Feminist Voices You Should Know

Feminist Voices

We've read many great memoirs, collections of essays and cultural analyses by female authors in recent years. Here are some feminist voices that kept the conversation going this year. In her honest and incisive memoir Shrill, Lindy West examines internet culture and body image through a feminist lens. Her absorbing essays and polemic against rape jokes in comedy combine Roxane Gay's […]

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A Woman in Charge of Her Life: 3 Recent Feminist Memoirs


Going with the idea that the personal is political, those involved with women's liberation often write first-person narratives of their lives and work. These are three of the most recent and entertaining. Author and journalist Jessica Valenti writes of the psychological effects of sexism in her memoir Sex Object. From her family history of abuse to […]

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Notorious RBG and the Supremes


In honor of Women's History Month, here's a look at books by or about the women who've served as Supreme Court justices. No Supreme Court justice in living memory has generated the following that Ruth Bader Ginsburg has. She's achieved almost cult-like status among liberals and progressives, particularly the young. The apex of this may be […]

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‘Manic Pixie Dream Girl’ Added to Oxford Dictionary


Chicago native and pop culture writer (AV Club, The Dissolve) Nathan Rabin recently achieved the unique accomplishment of having a phrase he coined, "Manic Pixie Dream Girl," appear in the Oxford English Dictionary. “Manic Pixie Dream Girl,” or MPDG, was Rabin’s description of a series of certain female film characters (most notably Kirsten Dunst in Elizabethtown, Natalie Portman […]

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Hair: The Obsession, The Romance, The Drama!

Hair 2

Forget thighs and breasts, the body part that women universally obsess about is hair.  Elizabeth Benedict, author of both fiction and nonfiction, has edited a new collection of essays entitled Me, My Hair, and I. These female authors talk about their hair: African American hair, Jewish hair, Latina hair, Sri Lancan hair, and hair from […]

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Watch Her: Anjelica Huston’s Biography and Filmography

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I wrote about A Story Lately Told, the first half of Anjelica Huston's memoir, in a blog post last year when it was published and mentioned how I was anticipating the second volume, Watch Me. It does not disappoint. While much of the first part of the book deals with Huston's tempestuous (and much-documented) relationship with Jack Nicholson, […]

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Traveling to Novel Places: India

Varanasi Woman

Teatime for the Firefly by Shona Patel is a book at once sweeping and intimate, covering the end of the British raj. Layla Roy has an unlucky horoscope and a grandfather who believes in educating women, and so she is sure she will never marry. However, Manik Deb, a British-educated neighbor, takes a romantic interest in […]

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Rock Critic Jessica Hopper to Speak at Harold Washington Library Center

Photo provided by Featherproof Books.

We chatted with Jessica Hopper, who presents her new book, The First Collection Of Criticism By A Living Female Rock Critic, at an Author Talk at 6 p.m. Wednesday, June 10 in the Chicago Authors Room on the 7th floor of the Harold Washington Library Center. Q: You've been writing about music since you were a teenager. […]

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5 Books to Read After You Read “Reading Lolita in Tehran”

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While Azar Nafisi's Reading Lolita in Tehran has become a modern classic in its own right, there are plenty of other books detailing the lives of women in revolutionary Iran. For those not familiar with Nafisi's story, she was an English professor in Tehran who held private, secret seminars for a selected group of students on […]

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What To Read After Missoula

Take Back The Night

Jon Krakauer is a master of writing about people in extreme situations, whether they go out into the wilderness in Into the Wild or follow Mormon fundamentalism in Under the Banner of Heaven, so it makes sense that he writes about sexual assault in a college town crazy for football. Missoula is home to the University of Montana Grizzlies, a […]

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