Women’s Stories Weekly

Melissa Harris-Perry Talks w/Margaret Cho & Jenn Pozner

WATCH the full discussion on the MHP Show page at MSNBC.com.

In case you missed it on Sunday of this week, professor and new politics & culture talk show host, Melissa Harris-Perry (of the show “Melissa Harris-Perry” on MSNBC) had an incredibly refreshing and of course, intelligent, conversation about feminism, bullying, young people’s & LGBT teens’ self-esteem, and unrealistic media representations with one of my long-time heroines, Margaret Cho (@margaretcho), and someone I’ve just recently come to know (via twitter &  her website) and admire, Jennifer Pozner.

In case you don’t know who Margaret Cho is, where have you been living?  She’s a brilliant comedienne, activist, writer, actress, cultural critic and dare I say, a public intellectual (in the traditional, non-academic kind of way that existed before about 1950, and not the professor-turned-pundit way we think of public intellectuals today).  Jennifer Pozner came into the discussion a bit later and lent her expertise.  She’s founder and executive director of Women in Media & News (and tweets @jennpozner).

Melissa Harris-Perry Show w/guest Margaret Cho (Pt. 1 of 2)

It was so exciting to see and listen to, and if you saw the Her Film twitter feed from Sunday, you knew I was so happy to see it that I was practically up on my couch dancing around.  Like I said then, when was the last time you saw three women sit around a table on national television and have an intelligent discussion of feminist issues?  Thank you, MSNBC, for the MHP Show, what an amazing contribution to politics and cultural discourse!  Watch it on Saturday and Sunday mornings from 10AM-12noon on MSNBC.

MHP Show w/guests Margaret Cho & Jenn Pozner (Pt. 2 of 2)


CNN Blog Gives Lengthy Attention to Miss Representation

Jennifer Siebel Newsom’s latest documentary film, Miss Representation, which premiered on OWN (Oprah Winfrey Network) in November 2011 continues to pick up steam.  It has screened in dozens of venues across most U.S. states, and CNN explores the film’s content, people who’ve lent their names to it (being interviewed for the film, such as Rachel Maddow, Rosario Dawson, Jennifer Pozner, Geena Dvais, Hillary Clinton, Gloria Steinem, Newark, New Jersey Mayor Cory Booker, and many more people), and talks about recent screenings at Auburn University in Alabama, Emory University in Atlanta, and Sistah Cinema in Seattle.

Also mentioned is the documentary America the Beautiful and its follow-up America the Beautiful 2: The Thin Commandments.  These films delve into the gross and offensive ways of representing girls and women in the media, and Miss Representation has a pretty stellar action and education campaign underway that includes ways to battle against negative images on a daily basis as well as mentor a girl you know to provide her with alternatives when it comes to internalizing these negative images.  You can take the pledge by clicking here.


ITVS Holds Month-Long Women and Girls Lead Online Film Fest

Thanks to The Mary Sue: a guide to girl geek culture (an awesome site), I heard of the Independent Television Service’s month-long online film festival this March, so this week we’ve landed in the middle of it but not to worry, there are still 14 days left in the month.  You can watch 11 different documentaries about women and girls by both female and male directors, including Abigail Disney’s brilliant series (recently aired on PBS), Women, War & Peace, along with We Still Live Here – Âs Nutayuneân (by Anne Makepeace) about the Massachusetts Wampanoag nation and its attempts to save their language, Taking Root: The Vision of Wangari Maathai (by Lisa Merton and Alan Dater) about the Nobel Peace Prize winner and activist who recently passed away, and several more.  Take a look at The Mary Sue’s article about two of the films, and then visit the Women and Girls Lead Online Film Festival site.


New Doc Tells Story of Women in Japan After 2011 Disaster

Filmmaker and journalist, Kyoko Gasha, will be screening her new documentary, Never Surrender at the Women Make Waves Film Festival in Taiwan this weekend, and will screen in several other countries this year.  Her documentary focuses on the strength of Japanese women during the aftermath of the 2011 earthquake, tsunami and nuclear disaster and the reconstruction that’s currently happening.  Gasha understands disaster, and understands evacuation; in 2011, she had to evacuate her New York City home after the September 11 terrorist attack on the World Trade Center.  After spending 10 days in northeastern Japan and interviewing 50 people, Gasha has come away with a documentary that shares something about the process of rebuilding a life.  Kyoko Gasha is planning on following the stories of these women for years to come.  Read the entire article on Focus Taiwan News Channel.


WIFT UAE Launches Short Film Fest About Muslim Women

The recently formed United Arab Emirates chapter of Women in Film and Television has partnered with Women’s Voices Now to put on a three-day short film festival called “Women’s Voices from the Muslim World.”  The festival was on this week in Abu Dhabi, UAE.  The line-up includes films from the UAE, Afghanistan, Indonesia, the U.S., Turkey, China and Iran, and screenings are followed by panels with several of the filmmakers whose shorts are screening.  For more information on WIFT UAE, check out the website here.

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