Monday, March 28, 2011

Brain Storm: The Flaws in the Science of Sex Differences

Join us for a reading & discussion this upcoming Thursday, March 31st at 6:30pm with Rebecca Jordan-Young, author of the recent book: Brain Storm: The Flaws in the Science of Sex Differences.

In this compelling book, Rebecca Jordan-Young takes on the evidence that sex differences are hardwired into the brain. Analyzing virtually all published research that supports the claims of “human brain organization theory,” Jordan-Young reveals how often these studies fail the standards of science. Even if careful researchers point out the limits of their own studies, other researchers and journalists can easily ignore them because brain organization theory just sounds so right. But if a series of methodological weaknesses, questionable assumptions, inconsistent definitions, and enormous gaps between ambiguous findings and grand conclusions have accumulated through the years, then science isn’t scientific at all.

Elegantly written, this book argues passionately that the analysis of gender differences deserves far more rigorous, biologically sophisticated science. “The evidence for hormonal sex differentiation of the human brain better resembles a hodge-podge pile than a solid structure…Once we have cleared the rubble, we can begin to build newer, more scientific stories about human development.”

Rebecca M. Jordan-Young is a sociomedical scientist and an Assistant Professor of Women’s Studies at Barnard College, Columbia University.

This event is co-sponosred by the Department of Sociology at University of Massachusetts.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Update: Malalai Joya is coming!

After being denied a visa, and the ensuing uproar over this denial, Malalai Joya was finally granted a visa and will be coming to Umass & Smith, at the times and locations previously scheduled. It has been a struggle to bring her these several thousand miles from Afghanistan - be sure to spread the word and be there to hear her!

We'll be selling her recent book, A Woman Among Warlords, for her Umass engagement. We hope to see you there!

Malalai Joya: On ending the Occupation of Afghanistan
Monday, March 28th at 4:00pm
University of Massachusetts, Thompson Hall 106

Friday, March 18, 2011

Malalai Joya denied visa by pathetically hypocritical US officials

Malalai Joya, author of A Woman Among Warlords, was going to be coming to the Pioneer Valley as part of a national book tour. Unfortunately, the United States government has seen fit to deny her travel visa based upon the fact that she's "unemployed" and "lives underground".

We don't know about you, but we think it's pretty difficult to hold down a job & fixed address when you've been the subject of multiple assassination attempts.

US government denies entry visa to Afghan women’s rights activist and author Malalai Joya
The United States has denied a travel visa to Malalai Joya, an acclaimed women’s rights activist and former member of Afghanistan’s parliament. Ms. Joya, who was named one of TIME magazine’s 100 most influential people in the world in 2010, was set to begin a three-week US tour to promote an updated edition of her memoir, A Woman Among Warlords, published by Scribner, an imprint of Simon & Schuster.

Joya’s publisher at Scribner, Alexis Gargagliano, said, “We had the privilege to publish Ms. Joya, and her earlier 2009 book tour met with wide acclaim. The right of authors to travel and promote their work is central to freedom of expression and the full exchange of ideas.” Joya’s memoir has been translated into over a dozen languages, and she has toured widely including Australia, the UK, Canada, Norway, Germany, Italy, Spain, Portugal, France, and the Netherlands in support of the book over the past two years.

Colleagues of Ms. Joya’s report that when she presented herself as scheduled at the U.S. embassy, she was told she was being denied because she was “unemployed” and “lives underground.” Then 27, Joya was the youngest woman elected to Afghanistan’s parliament in 2005. Because of her harsh criticism of warlords and fundamentalists in Afghanistan, she has been the target of at least five assassination attempts. “The reason Joya lives underground is because she faces the constant threat of death for having had the courage to speak up for women’s rights – it’s obscene that the U.S. government would deny her entry,” said Sonali Kolhatkar of the Afghan Women’s Mission, a U.S. based organization that has hosted Joya for speaking tours in the past and is a sponsor of this year’s national tour. ... read more

Outraged? You should be. Luckily, there's something you can do. Actually, make that four things. Check it - ACTION ALERT: Four Things YOU Can Do About Malalai Joya’s Visa Denial

Saturday, March 12, 2011

New Nikki McClure posters - 2011

Yes, another new crop of poster prints from papercut artist extraordinaire Nikki McClure. Please stop by & check them out. Guaranteed to brighten up that blank piece of wall you've been wondering what to do with.

Here's a great interview with her where she talks about her techniques and inspiration: The cuts & complexities of Nikki McClure

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