The Olympics and gender, plus marriage and the Police

Andrew Collins has blogged about how the Olympics coverage has dipped into moments of sexism and racism. In terms of sexism, he points out Gary Lineker’s casual sexism when interviewing Nicola Adams, by remarking on her beautiful smile when she’d just won gold when boxing at the Olympics. He reckons that Lineker wouldn’t close an interview that way with a male competitor, which seems about right, but I hope he’s wrong and that Lineker undertakes some mild flirting when interviewing Wayne Rooney on Match of the Day next year – go on Gary, tell him he’s sexy!

Mark Perryman has also written about Nicola Adams and other female Olympians for Compass – he looks at how the Olympics have provided a break to the male hegemony that is sport in the UK.

Womankind have written about their campaign to get information to athletes about violence against women. An interesting counterpoint to this is the campaign that Welsh Women’s Aid and the Welsh Government put in place as violence against women rises as sport’s fans as they drink themselves silly.

The Olympics are of course now officially over (hello Paralympics!), finished by a dubious closing ceremony by all accounts. Must admit I didn’t watch it (heard the Spice Girls and One Direction – that was enough to put me off). Chris T.T. has blogged about it under the headline “Not just shit but dangerous”. He says:

Kim gave a similar bashing to gender, sensitivity perhaps heightened by how the past three weeks has been an extraordinary Olympic Games for women; with significant, real steps taken. The ‘fashion biz’ segment in the Closing Ceremony was an unfathomably regressive bit of choreographed objectification. It felt deliberate, as if designed to rein in any aspiration or hopes that briefly glimpsed light this past month. 

Well worth a read on how culture influences experience.

Following my blog last week on the lack of female candidates for the roles of Police and Crime Commissioners, Theresa May has come under fire for not encouraging more women to stand. I agree with the article’s general thrust, but most of the points made do seem to be reliant on gender stereotypes, which doesn’t help its case.

Last but not least, a Feminist husband has written for Vagenda about how it’s expected that his wife should take his surname. He sounds like a thoroughly switched on guy!

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