Fighting with the Sky

Posts Tagged ‘breast cancer

Sorry that I have been majorly slacking this week.  Hopefully I will be getting myself turned around and back into the swing of blogging.

As always, these are some of my favorite posts from the past couple days as well as some of my weekly favorites that were already featured in Tuesday and Thursday‘s link love.  Don’t forget to leave links to what you have been writing/reading this week in the comments!!

New link love

meloukhia and Ashley have both written some great posts on breast cancer and the awareness month associated with it.

Rape is a Feminist Issue [Women & Hollywood] – let’s not forget that!

The Muppets and Street Harassment [The Undomestic Goddess] – let’s take a look at some childhood favorites!

Activist Modus Operandi: Methods of Communication [Genderbitch] – looking at activism for marginalized groups of people.

Weekly link love

Why Inclusionary Language Matters [this ain’t livin’] – when discussing feminism, it’s also important to talk about racism, classism, ableism, transphobia, and all the other -isms.

The Fifth Carnival of Feminists is up at Zero at the Bone — and I’m featured!

What if you don’t want a bundle of joy let alone a man to call your own? [Professor What If…?] – babies and hetero relationships are not a choice but a cultural imperative.

So I’m all about curing breast cancer and raising awareness about the causes and effects of it (for more info, see my review of Manmade Breast Cancer).  But the methods used to raise awareness about breast cancer bother me.

tatasBreast Cancer Awareness month is supposed to be about women’s health, but it really just ends up being another way for society to focus on breasts.  In many instances, raising awareness about breast cancer involves separating the breasts from women’s bodies.  We love breasts, but not really the women attached to them.  The slogan “Save the Tatas,” while catchy, focuses on one part of a woman’s body instead of the affects of breast cancer on women or society.

In addition, Breast Cancer Awareness month has pretty much turned into a marketing tactic.  Marketers objectify women’s bodies and focus on one part of a woman’s body for the purpose of sales, not really for the purpose to raising awareness about breast cancer and women’s health.

I think Deeky summed it up great in a post on Shakesville:

Hey, boobies! Yay for boobies! Save the boobies! We love boobies! The women they’re attached to? Not so much.

This is not to say that Breast Cancer Awareness is altogether bad.  The Walk for a Cure raises a lot of money for research.  It does get people talking about women’s health, but not always in a positive way.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard a guy say something along the lines of: “I’m aware of breasts all year long…hehehe.”  It has just kind of turned into a joke or a way to further objectify women’s breasts.

Sorry I have been kind of slacking on my weekly features this week.  The change in weather towards the chillier has made me feel like hibernating.  Hopefully I will be back in full (or at least more) force next week.  But to keep you up to date, here are some of my favorite posts over the past couple days.  As always, don’t forget to leave links to what you have been writing/reading!

The Fifth Carnival of Feminists is up at Zero at the Bone — and I’m featured!

Keep your “boyfriend jeans” away from my four year old [Feministing] – what gendered clothing and applying relationship norms to clothing means for children.

Today marks the beginning of Breast Cancer Awareness month.  Many blogs have written some great pieces and interesting facts in honor.

What if you don’t want a bundle of joy let along a man to call your own? [Professor What If…?] – babies and hetero relationships are not a choice but a cultural imperative.

Books: Sexism in America [The Undomestic Goddess] – a great book review and look at a talk by the author.

Manmade Breast Cancers by Zillah Eisenstein


I first read
Manmade Breast Cancer for Intro to Women’s Studies, but it was so good that I have read it again since then. This book is all about how the environment, politics, race, and culture intersect on women’s bodies in the form of breast health.

From the back cover:

A new understanding of humanity and feminism from the starting point of breast health is the ultimate goal of Zillah Eisenstein’s political memoir of her family’s experience with breast cancer. The well-known feminist author brings together a critique of environmental damage and the health of women’s bodies, gains perspective on the role race plays as a factor in breast cancers and in political agenda, links prevention and treatment, and connects individual support and political change.


I was not expecting to be reading a book about breast cancer in my intro to women’s studies, I was thinking that would be more of something that would be covered in a women’s health class. But after reading the book and seeing the intertwining of personal/family stories with the intersectionality of breast cancer, I realized why our professor had us read this book. This book shows the many ways in which sexism (and other forms of oppression) work their way into the very personal — the body — and how different forms of oppressions are intertwined.

This is not just a read for people interested in breast cancer, but for people interested in seeing how women’s lives are affected by all of these intersections. It’s a great book that is well written by incorporating different kinds of writing — from personal stories to political investigations.