Monday, April 23, 2007

Courtney Martin, Jessica Valenti, Kara Jesella, and...Bjork

It's a hot week for feminism here in NYC, and particularly for two of my favorite under-30 feminist mentors:

Courtney Martin hits the road with Perfect Girls, Starving Daughters: The Frightening New Normalcy of Hating Your Body, while personal hero and a founder of Jessica Valenti goes offline this week with her first book, Full Frontal Feminism: A Young Woman's Guide to Why Feminism Matters - a book she says she wished she had read as a teenager. Damn. Me too.

Excerpts of each are here:
Courtney on AlterNet
Jessica in The Guardian

For those of you not yet addicted to, some classic, vintage words from Jess -- who gets an undue amount of public flack from conservative detractors and misogynist wackos -- may sway you to check it out:
Where criticisms about my loud, opinionated ways might bother me if I wasn't a feminist, the fact that I am means that I know that there's nothing wrong with me, but only with a world that doesn't want women to speak their minds.

Such words have got to sound familiar to "second-wave" veterans. I'll be eager to see what the response is from an older generation to these new, important voices. Jessica wrote her book because, among other things, she believes that "All women, especially younger women, deserve feminism in their lives - and most don't have access to the university courses or feminist mentors who might introduce them to it."

A third book out this week by another next-generation writer I have yet to meet but already admire: Kara Jesella's How Sassy Changed My Life. Publisher's Weekly calls it "a behind-the-scenes, warts-and-all look at the magazine's office culture, including sections on the glossy's coverage of feminism, celebrity and girl culture....[T]he book—written in a style reminiscent of the magazine itself—is a testament to a publication that changed the face of teen media." Sounds like a fun romp through the recent past at the very least.

And as if these three offerings weren't enough for one week, check out this tidbit from Bjork on feminism (courtesy of

Feminism dead my a**.

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