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Invisible Women - A poor homologue of the penis

Invisible Women
Invisible Women - A poor homologue of the penis
By Caroline Criado Perez • Issue #34 • View online
I wonder how many spam filters that subject heading will get this email caught in.
Anyway, what a week, GFPs. What. A. Week. You will forgive the sweetness* and shortness of this edition as I am sleep-deprived and over-emotional. I cried at the result (especially this bit). I cried at the speeches. I even cried at the Guardian rolling pictures. I also have, for the last couple of days, had a series of really odd symptoms. My head is extremely heavy, like when I move my eyes too quickly it’s like the whole inside of my head shudders as it catches up. I also have extreme noise sensitivity, with the same head shuddering and fuzzing response at any noise. A quick google makes it sound like a migraine*, which I’ve never had before and what I’m saying is, I would like to sue the US for emotional and physical damages. The whole of the US. Including the A[merican]B[eefcake] and no I will not be taking questions at this time.
*sweetness not guaranteed, please see terms and conditions
*no I don’t have covid and can any GFPs who are considering it please refrain from emailing me their cancer diagnoses I am stressed enough rn xoxoxo

oh and just one more thing…
Yes, beauty journalists can write about politics. Yes women can like make-up and be badass election-winners. But for the love of god, NOT NOW, @telegraph.
Gender data gap of the week
The sole function of the clitoris is female orgasm. Is that why it’s ignored by medical science? | Life and style | The Guardian
When O’Connell was a medical student in the 1980s she was infuriated by her anatomy textbooks, which contained extensive anatomical drawings of the penis and registered the clitoris as a footnote.
“There’s the norm that’s the male, and then we’ve got kind of this subset over here who are not male,” she says. “And their unique characteristics are differences … there was a feeling that they were not whole people in the way that these other people are whole people and deserving of having their body parts having a full description.”
I know GFPs will be SHOCKED AND DISBELIEVING at this unprecedented framing of the female body. Never before have we seen or heard of such a thing.
The first comprehensive anatomical study of the clitoris was led by O’Connell and published in 1998. A subsequent study in 2005 examined it under MRI. It was not, O’Connell discovered, just a small nub of erectile tissue, described in some texts as the “poor homologue” of the penis. Instead it was an otherworldly shape, with the nerve-rich glans merely the external protrusion of an organ that extended beneath the pubic bone and wrapped around the vaginal opening, with bulbs that become engorged when aroused. It looked like an orchid. It was beautiful.
In the 20 years since that groundbreaking study was released, clitoral anatomy remains largely absent from the medical curriculum and from medical research. A literature review conducted by O’Connell’s team for her editorial in the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology found just 11 articles on anatomical dissection of the clitoris had been published worldwide since 1947. 
live footage of scientists responding to news of this data gap
live footage of scientists responding to news of this data gap
live footage of women everywhere responding
live footage of women everywhere responding
Default male of the week
This week’s default male comes courtesy of a GFP, who wrote in with this also entirely unprecedented news
Prehistoric female hunter discovery upends gender role assumptions
Randall Haas, an archaeologist at University of California, Davis, recalls the moment in 2018 when his team of researchers gathered around the excavated burial of an individual lain to rest in the Andes Mountains of Peru some 9,000 years ago. Along with the bones of what appeared to be a human adult was an impressive—and extensive—kit of stone tools an ancient hunter would need to take down big game, from engaging the hunt to preparing the hide.
“He must have been a really great hunter, a really important person in society"—Haas says that’s what he and his team were thinking at the time.
But further analysis revealed a surprise: the remains found alongside the toolkit were from a biological female. What’s more, this ancient female hunter was likely not an anomaly, according to a study published today in Science Advances. The Haas team’s find was followed by a review of previously studied burials of similar age throughout the Americas—and it revealed that between 30 and 50 percent of big game hunters could have been biologically female.
Naturally, the findings have been questioned because we can’t have prehistoric ladies challenging gender norms now could we that just wouldn’t be right.
ASU’s Hill says he’s not yet fully convinced that the female individual buried 9,000 years ago was actually a hunter in life. Burial goods, including hunting tools, could have been placed there because of symbolic or religious beliefs, he cautions.
For GFPs experiencing a strong sense of deja vu, that’s because the exact same thing happened when a Viking warrior previously presumed to be male, was, on DNA analysis, found to be female. From Invisible Women:
For over a hundred years, a tenth-century Viking skeleton known as the ‘Birka warrior’ had – despite possessing an apparently female pelvis – been assumed to be male because it was buried alongside a full set of weapons and two sacrificed horses. These grave contents indicated that the occupant had been a warrior – and warrior meant male (archaeologists put the numerous references to female fighters in Viking lore down to ‘mythical embellishments’). But although weapons apparently trump the pelvis when it comes to sex, they don’t trump DNA and in 2017 testing confirmed that these bones did indeed belong to a woman.
The argument didn’t, however, end there. It just shifted. The bones might have been mixed up; there might be other reasons a female body was buried with these items. Naysaying scholars might have a point on both counts (although based on the layout of the grave contents the original authors dismiss these criticisms). But the resistance is nevertheless revealing, particularly since male skeletons in similar circumstances ‘are not questioned in the same way’.
Still though, it’s nice that the Nat Geo tries to make up for all this disturbing gender-bending by putting our prehistoric lady hunter in a soothing pink dress, even if pink was originally a boy colour and even if it’s questionable whether we were actually dyeing fabric 9000 years ago. Some norms, it seems, are too sacred to bust.
It has POCKETS! an occasional series
So following on from backpackgate, I thought it might be handy for some GFPs if I related any success I have in my on-going battle to only spend my money on things that have actually been designed for women’s bodies that that are nice-looking AS WELL as practical. It all too often feels like the options for women are pretty but useless, or ugly af and practical.
Exactly, small child, exactly. So anyway, when I do happen to find something that ticks those boxes, I thought I would share it with you. This week, the prize goes to Lululemon. Yes, their clothes can be painfully expensive, but I take what I can get – and actually the running jacket I finally bought from them was about equal to others that were much less nice-looking and didn’t tick all my boxes, which were:
  1. POCKETS
  2. thumbholes
  3. waterproof
  4. reflective
  5. hood that stays up
  6. not vile-looking
You might not think that list is too much to ask. You would be wrong. However, someone at Lululemon appears to be listening, because I found all these requirements in their Cross-Chill Jacket. If it’s out of your price-range right now, it’s always worth keeping an eye as they do some really great sales. And no, I am not paid by Lululemon, but if they want to send me free stuff they should absolutely feel free to do so 😘
In other news I am OBSESSED with Nicole Kidman’s green coat in The Undoing (which, if you are not watching you MUST).
As the AB can attest, I have very little idea of what happened in the many scenes when she was wearing this coat as I could not focus on anything else. Just LOOK AT IT. It even has POCKETS!!
AND A HOOD. A RED-RIDING HOOD
In conclusion I consider it a grave injustice that I do not own this coat and the only way the US can make up for breaking me over the past week is to give me this coat post-haste.
Other business
Just a further little note on the ramble rambling: for those of you who want to help save England’s lost paths before it’s too late, you can find out how to do so here.
And I also love this initiative to create a network of walking routes that connect all of Great Britain’s towns and cities. Called Slow Ways, they ALSO need your help.
So: get your walking shoes on! (assuming you can find any designed for female feet)
Poppy pic of the week
EARS!
That’s it, GFPs! Until next time, please enjoy this gif of the US’s new VP elect sassing the very much very soon to be ex President of the United States.
Byeeee! xoxo
Did you enjoy this issue?
Caroline Criado Perez

Keeping up with the gender data gap (and whatever else takes my fancy). Like the Kardashians, but with more feminist rage. Plus, toilet queue of the week.

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