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The Secret Feminist Cabal: A Cultural History of Science Fiction Feminisms Paperback – December 11, 2009
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A network of beacons allows ships to travel across the Milky Way at beyond the speed of light. The beacons are built to be robust. They never fail. At least, they aren't supposed to. Learn more
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What's interesting to more general readers is the existence of an intensely active, intensely intelligent literary, cultural and sexual discussion taking place in the back waters of a genre that many think begins and ends with, as U2 calls them, ''Stories for Boys.'' --Rick Kleffel, The Agony Column
I really enjoyed this. It's a wonderfully thorough, analytical, and inclusive account, sure to become an indispensable resource. Better than that, it's a terrific read. Here you'll find everything you always wanted to know about women in fandom, women in publishing, women as writers. . . with the added value that the snippets of tasty vintage gossip are woven into a rich fabric of discourse. Helen Merrick's style is unassuming yet authoritative; she manages to be a scholar and an entertainer at the same time. Years ago, I read Women of Other Worlds, edited by Helen Merrick and Tess Williams, and was impressed. The Secret Feminist Cabal is more demanding, an ambitious project, but equally successful: this is a fine book. --Gwyneth Jones, author of White Queen
The Secret Feminist Cabal is an extended answer to the question Helen Merrick asks in her introduction: ''why do I read feminist sf?'' In this wide-ranging cultural history we are introduced to a multiplicity of sf feminisms as Merrick takes readers on a tour of the early days of sf fandom, tracks the upheavals of the 1950s and 1960s and the explosions of feminist sf in the 1970s, and contextualizes subsequent developments in feminist sf scholarship. Her history is expansive and inclusive: it ranges from North America to the UK to Australia; it tells us about readers, fans, and academics as well as about writers, editors, and publishers; and it examines the often uneasy intersections of feminist theory and popular culture. Merrick brings things up to date with considerations of feminist cyberfiction and feminist science and technology studies, and she concludes with an intriguing review of the Tiptree Award as it illuminates current debates in the feminist sf community. Broadly informed, theoretically astute, and often revisionary, The Secret Feminist Cabal is an indispensable social and cultural history of the girls who have been plugged into science fiction. --Vernoica Hollinger, ed. Edging into the Future
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If you enjoy the subject or if you are doing research on feminism I would definitely recommend this book. Once the class is over I, most likely, will not read again.