Scary Folks in Evanston

I don’t know who lives in Southeast Evanston but they sound very disturbed:

The Southeast Evanston Association, in an email message to its members, says neighbors need to assure that the establishment will carry “a hotel brand that will maintain a high quality of business, and not devolve into cheap housing for transient academics.”

I really wonder what that neighborhood is like if its residents are so terrified of “transient academics.” I mean, what are these scary creatures likely to do, grab innocent residents an quote Agamben at them? Yes, what a horrible menace.

Soon we will see messages posted on the gates of gated communities, “No thinking beings allowed lest they disturb our contented cud-chewing.”

Manly Women and Wikipedia

Some news items leave me at a loss for words. Here is an article about people who are criticizing Wikipedia for having masculine design:

“It’s aesthetically very masculine in its design,” Stierch told us. “Its community, like so much of the early Internet, has been male dominated, and I think when a lot of people—men or women—look at Wikipedia these days, they see it as a source for information but have little interest or excitement in contributing to it.”

As a counterpoint, Stierch offered up the fact that women tend to dominate other online communities, making up the majority of social media users. She said it’s a matter of choice about how to spend one’s time online, at that fewer women are drawn to the cold, technical, and argumentative environment of Wikipedia.

So if you are a woman who is drawn to cold, technical, and argumentative environments, I have news for you: you are a man.

As I keep saying, no male chauvinist has been able to be as offensive to me as some feminists manage to do on a regular basis. I mean, where the hell do you get off, policing people’s femininity on the basis of how “cold” or argumentative they are or like their environments to be? Is there a worse stereotype of women than that we are all warm and compliant?

And another question: where should I take my cold, argumentative self to stop being censored for not being the right kind of woman?

Senseless System

A colleague who just got a verbal assurance that the tenure-track position she interviewed for is hers asked me what life was like on the tenure-track.

“Wait,” she said in the midst of the conversation. “Do you mean to say that you write these articles or a book without knowing if they will be accepted for publication? You know the entire time that this can all be just a waste of time? There is no guarantee of publication?”

When I confirmed, she stayed silent for a moment and then asked, “Are you sure you really understand how this works? Because the system you describe simply doesn’t make sense.”