women executive

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19 May 1536  “This morning she sent for me, that I might be with her at such time as she received the good Lord, to the intent I should hear her speak as touching her innocency always to be clear. And in the writing of this, she sent for me, and at my coming she said: ‘Mr. Kingston, I hear I shall not die aforenoon, and I am very sorry therefore, for I thought to be dead by this time, and past my pain’. I told her, it should be no pain, it was so sottle. And then she said, ‘I heard say the executioner was very good, and I have a little neck’, and then put her hands about it, laughing heartily. I have seen many men and also women executed, and that they have been in great sorrow, and to my knowledge this lady has much joy in death. Sir, her almoner is continually with her, and had been since two o'clock after midnight. This is the effect of anything that is here at this time, and thus fare you well.”  [Letter from Sir W. Kingston, Constable of the Tower, to Thomas Cromwell]

Velma Barfield was a serial killer who eventually earned the nickname the ‘deathrow granny’, as she was the first women to be executed in North Carolina since the reinstatement of the death penalty in 1976 (Barfield was executed in 1984).

Barfield was convicted of four murders, all of them poisonings by arsenic after she had in some way misappropriated or stolen money from her victims. She claimed she was only trying to make them ill in order to give her time to earn back the money that she owed them. Her victims included her late husband, a boyfriend, and her own mother.

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Dany is trying her very best to do the right thing, to be a good ruler. Sometimes, within the context of this world, being a good ruler means doing things like executing Mossador. It’s about laying down a justice that’s blind and impartial and applying it evenly to everybody, former master or former slave. In this case, it’s very complicated for her because she has a great deal of affection for this young man who was a slave until she came. That’s the reason he was selected to represent the freed people on her council and he’s been a strong ally of hers, yet he disobeyed her. In her mind, she’s making a very hardheaded but fair decision. In the minds of the freed men and women watching this execution, she’s turning on them. She’s executing one of her children, one of the people who called her “Mhysa.” – David Benioff and D. B. Weiss {x} {x}

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Issa Rae’s ‘Insecure’

The half-hour comedy series Insecure, starring Issa Rae, Yvonne Orji, Jay Ellis and Lisa Joyce, looks at the friendship, experiences and tribulations of two black women. Created and executive produced by Issa Rae, this eight-episode series is also executive produced by Prentice Penny, Melina Matsoukas, Michael Rotenberg, Dave Beck, Jonathan Berry, and Larry Wilmore as a consultant.

You can get The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl by Issa Rae here

Never Forget & Never Stop Fighting

27 years ago today, 14 women were mercilessly executed at l’École Polytechnique de Montréal. Why? Because they were women.

Fourteen incredibly intelligent women with bright futures of now unknown potential were murdered by one man. One man crusading against the “Feminist Agenda.”

  • Geneviève Bergeron, a civil engineering student
  • Hélène Colgan, a mechanical engineering student
  • Nathalie Croteau, also a mechanical engineering student
  • Barbara Daigneault, another mechanical engineering student
  • Anne-Marie Edward, a chemical engineering student
  • Maud Haviernick, a materials engineering student
  • Maryse Laganière, a budget clerk in l’École Polytechnique finance department
  • Maryse Leclair, another materials engineering student
  • Anne-Marie Lemay, another mechanical engineering student
  • Sonia Pelletier, also a mechanical engineering student
  • Michèle Richard, a materials engineering student
  • Annie St-Arneault, a mechanical engineering student
  • Annie Turcotte, also a materials engineering student
  • Barbara Klucznik-Widajewicz, a nursing student

These are the names we need to remember, the names that we must celebrate, honour, and mourn. The misogynist that was so insecure, he was threatened by women studying engineering –– and women in general –– does not even deserve his name to be written in a footnote. 

These fourteen women are the ones who need to be remembered. They were rounded up, terrorized, and shot dead –– because they were women –– because they were smart, curious, and brave enough to enter a male-dominated field of study.

These women are the reason a pit grows in my stomach, the reason fear strangles my heart, whenever I see a man passionately argue #NotAllMen when faced with the innumerable accounts of #YesAllWomen. Because all it takes is one man with one gun to kill fourteen women when he feels like his rights, his place in society is threatened. 

One insecure man. Fourteen defenseless women.

This is why we need feminism, why we need to challenge the status quo to be better, to want better. We need men who can’t fathom why a woman shouldn’t be a physicist or an engineer. We need men who think it’s perfectly normal to cry or show emotion around their friends. We need boys who don’t understand how throwing or hitting like a girl is an insult. We need boys who are just as happy to dress up as Elsa for Halloween as they are Batman. We need toys that don’t separate the genders, that don’t tell the boys that they can be the next Einstein while telling girls that being cute is as far as they get to go in life. We need men to stop being threatened by a woman’s independence, strength, and success.

Feminism is not about the success of women at the expense of men, it’s about the success of women alongside men. It’s about respect and dignity. There is no reason (other than insecurity) for men to feel threatened by feminism, no reason (other than guilt) to try to discredit the negative experiences of women. Feminism should be about basic human decency, not about attacking (or defending) the patriarchy.

These fourteen women found out that you don’t even need to be an activist to be vilified as a feminist, you just need to be a woman. You don’t need to march in the streets for women’s rights, you just need to study engineering. You don’t need to take action, you just need to exist, and that’s enough to get you killed.

Hannah Szenes (1921-1944) was a Jewish Hungarian resistance fighter who was parachuted behind German lines in World War 2.

The child of a Jewish family in Hungary, Szenes showed a talent for writing from a young age. She was accepted into a Protestant private school, however in spite of a ‘gifted student’ discount she still had to pay double the regular fees because she was Jewish. Combined with her awareness of the worsening situation for Jews in Hungary, this led her to join Maccabea, a Hungarian Zionist youth movement.

In 1939 Szenes traveled to the British Mandate of Palestine where she studied agriculture and wrote poetry and plays about Kibbutz life. In 1941 she joined the Jewish paramilitary force Haganah and in 1943 volunteered to join the British Special Operations Executive to train as a paratrooper. After training in Egypt she was selected to take part in an operation to infiltrate German-occupied Europe and establish links with beleaguered Jewish communities.

On March 14th 1944 Szenes was parachuted into Yugoslavia along with two men, Yoel Palgi and Peretz Goldstein. Their mission was to enter Hungary and help save Hungarian Jews from being deported to the Auschwitz concentration camp. The team spent 3 months working with Yugoslavian partisans, during which they discovered that Hungary had been forcibly occupied by German forces in retaliation for attempting to surrender to the Allies. Faced with this new information Palgi and Goldstein decided to call off the mission. Szenes disagreed and pressed on to the Hungarian border alone, however not long after crossing she was arrested by Hungarian police.

Szenes was imprisoned and suffered a brutal interrogation by police who wanted to know the code for the radio transmitter she used to communicate with the partisans and the British. She was stripped, tied to a chair, and whipped and clubbed for 3 days. She lost several of her teeth. Yet she refused to surrender the code and so she was transferred to a Budapest prison where she continued to be tortured. Frustrated that she wouldn’t break, the guards brought in her mother, who she had not seen for 5 years, and threatened her life. Despite this Szenes still refused to give up the code and eventually her mother was released.

Szenes spent the next three months in prison but was not idle. She communicated with other prisoners using a mirror to flash signals and used large cut-out letters to spell out messages in Hebrew. She often sang to keep up the spirits of the other prisoners. However in late October she was tried for treason and on November 7th 1944 she was executed by a German firing squad.

Following the end of the war, Szenes became widely known when her diary, poetry and plays were published. She was recognised as a national heroine of Israel and in 1950 her remains were reburied in the military cemetery on Mt Herzl in Jersualem.

One of the final entries in her diary contained a poem reading:

In the month of July I shall be twenty-three,

I played a number in a game,

The dice have rolled. I have lost.

Just a thought, but been listening to and reading people’s thoughts on Islam, and Castro.

They’d specify horrific things happening to men, and only men, usually mass slaughter and torture in the millions. Then they would say how misogynist the ideology is because women are treated to a fraction of that or to something that would not be applicable to men but still doesn’t have a massive death toll.

“Islam is misogynist because women are executed for being raped!”

Actually it’s for the equally stupid “adultery” and it’s not sex specific, but it’s only discrimination against one sex, not ridiculously puritanical. At least it’s actually illegal to rape women.

Also look at the reasons to keep women covered up: so that men won’t be tempted to rape them. So woman hating and male privileging that they think men are rapists so they try to protect women. Because they hate them. And love men. Because logic. Not forgetting that men are executed at a massively higher rate for the same crimes (be they actual crimes or just religious crap), disposable utilities both in and out of the home and obligated to provide for their families. Their wives have no such obligations themselves, so if the kids starve to death while he’s on a business trip and the wife is bedecked in jewellery she paid for with her own earnings, he’s liable for that. Because they hate women so much.

Then there are people saying that Castro’s regime was/is misogynist. Listing things like imprisonment of prostitutes (not all of whom are female), forced abortions (to disguise infant mortality rates) and execution of women (who were related to executed men).

Different, but not “worse”, and not driven by hatred of women in particular. If you go by death toll, one is most definitely far worse but for some reason that never seems to count. And when an entire people are being oppressed (by the actual definition), it shouldn’t be a bloody competition. But pointing that out is “trivialising” the problem.

Male casualties are not a blip on the radar, it doesn’t even register. A problem needs to be experienced by women before it is even noticed (even then only as a women’s issue) and needs to be spoken about by women before anyone cares. Even then, only in relation to how it affects women, like women in I think it was Rwanda “it’s so hard being in power” because nearly all the men were wiped out, so selfish of them to die like that. When men are in power, it’s oppressive to women; when women are in power, it’s oppressive to women. This is why feminism is not what is needed anywhere in the world, because all humans are like this.

forbes.com
Jessica Chastain Just Launched All-Female Production Company, Freckle Films
Fed up with the lack of women executives in Hollywood, Jessica Chastain launched Freckle Films, and all-female production company.

Actress Jessica Chastain has now taken a major step toward pushing against gender inequality in Hollywood: She just launched Freckle Films, a production company with all-female executives. Chastain will head the company along with development executive Elise Siegel. They are partnering with Trudie Styler and Celine Rattray of Maven Pictures.

“I’m excited to launch Freckle Films, and I can’t imagine a better production partner than Maven Pictures,” Chastain told Variety.“Trudie and Celine are not only both highly experienced and successful producers, but the projects they’ve created demonstrate their tenacious dedication to strong characters and compelling stories that clearly resonate with audiences. It’s an honor to work with them, as well as their company, one that mirrors many of the goals that I aspire to achieve with Freckle Films.”

Read the full piece here

NICE WORK JESSICA!

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I agree… like the 14 women executed in Iraq last year for not wearing a hajib. Or those imprisoned for it in Saudi Arabia, or the myriad of other female rights violations due to sharia law involving just the Hijab… that’s before we look at who is FORCED by LAW to wear the Hijab…

that’s also before we enter into the various other womens/human rights violations, like getting stoned to death OR lashed AND imprisoned for getting RAPED… or the fact that women cant even drive in Saudi Arabia… or the 150 women executed in Iraq for refusing to convert… or the THOUSANDS of Iraqi and Syrian women who are currently being sold into sexual slavery…

The Chapel Hill Shooting is a tragedy by one bigot, lets not use it as an excuse to overlook the very real oppressions and murders happening EVERY DAY throughout the world. The greatest threat to and killer/abuser of Muslims is AND HAS ALWAYS BEEN other Muslims.    

Mirrors, Meta, and Breaking the Fourth Wall

When Sherlock is going through how the women executed the ghostly bride projection, he’s going through how Mofftiss has been queer coding the show. Character mirrors abound in the series, over and over again. It’s one of the basic tenets of our huge repository of meta. By showing a series of bride deceptions, we’re shown that this is done again and again, a mirror being held up to our core characters (Sherlock, John, Moriarty, Mary) through different iterations of other characters, their relationships reflected back at them ad infinitum.

Sherlock then goes on to identify the women’s one mistake: they broke the pane of glass, hence the sound of the glass shattering. The cult of women social justice champions is so obviously a mirror for our TJLC community that my husband even paused the playback on our watch through to comment, “Hm, conspiracy? Where have I heard that before…” and give me a knowing wink. He knew the cult was our mirror before they were unmasked to the audience. So what was our “mistake”? We shattered the glass when we removed it: we broke the fourth wall. We spilled the beans before Mofftiss was ready, and we won’t let it go, because we know we’re right. We cracked the meta code, we saw TJLC and we spread the word, and we won’t stop, even when Mofftiss has had to lie to our faces at conventions and interviews time and again. And though they have to put up a front of us being “wrong” or “hysterical” in the public sphere for the rest of the show to work, they know we are right, and we will win in the end.

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Sing Sing Correctional Facility is a maximum security prison in the village of Ossining, New York. It is located about 30 miles north of New York City on the east bank of the Hudson River. The name comes from the Native American words “Sint Sinck” which roughly translates to “Stone upon stone.” Construction for the prison began in 1824 and concluded in 1826. In 1914, Thomas Mott Osborne was appointed as the new warden, and he began his brief tenure there by disguising himself as an inmate for one week to experience conditions in the prison from the perspective of an inmate. He later went on to become a major reformer of prisons. A total of 614 men and women were executed by way of the electric chair, or “Old Sparky”, before the abolition of the death penalty in New York State in 1972. Today, Sing Sing houses about 2000 inmates and receives 5000 visitors each month. The expression of sending someone “Up the river” refers to criminals who were sentenced to a prison term in New York City who were then literally sent up the Hudson river to Sing Sing prison.

…I began my courses in various super-secret ‘schools’; hair-raising cross-examinations, tough soldier’s training. If anyone had told me that I would spend the summer of 1943 being timed at assault courses, tapping Morse messages on a dummy key, shooting at moving pieces of cardboard, crawling across the countryside and blowing up mock targets, I would have shrugged my shoulders with disbelief. And then, when I had arrived at the parachute school, I had realized that I never really believed it would happen. And if I had jumped, it was only because the boys expected the girls to be scared and to refuse.

“Ha, ha,” they had said. “We just can’t wait to see you shake like jellyfish and howl with terror on the edge of the hole…” And they had rubbed their hands in anticipation of a good laugh. Only we’d all jumped, and their throats had been as dry as ours when the despatcher had laid a firm hand on our shoulder to warn us that the fatal moment was approaching.

After the jump school, we were sent to a 'security school’ where we had learnt the art of being a proper gangster: how to open locks, lie successfully, disguise ourselves and adopt different personalities, how to recognize German uniforms and armament and how to code and decode messages.

— 

Anne-Marie Walters, on her training for the Special Operations Executive, prior to her deployment to France. 

Excerpt from Moondrop to Gascony, p. 30.

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Anne Hathaway was appointed a Global Goodwill Ambassador for UN Women, the U.N. agency promoting gender equality and the empowerment of women.

UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, who announced the appointment on June 15, 2016, called her a longstanding supporter of women’s and girls’ rights. She said Anne will put the spotlight on women’s work at home caring for their families as a key barrier to equality

Anne will be “working internationally to advance the adoption and implementation of policies that will bring measurable change,” including “affordable childcare services and shared parental leave at both government and corporate levels.”

She previously served as an advocate for the Nike Foundation, which supports programs to empower adolescent girls in the developing world, and traveled to Kenya and Ethiopia to raise awareness on child marriage. In 2013, she narrated the CNN documentary, “Girl Rising,” which focused on the power of female education.