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The follies and follicles of Vee Levene
"My goal is to dominate people in their sleep."
Latest posts 
In Gyn/Ecology, Mary Daly speaks to the idea of women being coerced into their own oppressive demise. She quotes Simone de Beauvior’s The Ethics of Ambiguity: “One of the ruses of oppression is to camouflage itself behind a natural situation since, after all, one cannot revolt against nature.” (56)

This brings to mind the idea of hegemony as “consensual” oppression. I swear I learned that as one definition, though Dictionary.com does not say that. Though it wouldn’t now, would it? It does, however, give the definition as a “predominant influence” of one group over another (whereas the Oxford University Press dictionary says only “dominance”). The idea of “influence” versus “dominance” indicates a slightly better definition, closer to the idea of “consensual” that I learned in Intro to Women’s Studies all those years ago, and so therefore I give props to Dictionary.com (well, the American Heritage Dictionary) over Oxford University Press (bloody Brits, who needs ‘em anyway).

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2/18/06 - Bald Vee
I have a round head. I have a pretty decent scar.



Explanation of the scar (pending confirmation from Mom): I was 3, and fell off a bed, onto a radiator. 2 big holes. Really nasty. Doctor found one, stitched it up, somehow managed to miss the second. This second one thus had to heal on its own, bloody and scabby for months.

I've felt the dent on my head my whole life, thought it was just a dent in my head.

Explanation of the cut: I'm graduating college in April; this may very well be the last time I'm able to do something like this; I just wanted to have done it. You know?
I emailed Princeton University Press with this question:

This is a bit of a random question, but I was wondering about a font used on a Princeton Paperback book. The book title is "Is Multiculturalism Bad for Women?" by Susan Okin; I'm curious as to what the font on the back cover is. Let me know if you can help me in this quest! :)

I found the response kind of amazing:

I was hoping to be able to answer your question about the font on the back cover of the Okin book, but I'm afraid I haven't succeeded.  I have the book on my shelf, and I took it to one of our senior deisgners to see whether she could identify the font.  She could not, and she said it wouldn't be possible to do so with certainty without having the original cover files.  To complicte matters, the cover was designed by a freelance designer who is, I believe, no longer living.
2/16/06 - PBwiki
Come on, join the wiki trend with me: PBwiki!
Find me there: VEE@pbwiki
First introduced to me by claireh, or rather, cehawley.pbwiki.com.
I just noticed I haven't been posting much lately (save for the Feminist Theories responses, which are, as you guessed, coursework). That's because any writing time I've had, I've been working on my script.

It's called "It Adds Up" and it's my senior project. Well, part of it. The other part is to direct it. It's a 10-minute play I wrote almost a year ago that I'm developing into a one-act (30-50 minutes). You can read a little bit more about it in the senior profile I posted earlier this week and in the blog I'm keeping as the reflection part of the project.

Here are some parts of the script. Some I think of as done, others as draft. Let me know what you think!

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Continuing the responses in Is Multiculturalism Bad for Women?, Yael Tamir agrees with Okin’s original essay, and elaborates upon her thesis by asking us to look within the ethnocultural groups that would benefit from the group rights multiculturalism promises. Tamir suggests that these groups are divided amongst themselves regarding the issue of reform, and that multiculturalism can be used to favor the traditionalists while disregarding reformists within the groups as assimilationists.

Sander L. Gilman doesn’t offer suggestions so much as just universally slams Okin. His essay is not only patronizing and angry, littered with entirely too many exclamation points, but rather pointless, as he is merely reactionary and does not offer any suggestion of moving forward. The closest he gets is suggesting that a problem with Okin is that “she fails to see ceremonial acts in her own culture as limiting and abhorrent” (57-8). This reminds me of the theory of diatopical hermeneutics, which I will discuss after these summaries.

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Senior Profile
interview by Viktor Maco
The Antioch Record, February 9, 2006


The Record: When was your first term at Antioch?

Vee: Fall '02.

The Record: Where did you live?

Vee: I lived in Bell 7 up on the right across from George and Kyle.

The Record: I'm sorry. What were you into that term?

Vee: I entered not intending to be even remotely social. Being social distracts me from other things. I came here four years out of [high] school so I had to get into work mode again.

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The other photos they took and didn't use:

In “Is Multiculturalism Bad for Women?,” Susan Okin’s argument is that minority ethnocultural groups that are more patriarchal than the Western societies to which they have emigrated should not be given the special groups rights that multiculturalism offers, if these group rights impede on the individual rights of group members, particularly those of women. She continues her argument by stressing that we need to look beyond the legal matters and into the domestic lives of these groups, because traditional private practices can oppress women, even if, legally, they are liberated.

In response, Katha Pollitt suggests that multiculturalism and feminism are inherently incompatible, because “multiculturalism demands respect for all cultural traditions, while feminism interrogates and challenges [them]” (27). She suggests that the West’s willingness to legally accommodate practices oppressive to women and children through the multiculturalism defense stems from women and the family being inferior within the West as well.

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Who Am I? Write 20 different statements in response to the question "Who Am I?" "I am..."

1. a feminist comedian- and no, that's not a contradiction in terms.
2. madly in love with Jennifer Saunders.
3. in support of a united Ireland.
4. from the beautiful city of Providence, Rhode Island.
5. a big fan of The Clash, and an even bigger fan of The Decemberists.
6. a blogger, blog-reader, voyeur, introvert, and verbal exhibitionist.
7. an Internet nerd (since 1995).
8. cynical- as in "cynic" meaning a pessimistic idealist.
9. a communist at heart.
10. obsessed with photos of myself.
11. a Taurus, though I'm not entirely sure what that means.
12. fascinated with carnivals, by which I mean the hey-day of the American traveling carnival.
13. a three-time survivor of sexual assault.
14. a three-time survivor of internships.
15. a two-year Americorps alum.
16. usually called "creative" on recommendations/references.
17. a high-school drop-out.
18. a former pot-head, by which I mean high all day, every day, before bed, etc.
19. perpetually struggling with mental and physical illness.
20. a descendant of Benedict Arnold.
Though I had some problems with Nancy J. Hirschmann’s “Difference as an Occasion for Rights: A Feminist Rethinking of Rights, Liberalism, and Difference” (most notably, its being unnecessarily repetitive and convoluted), I appreciated one of its critique of liberalism as it is similar to (one of) my own critique(s) of capitalism.

Hirschmann suggests that liberalism’s “individualism and rights were constructed specifically for propertied white men and are sustainable only through the subservience of white women, landless workers, and people of color” (28). She reiterates this later, and adds that liberalism’s “key concepts such as property and equality... depended upon [white women’s and people of colour’s] subservience and classified them as forms of property” (31).

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Last night I opened the Amazing & Disgusting Talent Show at the Amazing & Disgusting Party held at Antioch's Student Union. My lovely assistant Dylan introduced me, and I introduced myself by saying that Jennifer Saunders once called me a "fledgling contortionist", and that this was my public debut.

Photos. (Click for a bigger one.) (In the second picture you can see Dylan my lovely assistant and Amber my lovely friend.)



Thanks. Dylan for being my lovely assistant. kissmolnar for the tights and shorts; they came in handy after all. Bali for taking the photos. The Coney Island Circus Sideshow for general inspiration. Josh for saying, "That was sick! I just watched you and kept saying, 'That girl needs help!'" ("Amazing" was the general response otherwise.)
New York Times Critic Notebook on Belle & Sebastian:
A Quiet Band Worth Fighting Loudly About Makes Some More Noise

As I said to unbridled, I like the way it talks about the Belle & Sebastian that we loved- the Belle & Sebastian of the 90s, basically. It was the stories and the mythology that got me so wrapped up in them. An escape to a world both beautiful and sad. Sound familiar?

    The band's story begins with a limited-edition 1996 album called "Tigermilk." The album, now available on CD from Matador, includes a biographical essay that begins like a fairy tale: "Sebastian met Isabelle outside the Hillhead Underground Station, in Glasgow."

    Those names, Sebastian and Belle, came from a French novel about a boy and his dog. But listeners were free to imagine that Mr. Murdoch was Sebastian, and that the band's other main singer, Isobel Campbell, was Belle. Myth and mystery were part of the group's appeal. The members declined interviews, declined to include singles on their albums, declined to print songwriting credits. And they made lovely and sometimes perfect music: fragile songs hung on sturdy melodies; lyrics streaked with love and spite.
In the Liberal Feminism chapter of Feminist Thought: A More Comprehensive Introduction, Rosemarie Putnam Tong describes Betty Friedan’s progression as one towards humanism and away from feminism. She then quotes Friedan, who says we need a “new [human] politics that must emerge beyond reaction” (31). A critique of this transition by other feminist is that as long as patriarchy is firmly in place, “it is premature for feminists to become humanists” (32).

This is yet another issue I am ambivalent on. My first reaction (a bit ironically) was yes, let’s move beyond being reactionary. It’s a thing I try to accomplish in my personal life as well: being active instead of reactive. It’s a constant struggle, and on my more cynically reclusive days I wonder if action is possible, if we are ever autonomous enough to make a pure, active move. And moves we may think are active might actually be reactive; and sometimes, it’s so hidden, so internalized, we can never know.

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Hit upon both in “A Vindication Of The Rights Of Woman” by Mary Wollstonecraft (1792) and “The Subjection Of Women” by John Stuart Mill (1870) is the idea of the attractiveness of women—how it has, historically, been the aim in life of women and on which their worth is solely measured (which, naturally, perpetuate each other). What I find interesting is comparing ideas of attraction in these historical perspectives to today’s standards.

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"Every song I ever wrote was written for you."
- -Belle & Sebastian, "Dog On Wheels"

"I've written pages, upon pages, trying to rid you from my bones."
- -The Decemberists, "The Engine Driver"

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