I knew the Little House on the Prairieseries from my mom reading it out loud to me over the span of many many months. As an idealistic Midwestern youngin', I felt a connection to the Ingalls family, romanticizing the debilitating diseases, crippling crop failures, and other completely unrelateable nineteenth-century pioneer ailments they experienced throughout their homesteading and pioneering. (Did I take a family vacation to the Laura Ingalls Wilder Historic Home and Museum in Mansfield, Missouri? Yes.) And as an only child, I was delighted to learn Laura Wilder's only daughter aided with the completion of the books. But Judith Thurman's recent New Yorker article "Wilder Women" explores the lives and politics of both Laura Wilder and her daughter, removing both the series and the women behind it from the rosy lens of American lit-lore.
"Rave On" is the Page Turner series that asks feminist writers, artists, musicians, activists, leaders, and scholars to talk about a book that completely rocked their world. Today we feature media activist and writer Anne Elizabeth Moore on the Dirty Plotte comic books by Julie Doucet.
I don't spend a lot of time reading feminist theory, which speaks to an inherently limited audience. I study anti-oppression strategies in general, so most of what I've read that's influenced my drive as a political person who identifies as female isn't overtly feminist.
In fact, I find far more use in work that's not usually discussed in a feminist context, like Freire's Pedagogy of the Oppressed. Or books that sort of rail against feminist projects or events and address its weak points, so I can sort out where those sit with me. Like Norma McCorvey's I Am Roe.
But if I really think about something I read that made me gack with identification—that spoke to me in a pretty deep way about being a girl in the kind of world I was living in—it would have to be Julie Doucet's Dirty Plotte comic books.
Here's the short version of Lizzie Skurnick and her sassy-and-smart new book Shelf Discovery: She's a popular book critic and lit blogger who started a column called
"Fine Lines" for Jezebel.com that made you feel like you and your girlfriends were huddled beneath a zip-up sleeping bag with a mini-flashlight reading between the lines of Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret and all the rest of your beloved, well-worn vintage young adult novels to unearth the subtext 30 years later.
The column became an instant hit and Skurnick's newly released Shelf Discovery: The Teen Classics We Never Stopped Reading is the book that collects all of Skurnick's "book reports" with contributions from some YA novelists.
Page Turner chatted with Skurnick about how feminism bleeds through the pages of The Cat Ate My Gymsuit, why she's actually the anti-nostalgia woman, how the YA novels really did make her a teenage feminist, and her mission to create a literary teen canon. Read on for more!
"Rave On" is the Page Turner series that asks feminist writers, artists, musicians, activists, leaders, and scholars to talk about a book that completely rocked their world. Today we feature Estelle Freedman, Ph.D., the Robinson Professor in U.S. History at Stanford University, on Against Our Will: Men, Women, and Rape, by Susan Brownmiller. Read on for more!
There may be no one better to teach girls how to rock than music and culture critic Jessica Hopper. She's clocked massive amounts of hours as a tour manager, band publicist, DJ, touring bassist, Girls Rock Camp booster, and fanzine publisher. Her "music-is-my-life" credo and infectious passion for young women and feminism are evident from even a split-second glance at her work.
Now she's just released her first book, The Girls' Guide to Rocking. Heard of it yet? Perhaps you've seen the kick-ass promo. Read on for more!
"Rave On" is the Page Turner series that asks feminist writers, artists, musicians, activists, leaders, and scholars to talk about a book that completely rocked their world. Today we feature make/shift co-editor and copublisher Jessica Hoffmann on Women, Race, and Class, by Angela Y. Davis. Read on for more!
In 2008, 58 teenage girls published their take on body image, family, politics, and pop culture in the anthology Red: Teenage Girls in America Write on What Fires Up Their Lives Today. Page Turner caught up with five of them to talk about feminism, teen-girl falsehoods, and what's happened in their lives since their essays left off.
Welcome to "Six Questions," a new Page Turner interview series with authors about their work. Today we talk with Jamaican-born writer, activist, and performance-poet extraordinaire Staceyann Chin about her new memoir, The Other Side of Paradise, a chronicle of Chin's childhood that includes her survival of parental abandonment, poverty, abuse, sexual assault, and her eventual coming out as a lesbian in her deeply homophobic homeland.
Page Turner talked with Chin about lessons of survival, otherness, the writing process, feminism, and her upcoming documentary on her quest to become a mama. Read on for the Q&A!
Welcome to Page Turner, a new blog on feminism and books here at Bitch's online headquarters. Here's my goal with Page Turner: to make it a collaboration between you, Bitch's readers, and me, your biblio-obsessed blogger. Page Turner is all about our love of books and feminisms, and all the many ways we interact with authors and their work in our daily lives. Read on for more!
"Rave On" is the Page Turner series that asks feminist writers, artists, musicians, activists, leaders, and scholars to talk about a book that completely rocked their world. This edition features writer, performer, activist, and biologist Julia Serano on Daring to Be Bad: Radical Feminism in America, 1967-75, by Alice Echols. Read on for more!