aw. so touching to see this npr interview from 2007 on tumblr.
“i would say that a sassy girl was someone who maybe didn’t think that high school was necessarily the best time of their life.”
“If reading has historically been a tool of revolutions and of liberation, is it not rather because, constitutively, reading is a rather risky business whose outcome and full consequences can never be known in advance? Does not reading involve one risk, that, precisely cannot be resisted: that of finding in the text something one does not expect? The danger with becoming a ‘resisting reader’ is that we end up, in effect, resisting reading…This is why my effort…is to train myself to tune into the forms of resistance present in the text, those forms that make up the textual dynamic as a field of clashing and heterogeneous forces and as a never quite predictable potential of surprise. My effort is…to trace within each text its own resistance to itself, its own specific literary, inadvertent textual transgression of its male assumptions and prescriptions.”
“In insisting on the origin of the present volume not in theory per se but in the production of a practice, this book encounters feminism as an enabling inspiration, not as a theoretical orthodoxy or an authorizing new institutionalization…Practice is not censoring but merely showing what can be done, and done otherwise…. “
Shoshana Felman in What Does a Woman Want?
i love this hed.
there is an important tori conversation happening on an email thread. i want to underscore that “precious things” is the most important song, though it is obviously hard to choose. “tear in your hand” and “crucify” are pretty necessary. i have a secret (not anymore) love for “a sorta fairytale.” “take to the sky.” and i could use some qt with the “boys for pele” album.
i like a girl with “catholic damage,” as courtney love once called it.
heather havrilesky left a comment on our 90swoman post defending alanis’ feminist relevance and linked to her amazing 1999 salon article in which she connects alanis’ embarrassing/awesome truth-telling to adrienne rich’s feminist mandate from on lies, secrets, and silence, which is a book i have thought about every day since i read it in the 90s. (actually, to take it further and be really alanis about it, the way i experience that book is way more visceral than thinking. I LIVE THAT BOOK.)
anyway, how did i miss this essay? wtf was i doing in 1999? going on bad dates with that english guy who would never pay for anything and buying expensive lingerie and writing confessional essays at nylon? i know i had the internet.
heather also says:
“It’s embarrassing to love Alanis because she represents, in the eyes of men and women, the best and the worst of being a woman…She’s self-involved, insecure, fearful, bitchy and way too smart for her own good — all labels often used to dismiss emotionally unrestrained women. Alanis is what Freud would have called ‘hysterical.’
But women like Alanis don’t have any desire to rein in their emotions, no matter what the reaction will be. They can’t stand the repression and self-control it takes to be mysterious. Mystery works for women like Chrissie Hynde and Patti Smith and Sleater-Kinney’s Corin Tucker, women whose lyrics are subtler, more poetic and intriguing and just out of reach. But women like Alanis are too impatient for self-censorship — they want to share everything, all the time, with everyone. No more small talk, damn it! No more batting the eyes and slowly giving in. Let’s get to the truth! Let’s make a real connection, already! ‘Is she perverted like me?’ Just answer the damn question!”
i dont know if i wanted to share everything in the 90s, when i secretly loved alanis, but i definitely wanted to make a connection and hated the whole mysterious, repressed (BORING?) indie girl thing.
i am spending the day working on a paper about freud, tracey emin, and the politics of radical vulnerability during which i will ask, as heather does,”How could she do this to herself, expose herself like this, set herself up to be ripped apart ruthlessly?” i would maybe ask this of myself, too, but as jon says, im actually kind of cagey.
“But, as the legend goes, it was while reading How Sassy Changed My Life that our Editor-in-Chief decided once and for all to start an online magazine that could provide Sassy-esque community for lesbians and other weirdos without forsaking fun or feminist empowerment.”
sassy inspired us, we inspired autostraddle, and this entire interview is a third wave feminist/weirdo lovefest. which is exactly what i needed today. also, going to lilith fair with a straight male is very 2010.
High Art, 1998 (via thereal1990s)
“They wanted me to examine my life. I mean, this is it. It’s about you right now. I’m thinking about you.”
thats lucy in this super-hot 90swoman film. in honor of the oscars, our other nine 90swoman favorites and why.
they include: singles, welcome to the dollhouse, chasing amy…..
if you want to, you know, MAKE HISTORY, you can tell us yours.
(tama janowitz and andy warhol)
“i hate writing, ive never made any money from it, and i cant get published.”
thats what tama janowitz said during a reading i went to two winters ago.
i appreciated her refusal to pander to the audience and pretty up the truth. but that truth was so depressing. especially since so many 90swomen aspired to a life like or hers. or what we thought her life must be like, having read about her in sassy (or elsewhere) or romanticized the boho life she chronicled in slaves of new york.
i was thinking about this story while getting pissed at last weeks nyt article chastising female artists for not making art about violent women. ada says that female artists have been talking about women as aggressors since the 90s. i say that the article was a backlash-y excuse to make feminism look boring. and that if we want more art by women, we need more women artists. who can make a living wage. (or maybe more? so they can buy awesome clothes, like tama.)
in other news on 90swoman:
proof that the 90s are back (like you needed any)