Bringing Feminism to the Irish masses since the turn of the decade!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Drop the Dumb Teddy

You can just imagine Western reporters doing this in Haiti as we speak......

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

What's a GAA to do?

Nothing beats a good GAA match.
The weeks before the match when the whole town is abuzz with excitment , colours, pagenatry, excitement and endless pre analysis before the big game. The trip down to Pairc ui Chaoimh or up to Croker with horns a beeping and flags a waving. The rush and adrenaline pumping as you walk passed Barrys and down past Jurys waving and stopping to meet neighbours,old adversaries and new friends. Eating squashed sanwhiches and lukewarm flasked tea out of the boot of a car, Laughing as the stewards mess up Plan A again;
Ok Il stop before this turns into a poormans Billy Keane monolouge but you get the idea. Whatever gender,race,creed or age nothing beats a GAA match day.

I think when it comes to women and their involvement in sport the GAA is an exemplary sporting organisation. There is just as many ladies on the terraces and in the stands all whom can tell their Gooch's from there Gouldings. Unlike football and rugby, female GAA fans are treated with a bit of respect. Its one of the things I like most about the sport.
And then last Friday this happened and made it into every major newspaper in the land......


As a GAA women I was more than slightly peeved of at this. It was incredibly patronising getting hired models to pose beside the Waterford players when there are thousands of accomplished Camogie and ladies football players:Yet they will never ever get a chance to appear in the Sports pages as they dont fit the Western mould of what is 'attractive'. Its a kick in the teeth to all female athletes, who despite their talent and dedication recieve little recognition from the media. It seems the only way Women's pictures can make it into the sports pages is If they are a WAG, a 'hot' spectator, or an attractive tennis player.

I decided to air my grievances in my usual way over on (great for a general rant or laugh!) As usual when anyone raises a bit of critisism over the use of women's bodies in the media I got hit with a barage of well, 'sex sells'.

There seems to me two things wrong with this line of argument:

Firstly, that is not sex sellling but women bodies being used as sexual objects.

Secondly,Is that really what represents 'sex' in 21st centurey Ireland? Sex is probably the most interesting thing we humans have...and this is what we have reduced it to? Blonde hair extensions, full makeup, fake tan ,with no discernible talent except to pose? Sex with all its intricities,intimicys eroticisms, taste,touch, sensations, feelings, emotions,varied and multiple turn on's; yet those two blonde girls embody 'sex', Since many people appear to believe they are selling it?

Open any newspaper and you’ll find scant coverage of any women’s sport. The usual arguments which surface to defend this situation include: women aren’t interested in sport, only men read the sports pages, women’s sport is of a lower standard, women’s sport is boring, and so on. But these are all circular arguments. The sports pages are designed for a male audience and alienate women in various ways. Targeting an entire section of the newspaper at men while excluding women, and then claiming women aren’t interested, is illogical. And if sports coverage was more balanced between men and women, greater funding and resources would be invested in women’s sports and the standard would be raised.

So I decided to do a little experiment as I feel the blatant sexism in sport reporting has to be addressed now for future generations.
I have been buying the Irish Times, The Irish Independent and The Sun from Friday last (15th Jan) to this this Friday ( 22nd Feb) to try and get a picture of the medias reporting when it comes to womens sport. I will report back in due course but at the mo It aint lookin good for womankind..........