About a month ago, I appeared on POPSspot Sports Radio. The topic was “Sports & Violence Against Women.” It was a wide-ranging discussion on this topic and I really enjoyed being on the show. (I can’t figure out how to embed the audio on my site so just click over and listen to it where POPSspot has it available).
That same week, I did a podcast episode with Josh Katzowitz. He has a series called “Mightier Than The Sword” where he talks with writers “about writers, about their backgrounds and about the charcoal-to-bark, pen-to-paper, digits-to-keyboard, fingers-to-smartphone-screen world in which I love to live.”
The interview covers what it’s like to write about the impact of sexism on sports in a field that can be incredibly sexist, how I marry my writing to my activism, what “rape culture,” and about my upcoming book on sexual assault and college football.
On August 26, I did an online chat with Katie Klabusich at a site called Tawkers about college football and sexual assault. The downside to the Tawkers format as is: I can’t even cut and paste the text from the chat. The only way to read the full transcript of the hour-long chat is on Tawker’s site, scrolling down through the talk.
Way back in July, I was profiled by David Leonard for The Feminist Wire. In the long interview, I spoke about being a feminist and a sports fan at the same time:
I am a feminist sports fan. I am a feminist anything. That’s a hat I can’t take off.
Of course, being a feminist sports fan is hard a lot of the time. While watching a game, commentators – who are almost exclusively men unless you are watching women’s sports – often assume that the audience is just men or they actually make sexist comments (I’m thinking of Brent Musburger’s famous “boys, make sure you play quarterback so you can get a hot girlfriend” statement during the Alabama football championship game a couple of years ago). The ads around sports are sexist, too. There is a lot of eye rolling and righteously angry tweeting that happens while I am watching that helps me process it all.
A big part of the process of being a feminist sports fan is setting expectations nice and low. It’s about preparing for the inevitable let down and dealing with the disappointment when the letdown happens even though you’ve prepped for it. And it’s a lot of waving my arms wildly above my head and screaming on a regular basis, “I am here! Women are here!”
The interview is much longer and is about much more than just sports.
Recently, I spoke with Parker Molloy at Hellogiggles about women in sports. Here is what I said about the impact of Mo’Ne Davis:
I think the impact of a moment like one we just saw—the nation being captivated by Mo’NeDavis, her awesome play, and her kick-ass personality—is hard to measure. I have no doubt that there will be girls who suddenly imagine themselves as baseball players that wouldn’t have before. I definitely believe that there were plenty of people who, maybe for the first time in their lives, really wondered about why mainly boys play baseball and girls play softball. Emma Span wrote a great piece about why girls play softball for the New York Times earlier this year:
But issues of masculinity and sport are so intertwined that “throw like a girl” probably isn’t going anywhere for a long time. I think the flip side of people really considering the sexism that causes girls (and women) to almost never play baseball beyond hitting a ball in their yard, is people imagining Davis or [Kayla] Roncin as anomalies. Exceptions that prove the rule.
It matters, though, that a whole lot of people now understand that baseball can be for girls and that girls can play baseball. All of sports would be better if we divided players by skill level and not by some arbitrary biological standard.
Finally, my debut piece for VICE Sports is up today. It’s all about why I loved attending Charlie Strong’s women’s football camp this summer. And while I would appreciate you reading the entire piece, I will tell you that the final paragraph is one of the best moments of my summer.