Boxing Day Best Books

Christmas is over and we are faced with the daunting prospect of filling those dead days leading up to New Year's Eve. Seeing as the Harpy team initially came together over a mutual love of books, we thought this seemed the perfect opportunity to share a selection of our favourite reads to eliminate your post-Christmas blues - (because, as we all know, a good book cures all).

Tips for Surviving the Patriarchy this Christmas

If you celebrate Christmas, or know that you’re going to be spending time with people who do, the festive season can seem like a daunting prospect. After weeks of awkward office parties, winter colds and the incessant buffeting of capitalism, you’re expected to leave the house in sub-arctic conditions to deal with family commitments. Whether you love the festive period or not, here are a few tips for staying sane this time of year

Lyra Belacqua: A Fictional Feminist

The recent publication of Philip Pullman’s ‘The Book of Dust’ brought with it, for me, a wave of nostalgia. Although Lyra Belacqua, the fictional heroine of my youth, features only as a baby, the novel still centres on her. I bought the book and read it within three days, desperate to re-engage with the alluring world of witches, daemons and armoured bears that so captivated me as a child.

Serial Killers and Sequins with Kiri Pritchard-Mclean

Pritchard-Mclean is unafraid to take on subjects that are tricky to navigate, be it trashing serial killers on her podcast, or finding the humour in her experience of volunteering with vulnerable children for her stand-up show Appropriate Adult. What’s brilliant about her is that she is always careful to ensure that her jokes are hitting the right target.

Coerced Sterilisation of First Nations Women

This October, two First Nations women filed a lawsuit against the Saskatoon Health Region in Canada for coerced sterilisation. This legal action, which claims the women were subject to systemic racism, follows a report released on the 22nd July 2017 by Dr. Yvonne Boyer and Dr. Judith Bartlett (both indigenous, of Metis descent) titled ‘Tubal Ligation in the Saskatoon Health Region: The Lived Experience of Aboriginal Women’.

See You Next Tuesday

I recently found myself in the peculiar position of trying to explain the undefined, yet pretty unanimously agreed upon, ranking of English swear words. From 'bloody hell', through 'crap', 'bollocks', 'wanker', all the way up to the infamous trio: 'shit', 'fuck' and 'cunt'.