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Sidetracks is a collaborative project featuring various essays, videos, reviews, or other Internet content that we want to share with each other. All past and current links for the Sidetracks project can be found in our Sidetracks tag.





text that says Renay's Section

➝ I really liked Teaching Rambles: If You Could Teach It...: The Space Opera Edition. True story: back in 2009 I stalked, via google, college syllabi, looking for science fiction and fantasy classes and what they were going to be assigned so I could use those as a jumping off point for diving back into those genres. Of course, then I went back to school and there went that idea. This seems like a perfect subject for a recurring SF Signal Mind Meld, unless they've already done it (I've read it a long time, but not the ENTIRE run of the project). Personal LB challenge, though... *eyes Ana and Jodie*


On the importance of Magical Girl Heroines & Weaponized Femininity is awesome!

When I got the chance last year, I showed one of my girl cousins (who was twelve) the first episode of Sailor Moon. She came back to me about a week or so later and was maybe thirty episodes into the series, bursting with excitement over everything and every one.


My childhood! ;___;

➝ Jodie, if you're still looking for a new personal photoset, you should try this one out before I steal it for myself. :D :D

➝ N.K. Jemisin shared From the Mailbag: The Unbearable Baggage of Orcing and it wasn't like ~choir of angels~, spotlight revelation or anything. I generally don't think about orcs because I don't read fiction featuring orcs. But this was really eye-opening to me.

➝ Would you like to watch an adorable short film? It's SO CUTE.

[tumblr.com profile] imadra-blue wrote an awesome short essay about Journey, a game that EVERYONE SHOULD PLAY IMMEDIATELY. I need to replay it and write a post. It was so emotional and different.

Jennifer Lawrence is my spirit animal. *___*




text that says Jodie's Section

➝ Remember I talked about the 'Why Poverty?' series that the BBC showed last year? I just found out that all the films are available on Youtube, so hopefully no more country boundaries. I can't recommend these films enough; they're respectful, accessible and have a really light touch, allowing you to draw your own conclusions.

➝ In 'Why Gender Equality has Stalled' Stephanie Cootz looks at the social factors which can keep American women and men from creating the marriages of equality that both partners may want:

'A 2011 study by the Center for Work and Family at Boston College found that 65 percent of the fathers they interviewed felt that mothers and fathers should provide equal amounts of caregiving for their children. And in a 2010 Pew poll, 72 percent of both women and men between 18 and 29 agreed that the best marriage is one in which husband and wife both work and both take care of the house.'


The basic gist is that working hours are rising, the US doesn't legislate in a way which supports working parents and men still often earn more than women, forcing parents to compromise on shared child care. Cootz also drops a fascinating little nugget from sociological study:

'Typically, she found, they phrased their decision in terms of a preference. But when they explained their “decision-making process,” it became clear that most had made the “choice” to quit work only as a last resort — when they could not get the flexible hours or part-time work they wanted, when their husbands would not or could not cut back their hours, and when they began to feel that their employers were hostile to their concerns. Under those conditions, Professor Stone notes, what was really a workplace problem for families became a private problem for women.'


➝ I found this post about amendments needed to make the bill on marriage for same sex couple trans inclusive, is very welcome because I could not for the life of me understand these amendments when they were explained elsewhere.

➝ Jeanne from Necromancy Never Pays reviews http://necromancyneverpays.wordpress.com/2013/02/18/homeland-choosing-safety-over-freedom/">Homeland', Cory Doctorow’s follow up to 'Little Brother'. Analysing it leads her to some interesting places:

'The big question of my time and place, as this novel illustrates, is the choice each American has to make every day between working to increase personal safety and working for collective freedom. I keep trying to work towards freedom, but it can be harder than it looks. Listening to a mother explain why she should shelter her child from reading a book or watching the news—without arguing that our children should be reading all the books and watching all the news—is failing to work towards freedom. Stepping meekly out of line when the TSA demands it or acquiescing to the locking of public schools and considering the idea of arming teachers can be failing to work towards freedom. I’ve started to make a list of the times I’m tempted to choose safety. It’s like those food charts dieters are urged to make—looking at the list can horrify me at the end of the day. When’s the last time you chose safety?'


➝ Eva at A Striped Armchair wants to know what your heart books are. I enjoyed having a conversation with Ana about these kind of books recently and I was pretty excited to see Eva drawing people out about books that 'resonate with our truest, deepest selves'. I think they can be hard to talk about face to face, because you're so invested in them, so linked to them that mentioning how much they affected you can feel like putting yourself out for judgement sometimes. This is one of those moments when the internet facilitates conversation I'd find difficult to have in real life.

➝ Sci Find created an alternate history of Who, where all the Drs are women :D It’s super fun and there’s some fab casting here (Miranda Hart! Hattie Jacques! I saw Siobhan Redmond on stage once and she was fabulous — agree, agree, agree). Sue Perkins becomes the first openly gay Dr. Also props to the list’s creators for including older female actresses. At the same time, all the actresses on this list are white, so there's that... Does anyone want to suggest some chromatic actresses for the role of the Dr?

➝ A call to arms type article about low amount of translated fiction that gets published in the UK. Having briefly interned for an independent publisher of translated fiction I'm curious about people's feelings towards translated work. Do you read translated literature? Why do you think so little translated literature is published here? Is the recent popularity of foreign language TV programs having a knock on effect in book sales? Give me all the thoughts.

➝ This article that suggesting that 21st century Britain reflects 19th century attitudes towards the poorest seems a bit alarmist for example, (unless something goes drastically wrong with its implenetation, the bedroom tax is never going to require six children to share one bedroom). However:

'Since the recession, the Conservatives and their allies in the right wing press have had great success in recreating the Victorian concept of the undeserving poor. They have created the myth of hundreds of thousands of families living on benefit, in expensive homes, smoking and drinking their lives away. Jeremy Kyle and endless 'reality' TV documentaries which focus on the exception rather than the rule have helped cement that image in the minds of the public.

That isn't an image of British society I recognise. That isn't my constituents in Liverpool. That isn't your tenants wherever they may live. It's a tiny minority of people whose unacceptable behaviour is now being used as an excuse for cutting away the safety net of the welfare state, for attacking the foundations of the social housing movement, for allowing the poor and the vulnerable to once more be plunged into deprivation and hopelessness.'


is pretty spot on and I’ve seen first-hand how often people swallow the government's manipulated image of the poorest in society.

➝ Geek Feminism is starting a book club. Their first selection list is full of creators I've been wanting to try (bell hooks and Gail Simone especially) and although I'm not going to be able to join the discussion, I’ll be following their posts about the first two titles.

Date: 2013-02-24 09:19 am (UTC)
nymeth: (Default)
From: [personal profile] nymeth
I loved Eva's and Jeanne's posts too. Homeland is already in my e-reader thanks to Cory Doctorow's CC awesomeness and I'm going to read it next - super excited.

Guess who has just watched the first Why Poverty documentary? Thanks so much for the link!

Also, I'd totally be up for that personal LB challenge :D

Date: 2013-02-24 11:58 am (UTC)
bookgazing: (Default)
From: [personal profile] bookgazing
Yay! There's one that I missed (the land grab video) and the short films are new to me so I'm glad to have the chance to catch them. I think anyone with negative feelings about having to pay taxes to keep the UK's benefit system going should be glued down and made to watch 'Welcome to the World' homage, because after that I was like STATE SUPPORT FOR EVERYONE IN ALL THE COUNTRIES NOW.

I would also be up for learning about space operas.

Date: 2013-02-24 08:04 pm (UTC)
renay: artist rendition of the center of a nebula (Default)
From: [personal profile] renay
PROJECT PROPOSAL YOU'RE BOTH DOOMED. :D :D :D :D

Date: 2013-02-24 10:12 am (UTC)
goodbyebird: Batman returns: Catwoman seen through a glass window. (GG Rory what great writing is all about)
From: [personal profile] goodbyebird
ooh thanks for the book club link! Might have to throw myself into that, see if it motivates me to get going on reading. This year has not got off to a good start, I tell ya.

Date: 2013-02-24 12:03 pm (UTC)
bookgazing: (Default)
From: [personal profile] bookgazing
Hope it goes well for you. I think the Batgirl option looks very tempting.

PS. I see you're into rarewomen and were talking about rarewomen type vids. I am desperate for such a thing, that would be so excellent!

Date: 2013-02-24 12:23 pm (UTC)
goodbyebird: Batman returns: Catwoman seen through a glass window. (C ∞ Kate Cane)
From: [personal profile] goodbyebird
I've hear so many good things about her, everything Gail Simone ever looks very tempting ;) Not sure if they're talking about a new Batgirl run or what. If so, I better get started on the old runs pronto!

I've just recently dipped my toe into vidding so if I try to pull such a thing together it won't be for some time(my vid would totally qualify for such a challenge though hehe). But it truly should be a thing! Because a lot of the giga-fandoms still exclude women like whoa, and this would be an excellent way to rectify that. Good to know other people are interested :)

Date: 2013-02-24 12:05 pm (UTC)
bookgazing: (Default)
From: [personal profile] bookgazing
I think I'm going to keep the red panda so steal away (such a cute graphic). I might change my quote to a quote in a gif though, as I'm all about Hank Green's faith in humanity right now.

Date: 2013-02-24 08:04 pm (UTC)
renay: artist rendition of the center of a nebula (Default)
From: [personal profile] renay
I loved that gifset! I saw you reblogged it, it's lovely. ♥

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Ira is an illustrator and gamer who decided that disagreeing with everyone would be a good way to spend their time on the internet. more? » twitter icon tumblr icon AO3 icon

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