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This is why we include movies in our quarantine kits (and tv shows and books)

Updated: Apr 20, 2021


We include essays because there's a shit ton to read every day all the time and someone should sift through it for you.

We include recipes because, hey, a girl's gotta eat, right? And you might have a sister or sister-in-law who makes 365 different dinners a year and you should definitely know someone who thinks that totwaffles are worth exploring and cereal is a totally appropriate meal sometimes and waffles were made to be batched and frozen.

We include twitter follows because you might be new to that game and it is possible to stay out of the cesspool--if you're careful.

We include opinions because...well, you've met Jen, right?

But movies (and tv shows and books) we include because otherwise you might be forced to listen to SHIT LIKE THIS and think it is okay.

Jason Bailey at the NYT wants you to know the best things on Amazon Prime and Netflix. But he doesn't really seem to be capable of picking movies by, for, or about women. So if you were looking for something to watch (and didn't love what the algorithm was picking for you), you'd be steered in the direction of movies by, for, and about men.

Here's a quick glimpse. That's only 8 (with 1 that centers women).

Here's Jason Bailey again with 50 (!) options for you. This time, a solid baker's dozen center women. (Note: We were unwilling to consider flicks by avowedly misogynist male directors even those films included female protagonists or characters. Sorry.)

And he's not the only one.

The VIDA Count is a non-profit dedicated to creating transparency surrounding gender imbalances and the lack of diversity in the literary landscape. They have great graphics identifying how many women, men, and nonbinary voices are accounted for on the pages of major publications.

Even more interesting—at least to us—than the count for 2019 (right here and above ^) is the comparative count from 2010-19. That decade (seems to have) reshaped whose voices are present in the discourse.

We believe that you can't change what you don't measure.

So if you aren't counting—whether it is the movies that center men and their experience or the tv shows where the women are treated basically like dolls that get dressed up in fun clothes or the pages of the Los Angeles Book Review where more words are dedicated to men's words than to women's (we don't mean to single out LARB, but, did you see those numbers? 515/men : 250/women? bad. Those numbers are bad.)—then you can't even tell what you're being fed. And if you don't know what you're being fed then you cannot hope to change it.

So, to go back to the original point: The reason that we always include 3 and 3 and 3 is to serve as a reminder. We have stories. Those stories deserve to be told, heard, seen, shared.

Your stories. Our stories. All stories.


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