by Elna Schmidt Those who have already experienced a moment in their life where control slips through their fingers know the pain that comes with the realization that for life to be the same again, it needs to be static. It is not. There is no default to which life can return; it has changed. March 2020 marks for many the beginning of such a drastic change, causing life to be altered for good. However, for me, March 2020 also signifies immense pain and the beginning of a horrific journey.
By Lelia Erscoi The choice of pronouns is no arbitrary thing- Sophia’s (“Sophia – Hanson Robotics”, 2022) creators are doing all they can to make you think of it as a “her”. From its appearance, modeled on a mix of women’s faces – Audrey Hepburn’s, Egyptian Queen Nefertiti’s, and its own inventor David Hanson wife’s (Chung, 2022) – to the fact that it was granted human rights in Saudi Arabia (Parviainen, Coeckelbergh, 2021), the whole story behind Sophia is a very fascinating one that aims to inspire. However, that’s what it mostly is – a story.
By Hanna Eisen Are you a prude, a good girl, or a slut? It seems like these are the only categories women can fall into regarding their sexuality. While women learn from a young age that they have to act according to societal standards, none of the possible decisions seem to be good enough. One should be flirty, but not too sexy; being a virgin is something to be embarrassed about, but enjoying casual sex is shameful. It seems impossible to walk the fine line of being a “good girl”, especially if that does not fit with the (secret) desires one has.
by Catarina Vila Nova Western societies aspire to ideals of equality but it’s in moments of crisis that the reality of where we still are comes to the fore. When it comes to war, gender norms are almost as rooted as they’ve always been. Even with catchy stories of female soldiers in the early days of the Russian invasion of Ukraine flooding our timelines, traditional gender roles still take hold.
By Lelia Erscoi Let’s do a quick thought experiment: imagine a young boy, spending time enjoying his favorite hobby. What … More
You are what you wear, or rather you become what you wear. Despite the wish of certain companies to promote gender neutral clothing for children, differences between boys and girls clothes still persist. The determined ideas that garments communicate about what being male or female means are dangerously limiting for the children and encourage them to follow a path marked by a long history of gender stereotypes.
Which types of characters populate the fictional society of Dutch literature? When thinking about literature in terms of demographics, questions arise with regards to the literary representation of certain social groups. Why are certain professions for characters in recent Dutch novels so popular? And what does that say about the potential emancipatory and progressive powers of literature?