Posts Tagged book review

Feministing Readz: Tales of Two Cities

Editor’s Note: This is a guest post by Sheila Bapat. 

Economist Thomas Piketty’s Capital in the 21st Century emerged as the most prominent work addressing wealth inequality and the problems of capitalism this year. Capital provides data to demonstrate that the chasmic wealth inequality of today is unprecedented and is poised to only grow worse.

Piketty’s book, and works like it, satisfy the need for hard evidence of the problem of wealth inequality. They also satisfy the left (and by left I mean analytical) side of our brains. And that’s important — the notoriety of Piketty’s work positions the book to help influence dialogue about the problem of inequality as well as generate broader public awareness. A dispassionate work like ...

Editor’s Note: This is a guest post by Sheila Bapat. 

Economist Thomas Piketty’s Capital in the 21st Century emerged as the most prominent work addressing wealth inequality and the problems of capitalism this year. Capital provides ...

Feministing Readz: Getting inside patriarchy’s head with Natsuo Kirino’s Out

What if The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo were about ordinary people rather than Jason Bourne-like superwomen and counter-conspirators? Oh, and, if it were actually written by a woman?

Natsuo Kirino answered the question long before The Millennium Trilogy was even drafted. Her 1997 book Out is by no means new, but for a first-time reader it still leaps from the page with an arresting freshness. The issues she addresses in the novel are both depressingly urgent and familiar, and Kirino is a masterful psychoanalyst of her characters’ inner lives.

Out begins as the story of four women who share the night shift at a factory in suburban Tokyo making boxed lunches. When one of them kills her abusive husband, she avails ...

What if The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo were about ordinary people rather than Jason Bourne-like superwomen and counter-conspirators? Oh, and, if it were actually written by a woman?

Natsuo Kirino answered the question long before The ...

Feministing Readz: Bad Feminist gives us permission to be complicated with our feminism

When Roxane Gay’s essay “Bad Feminist” first appeared in the September 2012 issue of the Virginia Quarterly Review (VQR), we were sitting at brunch somewhere in Brooklyn losing our mind over the coming zombie apocalypse and the fallout of the Citizens United decision and its very visible impact on electoral politics, sipping mimosas and occasionally nodding our heads to the break beat of a Kanye song. Kanye brought back the boom bap with My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, mixed with all kinds of problematic lyrics. Autumnal equinox brought about a cool gentle breeze after a summer of ridiculous rhetoric from GOP–some dude tried to make a distinction between legitimate rape and rape; a Republican candidate for VP claimed that rape is ...

When Roxane Gay’s essay “Bad Feminist” first appeared in the September 2012 issue of the Virginia Quarterly Review (VQR), we were sitting at brunch somewhere in Brooklyn losing our mind over the coming zombie apocalypse and ...

Feministing Readz: Dorothea Lasky’s Rome

These days, it seems like wound talk is everywhere. Throughout the blogosphere, feminist writers have explosively reopened public discussions of how to articulate and theorize their pain. In April, Leslie Jamison sketched an expansive topography of wounded women of poetry and prose, challenging the frequent dismissal of female pain as condescendingly lumped into the genre of “confessional.”

Though Jamison’s essay was a viral sensation upon its release, she is not the first writer to grapple publicly with the problem of writing woundedness and womanhood. As early as the 1970s, Toi Derricotte confronted the belittlement of her candid poems on black identity as a reaction against “what is real and what people do not want to hear.” Beginning with Emily Dickinson, spanning ...

These days, it seems like wound talk is everywhere. Throughout the blogosphere, feminist writers have explosively reopened public discussions of how to articulate and theorize their pain. In April, Leslie Jamison sketched an expansive topography of wounded ...

Not Oprah’s Book Club: Sex Itself

Although gender expression has flourished in the wake of feminist, queer, and trans interventions, our society as a whole still claims the primacy of “biological sex.” From the fetishization of trans peoples’ genitals and tales of “transition” (Carmen Carrera and Laverne Cox took down Katie Couric on this point), to constant mis-gendering in mainstream media (as with the treatment of Janet Mock and Chelsea Manning), the policing of trans individuals makes evident a continuing reliance on “biological sex” as the ultimate determinant of identity.

In Sex Itself: The Search for Male and Female in the Human Genome (University of Chicago Press, $45), Sarah S. Richardson examines the biological grounding of sex at its apparent ...

Although gender expression has flourished in the wake of feminist, queer, and trans interventions, our society as a whole still claims the primacy of “biological sex.” From the fetishization of trans peoples’ genitals and tales of ...