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Big Sex Little Death: A Memoir (2011)

by Susie Bright(Favorite Author)
3.52 of 5 Votes: 5
1580052649 (ISBN13: 9781580052641)
Seal Press
review 1: I have to admit: I had not read any of Susie Bright's work, nor could I really place her name or face when I started reading this book. Then she started dropping names like On Our Backs and bringing up beef with Andrea Dworkin, and it all kind of fell into place. This is a pretty light memoir that focuses more on Susie's childhood, parents, and early activist life, glossing somewhat over her time as a leader in the second-wave sex-positive queer feminist movement. It's quick and smart, a good introduction to the movement for beginners, and intriguing to see the movement from the hippies of the 1960s to the radicalization of the 1970s and 1980s. I'm glad it's not heavy on the theory, which is both a good and bad thing I've found in second-wave texts, especially when it come... mores to a lack of intersectionality. Bright comes close to a good examination of the intricacies of queerness, poverty and feminism, but never takes it any deeper than she could. Bright's stories of the 1970s Midwest Communist labor movement are almost more fascinating than her sexual escapades in San Francisco, because they seem so anachronistic, uncovering a section of history that I for one knew next to nothing about and also revealing the hypocrisies of even the most seemingly liberal movements.The later chapters feel rushed, but maybe that was just me rushing to finish them. I like her writing style, which sometimes errs on the side of a little too conversational, but I feel like that works when the extremely personal becomes the political. Worth a read for anyone interested in second-wave radical feminism who doesn't mind the details when it comes to sex of all flavors and drugs of every sort.
review 2: Stopped reading this halfway in. Normally if I can't finish a book, I give it one star. But this was actually well-written, so I can't put my finger on what it is that I dislike about it. I just couldn't stay interested. I guess it wasn't what I expected. For one thing, it's called "a memoir" when it's not. It's an autobiography with every detail of her entire life, relevant or not. She includes the history of her grandparents, and spends an entire chapter talking about why her parents' marriage failed. She tells random little stories, like a girl who fell off a cliff that she never even knew & a crazy guy on a bus. If I talked about every crazy guy I've met riding a Greyhound, that'd be a memoir in itself.. But who really cares? I definitely found myself speed-reading & skipping ahead, hoping it would get better. Finally gave up. less
Reviews (see all)
Great book about the perspective of feminine sexuality. Susie Bright is unafraid to share the truth.
A crazy real autobiography. She even goes to places that shame her... I love Susie Bright!
Putting this on my reading list for my Summer Residency
Review forthcoming on Small Strokes :)
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