My Rating: 5 out of 5 Cups of Tea
Genre: Nonfiction Essays
Summary: 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 (via Goodreads).
Things I Loved:
- Gay’s voice is so clear and unique. She brings you into these essays as a trusted friend, willing to share her personal thoughts, stories, and inner-struggles. Reading this book felt like having coffee with a friend.
- The ambiguity and nuance Gay allows into her essays left me awe-struck. For so long, I have felt nuance missing from my own discussions on the topics she covers.
- From feminism to race to the way women present their gender, these topics were covered with such insight, but also caution. Gay recognizes the areas where she can and cannot speak, and she blends these areas beautifully, allowing her opinions and thoughts to shine through, while also making it clear that she recognizes her own limitations. This only heightens the feel of a conversation taking place. It challenges the reader to ask themselves where their limitations are, where their knowledge lies, and what they can do to bridge these two things.
- The honesty in these essays is breath-taking. Gay recognizes her faults and embraces them, giving them to us as an offering, as a way to better understand not only herself, but ourselves and the way we approach such hard topics as the ones covered.
Things I Disliked:
- The fact that I didn’t read this sooner in my life is really disappointing.
- Everyone. Whether you identify as a feminist or not, this gives brilliant insight into so many different topics and makes a great conversation-starter and thought-provoker.