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Old 02-04-2005, 01:43 PM   #28
Dojo: Sand Drift Aikikai, Cocoa Florida
Location: Melbourne, Florida
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 824
Re: Women and Everybody Else in Aikido

Emily Dolan Gordon wrote:

Should I be disappointed, that it takes a prominent male teacher to bring the subject of Invisible Women up?

I am.
I am, too. But not surprised as it took Nixon to go to China. In other words if a liberal went to China they would have labled him a 'communist', but not a diehard conservative like Nixon.

The same thing, here. If a woman spoke up on these boards with the same post, she either would have been ignored at best or her opinion derided as "reactionary".

Just look at the "warm" reception of the announcement of the Women In Aikido video got. A couple of jerks got on without seeing the video and decided that it wasn't needed or called for. One other man watched it and gave it a very lukewarm review. It was an excellent video, but many seemed to have ignored it. Put a man's name behind it and voila! instant agreement. (sorry for my sarcasm folks).

What the hell are we doing, as female budoka?
What more can we do?
Other than train and continue to train and continue to break down barriers by our mere presence. Other than that, I started my bulletin board (link in my sig) Women in Aikido. After about 6 months, I was going to delete it do to inactivity then women started to join thanking me for starting this board. Now, we have over 125 members.

What helps us survive and evolve?
By never giving up no matter what is said. It also means speaking up when required, even when doing so would not be popular. Also, just being there when someone (male or female) needs the support helps a lot.

How can instructors cultivate female budoka, objectively?
By being objective and subjective to their individual needs. I'm afraid by focusing training on someone's feminity or gender will just turn into patronizing mush such as being afraid to throw me because I'm female or only teaching me the "soft-way" of doing techniques.

I don't mind not being "marketed" that way lies ruin, but where is the common-sense commentary? I mean, besides "The Mirror" here on Aikiweb (waves to Janet et al).
Come check out Women in Aikido (click the link below.)

Anne Marie Giri
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