Twitter & My Intro to Women’s Studies Paper

I’m going to preface this by saying that I’m a bit of a Twitter nut.

One of my favorite things about Twitter is that many of my favorite authors use it. I love getting updates about new books and other things they’re doing with their lives. I also like to reply to their tweets. Usually it’s to no avail, as I’m sure their lives are immensely busy, but every so often I get something back.

Today, Jennifer Weiner, author of such books as In Her Shoes, Good in Bed, and many others, gave the Keynote Address at the BEA Bloggers Conference. I was extremely excited when she tweeted a video of her speech. I sat down to watch it, and was instantly captivated. I tweeted the following:

@caitlizgrace : 3 minutes into the vid of ’s BEA address and i already adore her. ?

A few minutes later, she tweeted back:

@jenniferweiner : You okay with cussing and sharing dessert? RT : 3 minutes into JW’s BEA address and i already adore her. ?

Holy crap.

Now, I’m no stranger to the awesomeness of Twitter — I was recently followed by one of my favorite up-and-coming bands, Kingsfoil. (If you haven’t heard their stuff, you should probably check it out.) I’ve also been tweeted by Jen Weiner before; she was holding a contest for her Twitter followers and she gave me suggestions of how to incorporate my Kindle into the contest.

But this short Twitter conversation had me doing a little dance around my bedroom.

Okay, back to the original reason I wanted to write this…

Something that Jen Weiner has been quite vocal about is the separation of “chick lit” and “men’s lit.” She is constantly looped into the “chick lit” category, and therefore, is not as well-respected in the literary world, especially, as she said in her speech, by the NYT. Here are a couple of quotes that really hit me…

Twitter is a place where Jodi Picoult and I can tell the world that the New York Times doesn’t cover popular fiction by women with the same regularity or regard with which it considers popular books by men. (


As anyone who’s taken a women’s studies class will tell you, as long as there’s a woman writing about her own life, there’s someone – sometimes a man, sometimes another woman — to tell her that what she’s written is unworthy, unimportant, beneath notice, that it’s not real literature and not worth taking seriously. (

I won’t go into everything that she addressed, but I will say this: she gave me the topic for my Intro to Women’s Studies final paper. I will be looking at the concept of “chick lit” vs “men’s lit” and figuring out why such categories even need to exist. Yes, I understand that some books are more geared toward women and others toward men, but why does society feel the need to separate men and women? And what about authors who aren’t necessarily in either of these categories? (For example, John Green, who writes books that both my seventeen year old brother and I enjoy.)

I can’t wait to research this topic… I’m actually hoping that maybe I can find a way to loop it in with my capstone (see my first 50 Shades of Grey post).

One more Jen Weiner quote:

No matter what you blog about, there’s going to be someone there to try to slap you down, to tell you it’s unworthy, undignified, silly and girlie.

Ignore them. (



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