So our Convoy wasn’t feminist? Bite me, baby.

20 Jun

See here, Convoy critics. I will do whatever I like with my breasts. If I want them in a montage of cleavage, I will put them there. I don’t care if you think this is an ineffective feminist action, or that I am not a feminist if I make it. Who are you to tell me what to do with my body?  Who are you to decide if I’m a feminist or not?

I don’t care if you think our convoy of cleavage was an ineffective protest. I never framed it as a protest. I said it was a frivolity that would achieve nothing. You imposed your own values on it, and then complained because it didn’t meet them.

We had no obligation to fulfil your expectations. Get off your arse and do it the way you want, instead of bitching and moaning that we didn’t do it for you.

I don’t care if you are angry because looking at our breasts will give guys a hard on. If you are angry about guys getting hard ons, take it up with them. Don’t tell me I can’t do what I like with my breasts because it will disturb “men.” Don’t tell me I can’t do what I like with my breasts because I’m playing into the hands of the patriarchy. Don’t tell me I don’t know what I’m doing cos brainwashed by the menz.

Actually, I think it’s the other way round. You are buying into patriarchy’s fear of women, and the myth of the power of our bodies to make men uncontrollably wild.

Personally, I have no problem with heterosexual men enjoying images of the female body. It seems pretty damn natural to me.

Years of patriarchy telling me what to do with my body, now Grace Collier and the feminists as well?

You find it sad that I can’t make a political point without using the “money [ie cum] shot?” It was my cleavage. I didn’t post an image of a man ejaculating on my face. Check this blog. See how many political points I can make. Wanna read my doctoral thesis and see how many political points I made in that? How about I send you any one of the many international conference papers I’ve presented, all of which make political points? Book chapters? Lectures? Articles? How very patriarchal of you to judge me by one shot of my cleavage, not my body of work.

I don’t know why you want to put me and all the other women involved down, for an innocuous display of our cleavage. I don’t care really, though I am an analyst  & I could give you a few theories. Suffice to say that your need to do this is your problem, not ours, and we’re not carrying it for you.

The Convoy of Cleavage was initiated and executed with an enormous amount of good will, joy, friendship, co-operation and laughter. A bunch of women, many of whom have never met, had a damn good time together, and made a point about sexism. It was a moment. It was never intended to be anything else.

UPDATE: WE ARE NOW IN THE HUFFINGTON POST WORLD SECTION.

Also in the UK Telegraph.

The Convoy featured in the UK Daily Mail, a Dutch paper and the Indian Deccan Chronicle.  Yes, we went global, and we find that very satisfying. Because of us, the sexist attacks on PM Gillard, and all women, got international coverage as part of our story. That was the icing on the cake for us.

We didn’t do it in a manner that met with your feminist approval?

Tough titty.

Convoy of Cleavage

This montage of images sent in by Twitter women who formed the Convoy of Cleavage was created and distributed by Destroy the Joint

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73 Responses to “So our Convoy wasn’t feminist? Bite me, baby.”

  1. Kim @ Frog Ponds Rock June 20, 2013 at 8:02 am #

    I know that you predicted this response in your previous article and so with that prediction in mind, I posted my cleavage with your line as my title, “Here is my mindless capitulation to empty symbolism”
    I was asked last night, that if the convoy of cleavage wasn’t a feminist act, what was it? I responded that in my case my participation in the convoy of cleavage was an act of lighthearted defiance, it was a “fuck you” To Collier and her assertion that cleavage has no right in the public domain.
    Thank you for this article Jennifer, I was going to write my own but you have saved me the bother I will just quote this article and say, Yes, This.
    I might even add a photo of my tits to the link for luck. In fact that is exactly what I will do. xx

    • Forrest Gumpp (@ForrestGumpp) June 20, 2013 at 8:52 am #

      You do that, Kim.

      Some titters on Twitter from men:

      Edit. Paragraph 8, line 3: “,or my blue dress”

    • hudsongodfrey June 20, 2013 at 11:48 am #

      Yes I think “fuck you to Collier” was exactly what it was, and I would have been reticent to say that because I’m a bloke.

      I’ve been making the point that I think Collier’s tactic was itself a gambit in support of Abbott in trying to dampen the effect of Gillard playing the gender card against him. So at the end of the say there are two discussions to be had here, one about political tactics that attempt to manipulate women around feminism and the other about the version of feminism that one supports being divided along broadly sex positive and sex negative lines.

      Either way as a long time follower of Jennifer’s I’m glad to see more female voices here.

      • Marilyn June 20, 2013 at 4:29 pm #

        Here is the thing for me, girls have tits. This is not a new concept. Girls have been displaying those tits to men for the entire existence of human beings.

        The silly girls like Grace need to remember that.

        I had my own peculiar answer to the cowards who abused me in the 1960’s, mindless abuse about what I wore.

        As a victim of hideous child torture by my parents I guess my response to bullies was quite natural – I used to play passive with my brutal parents by simply asking them why everytime they demanded anything at all.

        In 1967 I loved Peyton Place and Mia Farrow so I had a hair cut just like hers, it was unusual in a sea of tittering girls with long hair. I was immediately branded a lesbian so I had it cut shorter. Within a few years all the girls around me realised that long hair in a hot climate sucked.

        In 1968 I made a skirt 5 inches above my knee and was branded a slut, so I made the next one 10 inches above my knee. Within weeks all the girls were wearing skirts 10 inches above their knees.

        So by the time I was 15 years old I was a lesbian slut.

        Well guess what, 45 years later I still have very short hair and still show off my legs.

        Gillard needs to be trashed for what she did yesterday.

        A Parliamentary report on human rights condemned her brutal and illegal approach to refugees in our prisons and community, the UNHCR chief slammed the forced removal of Sri Lankans without due process, the UNHCR announced the biggest refugee crisis in 20 years and what did we get from that fucking moron woman?

        I will run off to Indonesia like all the spivs. before me to convince Indonesia to STOP THE FUCKING BOATS.

        Jesus wept, her racism looms larger and larger by the day along with her total ignorance of the law.

  2. Leigh Hillman June 20, 2013 at 8:09 am #

    Dear Dear Jennifer

    Perfectly said. There’s something seriously oppressive about women who foist their values on other women. It’s tiresome enough when this behaviour comes from men – to a degree I expect that – but it’s almost laughable when your own suddenly become the new moral gatekeepers. #convoyofcleavage, for those so appalled, was conceived as a piss take of those “convoys” that have, in recent years, borne down to Canberra objecting to every reform the government has instigated.

    It’s tiresome being pontificated at – I’ve spent 40+ years enduring it from men. I’m fucked if I should now put up with lectures from women like Helen Razer et al who consider themselves the only arbiters of what constitutes “good” feminist action. And don’t start me on junior chipmunks like Michael Brull who appears to have all the answers for women, Indigenous and white from the sanctity of his politically pure ivory tower. In Sydney?

    I was working and fighting to right wrongs before a lot of you were born so please have some courtesy and don’t tell me what I can and can’t do with my cleavage.

    • Jennifer Wilson June 20, 2013 at 1:22 pm #

      Oh, that brilliant hash tag – What a creative genius! xxxxxxx

  3. Amanda Mack June 20, 2013 at 8:18 am #

    Good on you! I’m a feminist who’s been actively engaged in the struggle for women’s rights for 35 years – in every aspect of my life. In that time there have always been some feminists who’ve tried to tell me what to wear and/or that feminism can’t be light-hearted. Jesus Christ on a speed boat! If I’d never been light with it I’d have gone mad by now.

    • paul walter June 20, 2013 at 12:13 pm #

      Now that’s what I call a good post… that is so down to earth aussie feminist woman.

    • hudsongodfrey June 20, 2013 at 12:23 pm #

      Good on you, great post, and “Jesus Christ on a speedboat”, or “Jesus H Christ on water skis” in the version I’m more familiar with is sadly underused in modern discourse :)

    • Marilyn June 20, 2013 at 4:32 pm #

      I’m with you Amanda. I fight for the rights of everyone though. The thing for me is that I am fucked if anyone is going to tell me what to wear.

  4. Carla June 20, 2013 at 8:26 am #

    Women who think they own feminism are a much bigger danger to it than some of the more moronic members of the patriarchy. I think the #convoyofcleavage was a great lighthearted way of showing how idiotic Collier’s comments were.

  5. auguries8 June 20, 2013 at 8:48 am #

    Reblogged this on auguries14 and commented:
    convoy of breasts, do what you want with your cleavage.

  6. Ray (novelactivist) June 20, 2013 at 8:48 am #

    The whole thing is absurd. One of the most popular songs of the moment is ‘Blurred Lines’ by Robin Thicke. There are two versions of the clip. One is banned. In both versions three young models pose provocatively around three fully dressed men. They pout, pose, prance and otherwise act as sexual objects. In fact their movements and poses are essentially the same in both versions.

    The only reason the second version, called the ‘dirty’ version, is banned is because in this second version they are topless for over 90% of the clip. That’s it. It’s not the provocative dancing or the pouting or the appearing as sexual ornamentation – it’s the breasts.

    • Ray (novelactivist) June 20, 2013 at 9:09 am #

      Should add that the models were professionals, were highly paid and the clip was directed by a woman.

    • hudsongodfrey June 20, 2013 at 11:52 am #

      Did both versions have the “Robin Thicke has a big dick” slogan?

      I can see why you might want to warn people about the content, I can also see how the content was enjoyable.

      • Ray (novelactivist) June 20, 2013 at 12:35 pm #

        Don’t know. Warnings are fine, but I said it was banned in several cases, ie FB, Youtube, broadcast – because of the bare breasts.

        • hudsongodfrey June 20, 2013 at 2:11 pm #

          Okay so I know a little about YouTube and their privacy policy tends to restricting content that is sexual to adults, meaning you may need a login to see the explicit version. Pornographic content, i.e. full nudity is generally not allowed on YouTube but there are plenty of other places you can see this and other similar material that aren’t porn sites.

          The actual content policing of YouTube tends to rely more on user feedback i.e. flagging, but in this case it could also just be the case that they do tend to maintain a somewhat more strictly controlled (and automated) system for policing copyright. Which is just to say that the breasts aren’t always the only reason for a DMCA takedown notice on that site.

          • Ray (novelactivist) June 20, 2013 at 3:16 pm #

            ??? Why did you find it necessary to try and explain Youtube policy?

            My point was that the uncensored clip is controversial because it dared to show naked breasts.

            • hudsongodfrey June 20, 2013 at 3:19 pm #

              It’s just that they could’ve censored it because sometimes people rip off others’ copyright. Or it could have been excluded from searches if you’re not logged in with preferences for adult material turned on.

              • Ray (novelactivist) June 20, 2013 at 4:03 pm #

                It seems you’ve missed the press reports that say it was because of the ‘nudity’.

                • hudsongodfrey June 20, 2013 at 4:11 pm #

                  No I didn’t see that in the press. I imagine that would mean prude complained.

  7. curlymcbert June 20, 2013 at 9:07 am #

    Helen Razer: Tiberius with a twitter account. You done good, Commander! Very proud that my rack is part of the montage.

    • Team Oyeniyi June 23, 2013 at 6:11 pm #

      ROTFLMAO! Tiberius with a Twitter account. I so wish I had thought of that.

  8. Egor June 20, 2013 at 9:15 am #

    I would really appreciate it if you could also include male population here. Who are generally expected to wear “business suits”. Even if it’s +42 outside.

    • Ray (novelactivist) June 20, 2013 at 10:11 am #

      I sympathise – it must be terrible being a privileged male who can afford to wear business suits. Poor baby.

    • Cam June 24, 2013 at 11:48 pm #

      And also maybe produce a #Convoyofspeedos? I mean, I am far left wing so don’t support Abbot in the least but I am pretty amazed that so many have got away with such humiliating criticism of him while Jules has been supported all the way to the Huffington Post on the matter of a facile opinion expressed by a little-known columnist back in Sydney. Are we mature in our evaluation of the treatment of people in general, or do we form our allegiances along purely political lines? Especially in an election year?

  9. helvityni June 20, 2013 at 9:16 am #

    Thank you Jennifer, you are putting Australia on the world map, I was pleased to read about your convoy even in Dutch media..
    All the misogynist Oz males should hang their heads in shame.

  10. baileysmother June 20, 2013 at 9:22 am #

    And, can I just add, @MissBaileyWoof thought of the hashtag with no human assistance whatsoever. Good dog!

  11. newswithnipples June 20, 2013 at 9:33 am #

    Yes yes YES to everything you said, Jennifer. It was a bit of fun with a serious result – the MSM loves a chance to publish photos of boobs but in order to publish the photos they had to mention Grace Collier’s comments about the PM’s cleavage, as well as all the other rubbish directed at her. Well done.

  12. samjandwich June 20, 2013 at 10:33 am #

    Jennifer you’re wonderful! Congratulations to you and all your co-conspirators for, er, achieving this level of exposure.

    I gotta say, at no time in my adult life have I felt this worried about gender relations in this country (as if “gender relations” is even an issue that people of my generation imagined we’d ever need to contemplate) as I am now. Having a female PM has brought the same sort of nastiness out of the woodwork as happened when Pauline Hanson first emerged in all her racist glory. It’s obviously, disappointingly, something that deeply troubles many people. Which is bizarre in a way, and perhaps demands slightly satirical responses like the Convoy, but I think it’s something we’re going to be talking about for some time to come.

    • helvityni June 20, 2013 at 11:21 am #

      I hope the talking will continue, I hope this will not disappear like a tweet in a cyberspace….
      At least overseas Julia’s misogyny speech is still talked about; both in America and Europe…so my friends tell me.

      • Marilyn June 20, 2013 at 4:37 pm #

        But it was one of the worst speeches I have ever read. It didn’t stand up for any woman but Gillard. And on the same day the senate reduced tens of thousands of women to penury.

        And Helvi. The most sexist club in Australia is Emily’s list. Gillard and her girls all got preselection under Emily’s list, no merit required.

        That is man hating surely.

  13. hudsongodfrey June 20, 2013 at 12:09 pm #

    Once again I think congratulations are in order, but at the same time we really do have to have the conversation about whether feminism is meant to be sex negative or sex positive. The diplomatic answer that says it can be both and that the two are separate issues evidently isn’t reflected in terms of our public discourse.

    Where I see political issues and a partisan tactic, on both sides, I also see a conflation of feminism with sexual conservatism that repeatedly rears its ugly head, and appears to work. While some are calling out cleavage for being superficially referential of patriarchal attitudes nobody seems quite so aware of the inherent sexism behind protecting us from the dangers of cleavage. And the problem with that response to sexism is that it treats sexual repression as if it has merit. It does not!

  14. Candice June 20, 2013 at 12:27 pm #

    Initially, I thought the request for cleavage shot was a joke. Media attention received check. Uniting diverse types of women, erm no. Yes, you wrote a brilliant piece (once again) and you’ve convinced me (of how you feel).

    I hate playing the ‘race’ card (it’s tucked in my back pocket with my ‘gender’ card), but this convoy thingo really bugged me and I couldn’t work out why. And that’s when I realised it, I felt marginalised by ‘mainstream’ feminists since it was originally a suggestion by Destroy The Joint. So, it did have a feminist credo albeit through the execution of a ‘frivolous’ exercise.

    The receipt of ‘blink-and-you’ll miss it’ mainstream media attention reminded me of Femen objectifying themselves in order to get attention but only representing a certain ‘segment’ of the female market to fight for their ‘poor, oppressed sisters’.

    Logically, I know the context is completely different. The PM is more Boadicea (thanks Mary Delahunty for apt description) – especially during Question Time – than oppressed and Grace Collier’s comments were not worthy of any attention in my view, they’re that stupid they’re not worth it.

    For me, the oversaturation of naked, near-naked female bodies in the media, the constant references to the PM’s body, I’ve just had enough of body parts. (Or was it a certain menu?)

    • paul walter June 20, 2013 at 1:09 pm #

      I agree, Candice.
      The Opposition are trying to sell exclusion of Gillard on no better basis than the ludicrous basis that she is a woman. Reactive patriarchy short circuits future participation by women in social decision-making if they ruin Gillard.
      To anti Gillardists, I say this is totally apart from any issues relating to the PM’s competence and propose, that she is not necessarily the sole or even a significant reason for the government’s current poll difficulties. There are complicating factors relating to the constitution, if that’s the word, globalisation and change in general that have shaken culture and politics throughout the modern world.

      • Marilyn June 20, 2013 at 4:39 pm #

        But she is trying to exclude Abbott just because he is a man Paul, you don’t get it both ways.

        • paul walter June 20, 2013 at 6:20 pm #

          Marylin, its such a whimsical comment. Ever heard of Murdoch, Rinehart, etc etc? Come on, come back to terra firma.

      • Candice June 21, 2013 at 12:46 am #

        Obviously the gender issue is relevant. But It became very clear that there was something strange going on when the mainstream media constantly, and I mean constantly bagged the PM, her achievements, overlooking the hung parliament status, the level of negotiation involved, and the intricacies of coping with this role. It could have easily been Tony Abbott in 2010. However, it was only until the ‘misogyny speech’ when the media spent more time deliberating on ‘is misogyny the same as sexism’, his wife coming out to support him etc when globally the speech resonated, that I woke up to the scary issue that I was being manipulated. Media manipulation is a given but the level by mainstream media was baffling. It was only when there was global ‘approval’ that the position sort of changed to accommodate the idea of sexism in Australia. And listening to 3RRR dissect the speech in such an interesting way helped go, ‘hang on, I’m being fed quite a bit of crap here’.

        With the second speech, the media then focused on abortion, blue ties and being banished and suitable bits were cut and pasted to encourage that narrative. If you read the entire speech, in its entirety, it was vastly different message. Perhaps the performance of public speaking wasn’t as spontaneous as question time but it was quite socially relevant. And quite good I think. The words ‘banished from the *core* and *centre* of politics’ were conveniently omitted implying a deliberate gender divide. (Senator Madigan was also putting an abortion bill through the Senate reducing or cutting medicare rebates for gender selection abortions which I naively thought was a legimate concept until I looked up Senator Madigan’s biography.)

        Then this constant barrage of ‘leadership’ issues very much encouraged by the mainstream media. No actual facts just this constant drama of a fractured ALP so we have no focus on the Coalition’s policy other than STOP THE BOATS and getting us out of the mess the ALP has made by focusing on the deficit and not saying that if you look at the economy in terms of the GDP in comparison to the rest of the world we are doing well economically.

        The ALP’s leadership crisis constantly fanned by rumours and speculation rather than focusing on government achievements, visits to schools where sandwiches thrown were the focus and not why the PM was there.

        Across the board this bias is so overt. Newspapers, radio stations, television shows – very rarely is there balance. Does the constant bias against the PM, where the media rationalises this with ‘the people are just sick of her’ or ‘people aren’t interested in her narrative’ when they’re creating the narrative, mean that those running the media are in collusion with promoting the PM being divisive when it’s kind of like a circular narrative.

        I voted for Baileau when he promised to increase teachers’ pay and get rid of MYKI and he reneged (the teacher promise was dragged out for years) but he didn’t get the amount of vitriol that she does.

        My point, (finally) is the PM is being accused of being divisive but there’s something a lot more sinister going on in terms of the blatant bias. I think that’s why people are either for her or against her because you’re either buying into the bullshit or you’re not. Ok I’m simplifying A LOT but it’s late and I’m tired. But I’m just seething that when you rely on the ABC for some sort of balance, even they promote the constant speculation and are not focusing on the policies. I mean a constitutional crisis for god’s sake.

        There were two polls, after menugate, the Nielsen and the Morgan but the focus was on the one that framed the PM in the most negative light.

        I think it’s a boys’ club and the PM is opening up debate and it scares people. I wonder though can you be a woman and act like a man? The menu the alleged ‘mock-up’ (my arse) made me realise how infantile the Liberal Party leadership actually is.

        We don’t have intelligent debate in a mainstream landscape anymore, we’re fed stuff now and it’s all very kneejerk.

        (I feel I’ve explained some of my frustration and shattered naivete. I’m new to twitter and it has really helped me with this rage I feel at the way I was being manipulated. It’s like watching two narratives on separate bandwiths – mainstream and twitter. And while I didn’t agree with the cleavage convoy, in the broader scheme of things it’s wonderful to know that there are people helping each other, debating each other and learning off each other. It’s brilliant. Apologies for bad syntax, grammar, blah blah)

        • Forrest Gumpp (@ForrestGumpp) June 21, 2013 at 9:05 am #

          Candice,

          “Apologies for bad syntax, grammar, blah blah”

          How dare you apologise for such a well-written encapsulation of the ‘two-bandwidths’ experience!

          You observe:

          “… there’s something a lot more sinister
          going on in terms of the blatant bias.”

          I agree with you. Which is not to say that I understand this bias correctly myself, but I think your point worthy of amplification. Let me begin with an observation I made on another ‘Sheep’ thread:

          “I cannot forget the manner of the elevation to the role JG now holds. Not a whisper of it leaked to the public before the deed was done. We have since learned, courtesy of Cablegate, that an accredited co-ordinator of that palace coup, then-Senator Arbib, was a ‘protected US source’ and others on that record are referred to (chillingly) in the context of a reporting BACK in those cables with respect to the finding of an alternative to Rudd long before the coup.” See: http://noplaceforsheep.com/2013/06/13/men-who-hate-women-are-everybodys-problem/#comment-74867

          The coup occurred just a couple of months before the August 2010 Federal elections. Given the position Julia Gillard subsequently was to take with respect to Assange, and in the light of that seeming ‘reporting BACK’ of which the Australian public was to learn after the Cablegate dump of August 2010, it is my opinion that the principal driver of matters electoral at that time was the getting of an Australian executive government that would go along completely uncritically with US intentions with respect to Assange.

          It is interesting to note that throughout the entire period from the coup to the present I don’t think a peep has been heard from the Opposition with respect to Assange, despite the avalanche of disclosures that have since occurred in the US with respect to ‘secret law’, the surveillance state, and extra-judicial killings of its own citizens. So its acceptibility as an equally compliant source of a future Australian executive government, viewed from a US perspective, would have remained presumably equally untarnished.

          Does the MSM bias which Candice perceives mean that the main driver of matters electoral in Australia has changed preference as to the ‘team’ seen as best advancing its own interests on the world stage, or is it evidence of a trans-national CONTEST as to which entity will be in the immediate future ‘the power behind the throne’ with respect to the Australian polity? Or has an unanticipated spanner been somehow thrown into the Australian electoral workings that might require, for public consumption, a post-election explanation that, for example, media bias one way or another was largely responsible for an outcome in truth perhaps due to other causes?

          Candice, in my own small way, I try from time to time to combine the ‘two bandwidths’ of which you speak here on ‘Sheep’. http://noplaceforsheep.com/2013/03/23/the-happy-place/#comment-75032 But only if you have time to kill!

          “We don’t have intelligent debate in a mainstream landscape anymore, we’re fed stuff now and it’s all very kneejerk.” Yup.

          • Candice June 21, 2013 at 1:04 pm #

            Thanks for the link.I will read it.

            For me regarding the transfer of from Rudd to JG, that period is over. I am more concerned with the rubbish playing out right now. Having watched Tony Abbott over the yeasrs, the change from bully boy to invisible – I don’t buy it. The idea that there is even a tiny possibility that he will PM freaks me out – I don’t WANT to use the word *literally* but…

            Simon Crean’s nonspill after the Caucus decision going with JG was on the day JG made a speech apologising to women (and their children, the fathers, their families) for the practice of forced adoptions was a betrayal.

            The media hardly mentioned this and the recipients of that speech, after years of heartache, didn’t get that validation.

            So I am not a fan of Kevin Rudd’s and I never will be.

            I’m not going to go back and forth about this but thanks again for the link – it will help my path to hardcore cynicism. ;)

            I signed up to this site after reading Jennifer’s very powerful response to Clementine Ford. That piece affected me so viscerally. You’d have to have a very hard heart not to empathise but when I reread it, it was still as moving and on an intellectual level, the words, the structure, the flow – bloody good writing.

            And that’s largely why I’m here. I replied to this article because I felt a bit off about the convoy and wanted to give my perspective but then I also didn’t want to cause additional division by a side issue when the next three months are going to be really challenging to get through (in my view).

  15. paul walter June 20, 2013 at 12:45 pm #

    Just a thought. Women again are asking for an adult conversation from people like me over the issue of their bodies and sexual attraction and with that the desire to own or control the desired object.
    If there are two flawed responses, the first is going to come from men moronic enough to take this openness as a come-on, the sort of men who can’t understand women ( and themselves, in a sense) and wouldn’t have a clue how to relate to women in bed or anywhere else. Men so badly socialised themselves that they have only a sense of the sterility of the consolation of petty power, against the gift of person to person communication, in common endeavour.
    This is going to be the phenomena that bothers some other women, perhaps a bit shyer, or in a more sinister way, women brutalised into PTSD type mindset from brutalisations by low types in the past.
    Am sure feminists would further ask of me that I consider the socio-cultural phenomena of patriarchy on the defensive in a seemingly changing historical system, where the rituals for gender relations, connected to unmanageable fertility say, are now rendered problematic by biological science..
    They would possibly ask me how it is that many women still apparently have trouble identifying their own genitalia and its various purposes and the number of women who don’t discover till later in life what an “orgasm” is (also down to male ignorance), in the era of Late Patriarchy.
    They would point to patriarchy as a system of conditioning and suggest the fear ought to be put in context. It’s actually possibly one of the few positive points in MTR’s muddled take, say- she is not wrong to question the conditioning of women, even if the motives and thinking and actions seem unclear and counter-productive at times.
    But overall, I take it as an invitation to myself and other men to to consider how we,too may improve the way we approach women and conduct our dealing with them, as something collaborative, which means many of us (males) would have to brighten up our ideas, make the effort to reach put for the proffered olive branch and accept some thing much better than gender cold war as a default norm for hetero gender relations

    • hudsongodfrey June 20, 2013 at 2:36 pm #

      Somebody correct me if I’m wrong on this, but I looked at the twitter stream for the convoy yesterday and keeping in mind that this is twitter I didn’t see any lewd or leering male comments being made. Maybe there was a bit of censoring going on that I wasn’t aware of, but I’d like to hope our gender are a bit more mature than to mistake activism for titillation.

  16. Anonymous June 20, 2013 at 1:07 pm #

    Go get ‘em Commander Cleavage. I think we are in the era of sanctimoniousness par excellence and you have done them over-a boob job!!

    • stewarthase June 20, 2013 at 1:08 pm #

      The last comment wasn’t anonymous-it was me, Stewart Hase

      • Jennifer Wilson June 20, 2013 at 1:19 pm #

        Yo! Thank you Stewart!

      • Candice June 20, 2013 at 4:25 pm #

        I’m glad I had an opportunity to give a different perspective.

  17. Forrest Gumpp (@ForrestGumpp) June 20, 2013 at 1:10 pm #

    Just as a matter of interest, the original cleavage in question that elicited the unsolicited dress sense advice was that shown in a photograph of Julia Gillard taken in 2006, before she was even Deputy PM. Here is the tweet used to promote it:

    http://blogs.crikey.com.au/northern/files/2013/06/Grace-Collier-grab5.jpg

    A note below the image says:

    “** The photograph above is un-sourced and was found in an obscure corner of the internet. If you know of the source I’d be happy to give credit where it is due. *** Update re this – thanks to Bill Walters @4b5 he provides a link to the original photo from this November 2008 piece in The Financial Review. The photo is by Andrew Quilty, was taken in 2006 and accompanies a piece by Leo Shanahan.”

    This information courtesy:

    Not exactly chronologically honest use of an image in making a personal criticism of Julia Gillard in her role as Prime Ministe, is it?.

    • paul walter June 20, 2013 at 4:29 pm #

      God bless you, Margo.

    • Mieke Senior-Loncin June 20, 2013 at 7:32 pm #

      …. and can I say it AGAIN … not only was the photo taken when Kevin Rudd was P.M. but the photo was ‘photoshopped’ !! The character assassination of our first female Prime Minister has reached such lows , I really despair. For me ‘the menu’ saga really reached the pits, as a woman I feel violated and to think these grubs in the opposition are already celebrating thinking they are about to run /destroy this beautiful country of ours makes me angry , despairing and very sad.

      • doug quixote June 21, 2013 at 7:32 pm #

        Agree, a very obvious faked photograph. They would have had her topless if it would have been at all believable.

      • Forrest Gumpp (@ForrestGumpp) June 22, 2013 at 4:24 am #

        Looks like you were more ‘on the money’, Mieke, as to the date of the photo:

        I knew I had seen the content of the tweeted link somewhere, but had lost sight as to where. In either case, one taken before she was PM.

  18. gabrielle hewison June 20, 2013 at 1:43 pm #

    Whoever is generalising about feminists, please stop, some of us definitely do have a sense of humour!

    • Marilyn June 20, 2013 at 4:40 pm #

      Yeah and so do some men, many of them are my friends.

  19. wooster87 June 20, 2013 at 3:20 pm #

    Reblogged this on woosterlang87.

  20. Forrest Gumpp (@ForrestGumpp) June 20, 2013 at 5:08 pm #

    For the ‘Sheep’ record:

    Another blow struck against the ephemerality of Twitter. “They Huffed, and they puffed, but the house built of brick did not blow down.”

  21. shona June 20, 2013 at 7:23 pm #

    It met with my feminist approval. I thought it was awesome, and so is this follow up.

  22. Garpal Gumnut June 20, 2013 at 8:33 pm #

    Jennifer, as a patriarch with unashamed patriarchal opinions I note the absence of babies and infants from the montage. Nestle and the other peddlers of formula milk will be thanking the convoy for further distancing breasts from their biological function. Sexists and Feminists rule–OK seems to be the catchcry. Opponents united in the sexualisation or desexualisation of breasts at the expense of future generations, and an increase in the share price of predatory artificial Infant Formula Preparations on mothers with young.

    • helvityni June 20, 2013 at 8:56 pm #

      Speak for yourself, GG. Most women breastfeed their babies, and can still be proud of their cleavage, go and take your harping somewhere else. Are you feeling guilty about bottle feeding yours.

    • Garpal Gumnut June 20, 2013 at 9:17 pm #

      Should anyone doubt the low breastfeeding rates in Australia, may I recommend this site, given to me by Mrs Gumnut.

      https://www.breastfeeding.asn.au/bf-info/general-breastfeeding-information/breastfeeding-rates-australia

      The politicisation of breasts by Sexists and Feminists is interesting.

      The rapid lowering of breastfeeding mainly due to big Pharma and the influence of a sexualised culture at the expense of biological function is illustrated by this graph.

      https://www.breastfeeding.asn.au/sites/default/files/styles/large-centre/public/inline_images/BF%20first%2012%20months.jpg

      Which is not to say that one should not fight sexist portrayals of breasts as feminists. But perspective is needed. Feminism and Patriarchy are not exclusive.

      • hudsongodfrey June 20, 2013 at 10:06 pm #

        Sorry Gumnut, but while the graph shows a decline in rates of breastfeeding, I saw no evidence presented on that side much less anywhere else to support the claim you’re making about the reasons why.

        Nor do I see a strong link between these assertions and the way that Grace Collier chose to disparage Ms Gillard.

        When both sides are referencing the same social milieu and somebody wants to change the subject it usually just means that they looking for a diversion.

        • helvityni June 21, 2013 at 8:18 am #

          GG, most women have to work these days ,they’d love to breastfeed their babies longer, but it’s difficult because of working; babies go to childcare, they are looked after by grandmas, or maybe a husband…
          Women , most of them, do breastfeed as long as possible, they don’t give up because they worry about losing the shape of the breasts, they do because it becomes too difficult…maybe few..

          I breastfed my first one for a year, the others for six months, my boobs are still looking fine.

          Some women have to give up because health reasons.
          As a woman, you should try and understand your sisters a bit better and stop harping and looking for faults.

          • Cam June 25, 2013 at 12:02 am #

            And perhaps you should try to understand your sister better too, Helvityni? The lack of feeding babies hadn’t struck me until I read Gumnut’s post. I understand that the purpose of this “convoy” was not to highlighting breastfeeding, but I think it was frivolous of Destroy the Joint (NOT of No Place for Sheep) to pick this up in the first place and promote it as though it were some issue of great magnitude. A #Convoyoflactatingbreasts, on the other hand? Now there would be something that might change medieval attitudes. This is a function that is opposed far more frequently n mainstream society than is the showing of a woman’s cleavage.

  23. elearnkti June 21, 2013 at 1:08 am #

    Hmmmmm….seeing as how viral your light-hearted boob statement on behalf of Julia has gone around the world, and taking into account the ancientness and obscurity of the original Julia boob pic I can’t help wondering if our lovely Grace has actually done Julia a huge favour a la the famous menu? It certainly has done her no harm!

    • paul walter June 21, 2013 at 10:42 am #

      Maybe eventually, if the backlash to it continues to gain critical mass. What was significant about amazing Grace’s priggish attack was its viciousness and opportunism.

      • hudsongodfrey June 21, 2013 at 10:52 am #

        I thought what was amazing about it was that anyone gave her airtime! Maybe that’s just me?

  24. Amanda June 21, 2013 at 9:14 am #

    YOU rock my world Commander Cleavage. Yes, all the women I contacted. All the professional colleagues I have, who make a very nice living from their businesses… we had a great time doing our bit for the cause. I’m so glad to be a part of a movement that can speak so eloquently in pointing out ‘that’s your shit, not mine’. ;-)

    Congratulations on making such an impact. I like playing in this sand-pit. Everyone is really nice.

  25. Mindy June 21, 2013 at 1:06 pm #

    Fantastic work Commander.

  26. doug quixote June 22, 2013 at 8:34 am #

    Well done, women of Australia!

  27. Team Oyeniyi June 22, 2013 at 9:35 am #

    Brilliant! :)

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. So our Convoy wasn’t feminist? Bite me, baby. | No Place For Sheep | Colin's Folly - June 20, 2013

    […] So our Convoy wasn’t feminist? Bite me, baby. | No Place For Sheep. […]

  2. ‘Chill Girls’, ‘Chill Girls’ Everywhere | Avant Garde - June 21, 2013

    […] At least, in Australia: […]

  3. Feminism can be frivolous fun | Love versus Goliath : A Partner Visa Journey - June 22, 2013

    […] As for her opinion piece in the Guardian, I suggest you read it yourself, but only AFTER you have read Jennifer’s original fun, frivolous call for the convoy of cleavage that got international press coverage (other links are on Jen’s article, next link). Jennifer’s own response can be found at So our Convoy wasn’t feminist? Bite me, baby. […]

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