FBC ep15 review of Feminist Dont Wear Pink - 4:1:19, 10.01 AM.mp3
3:07PM Apr 1, 2019
Welcome back to the feminist book club podcast, a show for dangerous well read women. Each week we explore literature and media through a feminist lens as one small way to reclaim our time, our books and our stories. Let's get started.
Hey, everyone, Renee here, and I'm bringing back our intern Mariah King for another book review. Hi, Mariah. Hey,
what are you reading today?
Today we're reviewing feminist don't wear pink and other lives by
Scarlett Curtis. And she's the editor as an essay collection. Is
Yeah, that's a collection with everyone from Jamila, Jamil to Keira Knightley and even Emma Watson. Oh, wow,
I can't wait to hear more about it. Oh, just take us away.
Okay, so essentially, this book is made up of dozens of essays, all written by female identifying writers, I suppose a lot of them are not writers by trade. And honestly, that comes through pretty clearly who's a writer and who isn't just because I feel like what they had to say, was a lot easier to digest and kind of make sense of, so you get people from live little and Olivia Perez, all the way to Sky Jackson, who I think is like, maybe she's 16. I don't know, I remember seeing her on Disney Channel. So that age to me, and I didn't like it. Anyways, the point of this book is for all these different women to kind of say what feminism means to them, and how they first learned about feminism got in touch with feminism and kind of how they carry it out in their everyday lives. Which on the surface, incredible. We love empowering other women. We love empowered women. I mean, we love women, am I kidding? And I think on the surface, that's like a really cool idea. I just think that the execution is always wrong. I joke that I would have rather gotten a lobotomy then read this book. And, you know, after having finished the book, I definitely take it back. And that was pretty harsh. as funny as it may have been. I don't know, it just it all felt very elementary, if you will. And I think that books like this are definitely needed. Like, if I'd read this book when I was 13, or 14, I think it would have just been not necessarily life changing. But it definitely would have given me a lot to think about, and would have kind of propelled me in the direction of my own feminism a hell of a lot quicker than, than I did. I think that really says something. But being where I am now. I mean, I'm 20 years old, I go to a very liberal arts school. Well, I go to the University of Minnesota, it's not that liberal. But I think where I'm at now, it almost fell childish. It was just reading the same three pieces of advice over and over again, told by different people, which I mean, the advice is definitely save advice. But I don't know, at this point, I don't need somebody telling me that it's okay to have a period. It's like, yeah, I, I've been bleeding for how many months now, like, I'm well aware, and I don't need somebody to give me permission to have a period or permission to be comfortable in my own feminism. And maybe that's speaking from a place of privilege that I am comfortable in my own skin. Yeah, things of that nature. But I don't know, it just kind of rubbed me the wrong way, throughout almost all of the book. But then there would be these nuggets of sage sage advice, like Keira Knightley, his essay is just phenomenal, which I was not necessarily surprised at. But like she wrote better than some of the some of the people who are writers by trade. And she wrote about what it means to kind of be a woman. Her essay was titled the weaker sex. And she goes into a lot of detail when she gave birth and just kind of the physical toll that that has on somebody's body. And then how you know, men dare to say that women are the weaker sex. And so I thought that was such an interesting point. And something that I hadn't really thought about in my day to day life. I mean, of course, you hear the tropes of like, Oh, you throw like a girl, and you know, all that shit. But to kind of put it in the context of not only two women bear the children, but the children also like they literally get ripped from our wombs. Like, my hairs are standing up on the back of my neck right now. childbirth terrifies me. But yeah, so then she wrote about that. And it was just so interesting to kind of see it in that perspective. And I think especially from like a celebrity like that, where you inherently put them up on this pedestal of like, oh, like, Can you imagine Keira Knightley pooping, like, no. But then she talks about all these things, and kind of makes them I guess, more real and tangible in a sense. And then you have other pieces like, Jamila. Jamila was phenomenal. It was titled, tell him her essay in here. And it's about you know, I want my son to have the same opportunities as my daughter, and you know, all that other shit. But Jamila tells it in a way where it's like, like, tell him like, tell your son the struggles that women have gone through, don't sugarcoat things, tell him the like, tell him your own personal struggles, and tell him the struggles of the women that he knows. So that he realizes kind of that it's an ongoing fight, unfortunately, and one that probably isn't going to end anytime soon. But we can do our part by educating the the younger generations, and hope that they do better than then their own role models, I suppose. But yeah, so that was really interesting. Oh, here's an interesting bone I have to pick. Now I'm in a lot of graphics, graphic design classes right now just kind of where I'm at with my major in journalism and art, and kind of the format of this book. I'm not gonna lie to you guys. It just, I've caught myself like laughing out loud. Because like Jesus Christ, how many different fonts Do you need to use in one book? It was there were a lot of stylistic choices. And I get that I'm being very nitpicky. And it's not about the font, it should be about the content and stuff. But you know what, it's a review. So we're just going to throw it all in there. And yet, there are so many fonts, like, it's uncivilized, is what it is. And then there are pages where you'll read a quote, in like, paragraph format, and then you turn the page and the entire page is made up of one sentence that you literally read on the page before. Why, why not only is that a waste of space, it's a waste of my eye muscles, it's a waste of time. And it just, it's one thing if it's in there, like three or four times, but oh, my God, I was like every three pages, there was one. And, again, I realized this is a very meticulous, and I'll be at bitchy point. But you know what, here we are. Other than that, I would say that the book was definitely like, feminist. I mean, how can it not be as feminism in the title, but yeah, it was definitely like empowering women and things like that. And like it is feminist, but it feels like easy feminism. And I could be wrong in thinking that and that could be completely coming from like a place of unholy privilege. And I do realize that but I feel like I wanted it to take me to the next level, and it never did. And the essays were so short, you only get like, some of them are one page, and some of them are six pages. But either way, it's like very short. And for the writers that you do enjoy, it's like, you just kind of get to skim the surface of what they're capable of. And then it ends and you're on to somebody else who you know, doesn't know, AP style, or whatever. And then other times when they're clearly not a writer by trade, and they're using like four exclamation points in one sentence. Don't ever do that. Don't ever do that. Unless it's a text message or you were drunk. Don't ever do that. Things like that. And then when it's one that you're just kind of trying to get through, it's like, it just goes on. And every three pages, I feel like I'm reading the same thing over and over again. But also a lot of them did stick out because just because of what they were able to speak on. One area that I felt this book was really lacking. Aside from, you know, the all important fonts was that it was very centered around Brown says hetero women. And that's one thing that I was kind of not necessarily appalled by but I was shocked and kind of upset by is if you're going to be like if you're going to claim to be a feminist book. I feel like you gotta have intersection ality? I mean, it's 2019. My head, I don't know, I just wish that it would have had more more to speak on about trans women and queer women and things of that nature. I don't even know what exactly it was that I was yearning for. But I didn't feel satisfied. I got done with it. And I was kind of like, Huh, okay, I feel no more empowered as a woman that I did before I started the book. And again, that might just be because of my upbringing, and from a place of privilege. But also, I was kind of expecting to have a sort of, I don't know, not necessarily an epiphany. But I really wanted to feel secure in my, in my personal identity as a queer woman. And that was something that I thought, a book that has feminist in the title that it would give me but then it didn't. So that's just kind of a small critique. Other than that, I would definitely recommend this book to anybody school age, like 16. And younger, I think this would just be such a good read, give it to your nieces, give it to your sister, give it to grandkids, I don't know how the people are, but give it to whoever will read it. Because I know that at a point in my life, this book could have drastically changed my outlook. That point, of course, would have been before I got all cynic and 20 years old as I am now. But with that being said, I did underline so many parts in this book, so many lines, like so many excerpts, where I just kind of had to stop and stare at the wall. And I was like, Wow, that was really beautifully written. Or were just kind of resonated with me for some reason or another. But overall, not my favorite book, what I read it again, not if my own life depended on it, but I would recommend it to my cousin's my friends, and people who could really benefit from hearing the things that I was privileged enough to hear growing up. So overall, I think I'm giving this a rating out of 10. And, and
God, okay, well, I said I was a cynic. So I think I would have to give it about like a five and a half. It didn't tell me anything I didn't already know. But I can see why it exists and how it does help other people. And I do love that there is a book like this to give people this space to learn and be kind of learn in a space that isn't targeted. And I think that is really important. Yeah, so five and a half out of 10. Eat your heart out.
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