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King Kong Theory Paperback – Bargain Price, April 1, 2010


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: The Feminist Press at CUNY (April 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1558616578
  • ASIN: B005EP2GGC
  • Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 5.5 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,187,261 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In the newest from Despentes, author of the controversial 1991 novel Baise-Moi (and co-director of the controversial movie adaptation), the feminist provocateur examines key questions of sexuality, male and female roles, and her own awakening to action. Having been raped at 17, and served as unwilling confidante to many women since Baise-Moi's publication, Despentes struggles mightily with a society that taught her, as a woman, not to fight back against a man attempting to rape her "when that same society has taught me that this is a crime from which I will never recover." She also, thankfully, finds some measure of relief; three years after being attacked, she discovered feminist writer Camille Paglia, whose words first inflamed and then emancipated her. Elsewhere in this short book, Despentes discusses sex, pornography, and prostitution. That she spent several years as a prostitute isn't notable, Despentes says; what's notable is that she's willing to speak about it. While Despentes wades boldly into some murky waters ("who is the victim in porn?"), she ultimately settles on a single, low note: "femininity is the same as boot-licking-the act of servility." Coming nearly 20 years after Baise-Moi, Despentes's manifesto feels flat and a bit in thrall to her earlier work.
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About the Author

Virginie Despentes, born in 1969, is a French writer and filmmaker. She is best known for co-directing the 2002 Baise-moi, the controversial rape/revenge film depicting a graphic mix of violence and real sex and based on her novel of the same name. She has written eight books of fiction or memoir.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By JK on November 15, 2012
Format: Paperback
Don't be put off by short summaries that make this book sound like just another body-image/self-help book on the market: Despentes is radical, piercing, funny, and powerful. KING KONG THEORY is easy to read but also immensely thought-provoking and analytic.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By yourlibrarian on August 5, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Despentes' thoughts about women's lives are the kind hardly ever heard in either the general media or common discourse, even though her experiences are ones many women will share. This says much more about how our media and discourse is seriously lacking in promoting women's perspectives than because her commentary is revolutionary. For some, this collection of essays may be revealing and inspiring in making them re-evaluate their place in the world or thoughts about other women. The book is a quick read and doesn't pad the discussion.

As a book, however, there is not a great deal to it. It struck me that these chapters would make a great collection of online essays as it is not a particularly cohesive work. I rather wish that these discussions could, in fact, be found online so as to inspire more commentary on the ideas raised in it.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Kaspar Hauser on July 29, 2010
Format: Paperback
Required of girls who are fickle about feminism as a result of feeling un-feminine. Despentes is a staunch character. This is a vital work.
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