Links for 6-16-08

Some time ago Penny called my attention to this post by Liz Henry regarding the erasure of women from the tech community via language. I loved it, not least because her most excellent rant includes one of my own pet peeves:

All of this just yanks my chain big time, like when people say in talks and demos, "It's so easy, my MOM can do it." (And then everyone in the audience laughs knowingly.) Like moms are the dumbest people ever. My pet peeve at technical conferences. I am a mom!

Preach it, sister.

If you've been wanting a guide to help you parse Christian right anti-gay rhetoric and what it has to do with politics today, look no more. The definitive work is Sin, Sex, and Democracy: Antigay Rhetoric and the Christian Right by Cynthia Burack. This is not a dry scholarly tome, nor is it written in academese. Very readable and unexpectedly humorous in places, it is informative and timely.

I should have blogged this back in April, but Fairer Science has a new section on building web communities. It includes a section on using women in science blogs to encourage young girls in science.

How's your bias literacy? Ruta Sevo and Daryl Chubin have put together a primer of sorts. You can download it here.

The 2008 WEPAN conference proceedings can be found here.

That's all for now. I hope you'll find some or all of these interesting!


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Though i've heard alot, i've not heard "mom could do it". It would offend me, and i'm a guy, and i'm not easily offended. Like many, i have a Mom too.

I have used a line that starts "It's so easy...". But it ends with "even I can do it." Self deprecating humor is my favorite, though irony, sarcasm, stunning understatement, and, well, puns, are up there too.

My current favorite physics joke: "I was driving down the road and looked down and the speedometer for my exact speed. All of a sudden, i had no idea where i was."

My son, through the course of his (recently completed) post-secondary studies in electronics, instrumentation, and robotics, thoroughly enjoyed the reactions he got when he would mention to his teachers that he had learned soldering and digital logic from his mother.