Welcome to the very first edition of the proF reads weekly roundup, an assortment of articles painstakingly chosen based on… Well, whatever I feel like talking about, really. This week, I’ve got some midterms coverage (fatigued yet?), book recs and more food for feminist thought. Let’s get to it:
“These 5 charts explain who voted how in the 2018 midterm election” by Brian F. Schaffner for the Washington Post
TL;DR: Democratic House candidates did well among suburbanites, millennials/Gen Z-ers and women. In an interesting twist, the author argues that college-educated women dramatically shifted left as a result of the pervasive, toxic masculinity running rampant on the right. What I think this article fails to capture, however, is the decisive role that white women played in re-electing Ted Cruz. (RIP, Beto 2018. We hardly knew ye. But like, call us?) It’s heartening to know that white women (not a monolithic voting bloc to begin with) might theoretically be unifying behind progressive candidates (and the women of color already doing a significant amount of political heavy lifting), but there’s still plenty of work to be done.
“The 'Beyoncé Feminism' professor wrote a book, and it's a masterclass on black womanhood” by Aja Hoggatt for Entertainment Weekly
Have y’all read those thinkpieces about tsundoku, “a Japanese word for a stack of books that you have purchased but not yet read”? That sums up my relationship with books pretty neatly, but I found another one to add to the list: Beyonce in Formation: Remixing Black Feminism by Dr. Omise’eke Tinsley, a professor at the University of Texas at Austin. Based on this brief interview in Entertainment Weekly, the book sounds like a thought-provoking exploration of womanism, Black feminism and the role of contemporary pop culture in both.
“There’s this space that’s opening up to imagine black women as feminists and being at the forefront of feminist cultural production that just didn’t seem possible even 10 years ago.”
Photograph: Eric Luke
“Funds for women-only professorships aim to end gender inequality” by Carl O’Brien for the Irish Times
In stark contrast to the women’s scholarship programs under threat from a rising tide of entitled men, the government of Ireland has pledged to fund a number of women-only professorships in traditionally male-dominated fields. Ireland isn’t the first government to implement such a plan, but it’s (depressingly) hard to imagine such a far-reaching proposition gaining wide support in the US.
Special edition post-election action item: Americans of Conscience Checklist by Jennifer Hoffman
I know I wasn’t the only one seized by a pervasive feeling of helplessness and anxiety after the 2016 election. Thankfully, like we often see in times of deep pain and confusion, people like writer and professor Jennifer Hoffman did the important work of figuring out exactly what we needed to do to move forward. For those times when it feels hard to figure out exactly what you can do to make a dent in our political troubles, the Americans of Conscience Checklist provides actionable, bipartisan suggestions for resisting voter suppression, supporting immigrants and refugees and promoting equality. It might not solve everything, but it’s certainly a start.
That’s it for this week, lovely readers! What articles have inspired/motivated/pissed you off this week? Feel free to join the conversation on Twitter (@proF_magazine) and Facebook – and you can always find me @audrakath.
Audra Brulc is a writer, researcher, and car karaoke star most recently from Tulsa, Oklahoma. She graduated with a master's degree in International Studies in 2018, and currently works for her alma mater while she figures out what exactly she's going to do with her life. Audra's favorite things include great libraries, autumn, good coffee and cats, and her dislikes include mornings, sad movies and pretentious academic writing.