Although women reportedly read more than men, women writers are much less reviewed – and when they actually are, they are too often marginalized into chick-lit sections. Throughout the intellectual world, authors, publishers and journalists are taking small steps against the blatant imbalance in how male and female writers and reviewers are treated. One inspiring example that might go viral on the social networks is the #readwomen2014
As a Guardian article suggests, the project started as “listing 250-odd names from Angela Carter to Zadie Smith and encouraging recipients to ‘if not vow to read women exclusively, look up some of the writers I've drawn on the front or listed on the back’.”
Committing to reading more women authors is, in itself, a strong political stance. However, if one wants to address the deeper sociohistorical roots of the problem – namely, patriarchy –ingenuous bemusement at sexist reading habits is clearly insufficient.
The Knight Center reports that on December 21, 2013, a group of armed men stormed the home of Mexican journalist Anabel Hernández, author of this fall's Narcoland: The Mexican Drug Lords and Their Godfathers:
On Dec. 21, about a dozen individuals armed with AK-47 rifles and handguns shut off the street where Hernández lives, entering a number of other residences to ask for the journalist’s home. They de-activated the security cameras in the neighborhood, including those that were installed in Hernández’s house.
Hernández was not at home when the incident occurred.
The individuals, who at first identified themselves as agents of the Federal Police, and then as “Zetas,” briefly detained and punched one of the bodyguards assigned by Mexico City authorities to protect Hernández, who was in the journalist’s house at the time of the incident.
The reasons for the home invasion are unclear. The armed group was in the neighborhood for approximately a half hour; however, authorities did not respond to the incident.
From scaling the very highest rooftops to political scandal through the eyes of Alexander Cockburn, we bring you our seasonal highlights for 2013.
THE CITY / URBAN EXPLORATION
Explore Everything: Place-Hacking the City
Bradley L. Garrett
"Garrett perceives the city like no one else I know. Seen through his eyes, it is newly porous, full of “vanishing points”, “imperfect joinings” and portals – service hatches, padlocked doorways – that you wouldn't usually notice... The city's accessible space extends far down into the earth (sewers, bunkers, tunnels) and far up into the air (skyscrapers, cranes), with the street level only serving as a median altitude." – Robert Macfarlane, Guardian
"[Combines] erudite references (Montesquieu, Walter Benjamin) with compelling photographs of men in hoodies in strange places." – Rowan Moore, The Observer Architecture Books of the Year