, April 26, 2010

Daniela Olszewska Takes the Scary Things People Say About Gender and Poetry Out of Context

and makes a poem out of it. Here it is:

head/desk or htmlgiantfail (a cento)

...language over body...i really don't give a fuck if you and your forehead and your paisley wall get pissed. there it is...That is a bland equation, pure ratio...i love women. i love women writers. but i also had a deadline to meet and the writing to think about first and foremost...i'm not ignoring gender bias, but come on...a lot of the comments here hint that certain groups of people are intentionally discriminated against. i don’t quite buy that. i’ve edited...maybe i smell, but i do believe that in general there are often a much higher % of subs from males. don’t know why that is. but then again, i honestly rarely consider gender when i am looking at words...I'd put my money on the fact that if he encountered more women who wrote language based work that spoke to him he'd be thrilled about it...Male and Female is mostly easy, but apart from that, what can you do...I understand why Affirmative Action was a good thing. I just have personal issues with it, unrelated to this blog post...everything you know has been taught. why is there any reaction looking at a list of “male” names in a journal? why do you not have the same aggressive reaction towards other patterns, red and white checkers?...I wouldn’t expect, however, a magazine like, say, Gray’s Sporting Journal (which regularly publishes poetry) to display an equal ratio, though I’m sure it would be interested in poems about women’s experiences in the areas it covers...You cannot simply infer that because there is a published ratio of 1 woman to 6 men in the issue then this means there is an editorial intention to favor men over women... i'm sorry that it's not the seventies and you ladies missed the you think “i am proud” when you publish a woman?...I did think a bit about aesthetic diversity, and i was cognizant of gender/racial diversity but not “hung up on it at all,” whatever that means...There was actually one female contributor, but her name did not make this obvious. It also did not help matters that I used the jokey name, No Girls Allowed Press, as my publisher...but accepting work to a magazine will never be some ideal, objective, blind can take the human out of the equation, which i personally find a touch inhumane or “un-fun,” but you can’t make it ideally fair or objectively fair...Wait, aren’t you on the board of WILLA (Women in Letters & Literary Arts)? Talk about announcing VERY LOUDLY the limits of your vision/etc...i’m not sure about others, but for me it’s not a question of never being moved by women...i am a little confused here. i read through WAC and found effeminacy. gene just happens to enjoy it coming from effeminate male voices. so the issue isn’t about “gender”. is it?...I would also argue that it isn’t rocket science...50% of all people are women. Whether 50% of all the great unpublished work out there is written by women does not necessarily follow from that...We had a long discussion about female writers in general, named a heck of a lot more names than you've managed to come up with in this post, and lamented the fact that there weren't more monstrous tomes by women -- the main exceptions off the tops of our heads were those of George Eliot, Ayn Rand and Margurite Young...I’m calling bullshit on your presumption, because it falls significantly short of a rational response...all that said, for others it could conceivably be surely a bias. but i think to assume it is that bias at work is as much a fault as the other way around...

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