Fahs ordered the text by theme, with sections like “Queer / Trans” and “Anticapitalist / Anarchist”. It includes blog posts and charter statements, as well as self-described manifestos whose demands include the abolition of money and the elimination of men. The oldest text, from 1851, is a speech by Sojourner Truth; the most recent, from 2018, is a poem titled “Occupy Menstruation”. Many documents come together in the late 1960s and early 1970s, during the second peak wave of the movement. Fahs’ self-preservation instinct is inclusive – crucial for a project dedicated to bringing together voices so marginalized they had to cry out to be heard.
That said, other than her brief introductions to the topic at the start of each section, she doesn’t provide much background information for the documents themselves. I wanted advice on how to situate these manifestos and understand what their authors were reacting to. They switch between sweeping generalizations and sharp specificity, referring to the shift to names and events that may have receded in the past but which clearly elicited a vehement response. Fahs must have his reasons for his selections, but in the absence of any explanation, some left me perplexed. Why a rolling and evocative address for the homeless by African-American anarchist Lucy E. Parsons belong to the same “Trashy / Punk” section as a Tumblr post by singer-songwriter Grimes?
Not that Fahs approves of all the views proposed. She can not. You get the feeling that some of the contributors, given the chance, wouldn’t just have disagreed on the more subtle points, but might have actively disliked each other. Andrea Dworkin denounces sex as “an act of invasion” while others are decidedly pro-sexual. At another extreme, the 1913 Futuristic Manifesto of Lust glorifies rape. A 1914 exhortation by the poet and painter Mina Loy mocks “ineptitude and the degenerate” and launches a reprehensible appeal for the “racial responsibility” of the “superior woman”.
There are sober, policy-oriented documents gathered here, but admittedly they are quite boring to read. The wilder the proclamation, the more likely it is to take up space in your memory and imagination. Some of them, like Solanas’ inimitable “SCUM Manifesto”, draw a line between horrible and funny, dehumanizing men (the “walking dildo” is one of its softest sprinkles) while swaying against it. Muzak’s ailments.
Solanas accuses men of projecting their own hated traits onto women – insecurity, vanity, passivity – while making the decision and the boast of the women their own. This gesture of reversing the situation raises a central question, even if it does not deign to answer it. (You get the feeling that Solanas, whose notoriety was assured when she shot Andy Warhol in 1968, was not so interested in questions.) Is there a fixed power in the world, and is- So what a feminist objective to snatch it from the men who wield it? Or does it allow a narrow, patriarchal understanding of power to dictate the terms? In other words: take up space? Or change the space entirely by doing more? In what book you can check 10 best dildos 2021?