Bad Feminist = Good Reading

August 12, 2014


I’m about to do something that people shouldn’t actually do.

I’m going to recommend a book I haven’t finished yet. That book is Bad Feminist. And it’s not bad; it’s good.

The thing is, I am so enthusiastic that I don’t want to wait until I’ve finished reading to talk about it. I want you to go get it RIGHT NOW so you too can enjoy it as soon as possible. Unlike a work of fiction, where the ending could royally screw things up, I have a feeling this essay collection is going to stay good ’til the very end. (And if not, whatever, it’s still worth the money for the 3/4 I’ve read so far.)

Bad Feminist is, at times, like reading an eloquent presentation of secret subsections of my brain. It made me laugh, it made me think, it made me feel less alone in my existence as a (sometimes angry, often confused, always flawed) woman.

“I embrace the label of bad feminist because I am human. I am messy,” Gay writes in the introduction. “I am just trying… to do some good in this world while also being myself: a woman who loves pink and likes to get freaky and sometimes dances her ass off to music she knows, she knows, is terrible for women.”

Gay doesn’t just tackle feminism, but talks race, politics, body image, friendship and pop culture. Reading this book is akin to spending time with your best friend (assuming, of course, that your best friend is incredibly smart, unfailingly honest and exceedingly likable).

So, in the event it wasn’t already clear, I enthusiastically stand next to the 7,843,564 other book people who are singing this one’s praises. In a summer full of fantastic new releases, this is the book I’m most excited about.

(And if you’ve already read it, I’d love to hear what you think!)

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  • Have been looking for a new book to take along on vacation…I think I’ve found it! Thanks!

  • I’m going on holiday in a couple of weeks and am on the hunt for some good holiday reading – will add this to my list!

    Kat x

  • Katherine,

    Have read it and LOVED it!

  • Got this off your recommendation. I am almost done with it and have to tell you it has been great! I want more of this—easy to read but SMART. I am working on my dissertation and need more reading like this for when I don’t want to do work or watch TV. Too often I go overboard and try to read for fun with something that’s too intense or experimental for it to be immersive (I’m thinking of you, Virginia Woolf). This, however, has been perfect.