Suzanne, as you know there has been a lot of private discussion about these matters. So I will discuss it with you privately.I've been away from the blog for a few days. Do you know whether there have been private discussions? Of course you don't. Now that I'm back, I see that Peter Kirk has announced at his own blog that he's on vacation, that he won't be back until September. This, to me, is important for several reasons.
First, if there's a public discussion here at this blog, I don't want to leave Peter out of a more public conversation that he may have started (even if he announces in public at my blog how he prefers for some things "private discussion"). Second, if there's discussion mentioning him, he should be able to speak for himself. Third, Peter asked a question of me, which I haven't taken the time to answer as if I've had the time; but I think he deserves an answer before September. Fourth, related to Peter's question, there's really a larger discussion going on at BBB, that's been stopped now. Fifth, what happened at BBB is indicative of a larger problem we've already observed with bible-blogging in general, the fact that men and not women continue to dominate the bible "studies" blogger carnivals and the Top 50 listings, where Peter now finds himself comfortably and increasingly near the top. Sixth, the general bible-blogging problem seems related to male privilege and to sexism and to mysogyny and to gynophobia.
Seventh, several have already noted particular issues for them, very likely because they are women. For example, Suzanne notes:
"Naturally my comment will stand out as marked, because I am one woman among a large group of male bloggers."And Paula remarks:
"Right now, based on this conversation alone, all I can see is that Sue has a legitimate grievance of clear bias against only her discussing gender. If the BBB wants us to believe this isn't so, they can't hide their argument from public view."And Kristen says:
"I made a couple of suggestions over there. But I'm leaving tomorrow on a trip and will be gone for about a week, so I won't see the results. Catch you when I get back! "And Judith reads and then comments "over there":
"A nice carnival. Any real reason that all the women bloggers are down at the bottom in a group called ‘Miscellaneous’? As one of that pack, I’m curious…."She gets an answer and then replies:
"Believe me, I know how much time it takes to put together a good carnival. So thanks very much for your work on this one. As I said, I was just curious how we all landed up in the same category of ‘Oddities’ "Please observe
the oddities that Judith observes,
the extra work that Kristen must do,
the call for more public discussion that Paula has to make,
and the public markedness.
The markedness is what Suzanne
can't help but experience.
This is the experience of females, not males,
of women, not men,
in bible blogging.
So Peter, as one justifiably hypocritical man to another, asks me:
"Kurk, isn't it the pot calling the kettle black when on this all-male blog you complain about BBB being all-male? The only reason BBB is all-male is that, despite looking, we can't find a woman who wants to join it. But surely what matters in this case is not what body parts we possess but what we have to say.
I have written quite a lot about the phrase sometimes translated "husband of one wife". Last year I busted the myth that it was used of women. Five years ago I wrote a whole series about this phrase.Now, I reply:
But there are other interesting topics in Bible translation, so at BBB we don't want every thread diverted into a discussion of gender."
"Peter, I am glad you worked to 'bust the myth' that the Greek phrases μιᾶς γυναικὸς ἄνδρα, mias gunaikos andra AND ἑνὸς ἀνδρὸς γυνή, henos andros gune were used exclusively for one sex but not the other. You did that by blogging individually; and not in a team of bloggers as you're a member of at BBB. Probably I should have pointed out that I don't blog with anybody else at my blog just as you don't at your Gentle Wisdom blog. But I do value the comments of women as well as men. I censor neither and try to allow the voices of all people of all genders to be expressed as the individuals commenting here would like.
Is my observation about the BBB team being all-male a complaint? If so,
- then my complaint is that you haven't looked hard enough to include women in your team of BBB bloggers.
- My complaint is that you want the default and unmarked body parts to be male so then you can say, by male logic, that "surely what matters in this case is not what body parts we possess but what we have to say."
- My complaint is that you all-male BBB bloggers censor a woman differently than you do a man.
- My complaint is that you have rules for commenters that you apply rather unevenly and pretend that gender is not in view.
- My complaint is that you all-men BBB bloggers say, 'Comments are closed, but you can leave a trackback' but then you allow trackbacks, if seems, only if we don't use the g-word in our posts.
- My complaint is not that all-you-males-and-only-males 'don't want every thread diverted into a discussion of gender.' Rather, my complaint is that you use your maleness as if it's not gender to control who gets to say what and how.
- My complaint is that you say you only want to 'discuss' such things in private while making rather public statements nonetheless here also at my blog."