Friday, October 26, 2012

Post-Jennifer Bryan

Jennifer Bryan's workshop and public talk on gender and sexuality diversity raised so many questions  and provided a strong and clear mandate to adults that if we want our children to have the fullest possible humanity and to include all children in our schools and communities we must become more educated about our potential differences.  Bryan used modifications of Kinsey's spectrum of sexuality development to offer a schema that helps us understand that individual sex, gender and sexuality potentially changes over time and place and involves an infinite number of ways of being, not just 2.  Sharing interviews with kids, in the evening program, Bryan asked us to be more empathetic to the hurts that come with being forced into a sex/gender binary system and then to be more thoughtful about the stereotypes that describe each type.

Some follow up links :

Jennifer's web site is here --  many reported wishing for more time with her; perhaps a school district could organize a whole-day training?

If nothing else, we should all pledge not to buy into the horror of super-sexy halloween costumes!

ABC did a story on the gendering of costumes / of kids in the choosing of costumes


"Feminist Frequency" examines the ways that legos' markets gender norms and sexism; Lyn Michel Brown's book "Packaging Girlhood" provides even more data on this and Hardy Girls, Healthy Women offers a lot of strategies for resistance including a Halloween tip sheet! 

Maine's Trans Youth Equality Foundation offers resources for families and supporters of kids whose gender expression doesn't "match" their assigned sex. Equality Maine offers political support and resources for safe schools.

Boys to Men offers trainings for schools interested in addressing gender stereotypes and the ways that they can support violence, and also support for parents wanting to help boys build a masculinity not centered on "Battle" (the biggest word in the "boy toy" word cloud).