Weekend Read: Bad Feminist by Roxane Gay in the VQR

Roxane Gay, a writer I really like, in the latest issue of the Virginia Quarterly Review, on being a bad feminist.

Will no doubt resonate with many, and perhaps slightly reassure? Some of the beats i like are er, slightly misogynistic.  And in part because of that, I try not to be the feminist police.  But I don’t buy the argument that feminism means validating all the choices any woman, anywhere, ever makes as inherently feminist… Anyway, this is a nice weekend read.

My favorite definition of a feminist is one offered by Su, an Australian woman who, when interviewed for Kathy Bail’s 1996 anthology DIY Feminism, described them simply as “women who don’t want to be treated like shit.” This definition is pointed and succinct, but I run into trouble when I try to expand it. I fall short as a feminist. I feel like I am not as committed as I need to be, that I am not living up to feminist ideals because of who and how I choose to be. I feel this tension constantly.

Roxane Gay, via VQR » Bad Feminist.

When you are done and want to know, ‘Who is this Roxane Gay and where else can I read her work?’, she has a blog and here is a link to her writing at The Rumpus, where she is essays editor.  She seems far too cool to be a professor, but apparently not.  For those of you who discover your new best (writer-you-want-to-be-best-friends-with) through this post – you’re welcome! I will pass your thanks to @lawandlit who brought me to Roxane Gay through this article on trigger warnings.



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