[Read] ➵ Bad Feminist By Roxane Gay – Dailytradenews.co.uk

10 thoughts on “Bad Feminist

  1. says:

    This writer certainly has a LOT OF OPINIONS I mean

  2. says:

    2.5 starsEssays are one of my favourite literary genres and recently I ve read some amazing essay collections that have introduced me to new ideas and new writing styles so perhaps I put overly high expectations on Roxane Gay s essay collection Overall I d have to say I was disappointed but this might have a lot to do with my high expectations and perhaps that I am not this book s intended audience.The book started off quite well I liked the introduction in which Gay discusses what it means to be a bad feminist , an imperfect woman in a world in which women are expected to strive for unattainable perfection at all times I was able to relate to the sentiment a lot of women have of wanting to steer clear of the feminist title because of its often negative connotations, and also because of not understanding what the theory was truly about There are a few reasons why this book didn t do it for me 1 This book is too heavy on pop culture, which isn t really for me I m probably the wrong audience for this book because, after all I don t watch reality TV or any of the television shows Gay critiques, I m not interested in critiques of 50 Shades of Grey, Gone Girl or Twilight at all so it s not a surprise that I didn t enjoy those particular essays.2 I think I was confused by the main thesis of this book I expected all the essays to be on feminism, an alternative and uniting for our diverse, pluralistic society type of feminism This book was essentially a mixture of feminist essays, loosely feminist essays, essays on observations of race, class and pop culture critique, and some memoir style essays I m not even sure whether I can call the majority of them essays as they read like blog posts Although I ve learned a lot from reading people s blogs, a paperback perhaps isn t the right medium for this type of writing 3 I wasn t challenged enough I felt like Gay was trying to say, look I m an academic but I m still cool I appreciate and admire postmodernist feminist writers when they write in their own styles and don t feel the need to stick to conventional, dry academic writing styles, but this particular style just didn t engage me I read a lot of feminist literature and I guess what I always look for when I finish books like this are new realizations, new ideas and things I didn t know before, but this was simply a rehash of the last two years of pop culture discussion on Twitter 4 I was quite frankly uninterested in most of her essays Some of the essays ended too soon I had no idea where she was going with some of them and when I had finally figured it out, the essay had ended I can definitely see Gay s appeal, and the idea of her appeals to me as well This is a world in which women are constantly being silenced or being called histrionic, strident, etc for having an opinion or talking about controversial issues that make people uncomfortable so I always support women who have found their voice and are able to express themselves Gay does bring up lots of important topics, such as rape, racism,racial stereotypes, and abortion and these topics still need to be discussed and dealt with With all that being said, I did like quite a few of the essays The ones on race were decent Personally as a black woman in academia I enjoyed her discourse on the lack of black professors in academia and I have to say that it was not until graduate school that I ever had a black professor or even black classmates for that matter and that was a big deal for me.Gay is definitely a passionate and fearless writer, It s too bad I didn t enjoy her essays as much as I d expected to.

  3. says:

    I became aware of the I don t need feminism because meme several months ago You know those photos of young women holding up signs that read things like, I don t need feminism because I am capable of critical thinking, or I don t need feminism because I am not a delusional, disgusting, hypocritical man hater I shook my head, rolled my eyes, but still, these weird declarations chilled me How did a socio political movement founded on the principles of empowerment and equal rights become reduced to disgusting man haters Who are these ignorant young women who believe that feminism is a dirty word, something to be ashamed of, and how do they not understand what they owe to the generations before them and how much work there is yet to do For the purpose of this review, these questions are purely rhetorical The answers are there, they are complex, and the subject of many a dissertation, I am certain Which is probably why Tumblrs of anti feminist rants exist we stopped talking about what feminism means on an every day cultural level Feminism removed itself to the alabaster towers of academe, where concepts such as intersectionality, essentialism, Third Wave feminism, and patriarchal bargaining are no match for the mainstream, which is still shuddering over 80s shoulder pads as wide as an airplane hangar Well, thank God for Roxane Gay and her collection of intimate, generous, witty, and wholly accessible essays, Bad Feminist Her voice is the first I ve heard say, It s okay to be messy, to hold conflicting opinions, to do things that don t follow the party line, to question and be confused and STILL be a feminist As she says in the collection s closing line, I d rather be a bad feminist than no feminist at all First, a few things you should know about Roxane Gay she s a writer of novels, short stories, essays a professor of English a literary and cultural critic a native of Nebraska, the daughter of Haitian immigrants You will learn much about Roxane by reading her essays Some of what she shares will make you laugh Some of it will break your heart At some point, she will hit a nerve and piss you off though not when she writes about participating in Scrabble competitions she s adorable and so, so funny here She ruminates, chats, gossips, but rarely does Gay conclude Her essays hinge on the ellipses of what makes us human our vulnerabilities, our inconsistencies, our flaws Like each of us, she is a mess of contradictions hence, her admission, her claim, to being a bad feminist Don t look here for an historical treatise or a modern exposition of feminism This is not a textbook It is not a quick and dirty Feminism for Dummies It is one woman s thoughts many of these essays have been published previously, giving to a loose and rangy feeling to this collection on a wide range of contemporary American issues, political and cultural, with the basic theme of how feminism can confound and inspire Gay is a pop culture enthusiast and many of her essays examine contemporary race and gender relations through the filter of current cultural touchstones She is an unabashed consumer of what are pointlessly referred to as guilty pleasures I floundered a bit at times, feeling like I was smushed into a corner booth with a bunch of girlfriends at brunch, squirming and looking around the diner, unable to contribute to the conversation I haven t had television since 1993 and I don t read fan fic.Still, I soaked up what Gay had to say about the pop culture phenoms, even if I couldn t relate to the details She has this raw way of setting forth her opinion, often pointed, contrary, angry, or biting, but without a hint of snobbery You get that she gets it s opinion, not gospel She makes many points that resonated deeply with this reader In the essay Beyond the Measure of Men, Gay writes The label women s fiction is often used with such disdain I hate how women has become a slur I hate how some women writers twist themselves into knots to distance themselves from women s fiction, as if we have anything to be ashamed of as women who write what we want to write I don t care of my fiction is labeled as women s fiction I know what my writing is and what it isn t Someone else s arbitrary designation can t change that If readers discount certain topics as unworthy of their attention, then the failure is with the reader, not the writer To read narrowly and shallowly is to read from a place of ignorance, and women writers can t fix that ignorance, no matter what kind of books we write or how those books are marketed But in later essays, The Trouble with Prince Charming, The Solace of Preparing Fried Foods and Other Quaint Remembrances from 1960s Mississippi Thoughts on The Help and Surviving Django, she takes to task both the writers and readers of Fifty Shades of Gray, Twilight, and The Help and the film Django Unchained Gay draws the inclusive reading line at irresponsible writing of poor quality that celebrates the subjugation and abuse of women and at writing and film that craps all over the black American experience Gay also, naturally, discusses feminism from the perspective of a woman of color This opens worlds of opinion and perspective that this reader craves In light of this summer s controversy over domestic abuse, the NFL, and the punishment Janay Rice suffered at the hands of her husband and the media, as well as the killing of Michael Brown and the unrest in Ferguson, MO, I want to ask these young women of Tumblr, How s that I don t need feminism working out for you For I do not believe that feminism is the purview of women It belongs to all who advocate for social justice and human rights Gay makes the point again and again, in so many clever and self effacing ways, that we have isolated ourselves in our narrow categories Feminism is not spared her scorn it has largely excluded women of color, queer women, transgendered women, it hasn t dealt adequately with fat shaming, it doesn t recognize privilege, it offers up highly educated, wealthy, successful white women Marissa Mayer, Sheryl Sandburg as proof that things have changed But what is most striking about Bad Feminist is to hear a strong, wise, accomplished, vocal woman say, I m still trying to figure out what feminism means to me.

  4. says:

    Trite, trivial, narcissistic and vacuous beyond belief There s nothing thoughtful or interesting here the collection is one pretext after another for Gay to publicly exhibit her triviality and bad taste, forgive herself for it and demand applause Readers are inveigled into service as Gay s indulgent confessors The repeated routine is a Gay admits to loving some god awful schlock b Gay ponders her own courage in making this disclosure c Gay discovers consuming this schlock is really both personally virtuous and politically salient which are indistinguishable You suspect I exaggerate I understate On Reality Television Reality television often gives the impression that like gender, the whole of life is a performance The Los Angeles mansion or the tropical jungle or the fading rock star s tour bus is the stage, and what a stage it is brightly lit, lurid, encouraging us to see the garish spectacle of life at it s most artificially real I watch it all the faux highbrow fare of Bravo, the booze soaked MTV programming, the glossy competition shows on CBS, the sleazy exploitative fare of VH1 and even the off brand shows on lesser cable networks like Bad Girls Club and Sister Wives.No one shines luridly on this faux real stage than a woman Whether it s a modeling competition, a chance to compete for love, a weight loss show or a look into the lives of an aging magazine publisher s harem, women are often the brightly polished trophies in the display case of reality television The genre has developed a very successful formula for reducing women to an awkward series of stereotypes about low self esteem, marriage desperation, the inability to develop meaningful relationships with other women, and an obsession with an almost pornographic standard of beauty When it comes to reality television, women, often than not work very hard at performing the part of woman though their scripts are shamefully, shamefully warped.Reality Bites Back The Troubling Truth About Guilty Pleasure TV by Jennifer Pozner, is a very smart book that skewers reality television for its sexist, racist, and dehumanizing tactics in nearly every genre of reality television While I think of myself as media literate and a feminist, I don t know that any book I ve read this year has made me as uncomfortable as Reality Bites Back for its incisive examination of what I have often thought of as harmless entertainment programming I had to question what it says about me that I take so much pleasure in the drama of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills or the drunken, weave snatching antics of Rock of Love or Flavor of Love, that, I, like many others, take pleasure in what Pozner brands, the cathartic display of other people s humiliations These shows exist because audiences need reminders of the wrong turns our lives might take.On The Hunger Games I have found myself inexplicably drawn to these books, the complex world Collins has created, and the people she has placed in that world.I am not the kind of person who becomes so invested in a book or movie or television show that my interest becomes a hobby or intense obsession, one where I start to declare allegiances, or otherwise demonstrate a serious level of commitment to something fictional I had no hand in creating.Or, I wasn t that kind of person.Let me be clear Team Peeta I cannot even fathom how one could be on any other team Gale I can barely acknowledge him Peeta, on the other hand, is everything He frosts things and bakes bread and is unconditional and unwavering in his love and also he is very, very strong He can throw a sack of flour, is what I am saying Peeta is a place of solace and hope and he is a good kisser In December 2011, I didn t really know much about The Hunger Games Given my abiding interest in pop culture, I m not sure how I missed the books.I do most of my leisure reading at the gym I hate exercise Yes, it s good for you and weight loss and whatever, but normally, I work out and want to die I really do I knew I was in love with The Hunger Games when I did not want to get off the treadmill The book captivated me from the first page I wanted to keep walking so I could stay in the world Collins created More than that, The Hunger Games moved me There was so much at stake, so much drama and it was all so intriguing, so hypnotizing, so intense and dark I particularly appreciated what the books got right about strength and endurance, suffering and survival I found myself gasping and hissing and even bursting into tears, than once I looked insane but I did not care I was completely without shame.Does any investigation follow these displays of pleasure Any inquiry into these effects of consumer ecstasy, and the political, aesthetic or formal aspects of the works that provoke them Nothing Like a tween s book report, the shallow analysis is limited to descriptive characterization the one relation Gay has to these fictions is identification and fantasy Two centuries of political and aesthetic theorizing and literary criticism and nearly a century of the critique of mass culture have completely passed Gay by, and she remains in a critical infancy, celebrating her own every impulsive and naive reaction to the prods and stimulations of these processed snack entertainments These products Gay exhibits herself consuming serve her as occasions and instruments for the most solipsistic autocommuning and self exploration, tossing up an endless stream of clich s My love for these books, at its purest, is not really about Peeta or anything silly though, still I love that a young woman character is fierce and strong but human in ways I find believable, relatable Katniss was clearly a heroine, but a heroine with issues She intrigued me because she never seemed to know her own strength She wasn t blandly insecure the way girls are often forced to be in fiction She was brave but flawed She was a heroine, but she was also a girl who loved two boys and couldn t choose which boy she loved best She was not sure she was up to the task of leading a revolution but she did her best, even when she doubted herself.Throughout the books, Katniss endures the unendurable She is damaged and it shows At times, it might seem like her suffering is gratuitous but life often presents unendurable circumstances people manage to survive Only the details differ The Hunger Games trilogy is dark and brutal but in the end, the books also offer hope for a better world and a better people and for one woman, a better life for herself a life she can share with a man who understands her strength and doesn t expect her to compromise that strength, a man who can hold her weak places and love her through the darkest of her memories, the worst of her damage Of course I love these books The trilogy offers the kind of tempered hope everyone who survives something unendurable hungers for.This is all a kind of advertising doubling as promotion of personal brand Roxane Gay is developed as a vendible, celebrity attention magnet because of her consumption of these brands with a ostentatiously childish, naive appetite and trembling excitement that is repeatedly declared delightfully naughty in an innocent way In turn the brands are re energized and valorized by the spectacle of Gay s quirky celebrity , self regarding, narcissistic enjoyment.

  5. says:

    Feminists are just women who don t want to be treated like shit Well, Roxane Gay and I both have a favorite quote in common now and I ll also be calling myself a bad feminist because I would rather be a bad feminist than no feminist at all I went into this book not knowing much about the author I feel in love with her just with the intro I didn t really connect with some of the stories especially the first third but things picked up towards the middle of this book and laughed out loud during the bits about Twilight and Fifty Shades of Grey Overall I think it was hard to connect with some of the essays simply because I hadn t read the books or watch the movies that were mentioned.

  6. says:

    Well this was a huge disappointment I had such high hopes for Roxanne Gay A Haitian American cultural critic with a master s and a nonperfect body type Yes I was sure she would eviscerate popular culture and social injustice with an incisive eye and a unique perspective But nope These aren t really essays they re like unstructured wallowings, ramblings that just flit from thing to thing and never get anywhere or lead to any new thinking Yes, Gay takes stream of consciousness meanders through race and class and reality television and sexual violence and Twitter and respectability politics and Scrabble and The Hunger Games But there s no structure In one essay she ll talk about Twilight and then she ll talk about rape and then she ll talk about fairy tales, without ever returning or making any broad claims that tie it all together In another, she goes on and on about how bad Law Order SVU is for our society and perpetuating rape culture, and then she says, I ve watched every episode of this show multiple times I don t know what that says about me You don t Why not This is a book of personal essays Why don t you ponder that a little bit and try to draw some goddamn conclusions I never felt challenged by her ideas, and I don t think she challenged herself to actually dig into them, either In an essay about why the book is called Bad Feminist, she rails against the idea of an essential feminism, whereby all feminists can be grouped into one category that s defined by a fixed set of ideals and traits And then immediately after that she explains that she s a bad feminist because she likes the color pink and refuses to learn how cars work and wants to have a baby Did she not even re read her own work before sending it off to be put in a book I think part of the problem plagiarizing myself from my own comments is that, because of teh internetz, publishers are conflating popular on Twitter with is able to write well They re tossing off book deals to anyone with an impressive following, and not pushing writers to do harder work than they ve already done online As if having a talent for snappy one liners is not the exact goddamn opposite of being good at thinking deeply about an idea and drawing surprising and interesting conclusions from it.On a personal note, another issue has to be that I read this so shortly after the fall down stunning Empathy Exams Jamison s dazzling pieces or really any essays done well read like tightly constructed meditations, beginning middle end investigations, pursuing an attempt to solve a quandary or at least interrogating an idea and shaking loose some brilliance from it But Gay s essays are all basically unsophisticated blog posts They never got anywhere and just left me frustrated.In conclusion there are some really fantastic essay collections being published today This is definitely not one of em.

  7. says:

    It s not very often that a book causes me to weep uncontrollably in public, but this book did Roxane Gay moved me in a way that I haven t been moved in quite a while with this collection of essays, ostensibly umbrella d under the topic of feminism In reality, only about a third of the essays directly address feminism Gay also addresses race, culture, and Scrabble competitions It s equal parts commentary, memoir, and critical analysis It s pretty phenomenal I don t even know where to begin when it comes to expressing how much I love the way this woman writes I could read her all day, every day Even the essays whose theses I disagreed with, I loved the way they were written Even the essays whose topics were beyond my realm of personal experience, I loved the way they were written Then there s the fact that I absolutely fucking love her take on feminism in the 21st century I don t know if there s ever really been a time that feminism didn t have some form of dirty word connotations associate with it, but we re currently living in a time where the Women Against Feminism Tumblr portrays feminism as a philosophy meant to raise women up at the expense of men The girls on that blog really need to spend some time actually reading feminist theory instead of just regurgitating what Rush Limbaugh tells them feminism is about because most of their claims so wildly miss the point, but that s a rant for another day The problem with feminism today is that there s no coherent central focus other than the obvious equality for women There s different schools of thought under the umbrella of feminism that espouse different points of view, and many of those schools are rooted in the cross sectional experience of being a feminist and Something Else, whether it s a black woman, a lesbian woman, or a Jewish woman Unfortunately, the voices that rise above the others and are seen as representative of all feminists are often white middle class women, and those feminists don t represent Roxane Gay s feminism The ways that she expresses her feminism clash with what she calls Capital F Feminism in a way that s always made her feel like a bad feminist, and that is where much of this collection springs from She writes about the myriad aspects of her personal identity, combining race, gender, sexuality, life as an academic I don t necessarily identify or agree with all of her points, but when she hits a nerve, she hits it HARD The series of essays on sexual violence particularly What We Hunger For in which she talks about strength in women and her own experience as a victim of rape were phenomenally moving The conversations that our country has had about the topic of rape in the last couple of years have been sickening and heartbreaking I wish the piece The Careless Language of Sexual Violence had been included as an afterword to her novel An Untamed State because it forced me to completely re think the way I thought about that novel and its representations of violence and sexual assault Those pieces reduced me to a blubbering mess, sobbing on the terrace at my office building during my lunch break Roxane Gay is also the first person to make me want to read The Hunger Games series and the first person to make me feel okay for not liking Caitlin Moran all that much she s alright, but doesn t seem to understand that her experience is not necessarily representative of all women Some of the essays are a little overly academic in tone and that my turn off some readers, but this is a phenomenal piece of work It s great to be reminded that feminism shouldn t be about women doing certain things careers over domesticity, blowing off patriarchal standards of beauty by not shaving or wearing makeup , but about enabling women to make their own damn decisions about those things I just wish those things weren t widely seen as contradictory to feminism, or bad feminism.

  8. says:

    I ve been on the look out to read feminist books, but most of the ones I tried reading before focus heavily on either privileged males and or sexual assaults, which then leads to me feeling terrified to leave my homeHowever, Bad Feminist focuses on Gay s opinions about misogyny, institutional sexism that consistently places women at a disadvantage, the inequity in pay, the cult of beauty and thinness, the repeated attacks on reproductive freedom, violence against women, and on and on And I felt strongly included Roxane Gay s wit is so sharp and on point, I couldn t help but be instantly swept away into her writing voice Her essays reached me, made me feel like I was a part of something I am a bad feminist I would rather be a bad feminist than no feminist at all In Bad Feminist, Gay takes us through the journey of her evolution as a woman of color while also taking readers on a ride through culture of the last few years and commenting on the state of feminism today The portrait that emerges is not only one of an incredibly insightful woman continually growing to understand herself and our society, but also one of our culture.There were so many great essays that it was simply too tempting not to share my favorites quotes from each and every one of them Feel Me See Me Hear Me Reach Me So many of us are reaching out, hoping someone out there will grab our hands and remind us we are not as alone as we fear Exactly how reading this collection felt like I learned about how ignorant I am I am still working to correct this Peculiar Benefits Privilege is a right or immunity granted as a peculiar benefit, advantage, or favor There is racial privilege, gender and identity privilege, heterosexual privilege, economic privilege, able bodied privilege, educational privilege, religious privilege, and the list goes on and on At some point, you have to surrender to the kinds of privilege you hold Nearly everyone, particularly in the developed world, has something someone else doesn t, something someone else yearns for Going into these essays, it was very important for me to get educated about certain kinds of privileges, and Roxane Gay did so in the most informative way You could, however, use that privilege for the greater good to try to level the playing field for everyone, to work for social justice, to bring attention to how those without certain privileges are disenfranchised We ve seen what the hoarding of privilege has done, and the results are shameful How to Be Friends with Another Woman When I read the table of contents, I was so damn excited to get to this essay And it was just as great as I had hoped it be Abandon the cultural myth that all female friendships must be bitchy, toxic, or competitive This myth is like heels and purses pretty but designed to SLOW women down If you feel like it s hard to be friends with women, consider that maybe women aren t the problem Maybe it s just you Want nothing but the best for your friends because when your friends are happy and successful, it s probably going to be easier for you to be happy My mother s favorite saying is Qui se ressemble s assemble Whenever she didn t approve of who I was spending time with, she d say this ominously It means, essentially, you are whom you surround yourself with This saying, thanks to my mom also educating me about this when I way younger, turned out to be one of my favorite sayings too I Once Was Miss America Nostalgia is powerful It is natural, human, to long for the past, particularly when we can remember our histories as better than they were Life happens faster than I can comprehend I am nearly forty, but my love of Sweet Valley remains strong and immediate When I read the books now, I know I m reading garbage, but I remember what it was like to spend my afternoons in Sweet Valley, hanging out with the Wakefield twins and Enid Rollins and Lila Fowler and Bruce Patman and Todd Wilkins and Winston Egbert The nostalgia I feel for these books and these people makes my chest ache I m so glad that Gay captured this feeling because quite a few books make me feel the same Books are often far than just books And since we re on the topic, Roxane gave so many great recommendations throughout this collection I have now, thanks to her, promptly added Dare Me, by Megan Abbott Battleborn, by Claire Vaye Watkins She made them sound so compelling and intricate Not Here to Make Friends My memory of men is never lit up and illuminated like my memory of women MARGUERITE DURAS, The LoverThis essay talked about unlikable women in literature and what likability exactly means And it completely shifted my worldview.Gay features a phenomenal quote from a Publishers Weekly interview with Claire Messud about her novel The Woman Upstairs If you re reading to find friends, you re in deep trouble We read to find life, in all its possibilities The relevant question isn t Is this a potential friend for me but Is this character alive And in her own brilliants words, Roxane adds but the ongoing question of character likability leaves the impression that what we re looking for in fiction is an ideal world where people behave in ideal ways The question suggests that characters should be reflections not of us, but of our better selves She has incredible last sentences Also, I quickly want to mention that throughout this collection I could actually feel Roxane s passion for literature and storytelling I could feel how reading really is her first love, as she mentioned, through her great book recommendations Reaching for Catharsis Getting Fat Right or Wrong and Diana Spechler s Skinny I still cannot stop thinking about this essay I don t think I know any woman who doesn t hate herself and her body at least a little bit Bodily obsession is, perhaps, a human condition because of its inescapability It was so deeply personal and detailed that I was moved than once And it was, ultimately, honest and breathtakingly alive Sometimes, a bold, sort of callous person will ask me how I got so fat They want to know the why You re so smart, they say, as if stupidity is the only explanation for obesity And of course, there s that bit about having such a pretty face, what a shame it is to waste it I never know what to tell these people There is the truth, certainly This thing happened and then this other thing happened and it was terrible and I knew I didn t want either of those things to happen again and eating felt safe French fries are delicious and I m naturally lazy too so that didn t help I never know what I m supposed to say, so I mostly say nothing I don t share my catharsis with these inquisitors A Tale of Three Coming Out Stories This piece talked about people with high public profiles and the boundaries they do don t receive This is, in part, a matter of privacy What information do we have the right to keep to ourselves What boundaries are we allowed to maintain in our personal lives What do we have a right to know about the lives of others When do we have a right to breach the boundaries others have set for themselves People with high public profiles are allowed very few boundaries In exchange for the erosion of privacy, they receive fame and or fortune and or power Is this a fair price Are famous people aware of how they are sacrificing privacy when they ascend to a position of cultural prominence We tend to forget that culturally prominent figures are as sacred to those they love as the people closest to us We tend to forget that they are flesh and blood We assume that as they rise to prominence, they shed their inalienable rights We do this without question Heterosexuals take the privacy of their sexuality for granted They can date, marry, and love whom they choose without needing to disclose much of anything If they do choose to disclose, there are rarely negative consequences The world we live in is not as progressive as we need it to be For every step forward, there is some asshole shoving progress back There are injustices great and small, and even if we can only fight the small ones, at least we are fighting The Trouble with Prince Charming, or He Who Trespassed Against Us As the title might suggest, this essay confronts the trouble with prince charming in fairy tales and literature I enjoy fairy tales because I need to believe, despite my cynicism, that there is a happy ending for everyone, especially me The older I get, though, the I realize how fairy tales demand a great deal from the woman The man in most fairy tales, Prince Charming in all his iterations, really isn t that interesting In most fairy tales, he is blandly attractive and rarely seems to demonstrate much personality, taste, or intelligence We re supposed to believe this is totally fine because he is Prince Charming His charm is supposedly enough Then she offers a detailed view on the Disney princes, and I was living for this In The Little Mermaid, Prince Eric has a great woman right in front of him but is so obsessed with this pretty voice he once heard he can t appreciate what he has In Snow White, the prince doesn t even find Snow White until she is comatose, and he is so lacking in imagination he simply falls in love with her seemingly lifeless body In Beauty and the Beast, Belle is given away by her father to the Beast himself, and then must endure the attentions of a man who essentially views her as chattel Only through sacrificing herself, and loving a beast of a man, can she finally learn that he is, in fact, a handsome prince The woman in the fairy tale is generally the one who pays the price This seems to be the nature of sacrifice Holding Out for a Hero There s a great deal about our culture that is aspirational from how we educate ourselves, to the cars we drive, to where we work and live and socialize We want to be the best We want the best of everything All too often, we are aware of the gaping distance between who we are and whom we aspire to be and we desperately try to close that distance So much YES to the last sentence In theory, justice should be simple Justice should be blind You are innocent until proven guilty You have the right to remain silent You have the right to an attorney You have the right to be judged by a jury of your peers The principles on which our justice system was founded clearly outline how our judicial system should function.Few things work in practice as well as they do in theory Justice is anything but blind All too often, the people who most need justice benefit the least The statistics about who is incarcerated and how incarceration affects their future prospects are bleak Trayvon Martin is neither the first nor the last young black man who will be murdered because of the color of his skin If there is such a thing as justice for a young man whose life was taken too soon, I hope justice comes from all of us learning from what happened I hope we can rise to the occasion of greatness, where greatness is nothing than trying to overcome our lesser selves by seeing a young man like Trayvon Martin for what he is a young man, a boy without a cape, one who couldn t even walk home from the store unharmed, let alone fly One of the most important essays Bad Feminist Take Two I am supposed to be a good feminist who is having it all, doing it all Really, though, I m a woman in her thirties struggling to accept herself and her credit score For so long I told myself I was not this woman utterly human and flawed I worked overtime to be anything but this woman, and it was exhausting and unsustainable and even harder than simply embracing who I am Simply put, Bad Feminist completely captivated me.I enjoyed the fact that as I read this collection, I didn t feel like I was really reading I felt like Roxane Gay was talking and discussing with me Her voice is distinct throughout this collection And while some essays left a profound mark on me, others were simply entertaining to read in the moment There is, indeed, something to admire in each piece.And it all comes down to this Roxane Gay brings intelligence, gravitas, and heart to her words, so that even reading about her winning tournaments in competitive Scrabble read like the most fascinating piece of writing She s talented and powerful beyond measure in my eyes.4.5 5 stars Note I m an Affiliate If you re interested in buying Bad Feminist, just click on the image below to go through my link I ll make a small commission Support creators you love Buy a Coffee for nat bookspoils with Ko fi.com bookspoils

  9. says:

    I feel like I m taking crazy pills when people talk about Roxane Gay I went into this hoping to love this book, hoping it would be revelatory as promised or that I would be better off for having read it But it was a slog to get through and I can t recommend it to anyone who s spent than a cursory 5 minutes on the internet reading cultural criticism It s not just that she doesn t offer nuanced critique, or that she contradicts herself it s that these essays are horrible written They re terribly, sloppily constructed Fully half of the essays in this collection have my scribble in the margin What the hell is her thesis Where is she going with this There s no POINT to it all, except to point out that racism and sexism still exist and are reflected and amplified by our pop culture artifacts No duh I guess if all she did was rehash these issues in a coherent, thoughtful and elegant way, that would be enough I can recommend a beautiful piece of writing, even when it adds nothing new to the discussion There s something to be said for elegant writing in its own right But this book doesn t offer such writing These read like the blog pieces they originally were.That s really the heart of the matter for me I could accept sloppy composition, sloppy thinking, from hastily assembled blog posts But this is a published essay collection This was her big spotlighted debut Considering the hype which preceded its publication, this book should represent the very best criticism she can muster the most crystallized opinions, the most thoughtfully unfolded trains of thought If this meandering, pointless collection of dressed up Tumblr posts is the best criticism she can offer to a publisher, it s sorely disappointing.EDIT Folks can take umbrage at the last third of this essay though I think if you re not ready to talk about your own history of sexual violence, you re not obligated to but you can t mention that PRECISELY following an essay calling out other female writers for their failure to write explictly about their histories of sexual violence , but there is no denying the rest of this review is spot freaking on 2 Two years later, I m knocking this book down to one star, because it still makes me angry to see it on bookshelves I threw away my copy This book represents the worst that 21st century criticism has to offer thoughtless, incurious, lazy, and ultimately devoid of rigor.

  10. says:

    An inconsistent collection of ultimately shallow essays Gay is funny, personable, thoughtful, and obviously intellectual but her essays don t delve deep enough into her subjects Further, I realize that essays can explore topics without coming to any definitive answers or conclusions, but I want than an introduction to a problem I want long and winding explorations with a surfeit of allusions, copious amounts of pattern hunting from history, deeper thoughts on why something is the way Gay says it is A 3 or 4 page essay on the women s fiction debacle Impossible Irresponsible Gay s Scrabble essay seemed to pay homage to David Foster Wallace with the use of footnotes, but was without Wallace s raucous humor or almost archaeological excavation of a topic The author explores contradictions within herself, feminism, and society without even trying to satisfactorily explain or unravel them I hold James Baldwin, Virginia Woolf, DFW, and Susan Sontag up as the ultimate essayists, so perhaps the problem is one of expectation Gay basically just shines a flashlight at an issue and says see that as opposed to dissecting things under the steady light of an operating room.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Bad Feminist summary pdf Bad Feminist , summary chapter 2 Bad Feminist , sparknotes Bad Feminist , Bad Feminist 6e63b44 Pink Is My Favorite Color I Used To Say My Favorite Color Was Black To Be Cool, But It Is Pink All Shades Of Pink If I Have An Accessory, It Is Probably Pink I Read Vogue, And I M Not Doing It Ironically, Though It Might Seem That Way I Once Live Tweeted The September IssueIn These Funny And Insightful Essays, Roxane Gay Takes Us Through The Journey Of Her Evolution As A Woman Of Color While Also Taking Readers On A Ride Through Culture Of The Last Few Years And Commenting On The State Of Feminism Today The Portrait That Emerges Is Not Only One Of An Incredibly Insightful Woman Continually Growing To Understand Herself And Our Society, But Also One Of Our CultureBad Feminist Is A Sharp, Funny, And Spot On Look At The Ways In Which The Culture We Consume Becomes Who We Are, And An Inspiring Call To Arms Of All The Ways We Still Need To Do Better

  • Paperback
  • 320 pages
  • Bad Feminist
  • Roxane Gay
  • English
  • 10 June 2017
  • 9780062282712

About the Author: Roxane Gay

Roxane Gay s writing has appeared in Best American Short Stories 2012, Best Sex Writing 2012, Oxford American, American Short Fiction, West Branch, Virginia Quarterly Review, NOON, The New York Times Book Review, Bookforum, The Los Angeles Times, The Nation, The Rumpus, Salon, The Wall Street Journal s Speakeasy culture blog, and many others She is the co editor of PANK and essays editor for The