Boobquake or Brainquake: What's Your Take?

Suzanne Murray

brains stain glass
Flickr photo by Rob Gale
In case you haven't felt it yet, there's a whole lotta quakin' going on today. Boobquake 2010 is here. According to Iran's leading cleric Hojatoleslam Kazem Sedhigi, cleavage causes earthquakes, which is why women there need to dress modestly. That sounds more sexist than scientific, and in response, Blag Hag blogger Jen McCreight has declared today Boobquake, which is a call for women everywhere to show off their cleavage to disprove Sedhigi's claim.

But some women wonder if we're really showing our support (pardon the pun) for the women of Islam by showing off our boobs today. That's where Brainquake comes in.

Brainquake (also taking place today) is a campaign that has been launched on Facebook in response to Boobquake.

The founders of Brainquake (Negar Mottahedeh and Golbarg Bashi) say they're saddened that McCreight, "a so-called feminist," and thousands of other women will be showing off "their tits" today.

They write:

Everyday women and young girls are forced to "show off cleavage" and more in order simply to be heard, to be seen, or to advance professionally. The web is already filled with images of naked women; the porn industry thrives online and many young girls are already vulnerable to predatory abuse. Violence against women and girls has a direct correlation to the sexualisation of women and girls. The extent of their sexualisation is evident in the hundreds of replies that pour into the “Boobquake” Facebook page where women write, apologetically: "I don’t have boobs, not fair" or "Hey, I only have a C cup… ” and “what about those of us who no longer have a cleavage? they sag too low."

World-wide, the sexualisation of women and younger girls, as young as pre-schoolers is a genuine problem and as mothers, feminists, and young women ourselves we believe that it is time to move away from this “bare it all” mentality.

Mottahedah and Bashi want to create a Brainquake instead. Instead of cleavage, they're calling for women to show off their resumes, CVs, honors, prizes, and accomplishments in honor of Iranian women. Post your abilities, your creativity, your ingenuity, and your smarts on blogs, on Wikipedia, on Twitter (use hashtag #brainquake), on Youtube, on Flickr, and all over Facebook.

Are you quaking today? Will you be be baring your brains, your boobs, or a little of both? Do you think the two quakes are at odds?

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