'Sick Sick Sick' : The Books of Ornery Women

A reading project examining a radical or ‘bludgeoned’ subjectivity of female writers | Session Four

Book: Beatriz Preciado, Testo Junkie, published by The Feminist Press, 2013
Reading to be announced

Our readings have contrasted the work of new female writers emerging from the online Alt-Lit scene with the late nineties Semiotext(e) ‘Native Agents’ publications under the editorial directorship of Chris Kraus, in addition to recuperating earlier women’s literature such as The Yellow Wallpaper, 1892, by Charlotte Perkins Gilman. We seek to explore the tensions between language, sociology, subjectivity and power-relations, their impact upon gender and the ways in which they take form in the text. As readers, we have the opportunity to revive inherited post-structuralist feminist (and their questionably excessive) ideals, bringing them face to face with contemporary radical subjective writings to address how gendered language can disrupt expected hierarchical sequences or to what extent it can reproduce them.

In November we began by reading Kate Zambreno’s Heroines, 2012, alongside a screening of Věra Chytilová’s New Wave film Daisies. In February we continued our reading with Chris Kraus’ seminal confessional memoir I Love Dick, 1997, which exposed Kraus’ desire-written pursuit of theorist Dick Hebdige in collaboration with her husband Sylvère Lotringer. In March, for the third session, we continued to consider the semantics of the female voice and read Katherine Angel’s Unmastered: A Book On Desire, Most Difficult To Tell, 2012, with Anne Carson’s essay The Gender of Sound, 1992, and April, the fourth session, leads us to Beatriz Preciado’s Testo Junkie, 2013. Katherine Angel and The Blackburn Company will perform Remastered on 12 May in the CCA Theatre.

A programme of events responding to both the authors and core texts accompany the reading group. Some will be initiated from within the project, but outside proposals are invited for reading, performance or screening events. 

Contact for further information, to make comment, or to submit proposals.

Initiated by Emma Balkind and Laura Edbrook in association with MAP 
With thanks to Chris Kraus, The MIT Press, The Feminist Press and CCA, Glasgow for their support