Herizons

Articles from Vol. 20, No. 3, Winter

Afghan MP Calls for Trials for Human Rights Abuse
The youngest member of Afghanistan's National Assembly told a McGill University audience this fall that "there will be no hope" for democracy in her country as long as warlords have positions of power.Malalai Joya gained international prominence two...
Are Women Human?
Human rights are what women in Thailand need so that they aren't sold into sexual slavery. They are what women in Bosnia need to prosecute the men who raped the tortured them during the country's civil war. And human rights will help stop women in Afghanistan...
Are Women Human?
CATHERINE MACKINNON ON GLOBALIZATION AND HUMAN RIGHTSOver the past 25 years, Catharine MacKinnon has changed the face of feminist legal theory. A law professor at the University of Michigan, she is, as one reviewer notes, "a famously polanzing figure....
Bloodletting: A Memoir of Secrets, Self-Harm and Survival
BLOODLETTING: A MEMOIR OF SECRETS, SELF-HARM AND SURVIVALVictoria LeathamNEW HARBINGER, 2006Review by Claire RobsonAs someone who is afraid of razors, I was a tad worried about cracking the cover of Bloodletting. The title, with its promise of injury...
Cambodian Centre Steers Trafficked Women from Sex Trade
In 1997, Chanthol Oung realized that women emerging from the effects of genocide, family violence, rape and sex trafficking had no services to assist them. Her response was to create the Cambodian Women's Crisis Center.Ten years later, the centre is...
Code White
CODE WHITEDebra AndersonMCGILLIGAN BOOKS, 2005Review by T.L. CowanWritten in diary form, Debra Anderson's Code White is a pageturner in the way that reading someone else's diary feels illicit: You hurry to read it all at once in case someone comes home...
Female Chauvinist Pigs: Women and the Rise of Raunch Culture
FEMALE CHAUVINIST PIGS: WOMEN AND THE RISE OF RAUNCH CULTURE Ariel Levy SIMON & SCHUSTER, 2005Review by Sarah PetrescuIt's inevitable that at any public feminist event, at least one heckler takes it upon himself to get vulgar. So I wasn't the least...
Goods Go Global on Caravan to Cuba
(SALT SPRING ISLAND) Spending Saturday mornings at the Salt Spring Island market behind a table cluttered with Caravan to Cuba brochures asking people for donations is not what I anticipated doing last spring.What hooked me in to joining the 17th Caravan...
How to Stop Female Genital Mutilation
Female genital mutilation (FGM) is a widely practised procedure that involves the removal of all or most of the clitoris (clitoridectomy), all or part of the labia minora (excision) or both (infibulation). While international efforts are underway to...
Iran Awakening
IRAN AWAKENINGShirin EbadiKNOPF, 2006Review by Noreen ShanahanNobel laureate and leading human rights activist Shirin Ebadi's autobiography reaches an audience shocked by her experiences and those of the women for whom she has spoken as lawyer, judge,...
Letters
STAY ABREAST OF CAUSESWe at Breast Cancer Action Montreal were delighted to read Penni Mitchell's column "Pink to Green" in the Fall 2006 issue of Herizons.For 15 years, Breast Cancer Action Montreal has been trying to stimulate awareness of the role...
Man Plan
We don't really need a wake-up call. But the fall's series of killings does make you wonder-are we really getting anywhere?The Dawson College shootings, and the killings that followed in the Pennsylvanian Amish community and in Colorado-this one all...
Never Have Hair That Is Smarter Than the City You Live In
Once, I made a hairstyle change based on a dream I had. In my dream, I was visiting with the president (of the United States) and I had this fabulous hair. I kept looking at it in the mirror, unable to concentrate on what the president was saying."Wow,"...
No More Tears Sister
NO MORE TEARS SISTERDirected by Helene KlodawskyNATIONAL FILM BOARD OF CANADAReview by Lasanda KurukulasuiryaThe portrayal of an armed-resistance movement battling an oppressive regime can easily fall prey to romanticized treatment and over-simplified...
Outside of Ordinary: Women's Travel Stories
OUTSIDE OF ORDINARY: WOMEN'S TRAVEL STORIES Editied Lynn Cecil and Catherine Bancroft SECOND STORY PRESS, 2005Review by Susana Molinolo"Who or what is calling us to do these things at midlife?" asks Janet Greidanus in "The Hero(ine)'s Journey?' her expedition...
Poverty Fuels Trafficking to Japan
The flight from Manila to Tokyo takes four and a half hours. For the over 80,000 young Filipinas who make this trip each year, it is a direct ticket into Japan's enormous human trafficking trade.Japan is home to 10,000 commercial sex establishments and...
Regina Feminists Rise Up
(REGINA) When Amber Fletcher heard that a proposed law in nearby South Dakota could take away a woman's right to abortion, she started talking to likeminded classmates at university. Last spring, they got together to mail coat hangers to officials in...
Revolution Needed at the UN
Women's groups around the world are backing Stephen Lewis' call for a new UN women's agency to be considered at a February UN meeting. The aim of the proposed new agency would be to put the human rights of women firmly on the international agenda.Lewis,...
Safe Guarded Space
SAFE GUARDED SPACESheena GrobbWONDERLAB MEDIA, 2006Review by Fiona MuldrewSheena Grobb's first CD, Safe Guarded Space, is anything but guarded. "I aim for the back row with good form," sines Grobb in "Back Row? letting her voice carry her song as far...
Sex Wars
SEX WARSMarge PiercyHARPERCOLLINS, 2006Review by Diana GaultMaking condoms may not be a big deal nowadays, but in post-Civil War New York City, it was not only a difficult occupation, but downright dangerous. Especially for a woman. And especially in...
Smashed: Story of a Drunken Girlhood
SMASHED: STORY OF A DRUNKEN GIRLHOOD Koren Zailckas PENGUIN, 2005Review by Kris RothsteinKoren Zailckas was a 14-year-old, middleclass American when she took her first drink. Over the next decade she would experience innumerable blackouts, have her stomach...
Sugar and Spice
Women and niceness have a long history full of toil and trouble. Today women are still expected, and frequently expect themselves, to be nice: soft, gentle, empathetic, selfless caretakers. And if there's been some understanding gained in the last quarter...
The Long Road to Justice
LEGAL CLINIC SERVES AFGHAN WOMENAfghanistan has changed. A freshly paved highway circulates throughout the country, sharp black lines on the dry, yellow landscape connecting major cities-journeys which, until recently, took double the travel time. In...
The Meaning of Wife
THE MEANING OF WIFE Anne Kingston HARPERCOLLINS, 2004Review by Shannon DevineI love to cook, but when my partner likened this to being a good wife, I bristled. The relationship between feminism and wifedom is so strained that this misplaced compliment...
Third Girl from the Left
THIRD GIRL FROM THE LEFTMartha SouthgateHOUGHTON MIFFLIN, 2005Review by Kerry RyanThird Girl From The Left would make a pretty good movie.Maybe it's Southgate's eye for framing a scene, her ear for dialogue or her ability to take an already intense situation...
Time in a Bottle
It has been three weeks since my little daughter died. Little, not because she was a toddler, for she was an adult. Little because osteoporosis, one of the results of the cirrhosis that took her life, robbed her of over five inches.We used to be the...
Uncle Tom's Cabin
Feminist ClassicsUNCLE TOM'S CABINHarriet Beecher StowePENGUIN CLASSICS(Originally published in 1852, Jewett, Proctor, and Worthington) Review by Stacey KauderHarriet Beecher Stowe was already writing for small magazines when she was impelled to document...
Water Inc
WATER INC.Varda BurstynVERSO, 2005Review by Nicole CohenIt is no longer funny to joke about Canada's water being piped to the United States to quench an insatiable thirst driven by pollution and global warming. Thanks in part to treaties like the North...
When Black Consciousness Meets White Consciousness
INTERVIEW WITH ROZENA MAARTBorn in South Africa, Rozena Maart is a writer, intellectual and cultural critic. She is also director of the Biko Institute in Guelph, Ontario. Maart's most recent book, Rosa's District Six (TSAR, 3005), was recently published...
With a Rough Tongue: Femmes Write Porn
WITH A ROUGH TONGUE: FEMMES WRITE PORNEdited by Amber Dawn and Trish KellyARSENAL PULP, 2005Review by Megan ButcherThis collection is successful not simply because it's the signpost of a certain marginalized identity coming into its own. This is a successful...