Pieces of My Feminist History (Part 4)

I mentioned in my last post that I found FMH in the spring of 2005. I periodically looked at the bloggernacle that year, but much of my time online was spent on another, mental-health related message board, and I didn’t have time to be involved in many more online activities. Also, while I was intrigued by Mormon blogs, I was also intimidated, and I have to admit that I was uncertain that I would find any welcome there. In Mormon contexts I’ve so often felt like an outsider, and I worried that the same dynamic would be at work online. So while I was interested to see people discussing such a wide variety of questions, I didn’t follow the blogs very closely.

I’m not sure what shifted, but in December of that year, I decided to start commenting on FMH. Read More

Pieces of My Feminist History (Part 3)

As I mentioned in my last post, I wasn’t planning to study theology when I went off to grad school. But once I started, I fell in love with it. I’ve blogged before about how it affected my faith more generally. But here I want to mention some of the issues that came up which were particularly related to my developing feminism, and mention some of the questions I was thinking about.

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Pieces of My Feminist History (Part 1)

I first saw the Star Wars movies when I was eleven, shortly after my parents purchased our first VCR. I was an immediate and enthusiastic convert. My siblings and I watched the movies over and over—in the days before we owned them, we used to check them out from the library every week (my mother would ask, are you sure you don’t want to try something new? and we would inevitably answer, no). I can divide up my life into Before Star Wars, and After. Read More

Anonymity and Comment Wars: Facebook vs. Blogging

When people talk about the reasons for uncivil behavior on the internet, anonymity is often mentioned as a culprit. If no one knows who you are, the theory goes, you’re less likely to censor yourself. And it certainly is ridiculously easy to find people posting under pseudonyms and tearing each other apart. (Just check out the comment section of most newspapers.) Read More


Some recent Facebook bloggernacle conversation has gotten me thinking once again about an issue that I’ve been meaning to blog about for a long time. (I probably started this post during the Prop 8 Blog Wars, but in classic ZD fashion, never got around to finishing it.) My original title was something like “Should We Have Compassion for Gays?” I changed it because I didn’t want to deal with the people who only read the title of the post before commenting. But that is in fact the question I want to think about.

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Joanna Brooks, Ralph Hancock, and The Book of Mormon Girl

If you follow the bloggernacle, by this time, you are likely familiar with Ralph Hancock’s recent two-part article at Meridian Magazine (parts one and two) about Joanna Brooks’ memoir, The Book of Mormon Girl. (See discussions here, here, and here.) I know I’m a bit late to the party, but I found this essay seriously troubling, and I wanted to add my two cents. There is a lot to consider, but I want to focus on a few things I found particularly problematic: Hancock’s condescending tone and generally dismissive attitude toward Brooks, and his approach to issues of gender and feminism. Read More

Circumcision Panel

Recently the ZDs brought together a panel of experts in male reproductive health to discuss an important but sensitive issue that affects all of us, with implications for religion, hygiene, and public policy. This is an abridged transcript of that discussion.

Myrtle-Jane Merryweather, moderator

Harriet Appleworthy, MD

Lucy Quackenbush, PhD, child psychology

Rachel Goldfarb, professional mohelet

Eliza Piddlewit, author, Intact Makes a Comeback!

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