Wednesday, August 31, 2016

The Geek Feminist Revolution - Kameron Hurley

The Geek Feminist Revolution - Kameron Hurley - 272 pages

This book is a collection of essays and blog posts by the author about a wide variety of topics, most of which carry a common theme of inclusivity, feminism, and geekdom.  Specifically, she discusses the representation of women, various sexual orientations, races, and economic statuses in the realm of gaming, sci-fi/fantasy, and fandoms.

This collection is a clarion call to awareness and responsibility for members of all communities, not just the geeks.  Because she is so stylistically strident, I had to pace myself more than I usually would as I was reading my way through this book for a couple of reasons; first, after reading two or three chapters, the essay presentation started to feel formulaic and that lessened the impact of her otherwise pointed observations, but also just because there's a lot to absorb here.  At times, it also seemed a little like an advertisement for her other fictional works and herself (near the end of the book is an entire chapter about how it feels for her to be "the man," or the accomplished author that's made it, and her tone of humility seemed too strained to be convincing to me), but she also gets very personal about events in her personal life that brought her to this most recent presentation of how she feels about the modern feminist movement.  And that is kind of the overall point here: marginalized persons moving to de-marginalize themselves by ripping the veil of complicity off of the words and attitudes we exhibit as a society every day.  This book is going to open your metaphorical peepers, whether you agree with every point or not.

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