You want to cut my what? - UBC Library
You want to cut my what?
Biker chick tells all
Amnesty UBC begins its fight against
female genital cutting. Page 5".
Jammin' with the Honey
The L'byssey's Alicia Miller chats with
band Clover Honey. Pages 6-7.
The secret affair
Examining biker stereotypes. Pages 6-7.
The truth about girly maps. Page I I,
Vol t imt 8
k IN. ue
Friday, Mardi 7, 2003
A Uhisseif Spetial Issue
UBC MEDICINE PRESENTS "THE
RUN FOR RURAL MEDICINE" Sun,
Mar 23. For info & registration details,
go to www.ubcmedicine.cjb.net/2005/run
WOMEN'S CENTRE ANNUAL
GENERAL MEETING: Mar 27, 5pm.
Come out & participate in the womenrun, women-oriented resource group!
LET YOUR SPIRIT GROW ART
EXHIBITION: Spiritual Expressions in
Art. Mar 3-8, 10am-7pm, SUB Art
Gallery. Sponsored by UBC Chaplains +
Murrill Fund. Free admission.
STRUGGLES IN RELIGIOUS
IDENTITY: IS CHRISTIANITY A
VIOLENT RELIGION? The Dodson
Room, Main Library, Mar 10, 4pm.
Speaker: Dr, Miraslov Volt He
Wright professor of Theology Y e
University Divinity School. Sponsored by
UBC Graduate & Faculty Christian
AMNESTY UBC'S 8TH ANNUAL
STUDENT CONFERENCE: MAR 89. Topic: Conflict & Human Rights.
Cost: $30. 2 full days of exciting speakers
& workshops + food, registration
package & &bonus T-shirt. Contact
Gabrielle at [email protected] or
604-988-8438 to register.
ATTENTION ALL HISTORY
THIS SPRING: Please take your grad
photos at: Evangelos Photography, 3156
W. Broadway, 604-731-8314. Deadline:
ENGINEERS W/O BOARDER UBC
SPEAKER SERIES: "Globalization &
the environment" by Dr. Peter Dauverge.
Mar 11, 6:30 at CEME 1202. Everyone
welcome. www.ubc.ewb.ca; ubc4ewb.ca.
MAKING PEACE IN A TIME OF
WAR" - CUSO's overseas projects. Feat.
Olympic Gold Medalist, Daniel Igali.
Mar 14, 7-9pm, YWCA (733 Beatty St).
ENGINEERS W/O BORDERS UBC
presents a benefit concert to raise money
for an overseas internship. Mar 11, 8pm
at Mesa Luna (1926 W. Broadway). $7
cover. [email protected]
EARN TESL CERT. 4 WKS $930. Sat
& online a,vail. Get paid to teach English
& see the 1v9 r14, 60)-609-0411.
TEACH ENGLISH OVEREASI Oneday TEFL workshop. Mar 15. 1 866.912-4465. wwwgoteach ca
uy a e
PLAYSTATION 2 FOR SALE + VF4.
$275 obo. 604-874-9016 or
[email protected] ca.
COMPUTER TABLE WITH PULL
OUT KEYBOARD TRAY. 4'x1', like
new. Black & grey. $70 obo. Call 604221-5314.
Hey you, yeah. You! Are you
eading this? I think you are.
You like looking at the ads
BACHELOR SUITE, 4TH &
TOLMIE ST. $495/month plus utilities.
High speed Internet avail; microwave
cooking only. Cheryl 604-224-8806.
Looking for a roommate?
Got something to sell?
Or just have an
announcement to make?
don't you? You know you
can place free Classifiedds?
You can also e-mail events
to [email protected]
and we might place it in our
Between Classes or
Weekend listings too. And if
you read enough ads maybe
you'll find one of those
GIVEAWAYS we always
have. There are free CDs to
be had and free movies to
watch. Real attentive of you
to read this. This was our
last page of the night. I hate
Ryon are a student,
you can place classifieds
for more information, visit
(basement) or call 822-1654.
Only a month to go...
the last issue oj the u oyssey comes out _April 9.
Come write and help out before you look for a summer job and get kicked out of your basement suite.
We rode to be free, now
let's pull up our sleeves!
and gender issues
by Erica Mali
When I turned 16, my mother urged
me to get my driver's license. Having
grown up in a poor family, she never
had the opportunity to do so. She was
30 years old when she finally did,
and I remember that day and how
excited she was. She remembered
her walking days—a stroller and four
young daughters across town, rain or
shine or snow. In a town too small
for public transit her freedom was
limited by her Having no
driver's license was just another reason she had to depenclon my father.
One of the most celebrated
moments in the history of women's
liberation was the popularisation of
the bicycle. It shook up the. Victorian
era of strictly defined gender roles by
giving women the possibility of independent mobility. Bloomers and
bicycle costumes came out in fashion
magazines to replace long heavy
skirts that restricted movement.
Conservatives were appalled by the
idea of a woman straddling the seat
in a sexually provocative manner.
Doctors warned of health risks for
delicate people. But women celebrated their newfound freedom. The car
later rolled over these celebrations
when it became widely available. It
was a vehicle of freedom, but only for
those who could afford it (which was
I live in a bicycle world full of gender contradictions. Men and women
ride side-by-side, but enter into the
bike shop, and chances are, you'll
find a gendered environment, namely a man's world. I witness a woman
enter a bike shop and joke about her
mechanical ineptitude, intimidated
by her lack of experience. I see a man
ignoring the advice of a female
mechanic, asking the advice of the
nearest male companion. Bike shops
are knocking down the doors of
women with any trace of mechanical
skills to make their shops less intimidating for female customers, and
maybe to get the world used to seeing
a woman with grease on her hands
A woman riding a bicycle today
does not provoke, images of a revolution, but history hasn't been forgotten. Just as women pulled up their
pants and rode to freedom in the
1890s, today women must roll up
their sleeves for freedom in the bike
shop. When I teach bike mechanics
and a man pats me on the head and
asks for a second opinion, I try not to
get insulted and I try even harder not
to doubt myself. And when a volunteer steps into the shop I try to make
sure she doesn't just paint bikes if
she really wants to dirty her hands
with bike grease. •
The ASI Exchange - BC's premier technology event to stimulate and accelerate
connections, opportunities and innovation
March 11, 2003
9:00 am - 5:30 pm
Women's Rights Have No Borders Rally
Enterprise Hall @ Plaza of Nations
exchange research ideas • visit over 250 academic and industry displays
listen to 13 innovative speakers • expand your professional network
seek research partnerships • see what 's new in BC's high-tech industry
ASI Exchange After Party
The Commodore, 868 Granville St.
March 11, 6:00 - 10:00 pm
Cost $10 per person
Visit www.techvibes.com to register
Medical Device industry Association
Women, and others, will be gathering Saturday at 11 am to celebrate
International Women's Day. So get yourself to Thorton Park, near the
Main St Skytrain Station, and march your ass down to Victory Square
for a rally at noon. There will also be a celebration dance at 8pm at the
Wise Club, 1882 Adadac, for those who want to get their groove on. Tix
available at the door.
Bustin' Out Festival
Celebrate Women's Day at this speakeasy, soiree, jam, jamboree, outing, exhibit, bare-all spectacle. We think they mean it will have stand-up
comedy, slam poety, music and dance. It is all going down at Chivana's,
2340 W 4th. If nothing else, it's on a bus route.
Amnesty UBC's Human Rights Conference
While most of the conference focuses on conflict and war there will be
two workshops on women's issues. On Saturday catch a talk on Female
Genital Cutting from 3-4pm or 4:15-5:15pm. On Sunday join in the discussion on Rape as a Weapon of War from 10:45-11:45am or 12-fpm.
The cost is $30 for the weekend or $10 for half of Saturday or all of
Sunday. Food is included. Top floor of the SUB.
Friday, Mardi 7 2003
A Ubyssey S ecial Issue
omen's Issu e
FRIDAY, MARCH 7, 2003
VOLUME 84 ISSUE 40
SPECIAL WOMEN'S ISSUE
Duncan M. McHugh
The Ubyssey is the official student newspaper of the University of
British Columbia. It is published every Tuesday and Friday by The
Ubyssey Publications Society.
We are an autonomous, democratically run student organisation,
and all students are encouraged to participate.
Editorials are chosen and written by the Ubyssey staff. They are the
expressed opinion of the staff, and do not necessarily reflect the
. views of The Ubyssey Publications Society or the University of
The Ubyssey is a founding member of Canadian University Press
(CUP) and adheres to CUP's guiding principles.
All editorial content appearing in The Ubyssey is the property of The
Ubyssey Publications Society Stories, opinions, photographs and
artwork contained herein cannot be reproduced without the
expressed, written permission of The Ubyssey Publications Society.
Letters to the editor must be under 300 words. Please include your
phone number, student number and signature (not for publication)
as well as your year and faculty with all submissions. ID will be
checked when submissions are dropped off at the editorial office of
The Ubyssey, otherwise verification will be done by phone.
"Perspectives" are opinion pieces over 300 words but under 750
words and are run according to space.
"freestyles" are opinion pieces written by Ubyssey staff members.
Priority wit be given to letters and perspectives over freestyles
unless the latter is time sensitive. Opinion pieces will not be run
until the identity of the writer has been verified.
It is agreed by all persons placing display or classified advertising
that if the Ubyssey Publications Society fails to publish an advertisement or if an error in the ad occurs the liability of the UPS will
not be greater than the price paid for the ad. The UPS shall not be
responsible for slight changes or typographical errors that do not
lessen the value or the impact of the ad.
Room 24, Student Union Building
6138 Student Union Boulevard
Vancouver, BC V6T 121
e-mail: [email protected]
Room 23, Student Union Building
business office: 604-822-6681
e-mail: [email protected]
Emily Chan was justaainding her own business when Megan mamma and
Dave Gaertner shamelessly slole her lunch and red it to the ravenous Janet
French and Anna lang,Jefl Mackenzie. outraged, phoned 91 I operator Parer
Nisher and alerted the authorities. OfllcersJesse Marchard,Jenmfet Forhan,
and Joanna Korthe all boated on the
and also busted ,utue kneecaps
in a shame/ess display of violence. Distracted by their own brutality, the cops
rood a nMice world ramous arsonist Lisa Johnson and her radhful side.
kicks. Kathleen Deering and Chris Shepherd, sneakily away. Weronilm
Lewmult and Analetle Del Rosario caught on however, and wall die help of
Alicia Miller and Ent Mah they snagged the arsonists, le thief, the bad
cepa and also cannabllist Michelle Mayne. 'Wen, what do we doc with al
Me. criminals? asked Amalie /ahem and Kerrie Thornhill in noison.
Amber Shilling answered simply: theio.. feather in hand Michel,/
Schwan& wanted r pint of the action In Sarah Conchae. inspired by the
tickling toot, stole pillows treat Duncan M. Molaugh and Me Fensom who
were in the middle of an Mtense pillow rw,ht and with the help of ilywel
Toscana taried and feathered the whole lot
Canada Post Sales Agreement Number 0732141
by Michelle Mayne
A woman's issue.
When coordinating a women's issue, one has to
ask if there is a place for it. Do women's issues
need their own paper? As coordinators of this
year's Women's Issue, we say, Yes. Women's
issues are still important and still need their
own space. Let us tell you why.
For one thing, according to Stets Canada,
women comprise 50.5 percent of the population. The fact that people are still referring to
women as a minority is troubling. When Sheila
Copps ran for Federal Liberal leadership her
platform was minority rights—seconds later,
she talked about the rights of women. If a group
representing half the population of a country is
still considered a minority, there is a problem.
Another concern is the under-representation
in the media of average-looking women. We
know, you've heard this before. But honestly,
finding representative silhouettes for our cover
was an arduous task. It was shocking to see how
difficult it was to find images of women other
than the stereotypical thin, white, hour-glass
shape we have all become accustomed to seeing
on the front of women's magazines.
It was at that point we decided the theme of
this issue would be the breaking of these stereotypes. Because it was not possible to- cover all
issues of concern to women, we attempted to
include as much material as possible about the
ways in which women are affected by stereotypes. The cover expresses this theme by show-
casing both stereotypical and average women.
We felt it was extremely important to address
the variation of experiences within the category
of woman. Female experiences are not only dictated by gender but also by class, race and life
experience. In this issue we attempted to allow
women of different races and classes to use
their voice to articulate issues that affect their
lives as well as their individual experiences.
Much of the content in the issue also surrounds the perception of women, be it in the
media specifically or society at-large. When we
were discussing story ideas for the issue, concerns about how women are represented and
the repercussions of this representation came
up over and over again. We felt it was important
to include a variety of opinions on how this representation affects individual women.
We also made the decision to steer the focus
of this issue away from matters surrounding
sex. Although we do not discount that this is an
role for men in its creation. We decided that
excluding men from the production of the paper
would only perpetuate all types of exclusion in
the future. Our aim was to encourage men and
women to strive together for equality.
Segregation often breeds fear, ignorance and
discrimination because neither side understands where the other is coming from. In this
respect we hope that men 'will also find these
women's stories an interesting read.
As we sit here and write this editorial piece it
also strikes us as to how difficult it is to describe
a 'women's issue.' Until it becomes easier to
articulate the concerns of women—without generalising and categorising—a Women's Issue is
a necessity. Women need to have a forum to
voice their concerns so that articulating
women's issues in the future becomes easier.
So what is it that we want you to get out of
this issue? We hope that you appreciate the
extra effort women made to create this issue.
important—and underrepresented—issue for
We hope you appreciate the extra effort men
women, we felt that too often sex becomes the
central focus of female-oriented pieces. Our aim
was to take a broader look at everyday barriers
that women overcome, and how overcoming
these results in empowerment. This is why we
focused on the amazing things that many
women are accomplishing everyday.
Another issue raised in the planning of the
Women's Issue was whether or not there was a
made to create thisissue. We would like you to
understand that the experiences of women differ greatly from those of men, but that this
should not limit women from working with
men to accomplish what should be Collective
goals. We hope to have represented women in
a positive and empowered manner. And we
hope that You will finish this issue thinking
(4114T/ I GUESS W
NATIONAL POST, CUTTING
WE ELIMINATE. TAXSS
TAXES MEANS INCPEASED
WILE. RAVE UNLIMITED
Free market economics getting you down?
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
Research and ideas for social justice
www.policyalternatives.ca 1 604,801.5121
IN THE FACULTY OF ARTS
WHAT'S BEYOND 2ND YEAR???
THURSDAY, MARCH 13, 2003
12PM - 2PM, SUB BALLROOM
Thinking about a Major?
Thinking about Honours?
Thinking about a Minor?
Thinking about a different Faculty?
Thinking about a Professional School?
Thinking about Careers?
Thinking about Graduate School?
Thinking about requirements?
Thinking about a Year Abroad?
Come talk to representatives about program opportunities.
DOOR PRIZES! DOOR PRIZES! DOOR PRIZES!
SPONSORED BY THE FACULTY OF ARTS LAI COLLABORATION
WITH THE ARTS UNDERGRADUATE SOCIETY
with DANIEL IGALI
and the Eniwar School Project
Friday, March 14, 2003
733 Beatty at Georgia
(by Stadium Shytrain Stn)
Fricla4, Mardi 7, 2003
A UbLIsseti Special Issue
Tie the ribbon
by Kathleen Deering
Four members of the White Ribbon Campaign (WRC) sit
around me in a circle, gathered for the interview.
"I don't like to do interviews alone,' explains Jon
Hanvelt, a Master's student in sociology and one of the
founders of the UBC group.
He wants to ensure the continuing survival of the
group, which is in its fourth year. The group exists to
raise awareness about violence against women and,
hopefully, help prevent it. The core consists of about
seven men right now, but many other members come
and go as scheduling permits.
The biggest event this year for the WRC was the
third annual pancake breakfast, held in November last
semester to raise money for the Sexual Assault Support
Centre on campus. They made over $3700. This term
members are 'sitting back and analysing what the
group is about,' according to first-year Arts student
They know they fill a niche on campus, but they
don't know exactly where they'll fit into UBC's services
in the future. 'We're trying to get a permanent space
for us to work out of,' Adam continues. "That way we
can establish a bit of a library, have contacts, have
someone in an office in case someone needs to contact
the group. It will give a structure to the group.'
'One of the big ideas is maintaing a presence on
campus,' says Master's of Education student Chris SteCroix, who co-founded the club with Jon. "I think now
it's all about establishing ourselves as a part of the
community. So when the four of us here are gone,
that's something that will still exist'
Chris and Jon are also part of another group, called
X-Y: Men Working Against Sexual Assault, through the
Wellness Centre. They give workshops to different
groups, off- and on-campus, and most recently gave a
talk at a campus fraternity. Many of X-Y's members
have joined because of these workshops.
Tyler Bryant, a second-year Arts student, became
involved after one of Chris' recruitment speeches at
Safewalk. "I just find it sad that half of this population
feels a lot more scared than the other half walking to
their car at night,' Tyler says. 'And there are a lot of
things, just sort of easy things, that we've done to get rid
Adam says organisations like the WRC are needed
on campus because, although awareness has been created for women about violence, there hasn't been the
same treatment for men.
"I think something that's really important to look
at and to deal with is the other side of things—the
men's side,' he continues. "How their role as the
agressors...or participants in that systemic violence,
or that structure that creates violence—how that plays
a part and how we can deal with that.'
He wants to emphasise that he's not pinning blame
or saying men are evil, but that they need to recognise
how they are part of the problem and that they can be
part of the solution.
What the members of the WRC are looking for is an
umbrella organisation to pull together all the organisations around campus interested in working on similar issues. They want to create a space where men can
comfortably talk about their own masculinity.
Jon commends the two younger men for their cornmittment to the group's ideals, because they will be
the people who ensure its survival and expansion.
"The process that we're going through now is figuring
out where we fit into the university environment—not
just as a group of guys who put together a pancake
breakfast but as a real live organisation that has an
institutional place on campus,' Jon says. "We are all
working on our own analysis and learning of the sexism we've learned over our lives.'
'As men we have a lot to gain from this work. It's not
like we're trying to save the world for women. We're trying to save the world for ourselves, too.' 0
Surf's up ladies
Pioneering women create surf clubs to escape city life
A great way to appreciate some of
BC's beauty is to get out in the freezing Pacific Ocean stuck to a board
and surf. While this might sound
like a harsh solution to a hangover,
it is a perfect day for surfers.
Surfing is growing in popularity,
especially amongst women. There's
just something about getting in their wet suits and
braving the elements in
order to pursue their passion and love of the water.
Avid surfers Kathleen
Diga and Jenny Stewart
both feel that to goy out
and surf or do anything
outdoors is a way to
escape the exhaust,
garbage and feverish pace
of the city. Perhaps this is
why more and more surf
clubs are opening up and
being spearheaded by
UBC's surf club is an
example of the increasing
numbers of women taking to the frothy waves. It
was started by Diga, who
has been surfing since the
summer of 1999. She fell
in love with the sport so quickly that
she started up the UBC Surf Club in
2000 with two other girls, one from
Quebec, the other from Nova Scotia.
She met both women through surfing and camping.
'It was kind of neat for the way
the separations of our lives came
together,' said Diga, reflecting on
the experience. The common bond
was one that Diga wishes everyone
could feel, by being 'out there, experiencing the peace with just you
[and] a couple of friends, enjoying
In its first year, the club had
about 130 members but since there
is nowhere to surf in Vancouver, the
club travels to other surfing areas.
Previous trips include going to
California, Hawaii and Vancouver
Island's Tofino. The club also finds
ways for travelling surfers to find
each other and to share rides and
expenses by posting on its website
Jenny Stewart has also pioneered a way for surfers to get
together by starting an all-women's
surf school in Tofino. Stewart is a
veteran of the sport. She started her
surfing experience at the age of two,
when her father first put her on a
board. She has participated in several BC Association surfing contests
as well as attended the ISA World
Surfing Games as a member of
Canada's National Team.
Her surf camp, Surf
Sister, opened up in 1999,
when Jenny decided to get
more women involved in the
sport by turning her hobby
into a full-time job.
The camp is designed primarily for women and features everything from daily
lessons in the summer and
winter, to two-day clinics and
camps such as the motherdaughter camps or the specialised wilderness camps,
where all organic meals are
an option. But while the website claims it is an all-woman
school Stewart encourages
men to participate in the clini ics. Interested surfers or surfteachers can contact
Stewart and Diga have
seen a lot of worldwide surfspots and they both say that there
are more women in the water in BC
than anywhere else. Along with
many other women, they are taking
their boards out and checking out
all the great things that surfing in
BC has to offer.
—with files from Jesse Marchand
Frictail, March 7, 2003
A Ulxisseil Special Issue
The women of the Sciences
by Janet French
The number of women enrolled in science at UBC is at an alltime high, but some on campus say women still, have a considerable way to go in the field.
Encouraging women to study physics is something Dr
Janis McKenna takes to heart. She said she never considered
how gender affected her role as a physicist until she was a
post-doctoral fellow. "Now I really think it's an important
issue,' said McKenna.
The UBC associate professor of physics and astronomy
has served on the executive of the Canadian Association of
Physicists' Committee to Encourage Women in Physics
(CEWIP), a group that has participated in international conferences to produce a list of recommendations for schools,
government and industry. Some of the recommendations
include making successful women more visible as role models for students, including more women on influential committees and decision-making bodies, and ensuring that the
distribution of scholarships is gender balanced.
'There have been, in the past, policies which were partially discriminatory,' explained McKenna. "UBC now has a policy for maternity leave for female students. Certainly, a
decade ago those didn't exist.'
McKenna said the recommendations are important
because fields like physics and engineering are still heavily
In 2001, 48 per cent of Science undergraduates at UBC
were female, and 52 per cent were male. The gender ratios at
UBC are also similar to the Canadian averages. However, the
participation of women in all sciences at UBC dwindles at the
graduate level. In 2001, 37 per cent of graduate students in
the Faculty of Science were women, along with 39 per cent of
those in Applied Science.
But the gender gap doesn't faze Alex Pope or Kristen
Coppin. The Master's students in physics and astronomy say
the lack of women in their field presents them with a welcome challenge. "There's an appeal to it,' said Pope. "You
think 'let's see if I can do it'"
Both Pope and Coppin said encouraging parents and stimulating teachers were key in piquing their interest in physics.
Colvin attended an all-girls high school and never got the
impression that physics was inappropriate for girls. 'You're
just in physics, and you don't feel like you shouldn't be
Not all girls have been encouraged like Coppin and Pope.
McKenna said studies show some high school guidance counselors may steer women away from subjects that are mathematical or challenging. "[Counsellors] might think they're
doing women a favour...by not stressing them too much,' she
explained. "But in the long run, they're...cutting them out of
certain career opportunities at an early age.'
Coppin and Pope both said successful role models like
McKenna are important, and would like to see more female
faculty hired at UBC. "If you see more women doing it, then
you [feel] encouraged,' said Coppin.
Pope added that she thinks things are improving dramatically for- women; and that a gender balance will merely take
time. 'I think [gender] is only an issue if you make it one,'
she said. "Most of the [men] are pretty accepting and don't
BRING ON THE WOMEN: Dr Janice McKenna is looking for more female collegues to join her for a science career
in the future. MICHELLE MAYNE PHOTO
see a reason why women can't do science.'
Gender balance in Science at UBC has improved dramatically over the past 20 years. In the 1980-81 school year, 82
per cent of Science undergraduates and 74 per cent of graduate students were male. Now the number of women and
men enrolled in undergraduate Science is almost equal.
Campus organisations like Supporting Women in
Information Technology (SWIFT) are working to get more
women into careers in computer science and technology.
Michelle Ng co-ordinates both SWIFT and the Alternative
Routes to Computing (ARC) program, a postgraduate diploma
in information technology for graduates of any program,
especially Arts. "It's always portrayed in the media that computer science is very male dominated, and it's very geeky, it's
very boring,' said Ng.
SWIFT sends women undergraduates in computer science
into high school classrooms to grasp the attention of young
girls through hands-on demonstrations, career information
and advice. "We want to let young girls see role models...who
have good communication skills, who are also interested in
things [outside of] computer science,' explained Ng. She
added that appealing to girls at a young age is key in recruiting them later on.
McKenna said since research is funded by taxes, the public's money should be used to provide equal opportunities for
both women and men. "If we want to have major scientific
breakthroughs, major new ideas, the chance of scientists making more discoveries increases if there are more people doing
this research,' explained McKenna. "If women are
involved...you are doubling the amount of brain power solving
the toughest problems in science and engineering.' 0
Percentages of Female Science undergraduate students in
Faculty of Science: 48 per cent
Mechanical Engineering: 13 per cent
Computer Science: 24 per cent
Physics: 23 per cent
Women dominate the departments of Nutritional
Science, Environmental science and Oceanography
Percentage of Female Science graduate students in 2001:
Faculty of Science: 37 per cent
Applied Science: 39 per cent
Amnesty UBC tackels female genital cutting through sponsorship
by Megan Thomas
Female circumcision, female genital mutilation or female genital cutting (FGC). No matter
what you choose to call it, the practice affects
women of all ages in a variety of countries.
This is why Amnesty UBC chose last year to
sponsor a Ugandan girl in the hopes that she
can avoid cutting in her future.
According to Amnesty UBC President
Gabrielle Williams, FGC was catagorised by
Amnesty International as a human rights violation last year under a new expanded mandate. FGC takes a variety of forms but refers to
any practice that includes the alteration or
removal of the female genitalia. It ranges in
severity from type one, the removal of the clitoral foreskin or all of the clitoris, to infibulalion, where the clitoris and the labia are
removed and the vagina is sewn up, leaving
only a small hole for urine and menstrual
blood to pass through.
The consequences of FGC range from shortterm ailments such as shock, hemorrage or
infection to long-term effects which include
difficulties with childbirth and the transmis-
sion of HIV/AIDS, as a single tool is often used
on many girls during a FGC ceremony.
Amnesty UBC works with the US-Uganda
Godparents Association (US-UGA) to sponsor
Violet, a 15-year-old girl from a village called
Bonio in Tingey County, a parOof the
Kapchorwa district of Uganda. To sponsor
Violet, Amnesty UBC fundraiser to pay for her
tuition of $550 at the Peace High School in
Bonio, a school run by members of US-UGA.
Tuition includes room and board and an education. It is through this education that
Amnesty UBC hopes to liberate Violet from the
practice of FGC.
As a young woman in Uganda without an
education, Violet would be dependent upon the
institution of marriage for her future. It is customary for young woman to undergo FGC to be
marriagable in many Ugandan villages. The
hope is that Violet's education will give her the
means to support herself so she is not dependent on marriage or her family for her
"We are basically giving these girls a choice
through education,' said Scott Church, a representative and FGC advocate for US-UGA. It is
through Church that Amnesty UBC discovered
the US-UGA, and consequently Violet. Church
says that it is customary in Uganda to charge A
dowry (or bride price) for a woman's hand in
marriage. It is this dowry, often the equivalent
of a year's salary, that he feels puts enormous
pressure on families to subject their daughters
to FGC. 'A daughter who refuses to be cut. is
essentially a $40,000 loss for the old man. That
is a damn strong incentive in their culture.'
This type of cultural practice makes the decision to not undergo FGC very difficult for
young women and their families.
"It is an incredibly mature and difficult
decision for [young] women to be making,'
said Williams. The US-UGA works to provide
support for girls who have already made the
difficult decision not to undergo FGC. "One of
the reasons that the Godparents [program] has
been effective is that they are a non-governmental organisation and they are operating in
a way where they kind of stand on the sidelines
and act as a sort of halfway house for people
who already want out,' said Church.
For some there is concern that programs
designed to end FGC may in effect impose a
different set of values on a culture. Frances
Macqueen, the co-ordinator of the Vancouver
Association for Survivors of Torture, is one
such person. "I don't like the idea of a kind of
colonisation where we go in and say, 'No, that
is wrong,'" said Macqeen. However, she
acknowledges that "it is a difficult dance,' and
agrees that the practice of FGC should be
stopped. Macqueen stresses that enabling
women to become financially stable and independent is integral to ending the practice. She
says it is these root causes within a culture
that perpetuate FGC and that these must be
taken into account when trying to end the
Amnesty UBC also hopes that if Violet can
avoid cutting she may return to her community and be in a position to change her culture
from within. "She may become an activist in
her own right against [FGC] from within her
own culture which is a really important part of
this project,' said Williams. Sasha Badr, the
social co-ordinator for Amnesty UBC agrees.
"We give the tools she needs to educate other
girls on a personal level about her experience
and the practice.' •
Fridati, March 7, 2003
Friclati, March 7, 2003
A Ulmsseq Special Issue
Vancouver trio is rocking out, and they're having run
Fun c oink it
by Alicia J. Miller
GOT WHEELS? This biker chick's got it covered. MICHELLE MAYNE PHOTO
ing it to
Addressing the biker chick mystique
by Sarah Conchie
I have a confession to make. Every night when I
come home to my cute little basement suite after
a long, hard day at school—or the quaint bookstore
I inhabit on the weekends—I take a slight detour. I
duck around the side of the house, open a tiny gate
and check on my dearest investment: my black
Yamaha motorcycle. My friends (non-bikers) roll
their eyes and wait for me at the door, hoping that
I won't be longer than a quick gaze.
Yes, I am a 'biker chick.' Yes, I wear leather,
and yes, my ears are tuned to that special roar on
a sunny day that compels me to turn my head and
appreciate a passing piece of machinery. But
I also have a bus pass tucked into my
wallet next to my bad-ass license. And
I don't sport tattoos, stilettos, or
The question that annoys me
the most? "So,' says the culprit
with an annoyingly jocular manner, 'What's it like being a biker
chick?" Sometimes, I reply with,
"So, what's it like being a pedestrian?' Other times, I merely
smile and say, 'Awesome. I'm loving it. It's not raining.' Satisfied, my
audience usually drifts away, but I
have the feeling they still think I'm the
type to pose in my bikini next to my bike and
upload the pictures onto the Internet.
Here's the truth. Riding a motorcycle isn't
glamorous. Especially in a city like Vancouver,
where the rain makes transit users of us all. Cold
weather is best bundled up against, thereby making you more like a little kid in a big snowsuit than
a barracuda. When it rains, there's no 'sexy'
involved—just wet And unless you relish the idea
of losing a significant portion of your epidermal
layer to the pavement, even the most gorgeous
days require more than a pair of jeans and a leopard print tank top.
And it isn't easy. Before I actually climbed onto
a bike, I would dream about simply turning the
key and roaring away, zipping in and out of traffic
with no more experience than my early days on a
bicycle. Well, a run-in with a parking meter soon
convinced me otherwise. Bikes require both
hands, both feet and more than a little coordination, all the while looking out for car drivers who
don't look out for me.
It's also time-consuming. The
more we ride, the more
tweaks and tender loving
care are required. One set
of tools is simply not
enough, and if you happen to have a classic
bike, they can be fussier
than a West End hairstylist. My bike, a 1982
Yamaha Maxim, has its
own morning routine
before it will take me anywhere.
But in case I start sounding
like my mother—every time I mentioned motorcycles, she mentioned horrible accidents—I admit that I've always been hooked on
bikes. The biker women I know (and wanted to
interview) just wanted to ride, not talk about it
One, a police officer who has been in the saddle
for almost twenty years, keeps her car under-
ground and takes her wine-coloured Honda
Shadow everywhere. Another works in an office
and rides her Kawasaki sport bike to work every
day, trading boots for demure flats during office
There's nothing in the world like cruising on a
long, curvy country road, being able to drink in the
scents of the summer, and feeling the wind slipstream past your body Without having to roll down
the window or wear a seatbelt.
Getting into biking is relatively simple—talk to
someone with a bike. If you're ambitious enough,
talk them into selling you their bike, especially if
they can't stop yakking about how perfect it is.
I started the wrong way—riding my boyfriend's
bikes. After getting all caught up in the image, and
getting quite a few scratches, I finally settled down
and bought a bike I could actually lift off the pavement myself. If you can't lift it, you definitely
won't be able to control it when you're speeding
along at 70km per hour.
Try out the bike before you try on the leather
pants. Even if it looks pretty, and you easily picture yourself tooling through downtown, get a
friend with a license to give you a ride, and test it
out first before you spend three month's rent.
And most importantly, get your license. Pick up
the book, read it and take the test Then, get that
same faithful friend to give you lessons before you
take your final road test, or sign up for a bonafide
rider training course. Because you really don't
want to be stuck just outside of Chilliwack at midnight, watching your beloved bike be towed away
to the impound lot while you trek along the highway with your thumb out and a ticket in your
pocket. Trust me, that's not cool at all, no matter
how much leather you're wearing. 0
ered with red, khaki or grey drapes, and a
myriad of curious decorations. A green alien
mask hangs above Lauree. A styrofoam mannequin head sits on the shelf. There is a surf-
she teaches mostly special education for
intermediate grades through high school.
In the midst of pricey Yaletown high-rise s,
Lauree is eagerly travelling towards the same
urban boutiques and trendy cafés, squats a
destination, having started the elementary
low, unadorned buildeducation program this
ing with a red, neon
sign: Mini Storeroom.
Amy's 'day job' is comNo front door, I.
pletely different from that
observe; this has got to
of her bandmates. She
and her partner own and
I'm about to listen in
operate Red Cat Records,
on Clover Honey's
located on Main St and
weekly practice session,
26th Avenue. The store
and I've been warned:
opened in July 2002 and
'We're thinking our
offers music released
rehearsal space is kinda
mostly on independent
stinky and gross.'
labels, as well as old
Following the long
vinyl, including 1970s
black pigtails of Lauree
rock. Just last month,
Amy herself released an
member and education
independent album, Self
student at UBC—I am
Titled, in which each song
led from the street into
originates from a differthe alley, through the
ent genre—from country
back door, down a stairto metal.
case and along several
Although the band is
corridors. Electric bass HAVING FUN? You betcha. Clover Honey (I-r), Anita Lynn Binder, Amy Marie
in the midst of creating
and guitar emanate Brannen and Lauree Tomlinson.
new material, they're
through the door of the
eager to share a sample of
space in question: the moment of truth has board propped next to the door, a chord
their work with me. It's been a while since
arrived. Lauree swings back the foam-insuchart taped to its base. A cymbal, a dream- they've played these songs and much laughlated door to reveal the source of the music.
catcher and a skateboard, along with posters
ter ensues, along with melody humming and
Anita Lynn Binder, the bass player, and gui- of Britney Spears and Shaggy, adorn the
exclamations of 'Oh yeah, that's how it
tarist Amy Marie Brannen (better known as walls,. Hockey sticks cluster in the
goes!' All three women sing, but it is
Amy Honey to fans of her solo w6A), beam corner.
Amy who is most enthusiastic
welcoming smiles at me. I enter.
Lauree sits down at the
about stepping up to the mike
It's true, the pungent scent of stale ciga- drums. Anita, her leopard-print
while rocking out on her purple
rette smoke does linger, but the space is
guitar. The focus is on rocking
more funky than gross. Round, multisharply with the tame neutralirhythms and booty-shaking
coloured lights hang in irregular loops from ty of her beige clothes, gestures
beats. Lyrics take a back seat
the ceiling. Amps, mikes, drums and an to the cell phone on the ground
and vocals provide either backover-stuffed couch crowd the room, all detri- and explains that it's there so she,
ground or punchy exclamation
tus from three other bands that share the can see when she gets a call—hearpoints. After finishing a couple
space. Foam hangs on the walls and the ceil- ing it is pretty much impossible. A substisongs, they ask me what I think.
ing in an attempt at soundproofing. It is cov- tute teacher for the Vancouver School Board,
'It's a lot of fun,' I comment.
Lauree nods, 'Our songs are quirky.°
Clover Honey was formed five years ago
after Lauree, who had always known she
would be a drummer (having written as
much in her grade ten yearbook) took a few
lessons. Since she was a natural, she
was told the best way to learn
was to join a band. She met
Anita and Omar, another
original band member, through an ad in
Straight, and they
Honey after an
comic book. A few
months later, after
Amy had moved to
Vancouver from Nova
Scotia, she replaced
Omar. She was intrigued
because the band had listed
Eric's Trip as an influence in
another ad in the Straight The three women
'gelled' and, according to Anita, "haven't
Since then, Clover Honey has won
SHiNDiG! (CiTR's annual battle-of-thebands) released both an EP and—in June
2000—an album, titled Go Horse Go. They
have booked and played 'two-and-a-halr
cross-Canada tours, playing as far east as
Montreal. Although they are currently working on new material with a view to recording
their second album this summer, they consider themselves more of a live band and
regularly play such local venues as the Pic,
the Brickyard and the Railway.
"We have more energy live,' Lauree
During die interview, it is apparent that
the three women love both each other a nd
playing together. 'Okay, sometimes we don't
get along, but we know that we have to
always love each other because we're family,' Amy explains and Anita and Lauree
laughingly agree. This strong connection
means that, for them, songwriting is a wholeheartedly collaborative process in
which they 'just kind of jam,'
says Lauree. Amy adds, "We
spend a lot of time examining each little piece of
the song, perfecting
every little part'
they think being an
all-female band has
:None of us actually
give it much thought
to be honest. It's
something we never
discuss as a band.'
However, Anita does note
that when they were looking
for a replacement for Omar, she
wanted a female guitarist to fill the spot. The
band is also casually looking for a drummer
who also plays either guitars or keyboard
and wants a female to fill the spot
"The dynamic would change drastically if
there was a guy in the band,' explains Amy.
'We come to practice, we're like, 'Look I've
got my period.' We gossip and we put on lip
balm and we're total girls.' Anita nods, "I
think we understand each other. We feel really comfortable.'
The band doesn't consider itself to have a
particular message, feminist or otherwise.
Instead, Amy sums up the , band's aim this
way: "We wan t to perpetuate good times
when we're playing.' Lauree laughs and
adds, 'Good times! That's our favourite saying: good times!' •
Clover Honey plays The Pic on Saturday,
March 8, 2003.
The Ubyssey chats i up with two ladies from the 'Monologues"
by Amielle Del Rosarib
Thousands of years ago artists adorned Hindu temples
and shrines with beautiful flower-shaped and triangular
images symbolising the tender membranes and fleshy
flaps of the female genitalia. These spiabols were called
"Yoni' and they were perceived as far more powerful than
the male symbol, the "Lingam.'
Eran Norton and Rene Wang are both English literature majors and theatre minors ready and willing to talk
about the trials of women's nether regions in UBC's production of "The Vagina Monologues' Norton, producer,
assistant director and actor, says- that the Monologues
have changed her outlook on herself.
"It really empowers you. Not solely on the physical
level, but also on the subject of being a true woman,' she
says as she closes her eyes and smiles.
She performed the piece 'My Angry Vagina' a monologue where she decries tampons, douche bags and gynecologist visits. In an excerpt from the play she says:
'Well, my vagina's not going away. It's pissed-off and
it's staying right here...It's hungry for depth. It wants kindness. It wants change. It wants silence and freedom and
Words like these, Eran says, 'make people realise that
they're not alone. They're not the only ones who think that
their vaginas are ugly. They're not the only ones who don't
know where their clitoris is.'
"The Vagina Monologues,' written by Eve Ensler,
integrates comedic moments with poignant issues concerning women's situations around the world. There is a
whole spectrum of feelings evoked. Pieces such as 'My
Angry Vagina' and °Flood' are very amusing while 'My
Vagina is my Village,' "Crooked Braid,' and 'Under the
Burge" deal with more serious issues.
Rene Wang performed "Crooked Braid' as well as 'My
Vagina is my Village'—a piece about Bosnian women in
refugee camps. The piece is about a woman who was
raped while in the camp. Wang explains. that "they invaded it, butchered it and burned it down.'
'Every time I rehearse those pieces, I feel so emotionally drained. Eve Ensler uses penetrating and acute words
and images that really shoot through your heart You have
to be really stoic to feel unchanged by these monologues,'
Since the very first performance of 'the
Monologues,' the rhetoric of women regarding their
bodily perspective has changed, but men, or what Eran
and Rene like to call 'Bobs'—men who have true appreciation of a vagina's beauty—have also been thanking
them for making the serious moments accessible
'A few men have visited me to say 'Thank you.' They
say that it's made them more comfortable, and because of
that, they understood what we were really trying to say,'
Rene concurs, think that humour is the
hand that opens the door and brings people
to enter this room that they didn't dare enter
before. There are a lot of serious and heavy
issues surrounding the vagina that people
would rather not talk or think about,' she
says. 'But ignoring such issues would only
worsen the existing problems. Humour
serves as a friendly invitation. It disarms people and creates a comfortable environment
that prepares them for sharper issues that
need to be faced.'
Proceeds from the shows are allocated to
the V-D ay campaign (www. vd ay. o rg ), ;for
which Eran is the UBC representative for. It is
a campaign to end violence against women
and girls. Benefits also go to Women Against
Violence Against Women (www.wavaw.com),
UBC Sexual Assault Support Centre, and The
Helping Spirit Lodge Society (www.helpingspiritlodge.org), which supports aboriginal communities and helps prevent family
- Whether you call it coochie, snorcher, poonani, yoni, cunt or pussy, these UBC students
say it loud—they have a vagina and they're
SHE'S GOT ONE: Eran Norton of The Vagina Monologues.
Fridaq, March 7, 2003
A Ulmsseq Special Issue
0 i i 411 11111
Fri Mar 7 to Sun Mar 9
All films $3.00
in the NORM (SUB theatre)
Film Hotline: 8224697 OR check opt
9:30 Confessions of a Dangerous Mind
Wed Mar 12 and Thurs Mar 13
9:30 Life and Debt
0 0 0 0 0 0 0 i 0•0 0 i 41
STUDENT LEGAL FUND SOCIETY
NOTICE OF ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
TAKE NOTICE that an annual general meeting of SLFS -Student Legal Fund Society (the "Society") will be held at Room
179/81 of the Curtis Law Building at UBC, on Thursday, March
20, 2003 at the hour of 12:15 p.m. for the followilig purposes:„
1. To receive the report of the Elections Administrator.
2. To appoint or waive the appointment of auditors.
3. To receive and consider the financial statements of the Society
for the year ended and the report of the directors to the
4. To consider special resolutions to amend the Society Bylaws
related to issues including but not limited to quorum,
appointment of officers, amending provisions, authority to
initiate funding, and general proceedings of the Society.
5. To transact such other business as may properly be brought
before the meeting.
TAKE NOTICE that any student of UBC who wishes to become
a member of the Society, and is eligible based on the Society
Bylaws, can immediately become a member by providing the
Secretary with their name and registered address within 30
minutes of the meeting being called to order.
Student Legal Fund Society
Email: [email protected]
Address: Box 70, 6138 SUB Boulevard, Vancouver, BC, V6T 1Z1
You've come a long
way lady (sort of)
A look duke career-driven female
by Joanna Kordus
Women have no doubt come a long
way in asserting their place in
today's world. Having achieved a
substantial level of equality with
men, women are now a powerful
group that can enter any career position and choose a life that suits them
best. The status of women now has
been achieved by way of social and
political action that has steadily
allowed us to restructure society
and to decrease gender differences.
This has also inevitably led to many
different opinions about the role
and presence of woman in today's
Although women have gained
the right and respect to enter the
same work force as men and to be
equally active in the political sphere,
there remains a continuous struggle
not only to achieve total equality, but
also to achieve some solidarity
amongst a mix of differing perceptions on the role of women in
Though women make up an average of 45 per cent of Canada's work
force, they still earn less than men
do. Nonetheless, this situation is
improving as better work opportunities and flexible hours become available. The woman of today is, without
a doubt, largely seen as a career
woman; she is independent, confident and determined. The fact that a
great number of women now choose
to realise their careers instead of
choosing to stay at home is sometimes misunderstood. The drive that
women project and the ambition
that gets them to their aspired goal
is still in conflict with their role of
staying at home and exclusively taking care of the family.
There are some views that a
career-driven -Woman is singleminded in a negative way; the fact
that women are now heavily represented in politics, the media and in
advocacy groups may, to a small
extent, make some uneasy and
mark them with a prima donna rep.
This may seem unjustified, but
some do uphold this view, and it is
not only a fraction of men. There are
also women who hold such an unenthusiastic standpoint on career-driven females.
Stereotypes are still alive. But the
notions that women are too weak to
survive in an active career and that
they are made to exist in the private
sector only are ones that females
really pay little attention to; we are
actually disproving them as we
Women are now, without question, a powerful authority in some of
the highest areas of our culture.
Feminism has obviously taken us a
long way and many women today
sometimes fail to recognise and
acknowledge the prospects that this
movement has opened up for us. At
times, we tend to take our liberties
for granted; though we enjoy the
opportunities and freedoms, we
have to do what we deem to be
important to us. Not all women are
feminists, but this is not to say that a
great number of women are unconscious of their history and current
position in our world.
Today, women are seen as powerful; they express their abilities in
all walks of life; they are conscious
of the world that surrounds them,
and are ambitious as they work
towards achieving their objectives.
We are shaping a place for ourselves
and asserting what a female is and
represents. Many of us are also
choosing to juggle many things at
the same time and are succeeding at
many different areas of our lives.
I think that we women have
become unconstrained and strongminded to such an extent that we
can go for any goal we envision, and
get there despite certain concerns,
belief systems, and negative inputs
into our role within society. Today's
woman is independent, self-sufficient and ambitious. As time goes
on, we will undoubtedly be more
and more active in the political and
legal system, representing our sex
actively, making more positive
changes, establishing ourselves and
ultimately taking on a greater role in
society. It will happen. 0
And on a personal note
A national shortage in a variety
One woman's triumph over herself
of allied health careers means you
can enjoy excellent employment
prospects and salaries when you
by Jennifer Forhan
train as a:
Radiation Therapist - provide
treatment for cancer patients
Diagnostic Medical Sonographer
- use ultra-sound as a diagnostic
imaging technique for pregnancy,
abdominal and gynaecological
. disease, the vascular system
and the heart.
Environmental Health Officer/
Public Health Inspector - protect
the health of people where they
work; live, eat, and play.
Build on your current credentials
School of Health Sciences
Choose your career path today.
if you already have education
For program information contact:
or toll-free 1.800.663.6542
-===== BRITISH COLUMBIA
INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY
A POLYTECHNIC INSTITUTION
I grew up believing that I was stupid,
worthless and ugly. There may be
many reasons why I had those
beliefs, but the fact is that I thought
horribly of myself.
When I began classes here at
UBC in September of 1998, I hated
myself most of the time. I wore
makeup and clothes that I thought
would impress other people and
spent more time worrying about
what others thought of me (and
judging everyone around me) than
about the rest of my life. I dated guys
that I didn't even like, did things
that I didn't enjoy doing and spent a
lot of my time resentful, angry and
lonely. I also worked hard to keep up
the façade that I was happy. As a
result, I continued to feel isolated
and separate from the world.
I never wanted to come to university. I felt obligated to do a degree
because I thought that was what
everyone else expected of me. I also
thought that I was supposed to
prove something to the world and
that maybe university was the way
to do it.
Ultimately, I was scared that I
would fail at life. I had always been
an average student, an average
dresser, an average person. I was
scared that I wouldn't make it, that I
didn't have anything to offer and
' that the world was set against me.
Now I realise that my biggest battles
have always been with chronic negative thinking and self-hatred. They
have always lived in my head and in
my experience and they have been
the hardest battles to fight.
The years at UBC have changed
all of that for me. Of course, it's not
just school that has changed me;
part of it is simply time and the
process of growing up. But these
years have been full of change and
unexpected personal growth. I came
here thinking that I could just 'hurry
up and do this degree,' and I am
leaving with an entirely different
During these years, I began to
see myself as part of a bigger whole
and tried my best to do my part in
it. I learned to take more chances,
by applying for jobs that I didn't
think I would get and by taking
courses that I didn't think I could
succeed in. As a result, I have had
awesome work opportunities and
took courses outside of my discipline that I thoroughly enjoyed. As I
met professors and other students
who became my mentors and
guides, their encouragement drove
me to work harder and, suddenly
(or so it seemed), I became more
interested in the world and in other
people than in myself. I opened my
mind and my heart to other
avenues, other people, other cultures and other experiences. I then
began to feel driven toward what
was previously an unknown and
abstract goal: a fulfilling liberal arts
education. And it was for me, not
for anyone else.
Today, I am a different woman
than the one who began classes
here in 1998. I feel smart, strong
and capable. I know that I might
still not be able to do everything in
life, but I know that I can try anything. I know now that I am a fighter, even though at many steps
along the way I was defeatist. I
know now that I will stand up for
what I believe in, that I will argue
for what I think is right, and that I
will respectfully disagree with you
if we have differing opinions. I
know that I dress as I please and
feel proud to do so. I know now that
my principles are more important
than other people's opinions of me. I know now that I will not stand to
be taken advantage of.
I know now that life is often hard
and the world is often bleak, but I
also know that out of darkness
comes light and out of sorrow
comes joy. I know now that I will not
settle; there is a career and a fulfilling life out there for me. Today,
most importantly, I love my life, and
myself, because it is mine, and I
am me. 0
Friday, March 7, 2003
A ULisseq Special Issue
by Parminder Nizher
So, what's it like being
Hmmin... eve r since I
stepped out of my Pampers I
knew I wasn't like a lot of
other girls—I have always
been Indian first and
Canadian second. Period.
I'll admit that until I hit
my late teens I was pissed-off
because I wasn't born a boy.
This attitude earned me the
title of rebel. Translation: if I
refused to learn to make aloo
gobey and roti I was a rebel.
Questioning why my brother
was allowed to sit around
playing Nintendo while I had
to help my mom with dinner
made me a rebel. Not wanting to wear a salwar kameez
made me a rebel. Watching
my brother receive a $50 bill
for his birthday while my
grandma gave me $20 had
me bent on having a sex
change. Another toast to my
Indian society is incredibly patriarchal-180 degrees
from the liberal-thinking
education and lifestyle of
university. Trust me, I don't
let the patriarchy rule my
life. But learning to live with
it has been fucking hard, and
I still have problems with it.
It's a matter of fitting into
certain roles when it is needed and discarding or shedding them when it is time.
Learning to blend the two is
interesting, though not desirable.
I figured out early on that
there are type-casts in society
and that an Indian woman is
Certain age-old boundaries and limitations are difficult to break. As liberal as I
am I cannot enter a relationship with a non-Indian man
without thinking twice about
how my family will disown
me if they ever found out.
expected to fit them without
complaints. The role of the
homemaker is front and centre. I cannot stress enough
the importance of learning
the art of symmetrical rotis.
There are a lot of silly little things I have to hide that
many non-Indian women do
not even give a second
thought to. Alcohol is a taboo
for Indian women to be near,
as are men. Sex is something
I'm not supposed to know
Who knows if my mom's
great-aunt's cousin's daughter-in-law's mother might see
me doing something inappropriate and pass it on to
my family. I'm dreading the
day I will break it to my parents that it's my life and that
I don't want to get married
before the age of 30 (then I'll
learn to be shunned and gossiped about by society).
But to this day I am still a
rebel—I refuse to learn how
to make chai. 0
Sexual objects or
divine Goddesses of love?
by Kerrie Thornhill
extremely sexualised images of women in
order to attract and hold male readership.
Although there is nothing wrong with being
aroused by images of the opposite sex, there
are many underlying problems with the commercial use of women's bodies. By portraying
only a certain type of large-breasted, thin and
almost always white women, these magazines
imply a certain set of criteria by which beauty
is to be judged. The fact that many of the
women have been surgically or digitally altered
in order to meet such criteria compounds
The same images are used in advertisements, and even women's magazines such as
Cosmopolitan, in order to sell products and
lifestyles. The problem arising from such use is
that portraying the female body for commercial purposes turns it into a kind of commodity. We, begin to lose ownership of our
The most important problem with using
images of females in pornography and advertising is that we are no longer included as players in the game of sexual activity. An 'object' is
a passive recipient of sexual attention, not an
actively engaged participant. Females are portrayed not as human beings with desires,
expectations and preferences, but simply as
toys, commodities and items for male
As in most gender issues, the crux of the
matter is respect By expressing themselves
freely and exploring the sexual sides of our
personalities, women acknowledge, affirm,
and satisfy themselves. When that same quality is objectified for commercial pd./poses, it is
subverted. This is the key difference between
belly dancing and pornography: sexuality
should not be servile. •
What is the difference between honouring
women's sexuality and objectifying it?
Feminism faces two conflicting challenges: the
traditional stigmatisation of female sexual
power, and the exploitation of it.
The suppression of female sexuality
through denial and shame has restricted our
freedom to express ourselves sexually without being stigmatised. All too often, women
who choose robust sex lives face the infamous 'slut' double standard. In the past, clitorectomies have even been prescribed to,
Canadian women as a cure for masturbation
and nymphomania. Sexuality, an integral
part of any woman's personality, was reviled
Taboo-breaking throughout the past several
decades has ameliorated this attitude somewhat. Today, effective and available birth control and the perception of sex as healthy and
natural means a freer environment for women
to discover and explore their personalities.
Alma Mater Society belly dancing classes
sell out. Popular shows such as Sex and the City
make the desires and needs of women their
primary focus. Valentine's day has become an
opportunity to celebrate a healthy sex life, and
even to raise awareness about issues such as
sexual assault On the whole, while some people still can't bring themselves to say the word
'vagina' out loud, most of us are buying tickets
to "The Monologues.'
On the other hand, the use of the female
image in pornography and the media can be
derogatory and exploitative. What is the distinction between celebrating women and
Many magazines, such as Maxim, use
(or win all five)
Pi AY THE SPECIAL ONE DOLLAR
7:30 PM CRAZY-U GAME ON
MARCH 10, 11, 12, 13, AND/OR 14
AND YOU COULD WIN AN APPLE IBOOK.
CLIP THIS AD OUT
FOR 1 FREE PLAYING CARD.
ONE FREE iBOOK TO BE GIVEN AWAY PER DAY.
INCREASE YOUR ODDS!!!
BUY A D TIO A
DS FOR ONLY $1 EACH.
2859 Maui Streets Avenue
2138 WESTERN PARKWAY, VANCOUVER
(on Campus, beside Bank d Montreal)
Large Selection of
DVD, VHS & GAMES
for your enjoyment!
STUDENT, STAFF & FACULTY
Organize a group of 10 or more and receive
complimentary lift pass & rental.
Enter RANT, the Ubyssey's
See vvvvw uhyssey ca
for details, or e-mal
ubysseyrantg hotmail corn
Friday, March 7, 2003
A Mosey Special Issue
Group Rates Start 0 $19 (incl. tax)
Mention this ad upon arrival & the organizer's
name is entered to win an exciting River
Rafting Adventure for two.
Call 604.986.2261 local 215
Come to SUB Room 23 (basement) with the
answer to the question below, and you
may win 1 of 3 copies of AMERICAN
HI-FI's new CD 'The Art Of Losing':
Question: Name any member of American Hi-Fi
(Hint: check out wwwumusic.ca)
The Art of toeing
Following the success of 2001 self-titled debut, featuring "Flavor Of The Weak",
AMERICAN HI-Fl release their brand new CD 'The Art Of Losing' - featuring heavy guitars, power
chords and crashing drums mixed together on one great pop/rock/alternative album.
University Boulevard Neighbourhood Plan
Tell us what you think
In keeping with UBC'S evolving University Town, a draft neighbourhood plan is being
developed,for the University Boulevard local area.
ntlice, suddenly, smoky;
thai makes downw ard
drops in the heavier air.
She flicks a dusty page.
I find a place for her
between some words I have.
She is covered in blue
Some things crack in
the shade where her beads make
I feel glassy.
Someone came in
while we were sleeping.
We were sticky from
our coffee dreams.
We threw a poem
at him, we threw poems
at the gray window,
and went to sleep
by Joanna Kordus
Sl walks, through the wooden rods.
Her hair-( irf, unspecific,' \
y a win& ss rain,
flows across the ioui;,,
entwined with dart, grey sum ,
until she lays her' 'heavy baggage down
before the fence
Three dogs, an overweight white cat
this is her cottage,
full of emptiness,
by the hand that cheated and had left.
He did not take your son.
Mountains of coal arise,
the German highway above the hills is static,
old bullets in red bricks of pierced memories,
and that old heart that beats behind it.
eye-streams drown her in the greenhouse,
red tomatoes fall and weep around her feet.
with its champagne-glassed head
towards the air
as fresh and wild as her.
She's shrunken, though.
No Rosa Centifolia Bipinnata.
She trots onwards.
In her cooling kitchen the lamp comes on.
She breaks dry bread.
She looks up on the parsley
"I love you, grandma.'
Her water is not molten,
A campus and community consultation process is being conducted to gather feedback on
the draft plan prior to its finalization and presentation to the UBC Board of Governors in
May, 2003. You can participate in this consultation in a number of ways:
1. Internet: You can learn more about the draft University Boulevard Neighbourhood plan
by reading the Discussion Guide at www.universitytown.ubc.ca and give your opinion via
the online feedback form.
2. Open Houses
March 10, 6 pm to 9 pm in Room 212A of SUB
March 11, 6 pm to 9 pm in Room 214 of SUB
March 13, 9 am to 3 pm. at the Aquatic Centre
3. Small Group Meetings (February 10 - March 31)
Your group can request a presentation by contacting the University Town inquiry line
at 604.822.6400 or e-mail [email protected]
4. Campus and Community Public Meeting
Tuesday, April 1, rpm
Room 214 - Student Union Building
How Campus & Community Feedback Will Be Used
Feedback gathered through this consultation via the web, fax, campus publications, open
houses, small-group meetings and public meetings will be recorded and summarized in a
Consultation Summary Report, which will be presented with a Technical report and revised
neighbourhood plan to the UBC Board of Governors. The Consultation Summary Report will
also be posted on the web.
For further information contact:
E-mail: [email protected]
I am your new-age hippie, with golden hair,
Shouting and screaming, yet still you don't care.
You don't hear my words, woven for peace,
You discredit me as someone willing to be appeased.
The flowers, once woven into my predecessor's hair,
Have all been polluted and rotted in despair.
I now come armed with knowledge of history learned,
And a clear mind that argues without being turned
By LSD, which my government tried to feed me with
To shut me up and sit on my stump, believing a false myth.
But I am not a strung-out hippie, a caricature of folly,
Nor am I just a little girl wanting to play with my dolly.
I am a woman, ready to argue and fight,
Using insight learned from Kerouac's verbal might.
I now see the earth crying,
I see the children dying,
I want you to all know that I am really tying,
To change this situation, propagated by a governmental organisation.
Enraged with it all, I promise to keep going and not take vacation.
Motivated by Difranco's powerful lyrics,
I stand in the face of most prevailing critics.
I will not step down from my positions ingrained
Into my psyche, forever retained.
Hope others join me and we come together, showing the world that the earth
will live forever.
Friday,. Mardi 7, 2003
A Ubyssey Special Issue
Guilty pleasures of girly magazines Pochsy gets foxy
Material girt gets to the
by Lisa Johnson
are your romantic expectations? My
answers are every girl's answers. I pick
Some days I pick the longest check-out line
mostly 'B's—we all know that 'A's are highin the supermarket. I bee-line towards an
maintenance and clingy, and 'C's are too
overflowing cart and plunk my basket
cynical to find a man.
down behind Ms Hold-On-My-AirmilesI take my score card to the Cosmo-quiz
Card-Is-Here-Somewhere. You might think
debriefing page. Whew! I'm an 'amorous
that's unlucky—I call it strategic planning.
optimist.' With that kind of validation, "CITIZEN POCHSY:
From a distance, it would be difficult
nothing can rock me.
HEAD MOVEMENTS OF A LONG-HAIRED GIRL"
to tell why I choose to linger. I may have
Of course, I don't take relationship Firehall Arts Centre
a Maclean's in my hands, or look conadvice from cell phone analysts, or use until Mar. 8
sumed by the decision between orange
quiz results to determine my self image.
and white Tic-Tacs. But my eyes aren't on
It's a ritual, and an escape. It's like choosby Anna King and Jesse Marchand
ing to watch Hugh Grant play a charming
I'm reading: 'Sexy or. skanky? Droolrascal with floppy hair and twinkling eyes, Citizen Pochsy has a dress on layaway at her
worthy celeb outfits.' '65 HOT things to do
who woos the nice girl he doesn't deserve, favourite store, Kinderslut, and she tries it on every
to HIS body.' "How even a good girlfriend
even though I know I should be watching day over her lunch break. She says all she wants is
can drive her guy away.'
Fix at the Blinding Lightll
to live long enough to 'stay young and beautiful forThat's right. I'm a closet Cosmo fan.
This act holds a guilty pleasure.
ever.' She knows that all you need in the world are
I know that young women like me
If anyone catches me at it, I have an a few good friends and she has three, well, two, or
aren't supposed to read magazines like
excuse all planned out. By reading the cell actually one, sort of.
that. I've heard the lectures. They make
phone article, I'm deconstructing our culCalling herself the 'universal girl' in her first
women feel inadequate, give girls eating ing a new, lightweight Nokia with an illu- ture's idolism toward material objects song, Citizen Pochsy flirts on the road between ditsy
disorders and bad self-esteem, and their
minated face-plate, he's subtly telling me
and emergent technologies. Just by look- and intellectual, spiritual and material girl, reality
visual rhetoric based on the 'male gaze.' that he's vain and afraid of commitment.
ing at 'His moan zones,' I'm subverting and delusion. Hines refers to Pochsy as 'a microThis is why I'm far too liberated to read
I knew there was something wrong the male gaze.
cosm of North American consumer culture,' where
with our relationship. Thank goodness
Now if you'll excuse me, I have some people are always searching for something to give
In private, I turn to page 51 to learn
Cosmo taught me how to scrutinise
social protest to attend to. Page 88: their lives meaning. With a painted white face and
what 'My guy's cell phone style says about his phone.
Scorpio's Love Forecast. 0
the giggles and exaggerated movement of a clown,
him.' The prognosis isn't good; by sportNow to the multiple-choice quiz: 'What
Pochsy becomes both a realistic and strangely surreal character as she spends an hour and a half
showing you her hilarious and lonely world.
'Citizen Pochsy' is the third clown monologue in
NO PLACE FORA LADY
a trilogy that took writer, performer and co-composcountry or region; many famil- was not what is now, so many
er Karen Hines ten years to complete. The culminaby Barbara Hodgson
iar names are mentioned of the women in this book
throughout the book, and were plagued by everything
tion of her hard work is this terribly entertaining
many unknown names are from bad backs to cholera. The
and thought-provoking work that centers on Pochsy
by Amber Shilling
included as well. Isabella Bird, sanitary conditions endured
being audited at her job as a contract worker at
Ida Pfeiffer and Florence by these women were less than
Mercury Packers. Drawing from her own experience
in being audited and her mother's actual job at an
No Place For A Lady by Baker are a few of the brave
perfect—many places were
unsafe mercury manufacturer, Hines creates a lovBarbara Hodgson is a wonder- women we follow through infested with fleas. Hodgson
able and endearing character that you can't help but
ful tribute to pioneer women their travels around the Earth. tells of the tumultuous advenforgive for her politically incorrect statements about
travellers. It documents many These fearless pioneers were tures endured by these women
'Holocaust Girl' and her jokes about old people.
early female travellers, follow- among the first to go against in a brilliant and engaging
Plus, it's evident she's a little, well, strange. Picking
manner. The book is a well
ing them through tumultuous the standards of what women
up mercury balls will do that to you.
journeys all over the world. should do. These women paced, comfortable read, and
If you caught Ken Finkleman's TV spoof series
informative in a fun way. No
Encounters with bandits and defied the norms of the 17th,
The Newsroom, you'll remember Hines as the terse
muggers left lasting impres- 18th and 19th centuries and Place For A Lady is overall a
and sarcastic production assistant, and you will
sions with these women yet by doing so, opened doors for wonderful book full of empowwince gleefully in this production as she takes that
ering stories and adventures of
most refused to be discour- future generations.
fidence grows with them. concentrated, ironic mannerism to an entirely new
aged. Tales of the _plague, No subject is taboo with
Most of the women were Each new place is easier to place. Hines also has a masterful way of using her
cholera and other deadly dis- these women, they experinavigate with the skills they body movements to express the sexuality and selfeases reminds us to be grateful enced things most women will wealthy enough to afford the
for vaccinations and cures never be exposed to. Robberies few luxuries there were back develop from experience. consciousness of Poschy's character. The songs are
then, including things like Learning about what these not particularly diverse, but their strong subject
these brave souls weren't lucky were a common occurrence
enough to have. The strength and murder was all too famil- clean sheets. Those who women dealt with makes you matter, sung in Hines's throaty voice, tell us things
weren't so well funded truly grateful to know that traveling the narrative never could. Accompanist Greg
of these women is unfailing, as iar to these ladies. Braving all
they battled impossible terrain sorts of dangers, these women travelled for the love of it, and is so safe in these modern Morrison's expressive piano-playing adds to the sad
put themselves at risk, all to to discover the many places times. The adventurous feel of beauty of the performance. Hines has put so much
and horrid weather.
that awaited them. As we fol- the book is felt through the detailed character work into Pochsy that she'll stick
Hodgson has organised the fulfill their need to travel and
book in an easy-to-read man- see the world through their low the women through their words and sparks a desire to with you for days. Don't miss her two remaining
performances tonight and tomorrow night. 0
travels, we watch as their con- explore the world. 0
ner, each chapter is a new own eyes. The medical care
heart of things
Ladies going places: travellers through time
The Ubyssey News
Come to news meetings Tuesday at 1 pm
in. SUB room 24.
Smashing Pumpkins - Earphoria
Earphoria is the Pumpkins newly released live CD
with all the classic Pumpkins tracks like "Cherub
Rock" & "Mayonaise."
Come. or else we print
more of your family
Hissing, the 80s
Frederic Wood Theatre
To receive a COMPLIMENTARY CD come to
the Ubyssey Office (SUB Room 23, in the basement)!
Tickets: Reg $16, St/Sr $10
Theatre at UBC Bo4 Office
Fridaq, March 7, 2003
A Umsseti Special Issue
t your average
RavensbrOck Forgotten Women of the Holocaust
At the Vancouver Holocaust Education Centre,
950 West 41st Ave until May 30.
by Megan Thomas
Rebecca Buckman Teitelbaum had never authored a cookbook before,
but during her time at the Ravensbriick concentration camp that is exactly what she did. In the exhibit Forgotten Women of the Holocaust,
Teitelbaum's work is just one example of the exceptional ways women
chose to maintain sanity through the horror of the Holocaust.
The exhibit focuses on the unique
experiences of women during the
Holocaust and explores the distinctly
4"*..4.4 <4, 4
female responses to the atrocities
that made women and children pri•
a e t
mary targets. The Ravensbriick con' 1 41 A,R41X4Ce,
centration camp was home to
.e.••,,/132,000 women and children in the
six years of its operation, and
117,000 died before its liberation in
On opening night the exhibit
started with a keynote address from
Dr Rochelle Saidel, executive director of the Remember the Women
Institute in New York. Saidel touched on the reasons why the Holocaust
was a very different experience for women.
She explained that there were specific physiological issues that
increased the hardship for women. These included pregnancy, menstruation, and the threat of sexual abuse and rape. Pregnant women brought
to Ravensbriick were either forced into abortions or their newborn
babies were killed upon birth. The threat of rape was also ever present
in the camp as women were continually abused at the hands of
Although intense persecution and
exploitation was central to the
Ravensbrtick camp, this exhibit
chooses to focus on the themes that
allowed women to survive and triumph over their persecutors. "[The
exhibit] is a window in for us to talk
about a broader issue of gender during the Holocaust...and RavensbnAck
has presented itself as the most likely window into [the experience of
women]," said Roberta Kremer, the
co-curator of the exhibit.
According to Saidel, it was the
homemaking skills specific to
women that allowed them to form
surrogate families within the camp
and aid survival. Women also chose
gift-giving as a way of staying human
during an incredibly inhumane experience. 'The gift-giving and the
recipe books...were as far as I know
uniquely women's- ways of resisting
and helping each other," explained
The original artifacts in the exhibit show that the women had few supplies to work with in order to create
the art work they accomplished.
Small tattered pieces of paper served as a liberating canvas and tiny
scraps of cloth became links to the outer world.
Perhaps the most moving piece in the exhibit is a hand-drawn atlas
created by Olga Benario Prestes, a German-Jewish political prisoner
being held at Ravensbriick. Olga used her own worldly knowledge, delicately reproduced on what paper was available, to educate the other
women in the camp about the geography of Europe. It is through this kind of
thought-provoking expression that the
0%9,41tiCHmir, VA tn
exhibit illustrates the unique strengths
of women during a dark time in history.
The hand-written recipe book by
Rebecca Buckman Teitelbaum provides
another example of women drawing on
their homemaking skills to transcend
the horror around them. And although
there were no ingredients with which to
bring the recipes to life at Ravensbrilck,
there were more than enough at the
Vancouver Holocaust Education Centre.
As a tribute to Teitelbaum a cake was
baked from a recipe in her book and it
was served on the opening night of the
Forgotten Women of the Holocaust is
an exhibit that brings attention to the most positive aspects of an
extremely negative event. It is well worth seeing and seeks to change
your perspective of the role of women as passive victims of the
• League sfqfsi. in April
• Regis ration and practices
Sign up as a team or as
an individual player.
for more inforrnalion visit: ivivw.louchfoatball.ca‘ or call 604-444-8223
Sure you do. 'Rant' is the Ubyssey's literary contest/supplement.
Poems, fiction- and non-fiction.
See www.ubyssey.bc.ca for the submission details.
E-mail [email protected] if that doesn't satisfy you.
The Ubyssey Colours Issue.
riday, March 21, 2003.
All colours welcome.