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April 18, 1993 | PATRICK GOLDSTEIN, Patrick Goldstein is a frequent contributor to Calendar
In Adrian Lyne's new film, "Indecent Proposal," billionaire playboy Robert Redford comes to visit Demi Moore at her realty company. As he walks into her office, we catch a glimpse of Moore's secretary, a blond bimbo busily filing her nails and reading "Backlash," Susan Faludi's 1991 expose of the war against women's rights. The shot is meant as a playful jab at Faludi. But after seeing Lyne's new film, in which Redford offers a happily married young couple $1 million for a one-night stand with the sultry wife, the outspoken author--and many of her female Hollywood peers--are in no laughing mood.
June 27, 2010 | By Edmund Sanders, Los Angeles Times
Naila Ayesh's path to becoming a Muslim activist for women's rights began when she miscarried in an Israeli detention center in 1987 after being arrested for belonging to a Palestinian student union. Today Ayesh, 49, founder of the Gaza Strip-based Women's Affairs Center, has become one of the only feminist voices in the seaside territory that was seized three years ago by Hamas, an armed Palestinian group that aspires to impose Islamic law. Besides being married to Jamal Zakout, a top advisor to Prime Minister Salam Fayyad of the Fatah-led Palestinian Authority — Hamas' political rival that rules the West Bank — Ayesh also raises eyebrows in Gaza as she moves in public without covering her head and sometimes even partakes of a shisha water pipe.
With a bachelor's degree in German and French and a master's in education, Shanaz Ardehali-Kordich never figured she would wear steel-toed boots and a hard hat to work. But in 1985, three years after a federal lawsuit cleared the way for women to load and unload cargo at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, the one-time school librarian and creative writing teacher decided she could make a better living working the docks.
May 20, 2010 | Meghan Daum
After struggling with its definition and connotations, Sarah Palin has apparently made peace with the "F-word." She freely used it in a May 14 speech for the Susan B. Anthony List, a PAC for antiabortion female congressional candidates. And given Palin's extraordinary influence in certain circles, you can bet untold numbers of women who might once have never considered it will now be dropping the F-bomb with alacrity. The word in question, of course, is "feminist." It may be the most polarizing label on the sociopolitical stage (it makes "environmentalist" or even "gay-rights advocate" seem downright banal)
March 10, 2008 | Tracy Wilkinson, Times Staff Writer
She purses her lips in a "tsk-tsk" when asked difficult questions. Questions about her life, about the husband who beats her, the father who denies her an inheritance and a place to live. Slightly hunchbacked, her thin frame barely fills the several layers of donated clothing she wears. At 26, she looks 15. She has three children and an elementary-school education. When she showed up at the door of a women's shelter here, purple bruises blotched her face and framed her shattered, crooked nose.
Hot-selling pop singer Sinead O'Connor decided Wednesday to pull out of her scheduled appearance on NBC's "Saturday Night Live" this weekend, saying she did not want to appear on the same program with guest host Andrew Dice Clay.
The hand-lettered sign over Peg Yorkin's office in West Los Angeles warns: "Absolutely No Soliciting." It's not to be taken too literally. On Wednesday, Yorkin told a Washington news conference that she was making a $10-million endowment and gift to the Feminist Majority Foundation and the Fund for the Feminist Majority, a sister organization that she co-founded in 1987.
Maureen McDermott has fewer privileges, greater restrictions and is more isolated than any other condemned inmate in the California prison system. It is not because of her behavior behind bars. She is described as a model inmate by prison authorities. It is not because of her crime. She paid a man to murder her roommate so she could collect his insurance policy, but many inmates on Death Row have committed crimes just as heinous.
You can still have rocking chairs and back rubs and even bubbling warm baths. But if you are planning to give birth in the comfort of your own home, don't get comfortable just yet. The modern midwifery movement, founded to liberate laboring women from hospitals, has gone Establishment. With malpractice premiums soaring and coverage for home births impossible to buy, most nurse-midwives won't be making house calls any more. Some voices of organized medicine say that's good for babies.
November 6, 1991 | HOWARD ROSENBERG
The following letter arrived recently, signed by Barbara Young and seven other "Ladies of the Office." The tone was anger. As other office ladies were watching a "soap" during lunch, several commercials ran for yeast infections and feminine products (including one that asked if we ruin our panties every month when we get our period), and I thought to myself about commercials I have seen very recently regarding birth control protection for women, particularly sponge or foam products.
April 12, 2010 | By Haley Sweetland Edwards
Every woman at the bridal shower was drenched in color. One wore a lime green strapless gown with turquoise sequins; another a violet leopard-print caftan with scarlet lace; another a yellow, gold-beaded chemise with a neckline that would have made J-Lo blush. Was this Yemen, or a strange mirage? "Really, it is very bad," said Samira Taher, one of the women at the shower. "If you see me in Egypt, I am always wearing the latest fashion, I have my hair in a new design, and I am wearing makeup, but here, I am wrapped in black.
March 9, 2010 | Jonah Goldberg
In Cameroon, some mothers "iron" their daughters' breasts to delay or prevent them from having sex. The procedure often involves grinding a very hot rock into the chest of the girl, but sometimes kerosene or hot plantain peels will do the trick. The practice, which permanently disfigures the girls, starts with adolescence because that's when girls start becoming attractive to boys. And heaven forbid that anyone expect anything like self-restraint from the boys. I'd never heard of the practice until I read about it in the Washington Post.
February 23, 2010 | By Robin Abcarian
On the afternoon that Malcolm Potts and Raymond Dennehy prepared to debate abortion in a lecture hall filled with UC Berkeley students, a noisy confrontation took shape a few dozen yards away in Sproul Plaza. The Berkeley chapter of Students for Life had invited an antiabortion group that specializes in traveling photographic displays of bloody fetal parts to erect its provocative images comparing abortion to the Holocaust and lynching. It didn't take long for an angry counter-demonstration to form around a hastily painted sign: "Abortion providers are heroes.
October 22, 2009 | Times Wire Reports
Kuwait's highest court granted women the right to obtain a passport without their husband's approval, the case's lawyer said, in the latest stride for women's rights in this small, oil-rich emirate. Attorney Adel Qurban said the landmark decision "freed" Kuwaiti women from the 1962 law requiring a husband's signature to obtain a passport. His client, Fatima Baghli, is one of thousands of women who have been petitioning courts for the right. The court found the article in the decades-old law "unconstitutional" because it goes against the principle of equal rights for men and women.
August 31, 2009
Re "The other war in Afghanistan," Opinion, Aug. 23, and "A Taliban victory?" Opinion, Aug. 25 In our great effort to demonize Iran, we ignore its state-run family planning, which is one of most progressive and effective in the world. Because a great portion of Afghanistan is linguistically and religiously an extension of Iran, could we invite them to teach family planning to Afghanistan's women? It could be more effective than dropping bombs and be more acceptable to the local Muslim population.
August 18, 2009 | Alex Rodriguez
Radio Khyber airs in the heart of Pakistan's wild and volatile tribal areas, where women are bound by strict centuries-old codes of conduct handed down by generations of Pashtuns, the dominant ethnic group in northwestern Pakistan. The code's tenets are oppressive and nonnegotiable. Women should confine themselves to their homes and the sole task of raising children. When they go to markets and other public places, a male relative should accompany them. And their voices should never be heard by strangers.
It usually happened before the first practice of the year. Some times it was later, but it always happened. Rene Portland would gather her Penn State basketball team and state her team rules: --No drinking. --No drugs. --No lesbians. According to former players, Portland told any lesbians in the room that they were not welcome and indicated that if she found any, their scholarships would be revoked.
It takes an enlightened man and a brave woman to write women characters who are not sex objects, ornaments or victims, said "Murphy Brown" creator Diane English, speaking on a panel at the Writers Guild.
August 15, 2009 | Raja Abdulrahim
A Cal State Northridge graduate student who was briefly imprisoned in Iran while working on her master's thesis on women's rights and then prohibited from leaving the country for nine months returned this week to Los Angeles, school officials said Thursday. Esha Momeni, 29, arrived at Los Angeles International Airport on Tuesday and was greeted by friends and family. "It is wonderful news," Cal State Northridge President Jolene Koester said in a prepared statement. "All of us in the CSU Northridge community have been looking forward to this day. I have met briefly with Esha, and she appears to be in fine spirits."
May 23, 2009
Re "Skirting the issue," Opinion, May 17 Michelle Goldberg provides an incisive overview of the population issue from a socioeconomic perspective. From an ecological vantage point, the best thing that could happen would be a universal one-child family. The Earth could recover from the wounds that billions of humans have inflicted, and the green technology we are urgently inventing could stay ahead of the damage. Universal education and readily available contraception are essential to our future.
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