The Duggars, the Dionnes, and Child Exploitation

Child labor laws frequently come up in discussions of the Duggars. There are laws about how child actors are paid---laws intended to prevent their parents from exploiting them---but these laws do not apply to the children of reality TV shows. As I was thinking about this recently, the Dionne quintuplets came to mind, and I began to find some interesting parallels.The Dionne quintuplets---five identical baby girls---were born in 1934, in Ontario. The Great Depression affected more than just t … [Read more...]


Stay in touch with Love, Joy, Feminism on Facebook:

Why Public Speculation about the Duggar Children’s Sexuality Should Be Off Limits

When Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar signed on with TLC, they put their family before the public as a form of entertainment, and that is how many Americans seem to view the Duggars---as entertainment. I'm not surprised, then, to see people publicly speculating about the Duggar children's sexuality, but I am concerned. To be clear, I'm not talking about noting that the odds are one of the Duggar kids is going to be gay. I'm talking about public speculation about the sexual orientation of in … [Read more...]


Stay in touch with Love, Joy, Feminism on Facebook:

Please Don’t Deny Our Agency

I wrote the first draft of this post last summer. I wasn't satisfied with it as it was, so I set it aside and promptly forgot about it. A conversation with one of my sisters reminded me of the post, so I've pulled it out and dusted it up.In writing, last summer, about Josh Duggar's Ashley Madison account, I noted that: Josh and Anna didn’t have sex until they married, so they had no way of knowing whether they are sexually compatible. Further, Josh doesn’t believe in birth control and he and … [Read more...]


Stay in touch with Love, Joy, Feminism on Facebook:

A Case for Calling the Duggars ATI Rather Than Quiverfull

I wrote recently about some of the many definitional issues surrounding the term "quiverfull." If you have not already read that post, you can do so here. But in this post I want to go farther and argue that we need to be calling the Duggars ATI, not quiverfull, because their primary identification is with Bill Gothard's Advanced Training Institute and their quiverfull beliefs stem from that organization. More generally, I would argue that accuracy demands that we be clear about what leaders and … [Read more...]


Stay in touch with Love, Joy, Feminism on Facebook:

Josh Duggar Sent to Long-Term Treatment Center

Earlier today, the Duggars released a statement. Duggar Family StatementWe are so thankful for the outpouring of love, care and prayers for our family during this most difficult situation with Josh. As parents we are so deeply grieved by our son’s decisions and actions. His wrong choices have deeply hurt his precious wife and children and have negatively affected so many others. He has also brought great insult to the values and faith we hold dear. Yesterday Josh checked himself into a l … [Read more...]


Stay in touch with Love, Joy, Feminism on Facebook:

Not Every Courtship Looks Like the Duggars’

So, courtships. In a post I wrote recently on the Duggars, I mentioned that I "went through a controlling and manipulative courtship process and then lived in fear that my mother would find out I was having sex during my engagement." A reader objected, and this exchange followed:So, I think it's time for a public service announcement: Not all courtships look the same. It seems that the high-profile Duggar courtships have so shaped public perception of what a courtship within this … [Read more...]


Stay in touch with Love, Joy, Feminism on Facebook:

Josh was “Just Curious about Girls” and the Rank Hypocrisy of the Duggar Excuse Machine

This past Friday, Jill and Jessa repeated their parents' minimization of their brother's actions, complete with their insistence that Josh was "just curious about girls." And what really hit me, hearing that, was the hypocrisy of all of this.First, they're treating what Josh did as something normal for boys his age when molesting prepubescent girls as a teen is not normal sexual behavior for adolescents. But more than that, this is the family that only allows "side hugs" before marriage, and … [Read more...]


Stay in touch with Love, Joy, Feminism on Facebook: