E.J. Graff

E.J. Graff writes on social-justice and human-rights issues, particularly discrimination and violence against women and children; marriage and family policy; and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender lives. She is a resident scholar at the Brandeis Women's Studies Research Center and the author of What Is Marriage For? The Strange Social History of Our Most Intimate Institution (Beacon Press, 1999, 2004).

Recent Articles

Barney Frank Goes Home

The idea that Massachusetts could lose Barney Frank in our congressional delegation never crossed my mind before yesterday, but I'm told that he's been signalling he's ready to go for a couple of years now. The New York Times ' Abby Goodnough had a nice item about his departure announcement, which includes a great kicker about his famous combativeness with reporters and, well, everyone: Mr. Frank’s famous petulance was on display at times on Monday; he dismissed what he called a “gotcha” question from a reporter about his personal investments and, upon learning she worked for Fox News, said, “Quelle surprise.” He also said he looked forward to leaving office so that “I don’t even have to pretend to try to be nice to people I don’t like,” leading another reporter to ask, “Have you ever?” “Some of you may not think I’ve been good at it,” Mr. Frank said. “But I’ve been trying.” I have to say, I am really looking forward to the "Barney Frank greatest hits"—the quips, the tongue-lashings,...

Advertising for Marriage

Rex Wockner, longtime gay reporter, says this is the best marriage equality TV spot he has ever seen. The LGBT newsweekly The Advocate agrees . I haven't seen as many as they have, but it's pretty great. My only thought: it could be even better if there's another one just like it, in which the principal figure is a woman. What do you think?

Women in the Boardroom

This morning, Women's E-News reports that since 2003, when Norway required corporate boards to be made up of at least 40 percent women, "plenty of other European countries have followed : Spain: 40 percent by 2015 for market-listed companies or those with more than 250 employees. France: 40 percent by 2017 for market-listed companies or those with more than 500 employees. The Netherlands: 30 percent by 2016 for market-listed companies or those with more than 250 employees. Iceland: 40 percent by 2013 for companies with more than 50 employees. Italy: 30 percent by 2015 for market-listed companies. Belgium: 30 percent by 2016 for big market-listed companies and by 2019 for small- and medium-sized companies." The writer, Nele Feldman, then asks why this hasn't happened yet in Germany, "where women make up 15 percent of the board of directors ." I know what you're thinking: The U.S. must not need such a law, since women already make up more than ... umm... okay, just kidding. According to...

13 Ways of Looking at a Turkey

Okay, maybe not thirteen ways. I didn't count. But we're not really working today, right—day before a holiday and all? So enjoy this .

More Thoughts on Football

I should have posted this poem in October. But since I'm on a football jag now, here's a famous poem about what young men are channeling when they play football. Written in 1964, it includes some offensive language from its era. But I love this poem and have known it by heart for decades. Autumn Begins in Martin's Ferry, Ohio -- James Wright In the Shreve High football stadium, I think of Polacks nursing long beers in Tiltonsville, And gray faces of Negroes in the blast furnace at Benwood, And the ruptured night watchman of Wheeling Steel, Dreaming of heroes. All the proud fathers are ashamed to go home. Their women cluck like starved pullets, Dying for love. Therefore, Their sons grow suicidally beautiful At the beginning of October, And gallop terribly against each other's bodies.

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