Monday, July 11, 2011

3 of the top 5 are women, queens of the biblioblogosphere:

Rod of Alexandria breaks the news this week.  Women have broken through the glass ceiling of the Top 10 Biblioblogs for June 2011.

He notes, "3 of the top 5 are women:"

1. Suzanne McCarthy, Suzanne’s Bookshelf
2. James McGrath, Exploring Our Matrix
3. Joel Watts, Unsettled Christianity
4. April DeConick, The Forbidden Gospels
5. Jane Stranz, Of life, laughter and liturgy

Notice how the 2 men in the mix are wanting to suggest now "How to Determine the Queen and King of the Biblioblogosphere."  Being now under a woman, even only 1, is, presumably, not good enough.  The 1 man makes his suggestion with a picture of the other 1 man:

What we the people must notice, with all of the talk and images about king-dom-ination, is how there's been a coup d'état, a revolution, a democratic decision-making reversal of the order of power that has let 1 un-defined and un-official and un-sanctified women in the top 10!

First, I want you to listen again to the rant by blogger and Bible Blogger and woman Amanda Mac.  Then see the Official Response that would exclude some women.  Finally see the injustice of male dominance overcome by people power!

First, her rant:
Once again, a call has gone out encouraging more women to biblioblog.  I think I’m getting a little frustrated by this.  Why?

Because there are female bibliobloggers.  They may be in the minority, but they’re out there.
So why aren’t they on the top 50?  A couple of reasons:

1. The top 50 is not an accurate representation of biblioblog rankings.  If it was, Rachel Held Evans would be # 8 on the list.  Also, Elizabeth Scalia would be on the list (now granted, part of the problem with ranking Elizabeth Scalia’s blog is that it is over at Patheos, and Alexa can’t separate out the different blogs).  Evangel over at First Things would also be on the list, as it has several female bloggers contributing.  Internet Monk also has female contributors and would rank around # 22.  Parchment and Pen would be #6.

I suggest we drop this whole “you have to sign up” excuse.  Is it the Top 50 biblioblogs or not?  If it’s not, it needs to be retitled “Top 50 Biblioblogs of people who volunteered to be on the list.”

2. The majority of the female bibliobloggers that I read wouldn’t make the Top 50 because their Alexa ranking is too low to be counted.  So it’s not that there is only a handful of female biblibloggers out there, it is that there is only a handful of female biblobloggers who generate enough traffic to rank in the top 50.

Solution:  Let’s find ways to send some of these fine ladies some more traffic so that their numbers can rank.

Grrr.  So ends my rant.
Then, the Official Response from the official officials, denying access into the kings' domination of the kingdom of the Top 50 Biblioblogs:
The field of biblical studies does not include everything that is written about the Bible, and in particular does not include theological, spritual, or sermon material, which is why Rachel Held Evans, Evangel, Internet Monk, and Parchment and Pen are not included. If these blogs include incidental material relevant to biblical studies, they may be included under “Related Blogs.”
Finally, the revolution of people power:

That's right.  The officially-excluded Rachel Held Evans is in the Top 10!   And she's not even agreeing to wear some crown.

Congrats to Suzanne, April, Jane, and Rachel!


Steve Caruso said...

So here's an idea.

Since I'm gearing up to put together a series of portals on different topics and re-do the home page more in the format of a news website (i.e. easier to read and navigate current issues), let's start a Women's Studies portal on The Biblioblog Reference Library.

I don't have gender as part of the author meta data as it's not something that's syndicated via RSS, but if I could have a list of blogs to include and someone willing to maintain them, once the infrastructure is in place why not?


J. K. Gayle said...


You've been doing an incredible amount of good work on all of this! Thanks also for being so thoughtful, so creative! Yes: "let's start a Women's Studies portal on The Biblioblog Reference Library."

No one should imagine, however, that such a thing should be a place to shuffle off the women to who don't fit into the majority scheme of things. And we all, nonetheless, may want to be open to other portals for studies of other minorities. In any case, the main point I was trying to stress with my blogpost here is exactly what you're trying to get at in your comment: the Top 50 has real problems with its lack of inclusion of women, whatever the reasons; and there are solutions that The Top 50 organizers who are so in favor of tight definitions that exclude women have never even dreamed of. (Rachel Held Evans is NOT eligible for the Top 50, and yet we do find we can vote her right into the Top 10. Now that's creativity! Can we deny Top Biblioblogging gender?)

So, if you're willing and are serious about having a list of blogs, we can get you that very soon. As for finding "someone willing to maintain them," that may take more than I can do? Shall we keep exploring? Would anyone like to volunteer? Other thoughts?!

J. K. Gayle said...

Peace indeed,

-J. K. Gayle

Kristen said...

I'm glad the men can laugh at this silly competition; but should I find it interesting that they are making comments about how silly it is only after a woman has beaten them for the top spot?

Or perhaps they have laughed at themselves before, in which case it is probably an unworthy thought. You see, I don't follow any of their blogs regularly except Suzanne's, so I don't know the history behind the humor.

J. K. Gayle said...

The funny thing, Kristen, is the denial by many (and sometimes it's the denial of a few women as well as mostly men) that there's any kind of discrimination going on at all with "this silly competition." I thought it was amusing that I was voted in the Top 10 once too, after raising such a regular fuss about the regular exclusion of women.

The one who started the whole thing, it seems, is a pseudonymous blogger named, "N. T. Wrong." Lots of the bloggers aspire to be him, or to be like him. However, some now are thinking he is a she. Lots of theories. But whoever Wrong might be, that blogger (or group of bloggers using that name) is gynophobic and mysogynistic and downright nasty from time to time. His whole thing (which "he" claims is all fun and is poking fun at the seriousness of the bloggers) is a classic game of boys-will-be-boys king of the hill. If it weren't that they dismissed the fact that they dismiss women who blog, well, then it might be entirely humorous. (If you want, I'm sure somebody could give a better "history" than I have. But that's my take on it.)

Jane said...

Wow i am amazed by this - delighted for Suzanne - but I feel a complete and utter fraud - Kurk why are you not up there in the top ten? - your blog is much more erudite and biblical than my own musings - I'm fairly sure this is just some fluke but I really like the way the revolution has happened - great fun!
Thank you! - and now I suppose I really have no excuse but to try and get back to the blog ...

J. K. Gayle said...

Yes, Suzanne really deserves this recognition as the very Top blogger on the Bible! (She has been in this Top 10 before, always in the Top 5 too. We readers get this!)

You are a complete and utter encourager of so many of us! Among other things, this is why you are voted in the Top! Your musings matter. Yes please keep blogging. And you've always been an encouragement to me, and encourager to many of us if you'll let me repeat that. (See your nice and kind and encouraging words to me. I've read that sort of thing from you elsewhere and often.)