"They will see us waving from such great heights. Come down now, they'll say. But everything looks perfect from far away." - Iron & Wine, Such Great Heights [buy the album]
I was about to get all riled up and go on a tirade but then I, you know, read. So, let me help you out.
The real post...
I've been doing a lot of thinking about women and political blogging, spurred by some meetings with feminist organizations and Desfemmes, a (rightfully) angry blogger who brought it to my attention again. I don't know why there aren't many female political bloggers, but the way that blogs are created is that people encourage their friends to blog, and then they link to them. Like New Donkey, which is being inserted into the blogosphere by Tapped and TPM. There are real pre-blog relationships existing between a lot of these bloggers, and in the political (as opposed to personal) blogosphere they are mostly male. Still, I have found several times that I've been offended at the oblivious stupidity of the chauvinism in the blogosphere (some dumb utilitarian game theory discussions of why pretty women in various ratios exist come to mind, though I'm not going to bother digging them up to link to them)...At any rate, there is a lot of women blogging, but it's not explicitly political. Figuring out how to change that is a lot of the challenge, but it's not a simple problem, because blogging is representative of existing dynamics as much as it is a new system to change those dynamics.
Read for the "good intentions," stay for the presumptions, assumptions, and unintendend condesencion which I was about to jump all over when I first read them in the satire post...
There’s also the fact that the white political blogosphere doesn’t help at all. It’s obviously a whites-only club (with select Blacks who act like in specifically stylized ways allowed). For instance, my style of blogging is very white - I feel like I have to conclude everything, which leaves less room for the more deliberative communication patterns I find among African-Americans. That’s common, but usually in a more extreme version. Whites don’t really feel comfortable saying ‘I don’t know’ or just going through inconclusive cognitive exercises. Jay Rosen does it very well, but he gets flamed quite frequently just for asking questions. The flame war pissing contest that motivates so many communities is another example of boys raising their hands in class and just generally being more aggressive. So Republic of T gets ignored by the ‘big boys’, even though it’s great. There’s also the fact that it deals with child-rearing, Buddhism and other stuff that straight white males don’t have and don’t think of, like career/family conflicts.
At any rate, there are a lot of African-Americans blogging, but it’s not explicitly political. Figuring out how to change that is a lot of the challenge, but it’s not a simple problem, because blogging is representative of existing dynamics as much as it is a new system to change those dynamics.
See, reading is fundamental.