This Week in Feminist Politics: Anna Delvey, Bad or Dumb A**? Farewell Kate Spade and Feminist Tony Bourdain
- Shonda Rhimes and Netflix are reportedly the winners in the optioning game for the first screen adaptation of Jessica Pressler’s must-read New York Magazine tale. Pressler announced this on Instagram. “Anna Delvey” (née Anna Sorokin), managed to snooker the New York – and international elite – into believing that she was the well-bred daughter of a German moneyman in the solar panel business. She managed to live at the posh 11 Howard, tip the concierge $100 to essentially become her best friend and social secretary, and conduct a high society lifestyle in the city all in cash. And this caused to red flags to light among the culturally sophisticated. “She ran that place,” said Neff, the concierge quoted in the story. “You know how Rihanna walks out with wineglasses? That was Anna. And they let her. Bye, Ms. Delvey …”
- Former President Bill Clinton is on a book tour for The President is Missing, a book he co-wrote with best-selling author James Patterson, and it is not going well. The timing of the press gaggle and the #MeToo movement has not been good to Clinton. It all began on Monday with an interview on the Today Show. It was supposed to be about the book, but turned to Monica Lewinsky. Speaking on the NBC show that has had its own sexual misconduct issues, Clinton reiterated that he should not have resigned. “Well, I don’t think it would be an issue,” Clinton told co-host Craig Melvin. “Because people would be using the facts instead of the imagined facts. If the facts were the same today, I wouldn’t.” Senator Kristen Gillibrand, the most prominent of Clinton’s critics, has maintained that the former President should have resigned after the impeachment and his abuse of power.
- Will the Oceans 11 remake/spinoff reverse the power dynamics that presently reign in Hollywood? “The “Ocean’s 8” cast of Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett, Rihanna, Anne Hathaway, Mindy Kaling, Helena Bonham Carter, Sarah Paulson, and rising star Awkwafina have four Oscars, two Emmys, nine Grammys and five Golden Globes between them,” offers Reuters. Warner Brothers greenlighted the heist film before the #MeToo movement. The main trailer, which has over 10,000 comments on Youtube, is a masterpiece in misogyny. The film is, at post time, set to win the weekend of June 10-11. The all-female cast made $4 million of Thursday night in the run-up to the weekend, up from the $3 million made by Ghostbusters, despite the trolling by alt right dudes.
- National Rifle Association spokeswoman Dana Loesch attacked feminism and feminists on – of all places – NRATV’s Relentless. "I am so tired of this matriarchal witch hunt on young men," Loesch said in video captured by Media Matters. "There is nothing toxic about masculinity, but there are plenty of toxic things about third-wave feminism and the matriarchy that’s attempting to assert authority and also be the ombudsman over all characteristics and definitions of that which are either masculine or feminine."
- “Men have to be on board. You can change women all you want -- if you don’t change men, nothing changes, because we share the world," said Nigerian author Chimamanda Adichie on The Daily Show. The conversation started something of a social media event when she said she was happy for men to hold doors for her, unless it came from some misplaced sense of chivalry. The hashtag #ChimamandaAdichie on Twitter, both pro and con, with arguments about that. You can watch the full episode here.
- Megan Greenwell wrote a lovely tribute to Tony Bourdain, who just recently passed. He was a brash kitchen bad boy, an international traveler, a bestselling author and – who would have thought it? – a feminist. "I hadn’t heard of (No Reservations) either, but there he was being fed by a grandmother in Uzbekistan and treating her like she was the celebrity,” she writes. “I think I binged six or seven episodes that night; almost every one had a part where Bourdain seemed awe-struck by a mother or a grandmother or a 20-something woman just starting her culinary career. In one episode filmed in Polynesia, he ate with a group of rae-rae, a local name for genderqueer individuals. He didn’t exotify them or condescend to them, he just listened and shared a meal. He fully acknowledged that cooking was relegated to women when it was seen as scut work, then bestowed wealth and fame overwhelmingly on men. And episode by episode, interview by interview, he worked to change that.” It is a lovely account of coming to love Bourdain through his travelogues. Read the full post here.
- Kate Spade, who committed suicide earlier this week, was eulogized online by a host of celebrities and socialites, daughters of Presidents and business titans. It has spurred great debate about “the fallacy of success,” because Spade seemed to have had it all: money, success, the esteem of her colleagues, a family – everything that the feminists of the 1970s wanted to achieve. And yet – she killed herself. “The important thing to understand, according to experts, is that those who might seem happy, who might seem fortunate, who might not seem to have a reason to be anything but lucky are not immune to mental health struggles,” Tanya Basu writes in The Daily Beast. “For those wondering about Bourdain and Spade’s suicides, the question is often why. But the truth is complex and one that is lodged deep within their now silenced memory and mind.” The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is 1-800-273-8255.
Cover photo via The Cut