Sexism is bad enough, but sexualized violence against women is a squick-out. See, for example, Harlequin. There are so many examples of book covers that are horrible like this, and it bothers me particularly because I’m so involved with books: reading them, loving them, collecting them. Just go and pee in my fun, why don’t you.
I think one of my favorite quotations about the icky rhetoric that “women these days are empowered and they can degrade themselves if they want and therefore it’s not degrading” comes from Jerry Holkins, co-creator of webcomic Penny Arcade. In one of their hilarious podcasts, Jerry and the other creator, Mike, are talking about the Pussycat Dolls. Mike says, “Wouldn’t they [feminists] like the Pussycat Dolls, because those women are in charge of their sexuality?”
Jerry replies, “They’re not in charge of their sexuality, in the same way that cattle are not in charge of their meat.”
I wanted to stand up and cheer. (Jerry, BTW, has many hilarious things to say about a variety of topics.)
Is anyone else tired of having her consciousness raised to a dizzying height? How come I’m always the one pointing out the sexism all around me? I’m getting tired of waving the flag. Can’t I go back to my pre-radical-grad-school level of only mild awareness?
And while we’re on the topic of things that make me mad about publishing, there has rightly been much outcry on the internet about publishers’ whitewashing of book covers; in other words, portraying characters who are clearly described as non-white in the book by using white models on the cover. It happened with Justine Larbalestier’s book Liar, a book called Silver Phoenix (although the author doesn’t seem too upset, but many others are), and on a whole series.
Multiple publishers have been involved. Don’t think for a second that I’ve listed them all. Won’t someone think of the CHILDREN?!?
Way to be classy, publishers.
Personally, I Blame the Patriarchy.