For a few weeks back, we tried to extinguish a fire torch by claiming that feminism has become a sales force. Is feminism the term used for literature to change meaning? Has feminism been fun and is it just a good thing? And what is actually feminist literature?
The literature blog has taken a chat with a handful of experts. First out is author Lotta Elstad. Elstad’s last book is the novel I refuse to think that both publishers and critics have been referred to as feminist. It was the reading of this book, which gave me the feeling that the feminism concept has become a bit strange: Has not the term been used in the strange ways of the last time? The publisher calls I refuse to think “a black, feminist contemporary comedy”, but I do not really understand what is feminist about the book. The author himself has shared many thoughts about this with us.
What does a fictional work make feminist?
Good question! Is it enough that the women’s traits are complex? That the work consists of the Bechdel test (test from the film world that examines gender balance, red.anm.)? That it addresses typical women’s case questions, abortion or violence against women? Or that the actual women’s experience is given space? I refuse to think has both been read as lightweight chicklit and a feminist manifesto.
I’m comfortable with both. I have wanted to entertain any reader, while this novel – like my first two – is an entrepreneurial novel exploring what can be called feminist absolutes . In the Studio , inspired by Julian Assange’s days in Stockholm, I ask indirectly when feminism has to go: What does one choose when the uncompromising women’s struggle for the integrity of the body – you can not even bother! – will be in the way of another (if possible bigger?) Revolutionary project, à la Wikileaks? Does an offense entitle you to break down a man? What if this man, in other contexts, is a liberator? Then to a separate room (a title I’ve shamelessly stolen from Virginia Woolf ).
Here’s the subject of a woman’s uncompromising hi-for-physical space-perhaps at the expense of love and meaningful interpersonal relationships. And in I refuse to think : Where is the time-limit the limit for our defense of self-determined abortion? The main character is, as you yourself observed, a “usually cowardly woman”. Yes, she’s desperate, but she’s also partly passive, clever, pretentious, self-employed, she’s working out, not least: She’s deliberately in order to get pregnant, to hold a man hostage, so she resets and chooses – in overtime – to kill this being as she intentionally and consciously created.
The question is: Do we still support her in her right to do this? Is the woman’s power over her own body absolute? Some mean: no . The avenue’s critic wrote to book, and this cynicism made her “heal on the fetus.” Klassekampens Bokmagasinet editor was partly attacked by a defense of Norwegian healthcare practice with abortion after twelve weeks. Some have been helped by the subject being addressed in a comic (I want to say tragicomic) form. Perhaps most interesting with these readings is how the novel has exposed that many, otherwise liberal women, are very uncomfortable with the abortion question. In this way, this story of an ordinary woman goes straight into the core of a fundamental feminist debate.
Is feminist literature the same today as for, let’s say, 20 years ago?
Unfortunately, I do not have enough overview of the field, so you must ask the literature about… Author of I love Dick , Chris Kraus, says in an interview with Dagsavisen that she knows an ambivalence around the label “feminist” that it may actually reinforce the idea of the woman like the other: “Why must things be feminist, feminine dating, woman your and your female daughter? “Yes, why must things be feminine your feminine dating?
I definitely agree that “feminism” can be used as a pure marketing strategy. The word is an effective signal of who a book may be interesting for. And neither is it so dangerous, as I see it. But disregard it: Does this reinforce the idea of the woman like the other? Well, can not we turn it over? In order for literature, or for that matter film, to really be good, or “universalism”, as it says, it must also be feminist. Are not Ibsen’s Hedda Gabler and a Doll’s House big work just because they expand our understanding of the world with a feminist horizons? You do not need a Wonder Woman , or turn the world on your mind, to let Egalia’s daughters (satirical novel by Gerd Bratenberg, ed.). To get this. Or take the film screen: Why is the Sopranos series far superior to the mafia classics godfather ? To me it is obvious: the women’s nuts. They get fit, they get depth, they get replies, and the sore and leaning relationship between men and women is placed at the center of our lives; It has been decisive for how we have built up the world and too much of our private anxiety. I want to say that The Sopranos is feminist precisely because it does not limit the woman to the other, but allows for both sexes’ life views.
We will do as Lotta Elstad recommends and talk about this with a literature whiter and more who work with books. Keep up with the weeks ahead!