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Not That Bad: Dispatches from Rape Culture Paperback – July 4, 2019
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Edited and with an introduction by Roxane Gay, the New York Times bestselling and deeply beloved author of Bad Feminist and Hunger, this anthology of first-person essays tackles rape, assault, and harassment head-on.
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In this valuable and timely anthology, cultural critic and bestselling author Roxane Gay collects original and previously published pieces that address what it means to live in a world where women have to measure the harassment, violence and aggression they face, and where sexual-abuse survivors are 'routinely second-guessed, blown off, discredited, denigrated, besmirched, belittled, patronized, mocked, shamed, gaslit, insulted, bullied' for speaking out.
Highlighting the stories of well-known actors, writers and experts, as well as new voices being published for the first time, Not That Bad covers a wide range of topics and experiences, from an exploration of the rape epidemic embedded in the refugee crisis to first-person accounts of child molestation and street harrassment.
Often deeply personal and always unflinchingly honest, this provocative collection both reflects the world we live in and offers a call to arms insisting that 'not that bad' must no longer be good enough.
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- Publisher : Allen & Unwin; Main edition (July 4, 2019)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 368 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1911630113
- ISBN-13 : 978-1911630111
- Item Weight : 12 ounces
- Dimensions : 5.08 x 0.98 x 7.8 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #425,517 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
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Reviewed in the United States on July 14, 2018
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I...Am...EVERY...PERSON ... IN... THIS... BOOK
I can relate in some way to all of them.
Thank you for this.
The title was what initially grabbed my attention: Not That Bad. How many times have I and countless others said that?! Was it because it wasn’t that bad? No. It was that bad but we still live in a world that, on the whole, doesn’t want to know about sexual assault.
It doesn’t quite feel right to say I have a favourite anything where rape culture is concerned so instead I’ll say that the best definition of rape culture I’ve read to date is by Clem Ford: “A state of existence in which the impact and reality of sexual violence is minimised while the perpetrators of it are supported by a complex system built on flawed human beliefs, mythologies about gender, and good old fashioned misogyny."
Usually I’d give each contributor in a book of essays an individual star rating and comment on their writing style or whether I connected with their story or not, but I won’t be doing that here. I’m so proud of everyone that contributed to this book and while some essays impacted me more than others, I’m not comfortable critiquing anyone’s experience of rape culture.
My full review (too long to post here), including a quote from each contributor’s essay, can be found on my Goodreads profile.
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There are such a range of reactions that people have when faced with these situations, it is impossible to cover them all. I was a little disappointed, however, as I expected the collection to examine the term 'rape culture' in more depth. There were glimpses of it in individual accounts but I feel that anyone wanting to know what 'rape culture' actually means would come away from reading this as confused as at the start. It was a difficult read but this subject needs to be discussed, it's just a shame that this particular book missed the mark for me.
Thanks to NetGalley and publishers, Atlantic Books/Allen & Unwin, for the opportunity to read an ARC. (Unfortunately due to a technical error I was unable to access the ARC so I bought a copy after release date - this review is from the purchased version).
But overall if you’re interested in feminism, and the subject of rape culture, this is recommended reading, and it’s essay format makes it easy to dip in and out of