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Angry Women

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Sixteen performance artists discuss human sexuality, racism, sexism, and the ways in which art can be used to break down taboos and dogma.


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Sixteen performance artists discuss human sexuality, racism, sexism, and the ways in which art can be used to break down taboos and dogma.

30 review for Angry Women

  1. 5 out of 5

    Garima

    Rage meets Wisdom meets Feminism meets FTW moments meets WTF moments. A therapeutic reading experience involving mild electric shocks.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Megan

    DIAMANDA GALAS: The original nature of woman's voice has always been tied to witches and the shamanistic experience--the witch as transvestite/transsexual having the power of both male and female. LYDIA LUNCH: They're killing too much of the earth and not enough of the people! Another reversal of intelligence. bell hooks: In Toni Morrison's The Bluest Eye, there's a moment when the little girl, a victim of rape/incest, says to another little girl whom she wants to be angry, "Anger is better -- the DIAMANDA GALAS: The original nature of woman's voice has always been tied to witches and the shamanistic experience--the witch as transvestite/transsexual having the power of both male and female. LYDIA LUNCH: They're killing too much of the earth and not enough of the people! Another reversal of intelligence. bell hooks: In Toni Morrison's The Bluest Eye, there's a moment when the little girl, a victim of rape/incest, says to another little girl whom she wants to be angry, "Anger is better -- there is a presence in anger." I was always moved by that contrasting of victimization vs. being victimized; it's important to maintain the kind of rage that allows you to resist. KATHY ACKER: In early books, the characters changed gender a lot: I never got 'his' and 'her' right! And the dumb reason was: I just didn't remember, I didn't care. ... I think the reason was probably my hatred of gender.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Kristen

    This was a suprisingly incredible read. It is 1991 interviews with feminists from many different walks of life. They didn't shy away from showing completely opposite views in the same group. These are real women, so of course everyone is different. This really made me think about my views on pornography, prostitution, and abortion. It is healthy to think, so the book gets an A++. My favorites were bell hooks and Susie Bright. bell has a very wonderful perspective on class and women. Susie has th This was a suprisingly incredible read. It is 1991 interviews with feminists from many different walks of life. They didn't shy away from showing completely opposite views in the same group. These are real women, so of course everyone is different. This really made me think about my views on pornography, prostitution, and abortion. It is healthy to think, so the book gets an A++. My favorites were bell hooks and Susie Bright. bell has a very wonderful perspective on class and women. Susie has the funniest stories of vibrators and sexual freedom. The fact that this was 15 years ago made the predictions for the future really fascinating. I love love love this book. I thought I was on the fringe, this showed me I have far to go to get there.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

    this book is such a trip. i really like it. it's all crazy oldschool poisonous flowers along the margins, goddess energy, fake-bloody-knife holding picture-taking, labrys-wielding, medusa-snake cover, let-me-show-you-my-cervix article-writing insanity. i love it. this book is such a trip. i really like it. it's all crazy oldschool poisonous flowers along the margins, goddess energy, fake-bloody-knife holding picture-taking, labrys-wielding, medusa-snake cover, let-me-show-you-my-cervix article-writing insanity. i love it.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Alan

    Despite being the only book ever to rival this one in heinousness of cover art-----I think Angry Women is one of the most important books of the Nineties if not the late 20th century--both as historical text and timeless shriek. It was an incredible education to read this, a lost trove, an oral history of late feminism through the lens of the most uncompromising, visceral, lacerating intelligences then performing art. It has it's flaws. They make better history. Everyone should read this. Despite being the only book ever to rival this one in heinousness of cover art-----I think Angry Women is one of the most important books of the Nineties if not the late 20th century--both as historical text and timeless shriek. It was an incredible education to read this, a lost trove, an oral history of late feminism through the lens of the most uncompromising, visceral, lacerating intelligences then performing art. It has it's flaws. They make better history. Everyone should read this.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Anita Dalton

    A very dated but very interesting look at counter-culture and fringe women artists, performers and writers. Definitely worth a read.

  7. 5 out of 5

    flannery

    Can't review this book because the bell hooks (and Lydia Lunch, less so) interview motivated me in the same way as all the David Foster Wallace I've read did, not to be ironic, flippant, not to operate on default mechanisms of distrust, fear, and meanness, not to be afraid of loneliness, not to perpetuate hurt, and then talking about it I get very serious and humorless, and I can't be any of those things on the internet without also being self-editing. The internet is the exact place to be ironi Can't review this book because the bell hooks (and Lydia Lunch, less so) interview motivated me in the same way as all the David Foster Wallace I've read did, not to be ironic, flippant, not to operate on default mechanisms of distrust, fear, and meanness, not to be afraid of loneliness, not to perpetuate hurt, and then talking about it I get very serious and humorless, and I can't be any of those things on the internet without also being self-editing. The internet is the exact place to be ironic and flippant and being otherwise feels downright unnatural. So allow me to sum up: good book! Well curated and edited. As a nascent feminist, still overcautious about most things, some of these women scare the living shit out of me but like I said, some of these interviews really cut to the quick, not just about sexism, but about failures in human relationships in general. I didn't like this at first because it lacked a sense of humor but it is okay to assert, without a wink to the audience, that some things deserve to be taken seriously.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Rita Brinkerhoff

    This book is a great history lesson. I love interviews!!! I think I read the Diamanda Galas interview about 20 times. You get her, bell hooks, Lydia Lunch, Karen Finley, Valie Export (who blew my mind!), and more more more.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Dan's

    KATHY ACKER: In early books, the characters changed gender a lot: I never got 'his' and 'her' right! And the dumb reason was: I just didn't remember, I didn't care. ... I think the reason was probably my hatred of gender KATHY ACKER: In early books, the characters changed gender a lot: I never got 'his' and 'her' right! And the dumb reason was: I just didn't remember, I didn't care. ... I think the reason was probably my hatred of gender

  10. 5 out of 5

    Bonnie Burton

    LOVED this book! Find out what makes performance artists such as Diamanda Galas, Annie Sprinkle and Karen Finley tick and ticked off.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Angela

    Great snap shot of some great late 80s early 90s feminists, performance artists and heros! My copy is old, worn, well loved and often read.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Meg Powers

    Bleh. If you want any more reasons to be annoyed by no-wave lady Lydia Lunch, read on. I've enjoyed the other RE/Search books so far, although the interviewer tends to take on a very fanboy/girl tone. I love feminist performance art, particularly from the 70s and 80s, and they profile women I respect-Maria Abramovic, Carolee Schneeman, etc, but this publication tends to make every performer read like the typical perception of feminist performance artists -think of a team of more violent, man-hat Bleh. If you want any more reasons to be annoyed by no-wave lady Lydia Lunch, read on. I've enjoyed the other RE/Search books so far, although the interviewer tends to take on a very fanboy/girl tone. I love feminist performance art, particularly from the 70s and 80s, and they profile women I respect-Maria Abramovic, Carolee Schneeman, etc, but this publication tends to make every performer read like the typical perception of feminist performance artists -think of a team of more violent, man-hating Judy Funnys from the cartoon "Doug." I will say that, not being a fan of Diamanda Galas anyway, I was pretty entertained by her violent urgings towards women to carry a gun or otherwise get raped. Read Angry Women anyway, but read it knowing that there are far better interviews and profiles of female performers and then skip over to the Re/Search Industrial Culture handbook. It's much more entertaining and violently masculine.

  13. 4 out of 5

    HeavyReader

    At some point in the early 90s, I realized that evey cool, strong woman I knew had a copy of this book on her bookshelf, and I decided that I needed to have one of my own. I went out and got myself one, although I can't remember where. This is the book where I first heard of so many amazing female artists and writers and thinkers: Susie Bright, bell hooks, Karen Finley, Sapphire. Annie Sprinkle is in this book too, and I will never forget her claiming to have saved a man's life by giving him a bl At some point in the early 90s, I realized that evey cool, strong woman I knew had a copy of this book on her bookshelf, and I decided that I needed to have one of my own. I went out and got myself one, although I can't remember where. This is the book where I first heard of so many amazing female artists and writers and thinkers: Susie Bright, bell hooks, Karen Finley, Sapphire. Annie Sprinkle is in this book too, and I will never forget her claiming to have saved a man's life by giving him a blowjob. Sexual healing indeed.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Maria

    I first read parts of this book as an undergrad during the peak of political correctness in the 90's and when I first realized what feminism meant. It was loaded and biting. I remember wondering about how dated it would be and so decided not to buy it. Chris saw it at a bookstore in 2006 and decided to pick it up for me. I've been re-reading some of it since then and realize how significant this publications is in the history of feminism and performance. Thanks Chris for picking it up--I love it I first read parts of this book as an undergrad during the peak of political correctness in the 90's and when I first realized what feminism meant. It was loaded and biting. I remember wondering about how dated it would be and so decided not to buy it. Chris saw it at a bookstore in 2006 and decided to pick it up for me. I've been re-reading some of it since then and realize how significant this publications is in the history of feminism and performance. Thanks Chris for picking it up--I love it when you TRY to be a feminist!

  15. 4 out of 5

    Megan

    Reading this book and its companion, Angry Women in Rock, gave me some my first experiences with queer culture and feminism in general. It was also the most radical thing I had ever encountered, as a 16 or 17 year old baby dyke just realizing how many different types of women in the world there were. I remember reading this and feeling positively subversive. Reading about these women made me feel less alone in my small midwestern town. It also make me feel totally inspired to do something great, Reading this book and its companion, Angry Women in Rock, gave me some my first experiences with queer culture and feminism in general. It was also the most radical thing I had ever encountered, as a 16 or 17 year old baby dyke just realizing how many different types of women in the world there were. I remember reading this and feeling positively subversive. Reading about these women made me feel less alone in my small midwestern town. It also make me feel totally inspired to do something great, and for the first time like that might actually be possible.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Andrew

    As pulpy as this book appears to be, it's pretty sociologically important, just as a historical artifact, and was certainly a sign of things to come (it was published in 1992). What lies within is 90's feminism in all its glory, or vainglory, its reasoned insights and wretched excesses (e.g. some of the absurdities perpetrated in the name of performance art), its embarrassing errors of thought, and yes, its anger, which is either appropriate or insane (case sensitive). As pulpy as this book appears to be, it's pretty sociologically important, just as a historical artifact, and was certainly a sign of things to come (it was published in 1992). What lies within is 90's feminism in all its glory, or vainglory, its reasoned insights and wretched excesses (e.g. some of the absurdities perpetrated in the name of performance art), its embarrassing errors of thought, and yes, its anger, which is either appropriate or insane (case sensitive).

  17. 4 out of 5

    Nomy

    this was the first place that i heard of bell hooks, sapphire, kathy acker, diamanda galas, karen finley, annie sprinkle, lydia lunch, susie bright, and a handful of other totally groundbreaking you-need-to-know-about-them women. i was still in high school i think. later on many of these women came to my attention in different ways and i felt grateful for having a reference point, having read their words in this collection.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Ryan Mishap

    A large interview book covering everyone from performance artists to sexual performance artists....okay, not exactly fair, because there are talks with bell hooks, Diamandi Galas, Lydia Lunch, and others. Karen Finley is the only performance type artist in the book that I have seen, although I don't think I want to see any of the others--especially the sex orgy with chicken parts all over stage. Hey, avant garde. A large interview book covering everyone from performance artists to sexual performance artists....okay, not exactly fair, because there are talks with bell hooks, Diamandi Galas, Lydia Lunch, and others. Karen Finley is the only performance type artist in the book that I have seen, although I don't think I want to see any of the others--especially the sex orgy with chicken parts all over stage. Hey, avant garde.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Lily

    This is a very important book. I wish it had included more voices of artists of color, but I can't say it has disappointed in any other way. The interviews are in depth and telling and vivifying and help so much to contextualize the art practices of these trailblazers who kicked the door open for future generations. Thank you to bell & Lydia & Susan & Diamanda & & & et al!! Thank you thank you!!! For being the raddest of the rad. This is a very important book. I wish it had included more voices of artists of color, but I can't say it has disappointed in any other way. The interviews are in depth and telling and vivifying and help so much to contextualize the art practices of these trailblazers who kicked the door open for future generations. Thank you to bell & Lydia & Susan & Diamanda & & & et al!! Thank you thank you!!! For being the raddest of the rad.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Andrea

    Re/Search books are [email protected]&king fantastic. And this one introduced me to the ladies who pushed it harder than anyone and currently still expand the poles. If you ever find this one, freaking pay what they ask for it.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Leilani

    This book has really great interviews with bell hooks and Diamanda Galas, but unfortunately the other people were more boring than not. Can we get a few more angry women in there who identify as more than just performance artists?

  22. 5 out of 5

    Claire Genevieve

    A rare insight into the thoughts of feminists and artists, (and feminist artists). There are few books covering the lives and opinions of women in performance art (and other art) so this was a welcome book back when I read it about 20 years ago. Every woman interviewed was a gem.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    This has everyone from bell hooks to Diamanda Galas - an AMAZING reader on women artists

  24. 4 out of 5

    Mo

    Lydia Lunch and Diamanda Galas in the same book? And then there was Annie Sprinkle, Kathy Acker and Avital Ronell, too. Lions and Tigers and Bears, oh my!

  25. 5 out of 5

    AnitaDurt

    i read this in highschool and really liked it. it was how i first learned about annie sprinkle and other she-roes in my life. i remember wanting to be IN this book. i still do...

  26. 4 out of 5

    Hyla

    This is one of my all time favorite books because of the amazing people interviewed in it: huge range of life experiences & perspectives.

  27. 5 out of 5

    CC

    Amazing resource. bell hooks, Susie Bright, Diamanda Galas, et al in one volume. Insight abounds.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Deirdra

    I loved this book, It's collection of various interviews. I don't know if this publishing company is still around. They had a line of great books that they published. I loved this book, It's collection of various interviews. I don't know if this publishing company is still around. They had a line of great books that they published.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Famous

    I remember this book feeling really relevant to my life and times when i first picked it up. It was validating and insightful of my own experiences.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Cindy

    An old favorite... warm and comfy like a worn-in hairshirt

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