A feminist take on parenting and politics


Apple is just one of the Silicon Valley companies to offer egg-freezing. Photo: Getty
Apple’s egg-freezing plan is simply a way of telling women to be more like men
By Glosswitch - 20 October 11:04

Rather than reforming an unequal system that give priority to men, companies are just offering medical interventions that enable women to behave like men.

Women at St Andrews. Photo: Getty
Universities won’t be a safe place for women until they’re a safe place for feminism
By Glosswitch - 15 October 17:16

If feminism cannot engage in a critical analysis of gender and sexual objectification then feminists can only ever be on the defensive.

What use is a campaign based on making women feel they should try to be more attractive to Olly Murs? Photo: Getty Images
No More Skinny is a campaign to redirect the objectification of women, not fight it
By Glosswitch - 08 October 12:40

It is absurd to tell women to love themselves in a world that alienates them from their own flesh.

We may not have a cure, but at least we can ensure that people can walk down the street without being feared or mocked. Photo: Getty
Schizophrenia is not a fatal illness, yet sufferers are still dying 20 years too soon
By Glosswitch - 06 October 10:42

We have to go beyond the well-meaning commitment to “combat stigma” and be willing to share our time – that extra twenty years we currently have to ourselves – even when we are unable to measure what this will mean.

A married couple show off their rings. Photo: Getty
Why do we still believe that divorce leaves men worse off than women?
By Glosswitch - 30 September 11:51

The myth of the “poor ex-husband” persists, even though the evidence shows that women and children are too often the victims of post-divorce inequality.

Women still do the majority of work in the home, despite now also being “allowed” to do paid (“male”) work. Photo: Getty
Why you should leave work on time today
By Glosswitch - 24 September 11:49

As part of National Work-Life Balance Week, we’re all being encouraged only to work our contracted hours today. But what if you don’t want a “work-life balance”, you just want a life?

No longer just the Blade Runner: since the death of Reeva Steenkamp, Oscar Pistorius’s story has become “a classic tragic hero’s fall”. Photo: Getty
We are drowning in stories that privilege the perspectives of white males
By Glosswitch - 16 September 12:42

Women’s bodies – naked, airbrushed and objectified – are everywhere but our names, passions and histories remain invisible. Too often, women are reduced to a footnote in the tragic story of someone male who still gets to take centre stage.

The top ten toys for boys includes Thomas the Tank Engine. Photo: Getty
To bridge the gendered toy gap, we need to spend less time celebrating femininity and more time attacking masculinity
By Glosswitch - 10 September 14:00

Our children’s toy choices tell us something not just about how they see themselves, but how they see the world we’re creating for them.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, with their eldest son George and spaniel Lupo. Photo: Michael Middleton/WPA Pool/Getty Images
Admit it, you are interested in the royal pregnancy – and that’s why we will never be a republic
By Glosswitch - 08 September 15:06

It is not healthy for an entire country to have such an investment in the contents of a woman’s womb.

Our culture dehumanises women by reducing them all to breeders and non-breeders
By Glosswitch - 01 September 13:25

Women are held back by a culture which groups us crudely into mummy and non-mummy camps; we must not fall into this trap of dehumanising ourselves.

A placard at a protest in Scotland in 2013. Photo: Getty
Will an emotional abuse offence ruling help vulnerable women?
By Glosswitch - 29 August 13:17

Control, dominance, bullying and manipulation are the driving forces behind countless “romantic” narratives. If new regulation is going to eradicate coercive and controlling behaviour as well as physical harm, we have to start questioning the stories we are told.

The Sun on the newsstand. Photo: Getty
The Sun is offering a date with a Page 3 girl as a prize – women and men deserve better than this
By Glosswitch - 21 August 12:16

It’s the logical outcome of countless messages regarding what a woman is supposed to be: beautiful, available, smiling, bending to the will of men and existing only to reflect men’s glory.

A woman pushing a pram walks through a park. Photo: Getty
Working mums shouldn’t have to be superhuman – employers need to be better
By Glosswitch - 15 August 10:24

It’s not a matter of whether a woman is at work or in the home; it’s a matter of identifying this huge, never-ending array of tasks which somehow, magically, get done, usually at a huge cost to women.

Peaches Geldof, her husband Thomas Cohen and their son Astala meet the Zoo's aardvarks during a visit to ZSL London Zoo on April 23, 2013 in London England. Photo: ZSL London Zoo via Getty Images
Motherhood is not enlightenment, and we should not condemn mothers for human frailty
By Glosswitch - 25 July 17:13

Mothers are meant to absorb the pain and problems of others as representatives of motherhood, but they remain flawed individuals capable of mistakes - they do not have access to the meaning of life simply because they have given birth.

The Archbishops of Canterbury and York, Justin Welby and John Sentamu, hold a press conference after the General Synod vote on women bishops. Photo: Getty
Women are humans too – and there’s no reason why they shouldn’t be bishops
By Glosswitch - 15 July 10:28

For far too long, in too many spheres, women are told that their exclusion from positions of authority is simply a mark of their “difference”.

Just basic acceptance of women and their children would do for starters. Photo: Getty
Should mothers have to be thankful that businesses “welcome” breastfeeding?
By Glosswitch - 25 June 16:21

A healthy, humane culture should have space not just for the idea of us, but for our bodies, our children, what we are and what we do.

These women like football. But it's OK if you don't. Photo: Getty
Women! If you don't like football, it's OK to say so
By Glosswitch - 18 June 15:15

Back in the 1990s, I used to pretend I liked football. Now I realise I had been taken in by the Football Mystique.

It might be intended as humour, but it’s also a reflection of what we think of pregnancy and women. Photo: Iain Farrell on Flickr via Creative Commons
How should we celebrate pregnant bodies? Not with twee maternity T-shirts, for a start
By Glosswitch - 11 June 11:41

In a world where women are shamed for their bodies, we should recognise how empowering, and phenomenal, a wanted pregnancy can be.

The message for women is that being fat isn't just unhealthy – it's shameful. Photo: Mason Masteka
Fat-shaming women doesn’t make us any slimmer
By Glosswitch - 03 June 10:47

Over the past few decades the ideal female body, as depicted in adverts and on film and TV, has got thinner and thinner, yet the average woman has got fatter and fatter.

Boy running in fountains. Photo: Getty
Only feminism can stop my sons growing up to hate women
By Glosswitch - 28 May 10:20

When we talk about raising boys to grow into confident men, we need feminism – not thinly-disguised hand-wringing about adjusting them to the new “equality” – to bring them up not to hate women.

A still from Dove's A Mother's Body advert.
Dove’s “A Mother’s Body” ad idealises motherhood to exploit women’s bodies
By Glosswitch - 19 May 11:08

It’s sickly and patronising, yet somehow as long as wages for housework and an end to objectification remain off the table, a cream with one quarter moisturiser sometimes feels better than nothing.

Betty Friedan explored the unhappiness of housewives. Photo: Getty
Glosswitch on Betty Friedan: The ennui of the Middle-Class Mummy
By Glosswitch - 12 May 13:50

While it might do so through the filter of middle-class angst, The Feminine Mystique provides a blistering critique of the ways in which female subordination and lack of choice are marketed to women as their very opposite.

River Island has taken its Anti-Nag Gag off sale, but the idea women should “hold their tongues” is ever-present
By Glosswitch - 08 May 14:14

The high street chain’s novelty item, a gag to keep women quiet, has been discontinued. But it reflects an expectation of women to keep quiet and not to make a fuss.

A newborn baby in an incubator. Photo: Getty Images
True reproductive justice is more than being allowed to become a mother at an older age
By Glosswitch - 30 April 16:23

Simply having the choice to have children later than before isn't a sign of greater freedom - it's simply a sign of greater privilege under the same old patriarchy.

The Duchess of Cambridge carrying her own son, rather than getting a nanny to do it. Photo: Getty
No, the Duchess of Cambridge is not ripping up the royal rule book – but that’s not her fault
By Glosswitch - 25 April 10:47

Kate has been declared a rebel for daring to carry her own child. What?

Footballer Ched Evans is reported to be rejoining Sheffield United after his release from prison in the autumn. Photo: Getty
The Ched Evans case shows that the “ruined life” narrative is just another way to blame the victim
By Glosswitch - 18 April 11:34

A disproportionate focus on the way men’s lives are affected by rape accusations has an important role to play in rape culture. Suddenly it is no longer the alleged crime, but its reporting that is the act of violence.

You don't have to pretend to be needed to be happy. Photo: Getty
Why are we still telling women that they need a man?
By Glosswitch - 10 April 11:38

If you think women don’t objectify men, you are wrong. We don’t reduce them to a few choice body parts, but we make them bit-players in our narcissistic life plans.

New-born babies in a hospital in India. Photo: Getty
The myth of choice: some ways of giving birth aren’t “more feminist” than others
By Glosswitch - 02 April 11:10

Childbirth is just one of the areas in which modern-day feminist beliefs can end up being appropriated by neoliberal and neoconservative agendas. Unless accompanied by structural change, “choice” is too often only meaningful for a small elite.

6 Things I Hate About Mothers' Day
By Glosswitch - 29 March 20:35

On no other day of the year are mums placed under so much pressure to behave “like a mum”. And what about those who wanted children - but couldn't have them?

A girl runs down an aisle of toys for girls. Photo: Getty
Should we be teaching feminism in primary schools?
By Glosswitch - 19 March 11:19

Our children's education is reinforcing the idea that it is natural for women and girls to be decorative, whereas men and boys are the active ones. Do we want them to be learning blind faith in gender stereotypes?