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September 21, 2016

Women's Media Center Investigation: 2016 Review of Gender & Emmy Primetime Nominations, at a Glance

Emmy's Report InfographicSeptember 15, 2016

Women represent only 25 percent of the 2016 Primetime Emmy Awards nominations in writing, directing, editing, and producing — unchanged from last year, according to a Women’s Media Center analysis.

Of the 43 writing, directing, editing, and producing categories, 328 of the nominees are women and 993 are men. Although the Emmys cover many different jobs related to television programs, these categories tend to have the most influence on what is depicted on the small screen.

When factoring in all 88 non-acting categories for the 68th Primetime Emmy Awards, women do only slightly better: 28 percent of the nominations, with men representing 72 percent. No women were nominated in 14 categories, mainly in cinematography, stunt coordination, music composition or direction, and sound mixing. Women are strongly represented in production design, casting, costume, hairstyling and documentary features.

“Our Women’s Media Center investigation shows there is a gender gap in Emmy nominations. Only 25 percent — one in four of all nominations — go to women in key, decision-making roles,” said Women’s Media Center President Julie Burton. “Most distressing is the lack of progress from year to year. There is a clear connection between the broadcast, network and cable programs that hire mostly male creators and the industry-wide gender divide. When there are few jobs for women, it is easy to see why so few women in non-acting categories are recognized for their excellence — if you cannot get through the door, you cannot be celebrated with Emmy nominations and honors. When will broadcast, network, and cable executives examine their hiring practices to ensure that women — especially in these influential roles — are at the table?” Read the full analysis>>

Image description: WMC Emmy's Report Infographic showing overall total of nominations by gender.

Transgender and In Prison: Violence, Harassment, and Denial of Medical Care Are the Norm

By Susan Buttenwieser | September 20, 2016

Ashley Diamond brought legal action against the Georgia Department of Corrections. Photo by SPLC/Robin Henson. “Being a transgender woman is not easy, but being a transgender woman incarcerated with the Department of Corrections is a nightmare,” said Ashley Diamond, who recently settled with the Georgia Department of Corrections after the Southern Poverty Law Center sued on her behalf. Diamond was denied medically necessary treatment and was sexually assaulted by other prisoners while being held in male facilities. “I was mistreated and mishandled from day one when I got off the bus. Everything from my name to being raped. I was ridiculed and brutalized, and I’m still trying to recover from it.”

Unjust: How the Broken Criminal Justice System Fails LGBT People of Color, a new report by the Movement Advancement Project (MAP) and the Center for American Progress, documents the widespread violence and mistreatment of transgender and gender-nonconforming people inside U.S. prisons, jails, and immigration detention centers and investigates the reasons for their high rates of incarceration.

One-fifth of transgender women and 10 percent of transgender men are incarcerated at least once during their lifetime, compared to only 5 percent of all adults. Almost half of black and a quarter of Latinx transgender and gender-nonconforming people are incarcerated at least once, compared to 12 percent of their white counterparts. More>>

Image description: Ashley Diamond brought legal action against the Georgia Department of Corrections. Photo by SPLC/Robin Henson.


With House of Cards, Game of Thrones, and Other Emmy-Nominated Dramas, Women's Stories Dominate

By Sasha Stone | September 15, 2016

Robin Wright in House of Cards

The film and television industries have been under pressure to include more women both behind and in front of the camera. But if movie studios have lagged behind the vanguard of change, there is no doubt that the television industry has increasingly embraced an array of rich portrayals of women as leaders and essential central characters. This reality is evident in the 2016 Emmy nominations for Outstanding Drama Series, where enormously popular female-driven narratives dominate the category.

Among the seven nominees for drama series, only two—Mr. Robot and Better Call Saul—are anchored by a central male protagonist. The other five revolve around or feature powerful women: House of Cards, Game of Thrones, The Americans, Downton Abbey, and Homeland. The women in each of these series don't just struggle for power; we get to see them attain it. Whether it’s the wife of a shrewd politician who routinely beats him at his own game, or women who reach beyond being wives of kings to become powerful monarchs in their own right, female-driven narratives rule this year's Emmy race for Outstanding Drama Series.

Now in its sixth season, Game of Thrones won the category for the first time in 2015, and it looks to be the frontrunner again this year. While Game of Thrones gives ample attention to its many male characters, there is no doubt that the most recent season has handed the reins of power to women. Considering stories about women rising to the top of the food chain in such extraordinary fashion is a new phenomenon for Emmy voters. More>>

Image description: Robin Wright in House of Cards .


We Need to Stop Sexualizing and Policing Women Who Have Curvy Bodies

Patrice BrownBy Gabby Catalano | September 21, 2016

Patrice Brown, a fourth-grade teacher in Atlanta who is known for being at the center of the hashtag #TeacherBae, is being criticized in the media — not for her body of work, but rather her body at work. Specifically people are calling Brown’s wardrobe “unacceptable” and too “sexy.”

First off, though her clothes themselves should be irrelevant to her job performance, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with Brown’s work attire. A quick look at her Instagram page reveals that Brown’s typical dress seems like it would hold up to any standard dress code. She wears skirts and dresses that are knee-length and high-necked, usually paired with flats or heels, and sometimes a work blazer. In every photo taken of her at school, her neckline is above her collarbone and her sleeves cover her shoulders. Although Brown did wear jeans in her classroom once, which is against the Atlanta Board of Education dress code policy, her dress attire did not meet any of the other “unacceptable” standards.

But, of course, the issue here is much bigger than Brown’s clothing itself. This criticism points to the way black women’s bodies have historically been disproportionately objectified and sexualized. More>>

Image description: Patrice Brown


Meet the Teen Artist Tackling Everyday Sexism In Her Work 

The Unsent ProjectBy Vicki S | September 19, 2016

19-year-old Röra Blue first caught the Internet’s attention with her jarringly honest photo series, “The Unsent Project.” The project, which has already accumulated thousands of submissions, is a collection of unsent text messages to first loves. First launched on Tumblr, users can now submit their unsent texts directly through Röra’s website: They can choose the color of their message, type their unspoken words to first significant others, and can then print them into stickers.

Recently, Röra has focused her attention on a new, more feminist-minded project: “Handle With Care.”

According to Röra’s website, “Handle With Care” seeks to capture sexist comments — literally. Her photos asks viewers to pay attention to sexism by forcing them to engage with and critique many of most common sexist stereotypes and microaggression that are prevalent in our culture today. More>>

Image description: The Unsent Project


Lizz Winstead's Mission to Talk Honestly (And Hilariously) About Abortion

Postcards from the VagBy Reilly W | September 16, 2016

I’ve long thought that Lizz Winstead — co-creator of The Daily Show, writer on the Huffington Post, comedian extraordinaire, author of Lizz Free or Die, and founder of reproductive rights organization Lady Parts Justice — is the best of the best in comedy. She is not only seriously hilarious, but also has a keen eye for spotting talent (Rachel Maddow, Jon Stewart and so forth) and is an enthusiastic supporter of all things related to women and reproductive rights.

Her current projects support this mission: Postcards From The Vag: Hilarious Stories From People Who Bleed From Their Wherevers, a comedy show taking place in DC tomorrow, offers a unique take on abortion. Instead of treating vaginas and feminism with fragility, Winstead — as well as comedians like Sarah Thyre, Maysoon Zayid — will talk boldly, honestly and hilariously about being a woman. More>>

Image description: Postcards from the Vag.


WMC Live #179: Rebecca Adamson, Autumn Eakin. (Original Airdate 9/18/2016)

Guests: Native leader Rebecca Adamson on the real (women's) story at the Standing Rock Sioux protest; Autumn Eakin and female cinematographers counter "the male gaze." To listen >>


Fighting Words (From Episode 179 of “WMC Live with Robin Morgan, 9/18/16”)

Okay, let's start with The Donald's newly trotted out by daughter Ivanka's childcare plan––concocted late in the game in a futile attempt to stem the mass exodus of women swarming away from the very idea of voting for him. This, you will remember, is the man who boasts of never having changed one diaper despite having five children, because that's woman's work and not his thing. This is the man who takes credit when his children are praised, although all of them were raised by his wives––usually divorced by then. Personally, I don't think even the wives under such circumstances did a great job, since the grown kids are somewhat robotic; all the males look like Donald and Gordon Gecko and the women--daughters and wives (apparently he can tend to mix them up)--all look like Barbie dolls. More>>


This week WMC SheSource features experts on the UN General Assembly approving the New York Declaration on Migrants and Refugees, the recents bombings in New York and New Jersey, the Emmy Awards 2016, the historical opening of the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington DC, and the gains of the far-right AfD party in German state elections.

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