Bad Feminist

Bad Feminist


Book - 2014
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A collection of essays spanning politics, criticism, and feminism from one of the most-watched young cultural observers of her generation, Roxane Gay. "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 issue." In these funny and insightful essays, Roxane Gay takes us through the journey of her evolution as a woman (Sweet Valley High) of color (The Help) while also taking readers on a ride through culture of the last few years (Girls, Django in Chains) and commenting on the state of feminism today (abortion, Chris Brown). 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. Bad 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.
Publisher: New York :, Harper Perennial,, [2014]
Edition: First edition
Copyright Date: ©2014
ISBN: 9780062282712
Characteristics: xiv, 320 pages ; 21 cm


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Apr 01, 2018

I liked this collection of essays, I liked how the author wrote, how she came across, her all too human thoughts and ideas. She's an interesting person with an interesting view of life. At least, I find it interesting as I come from a privileged middle class white background. I grew up and live is a largely middle class white religious area. I am not one of those people who can say "Don't worry my best friend is gay/black...." even if I wanted to use that pathetic excuse for saying something deeply homophobic or racist.
I can't say as I really thought this collection was much about feminism, I think it addressed issues on racism much more deeply then any feminist ideals. These were not new thoughts, not awe inspiring or revolutionary but they were heart felt and personal.
It is depressing to see how far we have to go to gain equality as a human race. Whether based on gender, race, religion; there is still so much we can't seem to solve, no matter how much money or resources we throw at it.
Nor does there seem to be any solutions to solve these massive differences in opinion or find a way to live with those opposing views.
I like to be positive and believe that humanity will learn to live together. There always seems to be hope somewhere. I choose to think it will prevail.
In the meantime.....I will educate myself, I will try to be a good example and maybe pay a little more attention to my daily choices.

Oct 19, 2017

Roxane Gay is not writing these essays to dictate what a feminist is or who a feminist should be, but rather the complex nature of being a woman and her own contradictions between the person she thinks she should be and the person she is. Her essays focus have a specific focus but build onto one another to reveal a complex woman. Gay does not write to tell us how we should be, but to make sense of the woman she is. Because of this her writing is personal and allows the reader to connect through agreement or disagreement, but also through exposure. While I may not be well versed in 90s teenage television/books or black films, I now know more because Gay used her personal interests to illustrate a point. This book is a conversation, and while you have a transcript of Gay's side of the conversation, if you're engaged you'll be responding with your own internal dialogue.

Chapel_Hill_KatieJ Aug 22, 2017

The essays cover a wide array of topics, and I finished the book feeling like I really know who Roxane Gay is. The ultimate message is that there’s no wrong way to be a feminist. Someone can be an academic and still write wistfully about the allure of Sweet Valley High books. It’s okay to like pink, and it’s okay to take Scrabble tournaments very, very seriously. The essays about pop culture may seem like they aren’t serious, but then Gay shows the very serious side effects of how gender and race are portrayed. All of these essays were very relatable.

Aug 19, 2017

I love Roxane Gay's writing. I read "Difficult Women" earlier this year and immediately felt compelled to read more of her writing. Sadly, "Bad Feminist" just misses the mark for me. There are a few notable essays (Blurred Lines & How to be Friends With Another Woman, as examples) but most of the other pieces in this book come across as regurgitated pop psychology rather than insightful ponderings. Would I recommend this book? Not a chance. Would I read more of Gay's writing? An emphatic YES!!

Oct 26, 2016

Gay's writing is AMAZING. I feel like I've known her for years or she's just another member of my family. She brings up some really excellent essays on Scrabble competitions that really spoke to me. I'm obsessed with board game/video game documentaries so that whole chapter was quite the treat. Well done! Highly recommended!

Aug 12, 2016

Smart, witty, insightful, and sometimes angry, Roxane Gay's collection of essays moves from the personal to the political to the cultural. Topics range from her own take on feminism and her racial heritage to popular films (Her chapter on Tarantino is particularly trenchant and necessary.) to the idea of privilege. These are essays for right now. She's also written a novel and a book of stories. I'd also recommend "The Argonauts" and "We Were Feminists Once."

Jul 20, 2016

Gay is a terrifically fun writer to spend some time with. This was the first book of hers that I read, and I look forward to reading more. She is able to be funny, warm, scathing, and unsettlingly honest all in one essay. Like all collections of essays written for many different publications, this collection has some unevenness. Some of the essays could have benefited from more careful editors who could have encouraged Gay to draw out some of the insights that are left implied, and who could have assisted in trimming more repetitive passages. But I'm interested to read more of Gay's work as she continues to focus her huge talent and intelligence on important contemporary topics.

Feb 20, 2016

Funny, honest, and always worth reading. If you're someone interested in the ideas and wordplay of a smart writer, here you go. Race, gender, movies, Scrabble and more. You might not agree with everything she writes, but she'll make you think.

Dec 13, 2015

A good collection; educating, enlightening, informative, inspiring. We have a long way to go - society.

AnarchyintheLC May 07, 2015

Gay's writing is very insightful and intense, I felt compelled to read through this whole book almost all at once (which is strange because essays aren't normally a "suspenseful" format for me). I really enjoyed these essays and I also read a few other books she references/praises which were also very good. Time well spent!

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Mar 01, 2015

"I would rather be a bad feminist, than no feminist at all."


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